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Ballet Talk for Dancers

teary-eyed SI phone call


ondine88

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Hi,

 

I know this will improve because we've been through this before, but boy is it hard. Left DD (16) in Boston on Saturday. Her biggest apprehension was not knowing anyone. I assured her that there would be several others there who didn't know anyone either. Well of course her 4 suite mates apparently all know each other so she is feeling very much left out and alone. Oh, those calls just break your heart - I reminded her that she felt that way at Saratoga, and by the end of the week had made friends and was loving it.

 

In the meantime I feel terrible..........guess this is just a call for "misery loves company" - has anyone else had the choking voice phone call yet?

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No choking phone voice, but mine was all teary in the car on her way home from a day at her SI--does that count? At the beginning of the week, she was all excited to have been placed in the second of six levels, since she is one of the youngest in the whole program, but by the end of the week in a room full of girls two and three years older and more experienced, she felt overwhelmed. I reminded her that she was placed in the level the instructors felt she belonged in, and that her job was to think of it as a challenge to which they hope she will rise. I reminded her that the idea was to improve as much as possible, not collapse in a fit of despair, nor rest on her laurels as she might have done had she been placed in the lower level. A few hours later, she was able to begin to remember things she had done well during the week and stop focusing on her short suits and insecurities. This is all soooo nerve-wracking isn't it? All the more so because we can't get in there and fight these battles for them, they have to do it themselves!

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We've had 3 or 4 teary phone calls from our 13 year old dd. This is her first time away from home and she's definitely feeling homesick, as well as a bit overwhelmed by what she perceives to be high expectations by her teachers in class. It's not all bad -- she's made friends (she went knowing no one) and her teachers have given her good corrections and attention but she's really feeling pressured and stressed. She's also been taken aback by how many very, very thin girls there are at her SI (she's not one of them!). This has also caused her some stress, which in turn alarms me because I'm not there to make sure she's eating enough... if you know what I mean.

 

So all in all, this is a learning experience for our whole family -- falling under the category of "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger". We're hoping the homesickness will eventually subside (it's already gotten better than the first few days) and that she'll become less nervous in her classes. We'll see.

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My husband left our dd on the opposite coast this weekend, and it is I who am teary eyed when I talk to her. She is trying to be tough, but I can tell from her voice that she is nervous. She is a late starter to ballet and has worked very hard to get to her first SI. I'm hoping that after her first classes today she will feel more comfortable. I don't think I will be comfortable until she is home.

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Last year my daughter was only 20 minutes away, so I had the chance to see her room, meet her friends, and generally see how she was doing without her calling me specifically to tell me.

 

This year my daughter flew on her own and is a long way away. I've had a few short calls from her, but I'll feel anxious until I've had some sign that she's settled in (which will probably mean that I'll stop hearing from her). I know that will take a few days, but it's still difficult.

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Thank you, it is tough, but I imagine that's how I will know my dd is fine, I'll stop hearing from her. Then I will have to work very hard to keep from calling her!

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Enjoy your phone calls, even though they're teary! My DS didn't call until yesterday. That's 8 days. What that really means is he went an entire week without needing something, which is the only time he'll break down and call. We try and tell ourselves that no calls are a good thing - it means all is fine. Or there's nothing going on that he can't handle. But a periodic status report sure would be nice. We've tried calls, voice mail, etc. Our next step is to just show up at his next outing. We don't live that far and I'm pretty sure it'd be embarassing. But at least he'd think about calling next time he goes away!

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Last year I noticed my DD tended to call when feeling down, but not when she was having fun. When I figured that out, it made me view the phone conversations differently. I generally got the happy news by snail mail, 7 to 10 days later, of course.

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cheetah,

my DD is one that never calls unless she wants something- usually money. But boy if I threatened to show up during a trip if she didn't, I bet should would call at least once so we know she is alive. What great threat.

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It is difficult to get one of those sad, homesick phone calls. They can really tear you up. I do really think that most kids call more when they are sad and that no news is usually good news.

My daughter (15) was quite sad the first 2 days and then had a great Tuesday and sad again Friday. The second week was a good week, all week. I know she still misses home, but now has friends away and is more comfortable in the new environment.

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dazedandconfused

Hi ondine! I'm right there with you. Those teary-eyed calls are gut-wrenchers for Moms. My daughter experienced the same thing at her very first SI 2 summers ago. Same situation as your daughter's -- suitemates all knew each other and she was the odd girl out for what seemed like forever to her. And sometimes those other girls can "sense" that in another girl and boy does that bring out the ugliness in some. However! Hang in there, because Sal is right. That which doesn't kill us makes us stronger. My daughter came home from that SI with a whole new feeling of confidence and control over her destiny that even my 18+-year-old son doesn't yet have!

 

That doesn't mean it's any easier on us Moms who'd fight lions and tigers and bears for our children, though, does it? :thumbsup: But you do have a lot of sympathy and support here. Just encourage her to reach out beyond her comfort zone, make other friends (surely there are many others in Boston who do not know each other), which she is probably doing a lot of anyway. Just may still be a work in progress.

 

How's this for a grieving Mom -- referring to myself here -- ? I went to DD's studio just to watch the other students in class and I sat there and cried like a blithering idiot. I had a lot of sympathy though. Everybody knew, even without asking, why I was there.

 

Keeping you and your daughter in my thoughts! :grinning:

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dance1soccer1

It's good to know that mine is not the only 15 year old who still gets that little catch in her voice at the end of each phone call. DD is a good one about calling. Even during her home intensive the past two weeks, she would check in each day after lunch (because I fret about the kids going out to lunch on their own). Dropped her at the SI yesterday, and she was fine, but before placement class this morning I got the "hi, mooom, sniff, I'm a little nervous" call. I'm sure I'll be getting another one after placements go up. She was among the youngest in the placement group, so nerves set in when she compares herself with some of the 18 year olds. I just keep reminding her, it's always this way the first few days, and in a week, these kids will be your best friends.

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dancerdriver

While I feel badly that many of you are getting calls that are longing and sad, I would like any call. Like Cheetah, I only hear from my son when he wants something, money, permission for this or that. The first year he went away (13) I had not heard from him in a week so I called him and he wondered why I was calling. So I call periodically to remind him who is paying the bills, including the cell phone bill and I usually get a call back in short order.

 

But no news is not always good news. At least you all know what your dk's are doing and thinking. I'm sure that it will all work out in short order.

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At least your son returns your calls. We've decided to repossess the cell phone since it isn't being put to good use (i.e. calling mom.) Haven't ruled out the surprise visit, either. Just looking for the right (i.e. not rainy) moment. I've found that among his studio-mates, though, this isn't uncommon. The girls he knows will call home daily - or more. With that amount of phone calls, some are bound to be moments of sadness. Hopefully you'll start hearing excited calls soon!

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Boy, I totally hear you dancerdriver and cheetah. My son would probably never call if he had the choice, and he certainly doesn't return calls. Last week, he was at another SI and I heard nothing until the last night before he left (a guilty, though still reluctant call). This week, when he left for a longer SI, I told him he was dead meat if he didn't remember that there were people at home that sent him to these things, and who cared about hearing how he was doing. My husband and I have decided to demand a brief check-in call when he's arrived, another within two to three days of arrival, just to let us know how he's doing and what's going on, and then a weekly call on Sunday evenings. We'll see if he really does it. Last year, my other son didn't call for two weeks! It took a couple really nasty messages to motivate him.

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