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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Just like that....it's over


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MoDance, thank you for your post and letting us know your DD decision to explore other life opportunities. I am not sure why it's making me so emotional...I guess I'm imagining how I would feel and support my own daughter through these decisions as well.  Perhaps it's also all the terrible things happening in the USA right now--ballet seemed a constant.  I hope you check in from time to time to let us know of life after ballet.  Sending love, peace, and much happiness to you and your family

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This is happening to kids all around us. I seem to wake up to a Facebook post daily as a dance family says goodbye. My own daughter is making a tough decision in the next couple of weeks whether or not to leave her performing arts high school to go back to studio life and either homeschool or local public school.  She isn't quite ready to stop dancing, but being home, she realizes how much of her anxiety and stress is gone. At some point, we have to stop being dance moms and just support our kids, who will be adults VERY soon, figure out their own path. It is tough!

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21 minutes ago, HarfordDanceMom said:

At some point, we have to stop being dance moms and just support our kids

Wise words HarfordDanceMom.  It’s hard to let go of what we want and just be supportive, but it is something we must do, otherwise we will never know if our child is following our dreams or theirs.  

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HarfordDanceMom you are right. This quarantine has shown my DD and us how we lived in an endless circle of Nutcracker, auditions, Spring Shows, Summer Intensives, to start all over again year after year... 

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On 6/4/2020 at 7:24 AM, HarfordDanceMom said:

At some point, we have to stop being dance moms and just support our kids, who will be adults VERY soon, figure out their own path. It is tough!

This is what we need to be doing all along, but it is not always easy. It IS easy for us, as adults, to see a goal and map out a plan to get there. This serves our young dancers well to have that guidance but there comes a point where we have to step away from the dance momager (mom/manager) and allow our dancers to take the lead and steer their life in the direction that they choose. Even if we have to bite our tongue because it is 'not how I would do it'. We need to support them in their personal growth, where ever that takes them. Countless times I have read the reminder "we are not raising dancers, we are raising humans". Hugs to all whose dancers have decided to step away from ballet. That is a hard decision and I know it is hard for us parents as well. Just hug and support your kids, that is really all we can do at this point.

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Noodles, thank you for your post.  Not everyone here is a mom-ager or thinks of themselves as a dance mom.  I relented with ballet lessons in hopes that my DD would hate it and move on.  I didn't want to be committed to something like that.  Yet here I am supporting DD as much as I am supporting her towards a desire to be a physician (both she said she wanted to be since 10).  I posted feeling emotional about MoDance's recent post as it is that; emotional when we are there to support our kids when they experience a loss, a win, or whatever change comes their way.  Being a minority...and in these current times, I was reflecting on all the racialized experiences I have had...and now seeing played out for all the world to know.  

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Bavalay I am so sorry for all of the injustices that you have very likely suffered. The upside is that people are opening their eyes to how deep the social injustice is and it does sound as if foundational changes are being discussed bot on the political/governmental front as well as in the ballet community.

Just for clarification my term momager was not meant in a derogatory way as in the was mothers were reflected in the show 'Dance Moms'. I just mean that as it begins we are typically the ones driving the ballet bus, researching dance programs, choosing classes for our young ones, summer programs, pros and cons of competition, scheduling shoe fittings and driving....so much driving, I am simply saying that no matter where we are on the journey it is important that we remember it is our dancer's journey and we are really just along for the ride. At some point we all have to hand over the reins to our dancers. 

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Thank you Noodles.  I was thinking of that show as I have experienced parents like that (and quit going into the studio as I don't want to talk about ballet or other people's kid with respect to ballet).  I appreciate the clarification.  And you can imagine the conversation and support I would need to give around leaving ballet might be different; I don't want my daughter to quit anything around racial dIscrimination.  She wouldn't have a life if that were the case.  😞

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Hugs to all.  I can tell you from experience.  Both from a sister who did not have my parent's support to dance professionally and my oldest who is retiring this season after 14 years dancing professionally.  It is a blessing to be able to make that decision on your own and in your own time.  My sister suffered from dreams unrealized at the hands of my parents.  We chose not to have our daughter experience that if we could help it.  She chose to retire this year and even though she did not get her final performance, as planned.  She is at peace that she lived her dream to fulfillment.  Fulfillment is key for each individual and does not necessarily mean a job.  What it means is that they walk away on their own terms and get to live the rest of their lives without the burden of an unfulfilled artist.  The walking away on their own terms and by their own decision is HUGE!  As hard as it is.  This is something to be thankful for.  Their decision.  The mental health aspect of that is huge. 



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