Wednesday, 8 August 2012

A Pink Leotard and a Netball Skirt

Once upon a time I had a little girl who loved ballet
She was enthralled with it.  It was the highlight of her week.  She loved to move, to laugh, to meet new friends and to have fun.  When ballet class was finished she would come home and dance in her room and go over and over the new steps that she had been taught.  She would passe more than she would walk.  She also sat on my lap at the desk and would gaze into the computer as we watched Youtube after Youtube of dancing and ballet moves.  My little girl had a passion for it.
On ballet class day she would rush home from school, get dressed and be waiting in the car for us to be there on time.  She didn't want to miss a minute of her precious ballet class.  She made sure that her pumps were on correctly, her tightly secured bun was just right and her leotard was sitting as it should.
From the moment that the class begun Grace had poise, moved gracefully and she enjoyed pointing, flexing and stretching at the barre.  She also loved seeing her reflection in the long mirrors and smiling at herself as she floated by.

The joy she experienced was obvious and infectious.
...and then we moved to Melbourne.  

Her biggest worry when we moved was her ballet.  I was a bit anxious too.  Even before we thought of a new school, she wanted me to look into ballet schools just like the one she attended in Sydney.  Well, we tried and we tried.  Our first experience was with a strict Russian school that left Gracie in tears - we never returned.  The second was at a local school that had been recommended to us but the day we arrived it had been flooded and the stench of mildew and mould was in the air and it was enough to put both Grace and I off.  Our last experience lasted nearly 12 months.  It was in a local hall, some of her friends attended, the teachers seemed lovely and Gracie went in with her head held high and with all the hope in the world that this was her new ballet 'home'.  It wasn't to be.  Not only did she not enjoy it but in between all the changes my little ballerina lost her passion.  Gone were the days of flitting around her room, of dreaming all things ballet, of watching ballet steps on Youtube.  

I must say, my heart broke a little when ballet took a backward step in Gracie's life.  It took a while for her to heal from the loss but I am happy to report that she has discovered a new love.

...and if that makes my girl happy.  Well I'm happy, too.

Plaits might not be as pretty as a tightly secured bun and a netball bib as flattering as a leotard but my girl has found a new joy and that is what life is about.
I will support her no matter what.  I smile as I drive her to netball training or to her Saturday game and feel excitement for her new found love.  I even felt joy when selecting new runners to play her "Bestest netball...ever!"  Because I love her.  


  1. You can tell Miss Gracie that I was never much of a dancer, I did Physie for a few years, but LOVED netball, and would love to get back into it!

  2. I will pass that onto Gracie. I can see you as a Physie girl. I did ballet for many, many years and my mum was a ballet teacher. I have a lot of happy memories but there is no hope of a return now. The thought of getting back into a leotard is scary.

  3. That made me cry, Jane. It's great to feel excited about anything no matter what your age, and if for Grace that's netball, I say 'go for it (little) girl!'

    1. I remember being in awe of you when you played netball at school, Gab. I could never be a superstar player like you but I loved watching and thinking how awesome you all were. I did LOVE my ballet and dancing and had many happy years attending classes and taking part in concerts. That is what brought me joy when I was growing up. Grace is happy and that brings me happiness, too. As long as my kids are smiling and enjoying life to the full, then I couldn't ask for anymore. I love them both to bits.