Thursday, December 16, 2010

Momma Bear

My girl had her final recital of the season.  My hero-husband took the day off to attend.  The recital began at three and we were told to be there at two, so we were.  Actually we got there at about 1:45, because we just like to be ‘good.’ 

I was hoping to run over to the retirement center to watch some friends at their piano recital, so I just dropped off my family and went on my way.  It turns out there is more than one available retirement center in town and I went to the wrong one.  I did finally meet the woman with whom I played phone tag for months when we were trying to volunteer at that particular retirement center.  I didn’t have the guts or time to tell her who I was. 

I am ultimately thankful I went back to the college where the recital was.  I got back within 15 minutes to find my darling husband and son sitting in the hallway with other parents.  Where was my girl?  Inside the gym with the other dancers.  They kicked the parents out!?  I walked up to the door leading to the gym to get my daughter and a lady told me I couldn’t go in.  I asked why and she said it was the decision of the lady who runs the dance studio.  Again, why?  I was given no answer so I said I was going to go get my daughter.  The lady stepped in front of me and told me my daughter was fine because the lady who runs the dance studio was in there with her.  I said that she doesn’t even know her—letting the lady interpret my pronouns however she wanted as I walked through the door.

I was really angry!  I surprised myself, really.  I do all I can to avoid confrontation.  I respect authority.  I do things I do not want to do because it is the most peaceful thing to do.  I often wonder how I would act if I were in a situation that called for me to stand up for my children or my faith.  I wonder if I would choke on my words.

Now this situation was hardly so dramatic.  In fact nothing more really happened.  I went in and sat with my girl.  When her teacher arrived, I let her know that my husband took the day off to be with her and was now sitting in a hallway.  I wanted my family together and she said that it was fine.  No big deal. 

But it was a small test for me to know that I can stand up.  I hope I can do so in the future without getting quite so hot under the collar.  I wasn’t ever rude, I don’t think, other than insisting on being with my daughter.  I smiled and walked and used nice words, but I was indignant, to be sure.

We love our daughter’s dance teacher so much.  We are less enthusiastic about the company for which she works.  It is disorganized and the leader is disconnected from the company in several key ways, but makes all the logistical decisions: like making little girls sit in a huge gym without their parents for 45 minutes for no apparent reason.  I believe she teaches mostly teens and soon-to-be-teens, so the condition of the little girl doesn’t occur to her.  Why we were there an hour early never was made clear, either.  Honestly, we could have shown up at 2:45 and all would have been just fine.

I heard later she didn’t want parents in because they talk and it would have been too noisy.  I don’t know if this was the reason or not, because the leader never actually addressed me or the group as a whole.  But the reason is so insanely ridiculous.  We were in a college gym with speakers (so big that I could have crawled into one) blaring at top volume.  Cheerleaders were practicing or gabbing on the sidelines, other dance groups were doing the same.  The place was a cacophony of sound.  But parents would have been too noisy? 

I felt like momma bear for the first time yesterday.  Usually I let my kids get the short end of the stick.  I don’t know if I looked like a momma bear or just a female dog, but the cool thing about being a momma bear is that you really don’t care!

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