What Is A Dance Mom, Really?

Dance Mom

Last fall, my daughter joined her first ballet class and I became a new dance mom. Never before in my life had I stepped foot into a dance studio. I had no idea what to expect but I was prepared for the worst.

Thanks widely to Lifetime Television’s ridiculous (non) reality show; often when people now think of a dance mom, negative images of overbearing, obsessive, out-of-control psychotic momzillas generally come to mind.

Funny thing. I didn’t find it necessary to have outrageous expectations, absurd excuses or maniacal meltdowns, as do the TV dance moms. When my daughter screwed up during her recital, I found it absolutely adorable.

Certainly there has never been a more beautiful sight than my precious, determined little girl working diligently to follow the instruction of her dance teacher.

Dance Mom

Each week, I would peer through the windows to see eleven 4 year-old girls chasséing about the studio. And each time I witnessed my daughter’s fortitude and delight through those windows, I swallowed the lump in my throat and held back unbidden tears (of joy).

There was just one time I felt the need to keep myself in check. One of the dance moms in our class was also a make-good-choices mom. Unsurprisingly, her child was the worst behaved of the eleven so her “you’re not making good choices” lectures nearly drove me to the brink.

Dance Mom

Being a dance mom is a simple idea. You’re a mom of a dancer. And if you’re supportive in an appropriate manner, you’re a mom of a happy dancer.

Dance Mom

We’re on summer break now but I’m as excited as my daughter to get back to it this fall. And there’s one thing you can count on for sure. This is one dance mama without the drama.

  • http://twitter.com/MommaOfG Symanntha Renn

    I’m glad to hear not all dance moms are horrible, and I hope you don’t let the instructor talk to your daughter the way Abby does. I doubt that you do because your little girl looks very happy.

    • http://kellihood.com/ Kelli Nelson

      I hope it gets better for your daughter. Are there other instructors you could switch to? We’re fortunate to have a wonderful, kind instructor. As for the moms, I think we’re a group of if-you-don’t-have-anything-nice-to-say-then-say-nothing-at-all moms. :)

  • Kristi

    Thanks for the reality check and assurance that dancing can be wonderful for moms and their kids. I can’t stand that show.

    • http://SweetnessOfLife.com/ Kelli | @SweetLifeMommy

      Sometimes reality-tv isn’t reality at all. I’m sure there are some moms out there that behave similarly to those on the show but I have to believe the majority do not. :)

  • Kristi

    Thanks for the reality check and assurance that dancing can be wonderful for moms and their kids. I can’t stand that show.

    • http://kellihood.com/ Kelli Nelson

      Sometimes reality-tv isn’t reality at all. I’m sure there are some moms out there that behave similarly to those on the show but I have to believe the majority do not. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/christene.danca Christene D’Anca

    This just made me even more excited about when my daughter can start dance classes. She is already asking about it, but I thinks she may still be a bit young (she is 2.5).

    • http://SweetnessOfLife.com/ Kelli | @SweetLifeMommy

      She’s the perfect age to start with a Mommy & Me class! My daughter was 3 when we started last year and because she’s extremely shy and timid, we spent the first 6 weeks in Mommy & Me Ballet. I felt like a clumsy cow but it was a blast and it gave her the confidence she needed to move to the next class. You and your daughter would both have so much fun. :)

  • christenec

    This just made me even more excited about when my daughter can start dance classes. She is already asking about it, but I thinks she may still be a bit young (she is 2.5).

    • http://kellihood.com/ Kelli Nelson

      She’s the perfect age to start with a Mommy & Me class! My daughter was 3 when we started last year and because she’s extremely shy and timid, we spent the first 6 weeks in Mommy & Me Ballet. I felt like a clumsy cow but it was a blast and it gave her the confidence she needed to move to the next class. You and your daughter would both have so much fun. :)

  • EvelynKrieger

    Forget the tv show–it’s ugly. Real dance mom’s do a lot of waiting,especially as their dancers grow older and become more committed, but hey, with our mobiles, laptops, ereaders, and errand list, we can usually get a lot done. Real dance moms do their homework, making sure they choose a teacher with excellent credentials and training. Poor ballet instruction in the early years leads to bad habits and muscular, skeletal problems. Real dance moms aren’t afraid to try a dance class themselves.

    • http://kellihood.com/ Kelli Nelson

      Thanks for the insight! We definitely do a lot of waiting but it’s well worth it and like you mentioned, it can be productive as well. I’m truly looking forward to many years of dance.

  • http://twitter.com/MommaOfG Symanntha Renn

    I’m glad to hear not all dance moms are horrible, and I hope you don’t let the instructor talk to your daughter the way Abby does. I doubt that you do because your little girl looks very happy.

  • http://SweetnessOfLife.com/ Kelli | @SweetLifeMommy

    I hope it gets better for your daughter. Are there other instructors you could switch to? We’re fortunate to have a wonderful, kind instructor. As for the moms, I think we’re a group of if-you-don’t-have-anything-nice-to-say-then-say-nothing-at-all moms. :)