Second Chance

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I like to think that I’m open minded. However, when my son told me that he wanted to take ballet, with his older sister, I was a little taken aback. I even found myself trying to dissuade him. “Wouldn’t you rather play flag football? Oh, piano lessons would be fun and musical.”

My first reaction wasn’t good or supportive. It took me a minute to come around to the idea. Not so much because I didn’t think boys should take ballet, but rather because, I had never envisioned my son taking ballet. My son who is rough and loud; this ball of energy who climbs on everything and is always moving at full speed.

As a parent you think you know your child, what is best for them, and what will make them feel happy and fulfilled. When the expectation doesn’t match the reality, it can seem like they are making the wrong choice. Often our first reaction is to correct and guide them back on the path that we deem right for them.

It’s okay that sometimes our first reactions aren’t always the best. We’re human and we’re just trying to do the best we can and figure it all out as we go. The good news is, our first reactions aren’t going to define our relationships with our children. Our relationships are built upon, what we do next. If we gladly buy them ballet shoes and proudly sit front row at every dance recital. Or if we force a football in their hands under the guise of knowing what is best for them. If we tell them who they are or if we help them to discover it for themselves.

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20 Responses

  1. We can’t always control our reactions but I think it’s awesome that you’re putting your son’s interest first. It would be nice to have him try ballet and to support him should he continue or decide to quit. I’m sure you’re going to do what’s best for him.

  2. I try to be supportive as much as I can especially when I see that my kids are really passionate about something. It’s okay that you reacted that way, and I like that you gave your son a chance too.

  3. First reactions are not easy to control but second reactions are what show our true selfs. That’s awesome you will be up there in the front row cheering him on!

  4. If my son asked me this, I think I would have reacted the same way you did. But, all kids are different and it is aweosme that you gave your son that choice.

  5. I must say that your final words left me speechless, “If we tell them who they are or if we help them to discover it for themselves.” As a mother this touched me on so many levels!!

  6. We had put my daughter in an array of different calasses- dance, gymnastics, etc… She hated them all. One day she came to us asking to be signed up for karate. We hesitated (because we wasted so much money on the other classes that didn’t work out), but them we enrolled her. She loved it!

  7. I can see how we all mess up sometimes but as long as we correct it we can all just move forward. Its funny how if we just listen they will tell us exactly what they want and we don’t need to push them so much.

  8. Oh bless it’s totally normal to react in a way that you’re feeling in the moment. I suggested so many random things to my parents when I was a kid I don’t know they were not worried about me more haha! They definitely played it very cool when I told them I was going to build a boat in the garden (and proceeded to do so with random planks of wood up to the point I had the whole decking built – and I was 8 at that time). xx

  9. As a parent we always want our kids to do things that we should have done as kids and I feel its kinda difficult but only fair to let kids decide whats best for them and follow their heart.

  10. My husband took ballet for a year as a kid when he was a gymnast. I think it’s great if a guy wants to take it because men do ballet. Just like women and it’s great to support our kids. Job well done!!

  11. I think our job as a parent is to support our kids in their endeavors and interests, even if it’s something unexpected. It’s great that your son wants to take ballet and that you are finding a way to support his choice.

  12. Aww this is great, I know so many boys who do ballet with my Witches. My cousin who is in soaps on the tele use to do Ballet and has got really far with his career 🙂

  13. I think there would be a lot of parents who whose first reaction would be the same as yours. But I bet they wouldn’t be as open and honest about not being totally supportive to begin with! So well done for that 🙂 I think my little man will want to take some sort of dance lessons at some point, as he loves the theatre and is always singing and dancing when we’re in the house!

    Louise x

  14. You know I’d probably have the same reaction at first too. I think you handled it just fine, and it’s not like we prepare ourselves for everything that our kids want to do or participate in. I think its great he wants to do ballet and supporting that is jus wonderful!

  15. Journa Ramirez

    Oh dear.. I’m not yet prepared for that kind of request from my little boy because he’s still young..So thankful you shared this experience. Thanks for letting me learn. Anyway, you’re still a great mom!

  16. This post is so perfect! I think self awareness is so important. I absolutely love that you realized your initial response could have been more supportive and then changed it. AND posted about it for everyone to see. All kids need to be nurtured and loved and it sounds like you’re doing an amazing job!

    Michelle | She’s Not So Basic

  17. Krystle Cook

    I would honestly have been shocked just as you were if this were my son. We are definitely only human and we have to take strides one day at a time.

  18. I think it’s totally ok to teach our kids that sometimes we need to regroup and readdress things. That we are human, and so are they. The fact that you caught yourself, that you took the time to not only think, but write about it, speaks volumes.

  19. Many times our initial thought isn’t our final thought. I have found myself in similar situations/thought patterns as well as a parent. Our children will surprise us many times and our first thought is usually a reaction to the immediate surprise of the situation. Thank you for sharing this. It’s good to see we are all very normal <3

  20. I really liked reading this… totally honest and open. And I’m GLAD there are little boys who want to learn ballet! My husband and I go to the ballet several times a year and I’m blown away by how strong and powerful the male dancers are… the world needs more of them 🙂

    Caitlin • Blonde Seeking Ambition

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