My daughters have been dancing since they were two and four. A couple of years in and they were invited to join the competition team. When your children compete together you naturally get to know and spend a lot of time with the other dance parents.
Correction, I mean dance moms.
Over the years I have asked where are the dads and have received some valid reasons (they’re working swing shift or with their other children while mom takes on dance duty) but the overwhelming response is “oh dance isn’t really his thing”.
Now, my husband had hoped our daughters would play a more traditional sport such as soccer or softball but our girls declared they would not play anything outdoors and loved dance. So my husband embraced what our girls loved. When his schedule permits he is at the dance studio watching classes when we are allowed to observe or he his chatting with the moms and the studio owner.
He gives our girls pep talks as if they’re playing in the Super Bowl and cheers for them at every competition. On competition days he runs errands such as going to the store for forgotten cotton balls or the very important bobby pins and he will go on much needed coffee runs since some of those competitions start early. And at most of those competitions, he’s one of a few dads present.
Over the years the dance moms (plus my husband) have traveled for competitions, been to some great parties and watched our girls practice over and over. And year after year my husband comes to classes, competitions and recitals proudly sporting a t-shirt with the dance studio logo on it and our girls’ names embroidered on his hoodie like they are his favorite football players.
More recently when we look around the studio we’re starting to see more dads. Maybe knowing my husband will be there for camaraderie has given them some incentive to come, but in any case, it’s nice to see the shift. More dads who might not be passionate about ballet or tap but are becoming passionate about supporting their child’s dream.
Dance dads, they’re only going to be young once, so what if you don’t like ballet? Your child will remember and cherish all of the times you sat in the audience and cheered embarrassingly loud for them.
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