Friday, September 24, 2010
My teen and I pop it like it's hot
Not a clue what that means? Whew! I'm not the only one.
It's teen-speak short for "Gangsta" - which is, I hear, the equivalent of cool.
I took my stepdaughter with me to Fit Hop last night. Before we even walked out the door, we had a discussion about boundaries.
ME: You need to promise not to make fun of me.
HER: Why would I make fun of you?
ME: Because I suck.
HER: Well, I can't dance, either.
I didn't respond how I would have before I started this dance journey. Only a few months ago, I might have broken down into tears, and explained that while she might not know how to dance, she's tall and thin and beautiful - which, in my previous stereotypical mindset must mean she'd be a natural on the dance floor.
Instead, I tucked my insecurities in a gym bag, gathered up a couple of water bottles, and booked it to class.
I'm grateful she was engrossed in texting so she couldn't see the perspiration beading across my forehead, or my chewed off fingernails. I'm thankful she couldn't read my mind, or hear the devil on my shoulder reminding me that I'm not even comfortable dancing for my husband, that I should just turn around and surrender to the fear.
That would have been a terrible mistake.
My stepdaughter is right - she isn't a natural dancer. She's tall (very tall) and never been into team sports. Her coordination is off, and her two left feet are slightly bigger than mine. But my kid's got swagger. And confidence. And a youthful enthusiasm that's infectious.
She played throughout the warm-up - teasing me, laughing, drawing attention to herself (and inadvertently me), but after a few minutes with Kasha, my kid got serious. Though she imagined the class to be more "fit" than "hop," she was excited to learn a series of steps that could earn her some "dance cred" at school.
In the process, I picked up some serious stepmom cred.
By no means did I execute the steps in Kasha or Jessica style, and though I didn't fixate on my image in the mirror, I still cringed when I caught a glimpse of my frumpy self popping it across the floor. But I worked hard. My stepdaughter worked hard.
And we both did it with a smile.
I have no words to explain how HUGE this is.
When I began this journey, I kind of wanted to do it alone. To suffer in silence. But after last night, my stepdaughter is itching to get back on the dance floor. She wants to definitely do Fit Hop, Salsa Burn, and even begged me to take her to Bollywood next week. A few months ago, I would have made up every excuse in the book not to.
Next week, I'll be counting down the hours until those classes.
She's not as sore as I am this morning, but before leaving for school, she hugged me and said even with my hair a frazzled mess, and my face not even washed, I'm still pretty G.
I'll take that.
The Book In My Bag Today: Dead After Dark, Charlaine Harris