“Thaangittu thakkadhin dhinna…”
Little A quit bharatnatyam this week. After 1.5 years. The long hours (classes starting at 5:30 pm and routinely running beyond 9 pm on a school night) were getting to be too much for the munchkin (and truth be told, for her mom as well). So. We let go this week. I (think I) showed more grace in accepting little A’s decision than I did when little N wanted to quit after only three months of lessons. Why? I gave this some thought. And came up with more questions than answers. Because I think little N is mini me (an impression that I constantly tell myself to back off from), do I hold her to higher standards and feel her ups and downs more personally? Or could it be that I have finally acquired perspective over the years that allows for better judgement and a more detached parenting style? Highly unlikely.
Gretchen Rubin (her again!) wrote about “opportunity cost” – i.e., the window of precious time that is lost when your kids are occupied with activities that are not a great fit for them, when they could be engaging in activities that they are really passionate about. Makes sense, if you think about it. I mean, we have seen little A work for hours on art projects. So much that we would have to tear her away to do other stuff that we thought were important (like dance practice). So. At her request, little A started art lessons at the local art council in lieu of dance lessons. The class runs for a more manageable hour from 5:30 to 6:30 pm. But, most importantly, little A’s glowing, excited face when she gets out of art class, impatient to show us her new creations, tells me that we are now on the right track with her.
Bharatanatyam was something that I wanted to learn when I was little and never did. With two daughters, I had hoped that one of them would inherit my interest. But I can’t say that I feel too sorry for myself. The girls need to be themselves and follow their own dreams. And find their own fun. I will miss my fun times of hanging out vambu-adichaxing with the other dance moms. At the same time, though, I must admit that I am excited about reclaiming several hours of free time on thursday evenings again. 🙂