Let’s Dance (or not…)

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Let’s Dance – my favourite Bowie record. What a sad week it’s been with his passing, and Alan Rickman today too.

Bowie has proved he was a showman until the very end. An utter legend.

I can’t help but think they’re having a better time up there entertainment wise than we are down here now…

Anyhow, I digress, today’s blog post is all about my experience of going to a toddler dance class this morning…you can probably guess how it went, but do read on for the full version of events!

A lovely friend of mine suggested we take our little ones to a toddler dance class today. They can attend if they’re aged between 1.5 and 4 so, being 20 months and 22 months old, they are on the younger side but we thought we would try it out so we book them in for a ‘taster session’ – otherwise known as a, ‘will this be a waste of my life, the teachers life and my sanity if we come again,’ session.

We get to the local church hall where the class is being held and we are greeted by a lovely, cheerful (and very youthful) lady who introduces herself. She asks the little ones what their names are, and asks them if they’ve had a good Christmas.

She doesn’t get a response from them. Just a blank stare (a bit like when I ask my husband a question and his eyes glaze over and then 10 minutes later he says “did you say something?”) I’m not sure she’s cottoned on to just how young they are. The two tots just look bemused and scan the room for potential playmates and note any snacks that might be lying around for use later on.

We take a seat and wait for the start of the class. The session is 45 minutes long and there is a “high turnout” today apparently so we sit and wait patiently and prepare our little ones for their class by removing their coats, and I give mine a finger-wag pep talk…for what it’s worth.

The class begins by some music being played and we are all asked to stand in a circle with our little ones. Here begins our downfall….

“Door!!!” screams my little one whilst clambering up my leg. “Door!!!!” (He can speak then…the little wotsit). He frantically points at the door and looks like a rabbit in headlights. I giggle nervously and reassure him whilst quietly dying inside, I knew this is how it would go. My friends little girl is sweetly smiling and having a jolly good go at it all (mostly freestyle I would say, but very cute) I’m not having quite so much success my end.

“Door!!!!” he yells again. “Door!!!” (I know, I know, I’d like to make a run for the door too mate but we are in for the long haul with this one now…)

We are then asked to kneel on the floor and asked to, quote, ‘pretend to be holding a great big snake. Mummies, can you show the children how to hold a snake? Ssssssss!’ (Cue me creasing up with inappropriate laughter inside at the sight of all these mums on their knees grasping a pretend, writhing snake 😂)

That finishes and after a few more ‘warm up’ moves/songs, we are asked to stand at the back wall. It feels like we are being lined up for execution by firing squad but she then reassures us that it’s time to gallop. “Yay!” Squeal the little girls, “holy crap” I say in my head. This isn’t going to go well. Limpit toddler is clawing at the wall from my arms, he’s trying to escape through a window in a bid for freedom the poor lamb but his struggle is futile…

“Ben and mummy, would you like to go first?!” IS SHE FOR REAL?! DOES IT LOOK LIKE HE (and me) WANT TO BLOODY GALLOP FIRST?! (The only place we want to gallop is out those doors thanks…)

“Haha!” I giggle nervously, “of course we will gallop first”. Kill me now. Seriously.

I put the Klingon down on the floor and the instructor begins chanting and clapping….

“Gaaallllop, gaaallllop, gaaallllop…” and so on. The entire room is clapping and chanting rhythmically, like bullies at school stood around shouting, “doooo it, doooo it, doooo it…” before your head is shoved down the toilet.

I take my toddler by the hands and drag him down the hall. I attempt a gallop, which I haven’t done for a long while, and he cleans the hall floor as I drag him along. I get to the end and everyone claps our pitiful attempt as we make the walk of shame back to the wall.

We join in the chanting and clapping as the others take their turn and Ben resumes his bid for freedom out of the window.

The rest of the class doesn’t go much better. The hand bells for the music section were given away to his friend, the hula hoop was stamped on with rage and the ribbon on a stick was used more as a jousting weapon than a twirling prop of grace and beauty.

The end of the class draws near and my friends little one has already been to find her coat once. A girl after my own heart. She’s had enough. My friend has had enough. I’ve had enough. My toddler has had enough and in my head I’m shouting, “door!!!”, too.

After bowing (okay, by that I mean my toddler lying on the floor shouting “no!!”) and sticker handing out, which my toddler didn’t want to partake in either (he isn’t fooled by stickers. He knows they’re a crap form of bribery at the tender age of 1, he already only deals in cold, hard cash thank you very much) we gather our things and say our thank yous and goodbyes. Thank Christ that’s over…

I think it’s safe to say this might be our only visit for a while. I’m not sure my one is quite ready for the stage yet…the world isn’t ready for that. The poor dance teacher isn’t ready for that either.

The only plus was that my toddler did have a rather epic afternoon nap so it wasn’t all bad/a waste of time. And when he woke up, he decided to eat his dinner dressed like this. Cuteness restored…for 5 seconds anyway 😉

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