My 5 year old son loves to dance. My 7 year old son is a reluctant dancer. My 37 year old husband is what we call a non-dancer. Me? In the words of Sarah Jessica Parker in the 1985 film Girls Just Want To Have Fun, I love to dance! I am not saying I am a good dancer, as I am not. But jeeze I love to have a crack at a wedding, party or for any particular reason.
Jack has inherited his love of dance from me. But his skills far outweigh mine. Sure, I can teach him the classics like Start the Mower, Do the Shopping and the Sprinkler, but he takes it all to the next level.
With these school holidays looming, I decided to enroll the Woogettes in the local dance school for a few days of ahem... tuition. The conversation went a little like this.
"I would like to enrol my kids into the Hip Hop Holidaze for Boyz and the Performing Princesses camps. " I said feeling totally stupid.
The young receptionist asked how old my daughter was. I explained that Jack was a boy and he was 5.
"Sorry, this workshop is for girls only. He can do the Hip Hop Holidaze for Boyz."
"Does the Hip Hop Holidaze cover ballet, modelling and cheerleading?" I asked.
"Then can he do the one with the cheerleading? He is dead keen on the cheerleading." I said, thinking if it was good enough for Jennifer Hawkins, it was good enough for Jack.
I hung up the phone and stared at it. I was replaying in my head what had just happened. I was trying to think if I was being unreasonable as I was totally outraged. If I was a cartoon character my head would be turning read and steam would be pissing out of my ears.
I decided to give it a while and think about what I should do. In the meantime I thought I was suffering a heart attack, but it turned out I had some wicked indigestion from lunch, This kept my mind off my fury for at least 30 minutes.
After school, I went through the options of dance camp again with Jack, strongly suggesting that Hip Hop Holidaze for Boyz might be quite cool. Even though they cannot spell for shit. Jack looked at me with his brown eyes and asked " Why can't I do Performing Princesses?" and I thought "Why CAN'T you do Performing Princesses!"
With a shaking hand I rang back the Dance School. I asked the imbecile who answered if I could speak to someone in charge. Someone in charge got on the phone and I said I was the mother of a 5 year old boy who wished to be enrolled in the Performing Princesses Class in the school holidays and as he is male, I understand this is not possible but I would like one good reason why he cannot. I was about to say that my money is as good as anyone's and no one puts baby in the corner when the lady spoke.
"It is a class for girls only."
OH MY GOD
"Who is it going to upset if he attends this class?" I asked "I doubt very much the girls would care."
"It is not the girls. It is the mother's of the girls who have enrolled them thinking that it is a girls only class."
A lively and colourful discussion ensued and ended with me telling the woman to give my contact details to all the mums of all the girls in the class so if any of them wishes to complain that my kid prefers ballet to hip hop, they can call me directly.
So to cut an even longer story short, Jack is going to live his cheerleading, ballet destiny these holidays. And Harry is an unwilling participant in Hip Hop Holidaze for Boyz. And to me, this was just another example of not bending over when someone says you can't do something.
As a wise man once said, Never say Never.