Last night we took Cora over to a local dance studio to sign us up for a Mommy & Me Music and Movement class for the fall. The studio was having an open house, there were other kids and moms there, mostly older kids. They were getting new shoes, new tights, new leotards, having a great time in the big lobby running around. Cora immediately spotted the corner of toys.
It was a good thing the corner of toys was there because I and several other moms had to wait a good long while to talk to the studio director. We were waiting while another Mom explained (over and over) how she thought it should be okay if her daughter signed up for a class but missed half the classes so she could go to soccer practice because her daughter is good at both and loves both and she's only 10 and shouldn't have to choose between these two activities that are so complementary to each other and that don't interfere at all with her schoolwork. And the director tried, very nicely and perhaps too gently, to point out that she didn't think it was fair to the class for one person to be able to pop in and out, she'd miss stuff, and actually ballet and soccer are very different. The Mom wouldn't give up. Eventually she did agree to go home, talk to the girl, and call the next day. When, presumably, the director can doodle while listening to her instead of having to smile understandingly.
So we signed up for our class, walked around all the dance rooms, Cora had fun crawling towards and then away from the mirrors, I indulged in a little dance lesson nostalgia, and Chris watched us both indulgently. In the car on the way home I told Cora that she might, even at the tender age of 10, one day have to choose between two things she enjoyed. Or maybe just find a studio with classes that don't conflict with soccer.
(The good part was that once that Mom left, us other moms were able to be so much more patient and kind with each other - "oh no, you go" "oh, you go" - because we all wanted to prove, to each other and most of all to ourselves, that we were not that Mom, too. )