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I am a Dance Mom Failure

For the past year, The Munch has been attending dance classes at the local dance studio. I’m usually teaching dance or dancing myself during that time – so her grandmother has been forced to be the stand-in “dance mom.” Since I have not really been around, I was totally clueless to the culture of this studio, and just how much they were seriously not fucking around.

It all started with the impending dress rehearsal. I asked Munch’s grandmother if she could take her, and she started to get very nervous.

Munch’s Grandmother: Oh I was hoping you could take her to her dress rehearsal.
Toni: I would but I have a super important meeting and then I’m teaching. Is there anyway you could?
Munch’s Grandmother: I can, but they want her to be in full costume with make up and a bun. I only had sons, so I don’t think I can do all that.
Toni: I’m sure it won’t matter. She’s only four. Just shove her hair up and slap some eye shadow on her face.
Munch’s Grandmother: Ummm, they are very particular about the buns.
Toni: Okay, well I will send her to your house with a bun already in her hair.
Munch’s Grandmother: Okay, they are just really serious about those buns.
Toni: I’m sure it will be fine.

That Monday, I got Munch ready in the morning for her afternoon rehearsal.

Toni: Listen, I have to do your hair now, because Grandma isn’t sure about putting your hair back in a bun for your rehearsal. So just try not to mess it up.
Munch: Okay. But can you put two braids in the side and then a braid around the bun?
Toni: Do I seriously have to go all Game of Thrones on your hair right now? Can’t I just do a regular bun?
Munch: I WANT BRAIDS WITH MY BUN!!!!!!!!!!!

So I did what any normal parent would do when their child screams in their fucking face. I did exactly as she asked.

I brought Munch to her Grandmother’s house and she was immediately anxious when she saw Munch’s hair.

Munch’s Grandmother: Oh her hair looks very pretty, but are you sure those braids are okay?
Toni: They’ll be fine. It’s a dress rehearsal! Who cares?

Well it turns out those braids WERE NOT FUCKING FINE AT ALL! Munch’s Grandmother was scolded for having the wrong kind of bun, and the owner of the studio had to do ANOTHER PERFECT BUN! She then sent Munch’s grandmother home with hairpins, a hair net, and specific instructions for me on how to get her bun perfect!

Okay fine.

The night of the show, I gave Munch the best goddamn bun you ever did see. But her “Dust Bunny” costume, which was a tutu adorned with pink feathers, was fragile. So I decided I would just get her dressed at the venue, so as not to smash her tutu during the car ride (or have pink feathers all over my car). We drove to the performance venue with the windows rolled up (so as NOT to disturb the bun), and got there just on time.

As I was dressing Munch, another Mom told me she was going to leave early, as the “Dust Bunnies” were the first to perform, and it was a long show. She was afraid her daughter would be too tired for the next night’s performance if she had two late nights. Her logic made perfect sense to me. One because who wants to deal with a tired kid? And two because who wants to sit through 2 hours of watching other people’s kids dance?

After Munch had her 3-minute moment on stage, we sneaked out, and I went to find her backstage. I guess leaving 5 minutes after the show has started and taking your kid away is NOT exactly “Dance Mom” etiquette. So as I was leaving her teacher walked past perplexed.

Dance Teacher: Are you taking Adelia? She’s not going to stay for the bow?
Toni: No. I’m getting her home early so she isn’t a total A-Hole tomorrow.

So I guess “Dance Mom’s” also don’t refer to their child as an “A-Hole” in public.

The next night of the 2nd performance I figured I could have the same routine as I did the 1st night. I did the bun at home, and assumed I could get Munch into her costume backstage again. Yet when I tried to enter, I was stopped.

Dance Mom Volunteer: Are you a chaperone volunteer?
Toni: No?
Dance Mom Volunteer: Well you can’t come in here. Dancers only.
Toni: Okay, I just wanted to get my kid dressed real quick.
Dance Mom Volunteer: You were supposed to do that at home. She was supposed to come dressed and ready to perform.
Toni: Well is there a bathroom I can use?
Dance Mom Volunteer: No. There isn’t. She was supposed to come dressed and ready.

My mom and I took Munch around the corner, found the fucking bathroom that this chick pretended didn’t exist, and proceeded to put on her goddamn costume and makeup.

Toni: Jesus H. Christ she was being aggressively unreasonable.
Munch: Who was mom?
Toni: Nobody. Don’t worry about it.
Munch: That mom that wouldn’t let you in that room?

I mean that was a lot of stress! Now I am not saying that Munch wasn’t the most AMAZING Dust Bunny… but basically she just skipped across stage a few times with a bunch of other girls who looked just like her, and then rolled on the floor.



6 Responses to I am a Dance Mom Failure

  1. Olga Davidson says:

    I was there. It was terrifying. Grandma Nancy is a hero to have put up with this all year. I am still curled up in fetal position. Someone hold me!

  2. Laszlo Nagy says:

    This reads like someone having to bargain with a police state where your child is held hostage by the police state atmosphere of this dance studio and its associated enforcers and you are the one who has to plead for the ultimate well-being of your child even though your child thinks that these police state dance enforcers have her interests at heart. Might I say, this might be the surest expression of how a mother has to fight The Absurd during each breath that their child takes. The good news is that it would seem that you won the war against the police state dance studio.

  3. Dorothea says:

    What? You were able to escape from watching the rest of the show? Unheard of!!! Lol I’m sure a memo will come out

  4. Natalie says:

    Male dancer dance moms…a must easier life. YOU WILL RUIN ME!

  5. Nancy Reimer says:

    I can’t believe they wouldn’t let you in the second night. Unbelievable! The classes were not so rigid. Glad all survived.

  6. Esha says:

    Hahah Toni you’re soooo funny: Do I seriously have to go all Game of Thrones on your hair right now?

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