This morning, after dropping Maggie off (school bus was laaate again) and then Nick off at school, I hightailed it back to Maggie’s school for parent participation during her gym class. I showed up last week for it, but was – a week early. I made it there today right on time.
It was 45 minutes of Dance, Dance Revolution. Now, I am all about hitting a softball, serving a volleyball, kicking a soccer ball (not so much the running that goes with soccer), pretty much anything involving a ball. But aerobics, no thanks. Just about the time I figure out what opposite direction my arms and legs are supposed to be going, they switch to something else. I am 10 seconds late for as long as I decide to torture myself, which in the last 10 years, is never.
I was a little nervous.
But, as it turns out, DDR is more of an eye-hand (or in this case eye-foot) coordination thing. And that, I can do.
We did a warm up round, with two people on the actual electronic sensor thingy and the rest of us on car-mat type copycats. When the arrow on the screen gets to a certain spot you step the direction it is pointing. And keep going as the arrows continue. Sometimes it’s a double jump, sometimes it’s a step and hold. Fun stuff.
Then the parents took a turn head-to-head against their child.
You invite me to school to go head-to-head with my kindergartener?
That’s kind of a no win. Either I do my best and my child loses, or I let my child win, which teaches her nothing. I believe in playing fair and playing by the rules. Unless you set mine at a different speed or handicap me in some way I am going to win. Don’t invite me to participate in gym class and then ask me not to participate. If you want me to watch her and cheer her on, then ask me to do that.
“Are you going to let me win?” she said right before it was our turn.
“Uh, no. That wouldn’t be fair,” I answered.
So we “danced” and I won. At the end she looked over at me and asked who won. We waited until the screen showed the winner and we both saw that I won. Then we high-fived and I told her she had a pretty good round. And that next year, she was going to give me a run for my money. And that the more she practiced, the better she would get.
This is an event they do every year. And Maggie will get to keep practicing. And the day she beats me, she will know she really, truly beat me.
The gym teacher came by and joked “You couldn’t just miss a few?”
“No. I really couldn’t. It’s not in me to not try my best,” I said.
“I’m the same way,” she replied.
And I’m pretty sure that I’m raising Maggie to be the same way. Whether that is good or bad, I can’t say for sure. But I can say I’m raising her the best way I know how.