Truthfully, I’ve had banking on my mind lately. The kid finally had a need to sit down and open a checking account a couple weeks ago, which meant the full deal serious money chat including an hour at our local branch reading over paperwork and signing her name onto contracts.
All that said and done though, getting over that mental hump that a number on website is just as valid as currency as is a fistful of twenty dollar bills… it’s been a cognitive leap for the kid.
“But now I’m broke, dad! I have no more money.”
“No… you just put it in the bank. Look at your balance.”
“I know… but now I don’t have any money. The bank has it all…”
“They’re just keeping it for you.”
“But I don’t have ANY money.”
“You have more money than you need. You have more than a hundred dollars.”
…and then back to the beginning of this conversation and repeat over and over and over…
Whoever said “It’s not whether you win or lose” probably didn’t win…
…but I think what we learned after a packed schedule of driving from here to there to somewhere else and back over there again, always dressed in elaborate costumes a meticulously styled hair and makeup –particularly for a ten-year-old– what we learned in that was that sometimes the things we do impress certain people are never going to be enough. Sometimes the people who need to be impressed are never going to be fans. Sometimes it might not even be about impressing anybody but yourself and the people in the audience cheering just for you. And sometimes you’re obviously in the wrong category and competing against people with so much more skill than you that you can’t help but feel a little inadequate so you may as well suck it up and just have fun.
I think, like when we get handed those nifty participation medals for completing a running race, in dancing all you really need is to understand is that second … third… even last place… is still ahead of all the other people who didn’t even try.
Is that too sappy for a Saturday morning comic strip? (I am still a dad over here, after all!)
Ultimately, dance dad duty results in a simple act: sitting helplessly in the audience while a stranger passes judgement upon your child and a year worth of your evenings spent driving through snow storms and commuter traffic to deliver her to weekly dance classes.
Like anything, life ain’t always fair. But tell that to a kid who woke up early to spend two hours doing her hair and make-up.