December 13, 2019

the stuff dance moms are made of, Dublin or bust

On Sunday Curly danced in Irish Dancing Midwest Championships (Oireachtas).  She typically gets pretty nervous for her first round.  It doesn't help that the first round is hard shoes and she prefers soft.  You would never know it by watching her dance, because she nails those damn hard shoes . . . in the studio.  

They randomly choose a dancer's number to start off the competition.  Curly has been one of the first few kids to dance in major competitions FREQUENTLY.  She hates that.  This time, she was dancing after 40 other kids.  What a break!  There were close to 100 girls under 12 in her competition.  Mini turned to me at one point and shared with me that she was disappointed that I hadn't managed to hold Curly inside of me an extra two weeks in order to have her arrive in early Jan instead of Dec. 19th.  If Curly was born in January, she would be the oldest dancer in her age group.  Believe it or not, back when I was busting at the seams with baby- Irish dancing age groups was not my main focus.  

No need to disguise this mug, because it
 looks NOTHING like my 11 year
old.  She took this because she wanted to
see if it was noticeable that one of her
 fake eyelashes felt like it was falling off.
 I hate when that happens.
Curly likes to watch competitors dance before it is her turn.  It typically relaxes her.  Gets her in the mood.  Pumps her up.  We watched the first several dancers (they dance 3 at a time on the stage), and I keep track of how well the competition does.  I jot notes in the program next to the dancer's number.  There were several 'NO!' or 'OK' notes assigned to these firsts 12 girls.  Where were the 'E' for excellent dancers?  Eventually we saw them.  There were three girls in Curly's competition that would undoubtedly take 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.  (Guess what?  Mini and I were right about that)  Knowing that she was going to be at the top of the pack STILL did not alleviate Curly's nerves. 

Early that morning I paid a makeup lady to do Curly's makeup and attach her wig.  *more eye rolls, please join me*  Now as Mini and I helped her tape her shoes and stick sock glue under her socks I noticed that Curly's eyes were FILLED with tears.  My true dance mom self stepped in.  

Curly in green and one of her many
buddies is two people to her right.
'Knock it off.  I didn't come here to watch you cry.  We are here because you freaking love to dance and you are DAMN good at it.  I could think of many other things I could be doing this weekend.  Do you know how much I paid that lady to do your makeup?  If you let those tears drop onto your cheeks it is going to ruin your makeup.  DO NOT CRY, DAMN IT.  I will turn into a true dance mom right here and I will give all of these people a show.  QUIT IT, NOW!'  Then I grabbed a tissue and inserted it directly into her eyeballs to absorb the tears so that the small flood that was gathering could not drip onto her face.

This is why it is fun to have Mini along -
she agreed to snap this photo for me
 of this ridiculous Snow White themed
Irish dancing dress.  Complete
 with the apple on the front. 
Silly, even by Irish dancing standards.
Then I wished her luck.  I reminded her how much she enjoys lining up and chatting with the other dancers.  The girl is social and has made many friends from other cities.  'Remember Kylie is lining up two people ahead of you and you relax when you chat with friends so get over there and do that!'  I told her to have fun and show her stuff.  

AND . . . she did.  Her first round, always her hardest - was outstanding.  She looked great.  High energy, lots of lift, etc.  She was delighted to be done with that part of the day and the rest of the day was smooth sailing.  (I mean unless you count when I forgot my cheaters were in my back pocked and they dropped in the toilet.  Fortunately this happened BEFORE I peed).

Yep, I packed my favorite,
fought-hard-to-get-them-on-sale pants. 
This is when it was finally over. 
Too bad you cannot see my face:
 too tried to be real, people.
Curly was one of the first 10 kids to dance in the soft shoe round, and unfortunately the judges often struggle to assign those first kids decent scores because they kinda forget about them.  That dance, that gave Mini goosebumps and had me practically in tears, was flawless.  We realized later that it was also the round that brought Curly her lowest scores.  She recalled (take top half of the girls and they dance again) and danced her set, which I thought could have used more pizzazz, but the judge's rankings (which we saw after awards and we knew her placement) did not reflect that, so what do I know.  

She missed qualifying for World Championships by 1 place while we were in Vancouver.  So, pressure!  This was her next and last opportunity to qualify for this year's Worlds which will be held in Dublin in April.  Mercifully they announced the world qualifiers before they started ranking the top 50 girls in reverse order.  Curly was a world qualifier!  Mini and I embraced (Curly was on stage at this point).  She came in 9th overall, and was THRILLED!

I was thrilled, and relieved that it was over.  Secretly, my bank account moaned a bit about financing a trip to Dublin.  


Marie Smith said...

Great news though an assault to the bank account. Congratulations Curly!

Ernie said...

Thanks! She works hard and as much as I would like her to move on from this money pit of a past time, she catches on to new steps like nobody else and she just loves loves loves it!

Busy Bee Suz said...

For the love of everything!! I can't tell you how frustrated I've been trying to figure out my damn commenting issue. Finally, I just went to using the PC instead of my Mac. Still had to work at it, but I'm here now. If only I could remember my exact comment from yesterday.
The hair. The makeup. It's so much....but I know you know that. It goes with the territory. I love her green dress too. I do love how passionate your girl is about her dancing and woot woot, she did great! Congratulations to her and to YOU. Well, mostly you, cause dance mom. :) Really, this is a big deal. Dublin sounds like an $$$ adventure!
I often go back and think: "If I'd been in 'the mood' a few weeks earlier, or later, Linds would not have a 12/27 birthday." It's tough to compete with Jesus!!

Ernie said...

Oh brother- sorry commenting was such a hassle. I appreciate you making the effort! I have a few readers who have let ne know they cannot comment anymore. Not sure if it is my blog's fault.

I am so glad that dancing weekend is in the books. Been at it for about 10 years now. Imagine that Coach's parents still do NOT get it. No phone call wishing dancers good luck. Nothin. I need to decorate or shop or something before the competition next year, because it interefers with holiday progress.

I hope to stay at least a few days with friends in Dublin to cut down on the expense.

Beth (A Mom's Life) said...

Congratulations to Curly!!! That's awesome!!!!

Bibliomama said...

Wow! Incredible accomplishment. I think you must have been in Vancouver the same time as our friends with the Irish dancing daughter. I still can't believe you do this with one of six kids. Do you ever sleep?