Monday, February 01, 2010

Scenes From A Life

First and foremost, I am so, so thrilled for our friends H&L H&L - they have travel approval and they will have their precious Ella in their arms in 20 days!!! Hurray! Four long years of waiting is about to melt away. You can follow their journey at Ella At Last.

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At dinner tonight, I watched Lana dip her apple slices in srichacha sauce. I have joked about the fact that Lana puts hot chili sauce on everything, but I have never seen her put it on fruit before. I'm guessing that she will make money in college by betting fraternity boys that she can eat food that is hotter than they can even smell. And she will win.

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I had to have some slightly horrifying dental work today. Fortunately, it was relatively quick, but still awful. Even worse, I have to go back on the 11th for MORE horrifying dental work. I swear that deep inside every dentist is sadist trying to get out.

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I took Lana to her first dance class last Thursday. I was a bit surprised that the dance studio was surprised to hear from a parent in January, looking to sign a daughter up for dance classes. Apparently, dance classes start in September??? Who knows this? Also, apparently, I am some kind of failure as a parent for having allowed my daughter to reach the age of 7 without having ever attended a dance class. (Am I the only one who feels like there is some kind of super secret club of moms who hold the information about things like when Little League sign-ups start, and when dance classes begin, and I am somehow shut out from this super secret mom club? Maybe I need to know their super secret handshake? Sigh.) The good news, they found room for her in a class and she started on Thursday and she LOVED it. The bottom line is that the child is built like a dancer - tall and willowy and she moves fluidly. I don't know how else to describe it except to say that she put on her leotard and leggings and looked like she had been dancing her whole life...

When I was little, I loved the book, "Ballet Shoes" by Noel Streatfield. (Which, by the way, was made into a movie with Emma Watson (the girl who played Hermione in Harry Potter), but I digress.) ANYWAY, in the book, the youngest Fossil, Posy Fossil, I think - puts on her dancing shoes and dances like she was born to dance. And that's not QUITE how fantastic Lana was, but she was GOOD. I was proud of her.

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On Sunday, the alumni associations for the Law School and Medical School of the University from which I graduated had a family ice-skating outing. (Yes, somewhere in that sentence is a fabulous lawyer-doctor-liability joke. I'm choosing to ignore that.) I cannot even begin to tell you how much fun we had. Lana took ice-skating lessons all last winter, but Gabe had never skated and it had been YEARS since Husband or I had gone skating.

I took figure skating lessons for about five years when I was growing up. I was not good at it - I mean, I took the lessons, I learned the basics, and my instructors would wring their hands at my parents and say - "she's never going to be good at this, why are you spending this money?" The truth was the ice-skating lessons (and ballet lessons) were prescribed by a doctor my parents took me to see - a bone specialist at the University of Michigan. I was born with hip displaysia, and when I was five, a doctor wanted to fillet me like a fish on a table, slice me open from ankle to hip, and turn my bones and create deeper, more "normal" hip sockets.

My parents went for a second opinion. Thank god. I remember sitting in the hallway, waiting for the doctor, surrounded by children with tragic bone malformations. Children who couldn't walk. Children who couldn't even sit up. Children twisted painfully. I had worn braces on my legs for several years, but was otherwise unremarkable.

When the doctor saw me, he took me back into the hallway and asked me to run. And I did, rather clumsily, but I did it. He asked me to skip and to gallop. And I did. He turned to my parents and said, "When she was born, they told you she probably wouldn't walk. But today you brought me a child who can run, and skip. There is no point in slicing her open. Make her go to ballet and ice skating lessons. She will never be graceful, but she will be fine."

And so it was that I spent many years as the worst student in numerous ballet and ice skating classes.

The point of this is that, when I stepped on the ice on Sunday, it had been many, many years since I skated. And for a few minutes, I thought that I no longer knew how. And then, I stopped thinking about skating and I just...skated. I think this phenomenon is called "muscle memory" - like riding a bike, your body doesn't forget how, even though you may not have ridden a bike a long, long time.

So, my legs had not forgotten how to skate. I forgot how much I love it - how much I love the feel of my skate against the ice, that little sound that the blade makes every so often as it pushes against the ice, the feeling of going fast. (I am not a fast person, not by any stretch of the imagination. I probably wasn't skating particularly fast, but it felt fast.) It felt like flying. It felt wonderful.)

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LM

7 Comments:

OpenID vanessagalore said...

No wonder you have been such a good friend through my medical insanity.

I had about 10 years of being pretty much the worst person in ballet classes. I mostly liked it, but I should have practiced on my own a little more. Now, I'm very glad I had that training. It's helped in my career tremendously.

Monday, February 01, 2010 10:13:00 PM  
OpenID vanessagalore said...

No wonder you have been such a good friend through my medical insanity.

I had about 10 years of being pretty much the worst person in ballet classes. I mostly liked it, but I should have practiced on my own a little more. Now, I'm very glad I had that training. It's helped in my career tremendously.

Monday, February 01, 2010 10:13:00 PM  
Blogger thecurryseven said...

J. and I are both laughing about the apple dipped in 'red rooster sauce'. (Which is how it's known around here.) TM will add it to anything we let him, though I don't think he's pondered the possibilities of pairing it with fruit.

Monday, February 01, 2010 11:09:00 PM  
Blogger j'lynn said...

You are not alone...I too feel like there is a secret mom's club that knows such things that I am not a part of and I sure as hell haven't been invited into within the last 8 or so years. I sometimes rely on my ex-sister-in-law and a friend of mine, but then I feel like a slouch of a mom when they are like, "Didn't you know that he was suppose to start last year?" My response, "Apparently I didn't or he would have,huh?!?"

I was never allowed into such things as dance and ballet...we couldn't afford and my family thought that people like "us" didn't need such stuff. I've always promised that if I were to have a little girl she will be allowed to dance, do ballet, etc...whatever she wants and I'll find a way to pay for it.

I'm very happy your parents went for a second opinion! :) Smart cookies they are... ;)

Monday, February 01, 2010 11:18:00 PM  
OpenID lookingforgeorge said...

Oh, I'be been trying to figure out the secret handshake/sign/whatever for years. I am also not in the club.

And? Thank goodness for second opinions!

Tuesday, February 02, 2010 2:19:00 PM  
OpenID mrsbroccoliguy said...

I'm totally not in the club either. But I was like way over the top excited for my little girl to take ballet so I had her signed up when she was 3 - I think like 2 weeks after she turned 3. That was the most on top of things I ever was. (See: 2nd Daughter not starting gymnastics until she was 6 1/2, a good 3 years later than she should have). I am way dependent on other moms to tell me when sports and other things are going on. Which has been a bad thing since moving here because I don't know very many moms.

Re: the skating lessons. I think your parents were awesomely smart to have you take those lessons for years even though it wasn't your "gift" - for the simple reason that now you can skate and have fun after all these years.

Funny story... K quit ballet after 3 years of lessons. (She literally cried on her way to lessons for the whole last year - I paid for it and so I made her go. I'm awful like that). So now here she is, 8 years later, telling me she wishes she hadn't quit. And asking me if maybe she could start taking them again! And I'm like "Why not?" It would make me very happy to see her doing ballet again. :)

Tuesday, February 02, 2010 5:09:00 PM  
Blogger William Dunigan said...

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Wednesday, February 03, 2010 6:57:00 PM  

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