We started Gigi in dance class two months after she turned two years old.
Her sister had been diagnosed with leukemia just four months prior and we thought that dance class would be a great distraction for her.
But as it turned out, leukemia was the biggest distraction of all.
Grandma had to take Gigi to a lot of her dance classes.
I was busy with Zoe either in the hospital or Zoe couldn't leave the house.
Hence, I couldn't leave the house
Gigi was very reluctant to participate.
All of it seemed interesting, but she just couldn't take that first step.
She always talked about dancing on stage like Zoe, but when it was right in front of her, it was just too much.
When she had finally and bravely decided she could join the other girls, it was fun for her.
But then I would be able to take her to class and all of her progress went out the door.
She would cry.
Hide behind me.
Disaster and despair took over her two year old self.
So, we stopped going.
We thought, next year will be better for her.
So, in September of 2011, we tried again.
She started off eager to dance.
She loves the leotards and shoes.
But once we got there (I have been able to take her to all of her classes this year) it was a repeat of last year.
It was about a month into classes and I had made my decision to stop being nice about her non-participation and delusional antics.
It was just a Gigi-ploy to get attention.
I bucked her up and firmly said "You have one more chance. Either you dance today, right now, or we leave and never come back!"
I declared "No more tears!"
I also threw in "If you don't start dancing today, then you will NOT get a fancy costume and get to dance on stage like Zoe!"
I didn't coddle her.
I didn't even act nice about it.
I was firm and forceful and she needed to realize that last year was last year and leukemia was not keeping mom away from her and what she thought was fun.
She has been the star of her class ever since...