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And The Answer Is . . .

We did it! We survived Take Your Daughters
To Work Day!


So I took a couple (very) large bags of toys to the studio, along
with lunches, snacks, and the girls’ activity boxes replete
with crayons and stickers and paper. And how much of that did we

Well, at least they ate the lunches.

Maddie bounced out of bed yesterday
morning with a spring in her step, which is decidedly
un-Maddie-like. I soon found out the reason why, as Maddie sang,
“I’m going to dance on Mommy’s stage!” She
was dying to get into the studio and play on our small cabaret
studio, and planned her clothing accordingly: because all the big
kids would be in rehearsal/dance clothes, Maddie wanted to wear one
of her dance leotards and skirts. What could I say?

An hour later, both girls were in their favorite ballet leotards
underneath some cover-up dresses. They had their ballet shoes
packed and were eagerly in the car, waiting for their first
glimpse. When we arrived, they both ran to the large studio where a
full cast rehearsal was going on, and they lingered in the doorway,
watching, until I pulled them unwillingly away to lay down a few
ground rules.

A small studio was available for the entire time I was teaching,
and I assumed they’d want to hang out there with the sitter,
playing music and dancing wildly around. I put on some ballet music
and sneaked out of the room, hoping for the best.

Sixty seconds later, Cora’s wail started up and could be
heard throughout the building. Ten minutes later, it was clear she
was not going to stop; when she gets into that mode she’s
been known to cry for over an hour. So I walked in, took her in my
arms, and went back to teaching.

And once Cora established that she did not wish to leave
Mommy’s side, my baby girl was golden. She spent the rest of
the day stuck to me but causing absolutely no trouble. If I were
sitting watching a scene, she sat in my lap or stood between my
knees. If I had to go onto the stage and give direction, she walked
along with me, holding my hand or clutching the hem of my shorts.
But she never complained, never got restless, never talked or
whined. She was my silent shadow for the rest of the day.

As for Maddie, she didn’t know what to do first. She
alternated between running crazy in the small studio with the
sitter, and coming back in to sit in the front and watch the big
girls. She was as quiet as Cora, though I could see she itched to
stand up and join the other kids.

So the day was, on the whole, a success. I was grateful for the
babysitter, who was able to keep an eye on the girls on the
off-chance they wandered off, which left me free to focus on my
work. And I was acutely aware of what an awesome job I have, that
lets me walk in and do my said job while holding a two-year-old. I
do, of course, wish that Cora had been ok letting me out of her
sight, but you can’t have everything.

It looks, therefore, as if we’ll be repeating this exercise
for the rest of the week. Hopefully Cora will become bored with the
“clutching Mommy” thing and want to wander around and
explore; heaven knows there were girls enough there dying to dote
on my two and shower compliments on them, so perhaps the adulation
will lure her away. Maddie is looking forward to a return to the
studio on Wednesday, and is practicing her Ariel song so she can
work it in front of the mirror.

Yeah, I know.


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