My daughter, Rebecca, is 6 years old. She has been doing gymnastics since she was 1 and a half. Last year, her coach suggested she try out for the competitive team, so she did, and she made it.
At 5, competitive gymnastics is not all flips and tumbles; it’s more repetitive motion and stretching. 6 hours a week. That’s 3 hours, 2 days a week.
Rebecca’s interest started to wane in about January. It was then that she told me she didn’t want to do gymnastics anymore. I didn’t know what to do.
Gymnastics has been so great for her. She has incredible balance which made learning to skate a breeze. She is super flexible and she can do the splits perfectly all 3 ways. It has given her great strength, allowed her to meet new friends, and kept her little body in good shape.
I was never delusional about gymnastics; I didn’t think she would be a professional gymnast or anything. It’s not even an emotional thing for me; I was never in gymnastics.
So why was this such a difficult decision? Well, I guess part of it is the idea of quitting something. Especially something she is good at and it’s good for her. The other part is: kids are so fickle. I didn’t want her to quit and then regret it.
So, I told her she had to stick with gymnastics until the end of the school year.
Despite what the weather feels like, June is upon us, summer is coming... and so is the end of the school year.
I had my yearly parent interview with Rebecca’s coach last week, and she told me that she didn’t think Rebecca was “giving it her all”, she wasn’t “taking it seriously.” In my mind, I thought “Is that because she’s 6, or because she’s not interested?” In either case, I agreed and said I didn’t think she was either.
Then she told me that Rebecca would not move up to the next level for the summer, she would stay at 6 hours instead of moving to 9...in my mind, not a bad thing. She said she may be able to move up come the fall. I wondered how Rebecca would take this news since her friend was moving up.
At dinner we discussed what the coach had said. I told her she wasn’t moving up, but her friend was and Rebecca got a little teary. It was then that I asked the most important question of all, and her answer was very telling.
I asked her if she was upset because her friend was moving up or if she was upset because she would be doing gymnastics in the summer. She said she was upset because she didn’t want to do gymnastics anymore.
Done. No more gymnastics.
So, this summer I’m forcing her play soccer, which IS an emotional thing for me since I played from 5 to 32. I don’t know what I will do if she wants to quit. Can you force your child to play a sport until they’re an adult? What if I use that “So long as you live under my roof” theory?
Am I a bad mom?
This morning, after going to bed at midnight, my daughter had me up at 5:15am. Not a surprise really, since that is her regular wake up time, but you always wish, when you have been foolish enough to stay up late, that they might grant you with an extra hour sleep.
It’s never the case though.
So, we came downstairs and I got her some milk in her sippy cup and we went into the den where I put my head down on her little Tinkerbell couch in hopes that she might follow suit and possibly, just maybe, she might fall back to sleep.
She did join me for a moment, laying down beside me for a brief snuggle. Then, not knowing that touch can hurt, she used my head as leverage to get herself up.
I laid there, head near the floor; It smelled a little like dog. I bet he sleeps on that couch when we aren’t looking. I watched her toddle away, and then back. She laid her head on mine and gave me the most perfect, drool laden smooch, and she was gone again.
From my vantage point, I could see her walk into the kitchen and check out the alphabet magnets on the fridge. I could also see the movies she had taken from the tv stand and strewn across the floor, the missing measuring cup that has been hiding under the couch for God knows how long, and the shoes she had taken from the front hall and relocated to new and curious places.
She talked as she went. Not forming any words, but definitely having a conversation. I’m not sure if she was talking to me or the dog, but I listened in.
Again, she returned to me, this time for a hug and some milk.
Finally, I dragged myself from the floor, and started making lunches for the big kids. She followed me to the kitchen and indicated that she would like to eat by grunting at her chair. So, I gave her some berries, bits of clementine and some flat bread.
She chattered away while I prepared the lunches, perhaps offering suggestions to her mommy, but the message was lost in translation.
As I explained to her my disdain for making school lunches, she smiled knowingly and shook her head to let me know I was making too big a deal of it.
And this is how my day begins. Early, simple, and yet, somehow, amazing.
I decided about 2 or 3 years ago, to stop colouring my hair because, with all the high lighting I had been doing, I was starting to look more like a blond than my natural auburn. I also wanted to see how I was doing in the grey department. So, I grew out my hair, and was pleasantly surprised with how much I liked my natural colour, although there were some greys sneaking in around the temples here and there through out. My solution to that issue was to never wear a pony tail unless I also wore a ball cap... maybe not the best solution, but it worked.
Recently, the grey was really starting to get me down... I think the extended winter and dreary days also had something to do with my mood, but I was taking it out on the greys.
So, I was beginning to think it was time to head back to the salon, but one of the other great things about not colouring my hair was the money I was saving, so I kept stalling on making an appointment.
Then I got a tweet that changed all of that. I had entered a Mother’s Day contest through @Wondermoms_ca, and I had won!
If you read my mother’s day blog, you know that Mother’s Day was not all it’s cracked up to be at my house, and had my husband not been sick with the flu, he would have been in the dog house.
It seemed that Mother’s Day was on the verge of being tossed aside completely and left for dead, but alas the day was saved by @WonderMoms_ca. She saved me from the grips of the Mother’s Day blues with the good news. So what did I win? A hair makeover with @GregMayHair.
Everyone on Twitter seemed to know and love Greg May and assured me I was going to LOVE his salon... Happy Mother’s Day to me!
On Saturday, I headed for the posh Yorkville area of Toronto to meet Mr. Greg May and see what everyone was raving about.
If you’ve never been to Yorkville, I’ll give you a little taste.
As I walked down the street, passing well dressed women, with designer everything and holding the hand of well dressed men, I noticed the streets were lined with cars that would never be in my budget. Being the first warm weekend in, what seems like forever; all the patios were full of people eating and sharing stories over import beers and martinis.
Surrounded by the pretence of Yorkville, I searched for 124 Cumberland. Then I saw the small, black sign “Greg May Hair Architects”. Although I was excited, this small town girl was a little nervous that I wouldn’t feel comfortable in the likes of an upscale Yorkville hair salon, but as soon as I stepped in the door of the salon, that entire pretence dropped away.
Greg May is a delight. He greeted me with a warm smile and a “Hey, you must be Moe!” he seemed as excited to meet me as I was to meet him.
While he finished up his client, I sat and flipped through magazines. I had only begun to read about the royal couple’s fertility issues when Greg’s assistant, Sonn, came to ask if I would like a drink, perhaps a latte. I asked for water.
As my water arrived, Greg came and gave me a proper greeting... hug and all. I’m a hugger, not a shaker (unless I’m on the dance floor). He then led me to his chair and his hands danced through my hair as we discussed what we might do with it.
He, too, liked my natural hair colour and was hesitant to colour it at all... until I revealed my grey, or as he calls it “the Nordic blond”, hiding at my temples.
After we had talked for about 15 minutes, I felt so comfortable and confident in Greg that I handed myself over to him and told him to do whatever he thought would be best. I feared that he may have visions of short blond hair, but he knew that I enjoyed warmer colours, so he said we would stick with the coppers.
My only request to him was that my hair be fun and sexy.
He decided to do two high lights and one low light, and he showed me each colour explaining how it would look in my hair and although it looked very blond, he assured me it would not be when we were done.
He seemed to read my personality, opting to do the high lights in a way that would make them have more “punch”... I liked that.
While my colour was setting, Sonn brought me Miso soup and sushi. Had I felt like I was in a pretentious salon in Yorkville, I would have been at a loss right then because the only utensils they brought me were chopsticks... to say that I am not great with chopsticks would be the understatement of the year. But rather than stress about it, I giggled at my ineptitude and ended up picking them up with my fingers.
As I sat there, eating my sushi with my fingers and watching a man sell Chihuahuas from a duffle bag through the window, Greg took care of another customer...his brother. It was sweet the way they interacted and it added to my comfort level. I am very close with my own siblings, and family means so much to me, so I love to see other people connecting with their own family.
My colour and my sushi were done, so Sonn took me back to have my hair rinsed. They have these wonderful chairs, well, more like loungers that you sit in to get your hair rinsed, so much more comfortable than the chairs with the back that tips back. I thought I couldn’t be any more comfortable until Sonn started giving me a scalp massage, then Greg came back with these dark chocolate covered almond clusters... It was very near to being a sexual experience... without the sex part.
Greg wouldn’t let me watch him cut my hair, as he wanted to do a reveal, What Not To Wear style. He did explain to me everything that he did as he made art out of my hair using a carving comb.
As he “carved”, we chatted about family and Twitter friends, and it turns out that Greg is from a small town too... no wonder I felt at home. Originally from Bracebridge in the Muskokas and raised on a farm, you really couldn’t get more small town than that... and here he was, Prada shoe adorned feet, firmly planted in Yorkville and fitting right in.
When he turned my chair so I could see what he had created, I couldn’t help but smile. My hair looks so natural (even my mother-in-law likes it, and she hates when I colour my hair) and the cut is truly sexy. I can’t help but stop and look in the mirror as I go by.
Styling hair is Greg’s passion, and it really shines through. Because my hair wasn’t long enough to do exactly what Greg wanted and he didn’t get to show off his scissor skills, he has asked me to come back in a few months. How did I get so lucky?
See you then Greg! Next time I’ll bring dinner... and baked goods!