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Daddy's Prima Ballerina

Dear Gracie,

What the heck happened?

Last week in ballet class, you danced with an elegance worthy of the Boston Ballet. You paid attention to Miss Melissa and imitated the other girls. I was so excited, honey. Daddy stood close to the other moms and made precisely timed comments like, "Ugh, I just can't get her ponytail right," when Daddy really meant, "Are you paying attention to my kid? You really ought to. She's outstanding." Today, however, you acted like you had never heard English before.

What's the deal, kid?


Miss Melissa said, "Stand at the bar," and you looked into the mirror. She said, "Dance around the circle," and you stared at the floor. While the other girls tapped across the studio, you sprinted like a wolverine with a neurological condition. Don't do this to Daddy, honey. I can't take it.

You see, I'm the worrying kind. When you do this, Daddy thinks, "She can't follow group instructions, she's going to get booted from class, she's going to be the nightmare kid in school, she'll never amount to anything, she'll be in 9th grade with coloring books and drooling on herself." You see, Daddy is a real glass-is-half-empty kind of guy, and you kind-of reinforced his illogical convictions this afternoon.

Plus, it hinders my bragging.

So listen to Miss Melissa next week, okay? Or Daddy's going to have an aneurism.