For decades now, I’ve known that I share so many of my mom’s traits. And then this happens and reinforces it even more…
Earlier tonight, my mom’s younger sister shared a photo of my mom when she was in a dance performance as a child. So … so … long ago:
This is the first time in my life that I’ve seen this photo, and it brought me right back to my own childhood. Here are some photos of me when I was four years old, still living in Taiwan:
In case you can’t figure it out, I’m the one in the red dress.
Back then, I had two cousins I spent all of my time with. They were both girls, and they were my absolute besties. My aunt — a professional dancer – was putting on a dance recital, and both my cousins were invited to participate. Since this was kind of a “girls thing” (at least from my understanding), I wasn’t included initially. I think they just assumed I wouldn’t be interested.
As it turned out, I was absolutely devastated when I found out what my cousins were getting to do and that I wasn’t included. I don’t remember how my sadness played out, but I do remember my mom and aunt deciding that if I wanted to participate, then sure, I could participate. I remember picking out a bright red dress with shiny sequins, because I saw all the other girls in their dresses and wanted to be just like them. And I remember wearing it in front of the mirror and feeling so proud of myself.
For my mom’s part, I know she was just happy that I was excited. I guess it makes sense now that I’ve realized how much dancing was a part of her entire life.
Finally, I’d like to close with a bit of social commentary on how amazing my mom and aunt (and really, everyone around us) were. I remember everyone getting a kick out of my wanting to wear a dress and dance, but no one ever insinuated that it was weird or abnormal. There was zero shame in me participating in a girl’s activity, and what was most important was that I was happy. And truly, I remember being so happy to be part of this dance group.
Turns out this was just another thing I got from my mom …