I grew up loving the two most quintessentially girly things a girl could love: horses and ballet. It was an eight-year affair I had with ballet, until I hit puberty and my knees decided they no longer loved what they were being put through when I danced. Although I didn't grow up to be the prima ballerina I dreamed about when I was six, I believe there are plenty of benefits of taking ballet classes.
I was lucky enough to have grandparents who considered my education in the arts to be an essential part of my upbringing, and so I had season tickets to the city ballet. I saw Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, Giselle, Coppelia, and many more, and I loved the music and the dancers, and the dances themselves. The beauty, grace, and power that these men and women had left me breathless (in fact, they continue to, to this day).
During my time taking ballet, I learned so many important lessons that translated into the rest of my life. Lessons about respect, discipline, grace and strength that will forever stay with me. And while there may be a history of elitism connected to the art form, times are changing, and we are truly starting to see that ballet is for everyone. Furthermore, being into ballet when you're growing up is formative in more ways than you might expect. Since becoming a mom as an adult, I frequently look up and realize that my past with ballet still very much informs who I am as a parent. Here's how: