You guys, I feel like I’ve reached a new milestone in parenthood…the extracurriculars! And I have lots of mixed feelings about it. I knew this day was coming, and I’ve looked forward to it for a long time. (Oh how I can’t wait to tailgate at all her future games or meets and embarrass her with my loud cheering and cheesy signs!) But I’m also a little bit sad that it got here rather quickly. I’ve been trying to hold out for the longest time, continually telling her “not yet” or “you can do that when you’re three…or four…” and well, we’re there now. And while I’m so excited for this new stage, and all that’s to come as she grows up, it still tugs on my heartstrings more than I’d like to admit. Adeline had her very first gymnastics class over the weekend, and while it was exciting and Adam and I beamed with all the proud parent heart eyes there are to possibly beam with, all it did was further solidify the fact that my little baby girl is in fact not so little anymore. How is it possible for her to be old enough now to start asking about learning or playing this or that, and doing this sport or that sport? Didn’t she like, just learn to walk? On one hand yes, and on the other, a part of me can barely remember her pre-confident sassy self!
I cannot wait until her first soccer game, which she’s requested to play this fall. And I cannot wait until I convince her to play Lacrosse and I help coach her team. (A girl can dream!) And I cannot wait until her first track meet when she runs all the things. And I cannot wait until her first dance recital when she dances in her own little world. Or her first swim meet. Or her first cross country meet. Or her first volleyball match. Or her first tennis match or softball game or heck, chess club competition. And I literally cannot wait for all of these amazing things that are in store for her future, because I remember how important these things were in shaping my own childhood, and young adult life. I wouldn’t be who I am today if I hadn’t had the chance to grow myself through all the extracurriculars I took part in. But at the same time, I want her to be little forever! And I want to relish in the too-young-to–do-anything-yet stage just a little bit longer.
But alas, grandfather time is like NOPE sorry sister. That girly of yours is ready to take on the world, one gymnastics class at a time apparently. And ok fine, I’m also kind of loving it, even though I just spent half a blog post getting all up in my emotions.
She’s been asking to do gymnastics for a while now, and after flip-flopping back and forth between gymnastics and dance class, she finally settled on gymnastics because she wants “to do the balance beam!” (Her preschool/daycare has a gymnastics class and a dance class, so she’s at least been exposed to both!) We considered getting her started at a regular gymnastics gym, but eventually decided we’d hold off on that until we knew whether or not she really loved it, and was a little bigger. (Also, $$$). We have a really great franchise of The Little Gym in our area and after checking it out, we quickly decided this would be the PERFECT way to introduce her to gymnastics and allow her to really test it out with kids her age, in a less intimidating and overwhelming atmosphere. We can also pay monthly, attend a different time class if we need to, and watch the entire class from the lobby. It’s just so cute, and perfect, and we’re excited to see her tackle this new adventure. She’s in a three year old class, and it seems just about right.
So let’s chat about her first class! We arrived early and were greeted with a fun welcome on the TV’s in the lobby and she felt so special. We got her shoes and socks put up in a cubby, met her teachers again, and then it was time for class to start! The lobby faces into the gym so the parents can watch everything. There were three teachers in her class, and other than the warmup, they split up into small groups and rotated to different equipment and centers throughout the class. The class was 50 minutes long, but it took at least half the class for her to finally feel comfortable to really get involved and jump in. She’s always been an observer, so I wasn’t surprised. I knew it would take a while for her to feel comfortable in such a new environment and with all new people. But once she really started participating, I could tell she lit up and was loving every minute. And by the end of class, she was already asking about coming back next week. She was so proud of herself, and immediately asked to go get ice cream. Ha!
While it’s not a “real” gymnastics gym, it’s perfect for her age! I was a little worried about the size of the equipment, and whether or not it would all be too “baby” for her or if she’d outgrow it too quick. But ya’ll, she’s only three. And I’ve had to remind myself of that on a regular basis. She is.only.three. and three is little. And her class is only kids her age, and every activity is perfectly set up so it’s developmentally appropriate. They have a 3 year old class, a 4 year old, and a 5 year old class, so she’s got room to grow. But I’m thinking by the time she’s 5, it might be time to upgrade to our local BIG gymnastics gym – if she’s still loving it! But for now, it’s the perfect first extracurricular!
It’s also a family membership, and we can cancel it at anytime. But they also have mommy and me classes, which means when Barrett gets bigger, if we’re still members, I can take him to some classes!
Have you tried The Little Gym? What did your kids start out doing when they were three?