E had her second Junior Cotillion class last night. During the first class, she box-stepped with three young men, all a bit awkward in the importance of suits and ties. All the young ladies twirled in dresses and stockings and high heels, most taller than their determined partners. I found myself strangely moved in seeing my eldest child and only daughter in the arms of several young men, chatting shyly with them as "step, together -- step together" was voiced in the firm tones of Miss Kent, their teacher.
In this course, young people grades 7 to 12 learn manners (first night was introductions, second night was thank you notes), table etiquette, both American and European, and then 45 minutes of ballroom dancing tutelage. The young men outnumber the young ladies, so the young men have the priviledge of learning how to "cut in." E was more sure of herself as they practiced "progressive waltzing" around the edges of the gorgeous 1920's ball room. A new red dress with black velvet jacket may have aided in her confidence, and as tonight was a "Masked Ball," the young men and ladies sported half-masks and some of the girls wore different gloves from the plain white cotton ones for sale on the counter. E herself wore black lace gloves with a black, glittery half-mask. She is enjoying herself thoroughly, and had the chance to dance once again with "Jet," a student at Horizon Christian High.
Is is starting? That mysterious boy-girl thing? With MY fourteen-and-a-half year old? Could be. Perhaps should be. But as she laughed and shared all on the long ride home from Banker's Hill, I found myself hoping for this openness throughout her years as she begins to think of boys for the first time.
Now for the hard thing: convincing Keith that he needs to escort her and dance with her at the Christmas Ball in December. E already has her dress -- a long burgundy strapless number that will need a silver bolero jacket. Perhaps my brother of my dad can step in?
See what a liking for "Dancing with the Stars" has got us?