Friday, October 12, 2007

Quietly Please

As I have mentioned many times before, Analese has such sensitive ears. Even as an infant, she could not handle gatherings were often a nightmare for us because she just wasn't comfortable. Toys that made noise were a definite "no-no"-but that was a blessing to us. We learned to adapt in order to keep her comfortable.

As she grew older, she was able to tell us that certain noises "hurt". Fireworks, parades, music bands...they all "hurt". It is painful to watch her-her eyes blink uncontrollably and her whole body tenses up, until eventually she just wants to be held and have her ears covered.

I have always hoped that this would be something that she'll eventually outgrow. As she has gotten older, she clearly wants to take part in loud activities, and enjoy the parades and other events, but I can see that it is still very painful for her. Oh, how I wish I could take it all away for her, but I can't. We do what we can to make her comfortable, always giving her the option of leaving if she needs to.

So now we have dance class. In her class, she has ballet, tumbling, jazz and tap-in that order. The girls wear their ballet shoes for ballet and tumbling and then come out and switch into their tap shoes. The last couple of classes I have noticed that Analese seems to shut down after tumbling. She just stands there, doesn't participate or even notice her teachers at all. Last week I assumed that she was tired after having been sick for so long. This week, she turned towards me a couple of times and looked like she was going to cry. Again, she just kind of shut down, no longer paying any attention to anything in the classroom. At one point another girl came over to her and waved her hand in front of Analese's can imagine how that made me feel to see that! I started to wonder if perhaps the hour long class was just too much for her right now.

So after class, she came out and as she was putting her shoes on, I asked her what was wrong. "The shoes. The shoes are too loud. It hurts my ears" Ugh, what do I say to that? " I don't like loud noises, Mom. They hurt my ears".

So once again, I am torn as to what I should do. This class is supposed to be fun, and often I feel like it is anything but. She does love it, she loves going....but she also has meltdowns after every class and goes home and sleeps for 2-3 hours. It just may be too much. Last week, as we were driving home she told me "being a ballerina is HARD work".

We have already paid this month's tuition, so I figure I will see how the rest of the month goes. If she continues to shut down, I am going to talk to her teachers and see what they think about switching her to the pre-ballet class on Saturdays. The last thing I want is to have the joy taken out of dance.


Lorrie said...

Awww, poor baby! Maybe as she gets used to the sound it will be better!

The Daily Rhythm said...

that's what I am hoping for! We'll just see how the month goes, and then go from there..