Tiny Dancer


I dream of his n’ hers sinks (and his n’ hers closets, as long as we’re dreaming).  I mean, what I really dream of is a third bedroom and a second bathroom and a home office and hardwood floors, but in this remodeled hypothetical home I’d definitely install some his n’ hers spaces.

Dreams aside, we have made do with our standard, one-sink-for-all situation for some time now, and one of the funny little rituals that has evolved is that my husband and I brush our teeth at the same time every night.  It’s like an unwritten date.  For two minutes, armed with dueling Sonicares, we stare at our side-by-side reflections in the mirror.

We’ve been doing this for years, and because it’s important to keep your marriage interesting, lately what I like to do with this two-minute window of time is, I like to make faces and dance around and try to get my husband to either laugh or flee.

I developed this habit in part when I started to wear a Fitbit and became aware that every step counts, even those two minutes when I am brushing my teeth.  But also because there is something liberating about getting really silly at bedtime: a literal shaking-off of the day, the big stresses and the niggly irritations, the looming question of Was I the best mom/wife/friend/employee I could be?  By 10pm we’ve talked out the work stories and the kid stories, done the bedtime troubleshooting, given the sips of water and the extra back rubs, hammered out the logistics of the coming days, set up the coffee for the morning, laid out the gym clothes…I mean, why not take two minutes to shimmy around the (tiny) bathroom, mugging in the mirror with my false eyelashes?  Why the hell not?

Hey, you get your fun where you can find it.

Anyway, speaking of dancing, Babygirl came home this week with the Nae Nae.

What’s that you say?

Yes, she was wandering the house singing (as she does; I honestly wonder if she has some kind of singing tic I should look into), but instead of the usual Twinkle Twinkle or Wild Kratts theme song, it was something like “Whey, whey, watch me nae nae”.  And there were MOVES.

By Saturday I had to ask.  “What’s this nae nae all about?  Is this A Thing?”

Babygirl jumped at the opportunity to be the authority and struck a pose.  “It’s like this, Mommy.”  And she planted her feet in a wide stance and did this arm move and shook her hips over and over while she sang the whey whey nae nae song.  Of course, this meant that I did the next thing moms have to do when their four-year-olds come home with hip-shakin’ dance moves: I took to the trusty Interweb.

The Nae Nae is A Thing!  It is a meme, if you will!  After lunch I pulled up the YouTube video and my husband and Babygirl joined me (LittleMan, engrossed in a National Geographic Atlas, could not even).  After a minute, the three of us couldn’t help ourselves: we all got up and danced in the bedroom, and my husband pointed out that obviously they stole some of his best moves in making the video.  (We did not worry about the fact that the lyrics are actually Watch me whip, whip / Watch me nae nae.  These are not nuances Babygirl needs.)

Laughing, I turned to Babygirl.  “Where in heaven’s name did you get this?”
“At P.E.!”
“At P.E.?  As in, your teacher taught you these moves?”

Yeah!  The things that go on in school, I tell ya.  You get your fitness where you find it.

Later that day I took Babygirl to Old Navy to return some shoes (where, as an aside, she coaxed me into buying her two replacement pairs, which I had to do, because…look at them.  Also this.).  Waiting for the elevator after we paid, some hip hop song came on and Babygirl looked at me and tentatively shook her hips.  I shook mine back, and the two of us hung out there in the elevator well for a solid several minutes, dancing around, feeling happy and foolish and very much in cahoots.

If anyone had asked, I would have said, Why the hell not?

After all, a little dancing is good for the soul.  Watch me nae nae.

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