Expectations and Disappointments

There are many times in our lives when our expectations of people, places and things don’t measure up. Sometimes it is because we have set our standards too high I believe. However if you don’t have standards to set then you will never have a yardstick to measure anything with.
I am guilty of expecting much from myself and then becoming disappointed with the results. I do it all the time.
It isn’t really fair to myself to do this either however I continue to do it.
So what has prompted this post?
Yesterday I took my daughter to a High Tea to meet the cast of Dance Moms. Well it wasn’t all of the cast since one cast member is facing criminal charges for assault against the dance teacher (Abbey Lee) and another is touring other parts of the world with her child.
My Tween and her her tween friend were excited beyond belief to actually meet the girls, their mothers and Abbey Lee. I was a little more subdued although I do have a bit of a girly crush on a couple of the mothers who (in my eyes) don’t always buy into the bitchiness and backstabbing that make up the majority of the show’s viewing.
The Tween just wanted to see the girls dance.
She wasn’t disappointed with anything about the day.
I was. I had taken my DSLR and was hoping to take beautiful photos of the dancers spinning, jumping and being beautiful. But damn it!! I couldn’t get it right.
Shot after shot was blurred and I was growing more frustrated by the minute as I changed settings and ISO. Many looked wonderful in the LCD but didn’t fare so well on my computer screen once I had downloaded them.  I managed a couple that I have added an ‘artist’s touch’ to in order to disguise the obvious grain and motion blur. But the majority of the photos were horrid. I think what is worse is that this occasion is not something that I can go back to later and re-take the photos armed with a tripod and better knowledge.
Luckily my daughter had her iPad and shot video that she is able to take stills from. That has made her happy. Because if she had been relying on her mother, she would have been terribly disappointed in the results.

Now to the another disappointment of the day. Abbey Lee.
I have watched the show “Dance Moms” countless times. Sometimes I have watched the same episode two or three times (not my choice), so I have built up an idea of this dance teacher in my mind.
I went along to the High Tea hoping beyond all hope that the producers of the show had just put it all together in such a way as to make her look really bad. Surely nobody could be that harsh, opinionated or egotistical? Sadly, my experience was that the producers must have done very little editing.
Abbey Lee is an attractive woman. Her hair and  makeup were tastefully done and her clothing choices were also tasteful. She looked elegant and sophisticated as she addressed the audience.
She is knowledgeable about her craft and this reflected in the answers given to questions from the floor. She is articulate and well spoken. She is also incredibly harsh.
Although pre-warned by the organisers that Abbey-Lee does not like questions beginning with “ummm” I was still shocked when she refused to answer any question posed if it was preceded by ‘umm’. One young girl at the table across from us, looked about to burst into tears when she began her question with ‘umm’.  Abbey replied  “What did you say?” and then moved on without answering the girl’s question. She even pointed out that the poor girl was near tears “Look she is about to cry” followed by the words  “harden up” before moving on to the next eager questioner.
(My sympathies were beginning to lie with the former cast member who is facing assault charges for hitting this woman).
Abbey Lee did not like answering questions about the former cast member or one of the other mothers (touring overseas right now). When she did answer those questions she was harsh and bitter with her responses.
In the case of my expectations of the dance teacher, I was disappointed.

My expectations of the prices of merchandise items on sale prior to the High Tea were met. Everything was over priced as I expected.  However the Tween was free to choose to spend her saved birthday and Christmas money as she wished. And she was happy so that is all that matter.

On a brighter note. The young dancers (all Tweens) were just delightful. They danced beautifully. They smiled and posed for photos with those at the tables and they showed grace and poise beyond their years. Their mothers were also lovely. I confess, I wanted my photo (without the Tween and her friend) with the mums, and I got my wish. Sandwiched between my favourites, Holly and Jill who greeted me with “Come over here Dance Mom” before posing for the photo with genuine smiles on their faces. When I mentioned it was my birthday, they both wished me a happy birthday and gave me a hug.

Although yesterday was a day of expectations and some disappointments, it was a huge success in the eyes of the Tween and her friend and that is all that matters.
For those who may be interested, photos are following.

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34 thoughts on “Expectations and Disappointments

  1. Being a Yank, I don’t know the show, but could Abbey Lee simply have been continuing to play the role she has in the show?

    Most important, don’t be hard on yourself. Getting good shots in a strange place and with lots of live and high speed action is very difficult, particularly if you’re not allowed to use flash of the performance (which you’re usually not). You do great work.

    Cheers from the desert of Utah,
    Dan

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    1. Hi Dan,
      The show is actually from the U.S. being shot in Pittsburgh. I doubt very much she was playing a role as it is a reality show. I just hoped that she was a victim of editing for the sake of ratings.
      Thank you kindly for your lovely words of encouragement. 🙂
      Note: I hope you didn’t see this reply already Dan. I apologise because I called you Lester once again so I’ve edited this reply.

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  2. Hi Suz, now this is Laurie, thought I’d let you know seeing you called Dan Lester. 😉
    Expectations are terrible things, they nearly always leave you disappointed. What a hard woman this lee person is. the photos look okay btw.

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  3. I think Abbey Lee is setting an awful example for these young girls. There is no excuse for being rude, and hurting someone’s feeling in the process. If she holds high standards for dancing fine, but not to answer a question and move on? She should be ashamed. I hope someday someone will stand up to her about her behavior. I am not a believer in “breaking someone down” to get them to perform, which I have read is this woman’s M.O. I’m glad your daughter had a good time though and happy birthday to you!! 🙂

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    1. People have stood up to her about her behaviour on the show but seriously I don’t think she really cares and I think she is of an age where she isn’t about to change. Yes, she breaks them down. I get so angry at what happens on the show however I went to this event hoping that it was all production editing and she wasn’t at all like that. Nope. She was.
      Thanks for the birthday wished 😀

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  4. Glad the tweens enjoyed their time. I’m not familiar with the show at all but I must say I think that Abbey Lee needs to get over herself. Sounds like a very self-centered, look at me–I’m the queen bee–type of person. Poor example to young girls and not very nice at all!

    Belated happy birthday to you! What fun to spend part of your special day going to high tea!

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    1. Thank you Elaine. I’m sure it was a case of ‘be careful what you wish for’. I had been saying for some time that I would love to go to a high tea on my birthday and lo and behold the Tween’s favourite television show were having a high tea on of all dates – my birthday. 🙂

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    1. Yes. I wonder how it will turn out? There is no doubt the other woman hit her but she was provoked. (It’s on camera. That’s one of the things about filming a reality show I guess).

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  5. As a former Dance Mom who stayed in the car, there was something going on with the other moms and the owner of the dance studio our daughter attended. We all ended up at other dance studios. I think it had to do with one of the very positive instructors opening her own studio because she couldn’t get along with the – ummm – nasty owner. I have seen parts of that show. To act that rude, and give such a poor example to young girls, or the young anythings–our daughter had a couple of boys in her classes–is not something that can be faked…unless she is an excellent actor.

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    1. It’s sad isn’t it? Yes, she is a successful teacher and has many past students working on Broadway, cruise ships and one touring the world with Wicked however being good at your craft doesn’t make you a nice human being.

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    1. I think that it must have been difficult for those girls who were excited and had just been spoken to by one of their television idols to not begin a question with ‘ummm’. I was terribly sad for them. You could almost hear everyone in the room hold their breath when a child ‘ummed’.

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    1. She was not a nice person at all Joey however the dancers and their mothers were just delightful. I was just pleased that my Tween showed no interest in asking questions.

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  6. In my opinion this post is over exaggerated. Maybe she was a little self-obsessed and rude at times but she really wasn’t that bad. Abby* must be doing something right if the mothers continue to stay there and she has dancers on Broadway. She was how I expected her to be. She answered the questions very honestly and was straight forward about everything. I would have loved to ask her a question but couldn’t think of one at the time. It would be an interesting response. I don’t think she would be a role model for anyone as we have the girls for that. Also Nia is 13. That’s all I have to say ✋

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      1. No I don’t do ‘agree to disagree’ that’s just cowardliness backing out of something. Also I’m a bit of a believer in fighting fire with fire. As you only see parts of the show and have not seen every episode of season 1,2&4 at least 2 times as I have, your observation of Abby is a bit like judging a book by its cover. Yeah she’s mean. Yeah she can be opinionated. But where have the nice dance teachers students gotten? Nowhere. Abby’s words make the girls were harder to impress her. Abby treats the girls harsh so when she treats them kind they know they must be doing something right. Also, out of the week of film they edit it down to 45 minutes so we never REALLY know what happened. Thankyou for your time

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  7. So excited you and the Tween had this experience. I’m an Abbey fan. I just love how she says the things I’d like to say sometimes. I’m not sure if its an act and therefore she would be ‘in character’ to keep the image or she is just politically incorrect at times (and proud). So jealous of your shoulder rubbing . Would it be technically bad of me to photoshop myself in ? hahaha

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