August 23, 2014

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Dance dad extraordinaire PDF Print
Saturday, April 19, 2014 8:00 PM

We are welcoming another writer to the family this month. My brother-in-law Tim has been fortunate enough to find someone to publish his book “All In: My Amazing Journey as a Dance Dad.”

Tim is the father of Lotus, our little dancer.

A little known fact about Tim is he was once a professional bowler. He was really good at it but it wasn’t his true passion so he moved on. He’s familiar with the feeling of doing something because you do it well, not because you love it.

When he met our little Lotus, he quickly became enamored. Who wouldn’t? She is awesome.

He slid into the role of father with ease. He was there for the right reasons and he was in for the long haul. We all embraced him because he made Lotus and her mother happy. After all, isn’t that what we all want?

He quickly went from Tim to “Dad” and that was that.

Tim says when he saw Lotus’s face the first time she danced competitively, he knew it was her passion. Like the fabulous dad he is, he decided to make it his as well. If she was going to succeed, it was going to take the whole family — and more. They were committed to making her dreams come true.

Some dads would be hesitant to enter the world of tutus, leotards, makeup and ballet shoes but not Tim. He accepted all the trappings and traps of making Lotus successful.

I want to make sure you don’t think what Tim and Dawn do with dance and Lotus can be compared to “Dance Moms” on TV. There is no drama in the Colley house or presented publicly concerning dance. Lotus is there to work and become better and refine her skills. Tim and Dawn are there to support her, not fulfill some childhood dream left by the wayside. They also support the other dancers at her studio as if they were their own.

The journey has been filled with triumphs, trophies, medals, blood, sweat, tears, disappointment and the list goes on. He and Dawn have become a tag team when it comes to schedules. If one has to go, the other one stays and vica-versa. If they can both be there, even better. It all gets done because where there’s a will, there’s a way.

The routine can be grueling for all. Lotus is in school all day and there’s homework and chores and then — dance. She dances six days a week. I know it sounds like a lot but most people who’ve followed their dreams will tell you it’s not easy, it isn’t always fun and it’s your full-time job if you want to the best.

Weekdays are filled with work, school and practice. Weekends are for traveling to competitions and a little downtime, if permissible.

I was once concerned how much time Lotus was devoting to dance. It didn’t seem like she had a lot of time for friends and goofing off. I felt sorry for her. If you talk to Lotus, perhaps she feels sorry for me because I really don’t have a passion other than my husband, my family and my j-o-b. That’s OK. I’m old. I’m good here and I get a lot of satisfaction out of what I do.

Lotus loves to dance. She’d rather dance than do just about anything.

When I saw her dance for the first time, it was on a computer screen during the first nationals my husband attended in Ocean City, Md.

Her first performance was a ballet duet with another little girl. Tears streamed down my face as I watched her. It was magical! I so get what Tim saw when he watched her dance.

Tim says that what he knew about dance when this all started could fill a thimble. Now he’s filled the pages of a book to help other dance dads.

You can check it out at


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