I tend to write posts and let them sit for a few days before I read them over again and actually post them. I wrote this one on Sunday evening... As will be obvious from the first sentence. I can hardly call this midnight, since it's literally only 10:30pm on this Sunday evening but nonetheless I will now begin to ramble. After watching some Gilmore Girls and falling asleep, then waking back up to turn it off and 'officially' go to bed almost an hour ago my mind is racing It's amazing how you can just fall asleep during an activity but then when you actually try to go to bed it can be futile. In this case I find myself going over the ballet classes I've taken the past two Saturdays. Now to be fair I don't feel HORRIBLE about them. I mean I haven't consistently danced since the end of 2008 or early 2009. YEP 2009. That's almost 6 freaking years ago. So with that in mind I'm trying not to be too hard on myself. And I mean thank God I do bikram yoga, because otherwise I don't think this whole trying to get back into dance thing would even be possible.
Bikram has allowed me to regain flexibility, strength, mental discipline, and although I haven't fully regained all of it, and ballet is an entirely different beast of it's own, it's helped this process.
Yet I still find myself tossing and turning, going over the parts in class where I particularly felt inadequate. I don't know why, but I swear what I'm struggling the most with in these classes is my brain. As a ballet teacher I always tell my students that they need to know the combinations because otherwise you can't work on refining the steps or remembering corrections because you're too caught up just trying to keep up with the combination. Which is true. But I now find myself being that person who cannot remember the combinations. I have never been this person. In the past, whatever I physically lacked, I made up for with a good mind, I could pick up and remember combinations for days like it was nothing.
Needless to say I am frustrated as hell with myself on this. How can I get my brain to catch up to my body? And I'll be damned if in the next class I take a get stumped by another petite allegro (small jumping) combination. I mean seriously. Yes, I've never been strong in the petite allegro variety but SHEESH it's never been this rough. I see even just as I write all of this out that I'm weighing far too heavily on comparing this 24 year old out of practice version of me to the 18 year old 'best shape I've been in' dancer version of me who had been taking ballet class 4 hours a day 6 days a week for practically 6 years straight, if not longer.
But how can I not do that? I NEED to push myself. I can't settle for just being okay. If there's anything I took away from all of the "Academic Ballet Courses" I took at Kirov it's the line "Ballet does not stand mediocrity." I cannot remember who the hell said it but I seriously have never heard a truer statement, and I knew it as soon as I heard it. Mediocrity just has no place in ballet. No one wants to watch that. Especially no one wants to pay to see that, and sure as hell no one is going to pay you to dance poorly or even just 'okay'. You can barely get paid to dance amazingly... SO yeah.
Why I am taking myself back down this rabbit hole than you may ask? The only word that comes to mind is: PASSION.
I seriously just love it. I don't know why, I can't explain it, there will probably always be at least a small part of me that dreads ballet class and the uncertainty of how my body will perform that day, but I do love it. Being a professional ballet dancer in a ballet company (which by the way I'm sure means nothing to people in the 'normal' world) is a hard life. I have friends who are in it and beyond talented who struggle with their directors just not giving them the chances they deserve. It's a crazy world where people don't eat and they abuse their bodies day in and day out. But there's an insane part of me that just wants a small taste of it.
I don't know if my brain will start to cooperate. I don't know if my body will cooperate. But I couldn't sit in bed tossing and turning going over the parts in class I WISH I had done better in. It gives me anxiety, and to be honest, there is not one damn thing I can do about it right now from my bed.
I needed this outlet, so thank you for existing. Thoughts can haunt us, and drown us sometimes. Sometimes we just need some gratification and acknowledgement and writing can somehow provide that. I actually had a good bikram class just this morning, the teacher even asked me to demonstrate a posture (floor bow) to my surprise. I felt very humbled and honored - I've seen people be called out for demonstrations countless times, and I've always wished to be that person. I also never really imagined that I would be, I am the type of person who needs interaction and validation, as I believe we all do in different ways. I may be more secure with myself in some ways but in others I still lack the self assurance to know how I am doing beyond- "wow, that was really shitty."
I have to put the classes behind me and move forward. The next classes will be even better. Bikram and ballet alike. I actually have an idea of a plan for how to make this ballet thing work... It's still a rough draft but maybe I'll share it at some point if it turns out to be doable (I HOPE!).
There is so much more to life than all this little self centered petty stuff I wrote about above. I needed to get my thoughts out and I did, which I can appreciate but there is so much more to my life than this here. Last weekend for instance, we celebrated my dear sister in law's birthday on Sunday by going to a winery. It was a nice time, my brother and I baked her a blueberry tart thingy from her pinterest, then on her actual birthday (Monday) we went to a great restaurant that caters to people with food allergies. They had a lot of dairy free and gluten free options on the menu which were great. I also made her this awesome paleo coconut cream pie from Living Healthy with Chocolate that I also made last year. Since it was so well received, I decided to give it a repeat appearance this year. Then yesterday after hanging out in Poolesville at the ballet studio for most of the day, I stopped by my brother and sister in law's house (the same one mentioned above - Johanna) and we ate pie, and talked. Later we made this AMAZING soup that popped up on my facebook newsfeed and went to a game night. I played a whole lot of the game Telestrations and literally laughed until my stomach hurt. I couldn't remember the last time I had laughed THAT hard, and it was awesome. Lastly on this here Sunday I met Johanna for yoga, then we met some more friends at an adorable restaurant in Alexandria for a late brunch which was also great. I eventually made my way home to a lazy evening with my husband and you know this rest about this evening.
That's it. That's all I have for today and this weekend and everything else. I hope I've sufficiently emptied out my brain enough for sleep. I'm excited for lyrical class tomorrow evening, it should be a lot of fun. I'm hoping to hang out afterwards and put my pointe shoes back on. Oh yeah that's another thing. No longer having ballet callouses sucks... Pointe shoes really hurt again. And they haven't since I was maybe 11? It's like I ran backwards for miles or something. But it's OKAY. I'll get there, thank God (and the Secret) for the power of positive thinking and the law of attraction. I feel so much better right now, you have no idea.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!
xo - Harmony