Look at the little girl in this picture. Why is she crying? She's doing ballet and little girls LOVE ballet, right!? Poor little thing shouldn't be crying... To anyone who is not a dancer this photo may make you laugh as it does me, but there is so much more freaking meaning behind this to me, and anyone else who is a dancer GETS what I mean... "The Struggle is Real" I'm sure most of you have heard this phrase over the course of the past year. It's meant to poke fun at us people living in a first world country complaining about things like our makeup or hair looking bad while some people have real problems and struggles. Take for example people who don't know when or where their next meal will come from. Or hm I dunno WAR that is actually taking place right outside people's windows... Crazy siege's in Australia. Just casual every day stuff. *Please note my sarcasm* However, to add to our nations self absorption and further feed the first world problems frenzy I am here to yet again ironically use the saying the struggle is real because damn it despite my life being pretty damn good, I feel a struggle.
Things have been weird recently. I feel different than I ever have before, I'm dancing again, but not teaching, I'm working at a job that I feel remarkably indifferent about, and I just feel.... WEIRD. I had a great relaxing weekend with my husband who is sick, we stayed in and watched TV... Like A LOT of TV. Got caught up on all the shows we watch together, including some crazy mid season finale's and it was nice to relax and unwind after all the recent mayhem. Of course Ernest was sick so it wasn't quite as enjoyable for him but I digress...
THEN here comes Monday. Freaking Monday. I was actually pretty chipper in the morning, I listened to some good radio (The Kane Show) on the way to work that had me laughing despite the terrible traffic and over 1hr long drive. I got a lot of work done and although work is work it was actually okay. I mean it wasn't a horrible day or anything, so really no complaints there. I think I sort of have a coping mechanism when it comes to work, I like to BLUR details in my memory so I just have a faint glow of a memory when it comes to the days or weeks past. SO who knows, maybe if I had been writing this yesterday it would be different. We'll just never know.
Moving on... I left early of course to get to dance class. On the dance menu yesterday was Modern for an hour (Graham style) then ballet technique with floor exercises and stretching at the end of class (another 2.5 hrs). I don't know if it's because I bummed around this weekend or what but man, I felt off in class. Hence the photo. It was rough. Any dancer can understand having these types of days. No matter how much confidence I felt I had gained over the past 5 years without dance all it took was an experienced dancer to come into class that made the teacher BEAM (I mean seriously she smiled from ear to ear while this girl did the combination across the floor) while watching her to make me feel like a lump of turd again. It's so tough, this industry. I'm trying to get back and obviously I realize that I'm out of shape and have a long way to go but I find myself questioning so much at times like these. The self doubt creeps back in, I wonder if I will ever have the "quality" that this other woman does. I know she and I are different and I'm different but what if my version is never going to be coveted. I'm embarrassed to even admit just how much this got me down. Shame on me really. To let something so small and insignificant affect me so much. I'm perfectly aware that there are amazing dancers out there, I just don't see them in class on a regular basis. I refuse to take steps backwards and revert to my old self conscious self. I just find myself wondering if the "things" I need to change in my technique are things that I'll be able to change. It's like telling a runner who has run the same way their whole life to run differently. Or maybe it's not. I'm not a runner.
As a dancer we put a lot of trust into our teachers and dance mentors. We need people to take a chance on us and correct us but what if they're steering us in the wrong direction? OR conversely, what if the direction they send you in or just making a suggested change or correction from a teacher changes everything. After an initial first impression (seeing a dancer dance for the first time) wears off they see how incredibly normal and average we are, don't they? Maybe I need to teach again...
Okay... I think I need to stop now and switch gears. Let me just say that I DO NOT like Kanye West... In fact typically when I think of Kanye I think about this:
It's pretty much one of my favorite things ever and always makes me at least smile if not chuckle. The reason I bring up Kanye is because I saw this earlier today and really liked it:
Yep, Kanye got something right in his lyrics.... It's common sense isn't it? Obviously there is only one of me, and only one of you, and in this case OF COURSE there are literally millions of people who are better at ballet than me. I mean we all technically KNOW this but the problem is believing it's okay to not be the best and not letting life and comparing yourself to others get you down... I know, I know... First world problems. I just danced the freaking sugar plum fairy and now here I am boo hooing that someone better than me came to class and now I feel bad about myself. Any girl in that school would've killed to perform that role. I'm such a freaking brat sometimes. Part of the problem I suppose is that even while dancing sugar plum I felt unworthy of it. Hopefully class today will go better, then I'll be happy again. It's just that easy. Good class = good mood. Bad class = bad mood until a better class experience is achieved. No wonder I was so depressed in high school!
Things will get better and I'll figure my life out, hey at least I'm trying. I never want to look back and think I didn't do everything I could to try and make it happen. I'm trying, we'll see how this all plays out.
xoxo - Harmony