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Emilee

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Mischief Managed.
I solemnly swear that I am up to no good. #leakycon #leakycon2018
Y’all, check out my friend Baileys announcement!! I’m so excited for her and super pumped to watch this series she’s a part of! #Repost @catchingbreaths with @get_repost ・・・ The concept is simple: follow someone’s journey from surgery to stage. Showing the life of a mucus mutant. Showing the life of a bilingual Deaf family. Showing the life of a dancer and @companythreesixty dancers. It technically hits all the hashtags: #spoonie #deaf #adultballerina #bodypositive #chronicillness. It hopefully connects with many communities and provides another voice in the chorus of those wanting representation in media abound. It is positive: a positive network with a positive focus wanting to counter the negative swarmy troll farm that is most modern media to date. But... what if the concept becomes a reality? What if I show not just the recovery from latest rounds of surgeries... but the pain and swelling and funk between? What if I don’t fulfill some sort of diagnostic paradigm being that I am an Atypical diagnosis (and someone who hopes not to be defined by that anyways where I can)? What if we capture not just the invigorating process of putting together a show with women I ferociously admire and protect... but also, how totally messy dance life can be? What if we showcase a family that’s equal parts Deaf as hearing... yet our variable mix of signing, reading lips, caption and speech isn’t in keeping with what the world wants from us? Choosing to share our story has come with a lot of IFs... but we are braving it none the less. Although I can’t believe our pilot episode premiered TODAY and that I can finally announce the news... fear of judgement subsists. Can perspective, positivity and living an imperfect life as openly as possible actually be of benefit? The verdict is still out... but I’m excited to try. I’m excited to see. And I’m excited to get started.▪️Click Link In Bio To Watch The Pilot Or Go To: onlygood.tv▪️#CatchingBreaths
The builders weren’t out today, so I decided to have one last hoorah in our still empty, hurricane Harvey-Ed house. They’ve finally begun repairs, and I’m super pumped for it to be fixed, but also a bit sad at the loss of the house as we knew it and how it was growing up. Here I’m in our game room, the red wall is my bathroom, and to the right is my old bedroom, where I was the night before the storm came. The bed I slept on had ceiling and insulation fallen on it the next day. Still pretty surreal almost a year out. TL;DR I love my new @sodancausa dance sneakers I got from @cinqdanceessentials ! Super pumped for the new year!
We had a guest teacher in class last night. I wrote a blog post about it! Link is in the bio. (Spoiler. It was wonderful.) Thank you so much, @linds779 for teaching us! (Ps. My shirt is from @balletlibrarian ‘s book Cantique, you can totally still get ya one. It’s my favorite, obviously.) PD: photo of me and Lindsi Dec from Pacific Northwest Ballet after class.
Once upon a time, my toes used to touch the floor.

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Day two.

The Airess are out.
I don’t know how it is that pointe shoes feel one way in the store, and another in the studio, but it seems to happen to me really often.
Sadly, it’s money down the drain for me. Maybe I should have taken more time or care in the fitting? I don’t know. Whatever, nothing that can be done now.
(anyone need a pair of sewn size 9 hard-shanked Airess?)
(but really.)

Class Thursday went fairly decently. It was different than I was used to since it was technically a Choreography class. I thought about not taking it, but I want to take the Variations class afterwards, and I’ve never taken choreography so maybe it’d be good exposure in such an easy-going environment as that with the youngin’s.

Thankfully, there wasn’t anything too invasive, although there were moments me and my fellow IV were rather nervous about it. After explaining the basics of choreography, Ms. Heidi assigned “team captains” and split us into groups. She made sure there were captains from each level, so I was the level IV captain, and then let us pick who would be in our group until we ran out of people putting most groups with three people and a few with four.
She said the team captain had the option of being in the dance, or just choreographing it on the group. She would play the music and we would come up with however much we could in our limited time. She told us there were no rules. Technique wasn’t required in the sense of it all being strict ballet.

I picked Judy and Leah to be on my team. I easily could have picked my fellow IV, knowing she was one of the most skilled of the bunch, but I knew what it meant to these girls to be picked and I knew their hearts would be good.
(plus I actually knew their names. So, that helps.)

I asked them what they had thought or seen or felt when they heard the music. Judy said, “Rebuilding after the Civil War.” (Gosh, I love her.) She had a few counts of what she saw and showed me, which was actually really good. Leah said she thought of water flowing, which is what I had felt as well.
I decided to have Judy start out with one 8-count, then have Leah come in with the next 8-count. (kinda 16-count?) and if we had time I’d put myself into a count because they didn’t want to do it alone.
(I love these girls.)
So I took elements of Judy’s thoughts and made them flow a little differently, then asked Leah if there was anything she was better or worse at or more comfortable with since I didn’t know her ability as much as Judy’s. She’s a trooper, and was up for anything. I gave her a bit to work with and we ran it a few times before time was out. We also had to write it down a certain way, which the girls understood wonderfully (I struggled with it? But understand it. So it’s okay) and we were the last group to go.
Some of the groups were longer, some were really short. Some were more complex but didn’t really flow too smoothly, and some really showed great potential. The girls all did great with it. I was pretty impressed.
Judy and Leah were a little nervous, especially that they were dancing separately and we hadn’t really gotten to go over it all that much, but they completely rocked it. I was so proud. And Ms. Munro had been watching. When they finished, everyone was kind of quiet for a moment, but I think they were waiting for more. It was a good silence, and after we finished, it was the only one Mrs. Munro complimented.
*dusts shoulders off*
(But really it wasn’t me, Judy had the main great idea, and Leah really nailed her part. I was so proud. team awesome.)

For Variations, Abby taught us the Bluebird variation.
It. Was. So. Fun.
I was mad, though, because my shoes were holding me back, so I almost rolled my ankle umpteen times and it was frustrating.
But what I could do of it was really fun.
It was a little difficult at parts, but only because of the way I learn things. I have to go over them a bunch and figure out all the transitions before I can do it all well. By the time I had it down, my toes were dying. So that sucked. I need to find my lambs wool so I can try a few things. Because this ain’t cutting it and my toes die and it is really sad and now I’m rambling and meh.

Abby and I had a private lesson after variations. She looked at my feet and assessed the shoes and my issues etc etc.
She pointed out the issues in my alignment and showed me how to correct it. It was difficult mentally, not because of her or anything, but because it felt physically impossible to do the things she was saying. It felt flat out wrong and made me feel like I used to feel with math as a kid when I knew what they were saying but it just wasn’t clicking in my head and I wanted to claw my eyes out. (I don’t know how else to describe it?)
But the great thing is I can tell Abby these things and she helps me through them.

After picking it apart and evaluating like I do, I realized part of my issue is that it looks wrong to me because I don’t look like what I’m used to seeing of proper technique.
I’m not your typical ballet body build.
My butt and boobs stick out and there’s nothing I can do about it.
But it doesn’t make me wrong, it’s just different. It’s more obvious on me because I have more of it.

At the end of the day, I was able to see what Abby was saying and feel the difference of most of it. Part didn’t click until I felt the different muscles that were sore the next day, but they’re really difficult muscles to work.

I ended up with knots all up my back from sleeping on a too-soft bed so I wasn’t able to work on it any more yet (yep, still in pain. ugh) but I’m at least hopeful.

My right foot also still seems to favor putting weight on the little toes instead of the big toe. I turn better on this foot, since I use more of the platform and the left foot puts it all dramatically onto just the big toe, which isn’t good either.

Sigh.
Lots to work on.
But better now than continuing incorrectly and it being harder to fix later.

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