These baby classes keep getting better and better. It’s still difficult having the different age groups, but they all remained engaged. I was so impressed when the kids started remembering what not only a pile and releve are but what a soute and echape and other more complex things are. And not where I say the word and they show me, but where I show them and they give me the word. Abarrane and my minds were blown.
We had eleven in class, mainly younger, one new, one making up a class. She really impressed us. Her feet are always pointed, her knees are always straight, her feet and turned out. She’s just a natural, she gets it, if she wants this she can take it as far as she wants. And she pays attention so well, eyes always in me or Abarrane, soaking in everything we have to offer. The girl is five and her grande jetes are better than mine. I hope she stays in dance so we can watch her grow.
We had a full class in adult, with two new people my friend Karen recruited 😊 they held up pretty well and really seemed to enjoy it. We had to pull out another barre to put in the center, and I stood at what I refer to as “Matthew’s barre.” It’s a short barre at the back of the room facing the mirror and Matthew stood there every class. I was a bit nervous to be facing the mirror side I usually try to avoid it, but what I found instead had me pleasantly surprised.
Maybe it was the cut of the leotard. Or maybe it was the pressure of being right in front of the mirror, but I didn’t look as big as I usually do. It was refreshing. I could see the proper alignment, the uneven hip, the core engaged, the muscle tone in the legs, the lack of flexibility in the ankles. All these things are important. It’s important to see the positive things along side the negative so you know what to address, where to improve, and what to maintain. It was encouraging.
Ms Munro taught our class and actually gave me some really good corrections and insight. In sous sous, my feet were too close together, causing my knees to not straighten as much as they need to. I also still need to elongate my arm in second a bit more. I tried to implement this but went too far, locking my elbows. She corrected that and I was able to feel the balance. These are things I could see with the mirror in front of me and could know what feeling was right, what was wrong, and what it looked like.
In the center, I noticed I was able to hold my balances longer. More on my right than my left, but both improved. My turn out was better, I was stronger, and overall my performance has improved. It was a good feeling to be able to hold my leg in arabesque while I promenade and maintain turnout. Part of it probably had to do with the fact that I was in flat shoes, but still. I also noticed that when I plie in fourth before going into a pirouette, my weight was too far forward. I tried to make it more centered, telling myself not to anticipate pain in my knee and just go for it. Throw the fear aside. I did that, and guess what happened? I did the turn. A solid single. I could have done a double if I really wanted, but I wanted to get the feeling in my brain and my body so I won’t second guess anything when I progress to doubles. It was like an epiphany. I also noticed an improvement on my chaines, which have been my demise for a while. (Almost five years now. Hah.)
Yesterday felt so good. I’m excited. I’m hoping to figure out more with my shoes and see what I can do to get them more tolerable. I felt so solid in class. I wasn’t just struggling to keep the pattern of the combination, but to improve upon each step in the process. I felt like I’ve really reached another level in this who dance life thing. I’m not necessarily better, but I have something in my brain that has clicked and a deeper understanding. And now I can think about keeping my eyes up 😂
I’m typing this on my tiny phone screen during a conference on communication. I wanted to write it last night knowing id be here, but I was so tired. So I’m just doing it anyway. I was so excited about writing this post and about the improvements in finally seeing.
I hope y’all are doing well. I hope you’re fighting for what you love. I hope you know how wonderful you are and that your fight is worth it. You got this. You’re worth it. I love you. (And that is something.)
Started ballet late October of 2011 at the age of 23.
Began pointe training late August of 2013.