I’ve had to miss a few more classes here and there for various reasons, and it makes me sad every time I do. I try not to let it get to me too much, though, as this is life and unexpected things happen all too often.
I was able to make Monday’s class and I’ll be in class again tonight (with a guest teacher who took class with us Monday and from what I gather is newly made company member somewhere. I hope to get more details tonight. She was great and really kind.)
Life has been rather difficult for me lately, in many different ways and avenues. I keep holding on to hope that things won’t always be this way, but until that happens the days are long and hard. I have found that this makes class harder. I guess I forget how much I fight against just to dance until my strength is sapped by other things and I have to dig deep to keep my spirits up.
My stomach is ever-complicated, my back has been causing numerous issues of its own with pain in my left lower back I don’t seem to have explanation for, as well as the “normal” complications from having the uneven legs. It’s possible this is a result of that but my chiropractor just blames the fact I dance. But I’ve been dancing far less since it started hurting, and dancing keeps my health largely in check for the most part. I can’t imagine what it would be like if I didn’t dance. What I have to deal with when I can’t make it too consistently is complicated enough.
So what do I do? Do I give in to the excuses I’m rightfully handed? Do I fight against all these complications? How much is too much to fight? Where do I draw a line? When do I tap out? Do I?
It’s exhausting, trying to find the balance in being able to do the one thing that makes me feel alive. I found myself in tears recently at the thought that everything in life is wearing me down so much that it’s compromising the thing in life that makes me happy to be alive. And that there isn’t much I can do about it.
So, I struggle. I fight against symptoms of these larger issues and thoughts that enter my mind telling me I can’t do the things I’ve been able to do in the past. Thoughts that tell me I’m not enough. That it’s not worth the fight; that I’m not worth the fight. I fight against loneliness, though I am grateful for the few I have that are here for me, but it is a road you largely walk alone. Few understand. And those few that do I greatly appreciate, though I feel for them having to walk similar roads, I am grateful we are at least together in that.
I don’t know that I’ll be posting quite as often as I have been lately–after every class and all. My goal is to give you fewer, more quality posts, rather than posting just because I usually do and it’s what is expected. I’ll definitely update any time I learn something profound or worth sharing, much like I did at the humble beginnings of this blog when it was centered around “everything I need to know about life, I learned in dance class.” Little bits of wisdom you can glean along the way.
Classes start next week, my first class being on Wednesday. I’m excited and nervous and hopeful.
Stay tuned 😊
4 thoughts on “A little update. ”
Hi there! You probably don’t know much of my journey, but I’ve been down the road of finding ballet as an adult, falling in love with it in spite of health conditions, even having to teach myself with no access to classes due to living in the bush — and then stopping ballet due to think ballet was harming me.
And then dealing with the fall out in my body from stopping ballet, because as it turns out, ballet keeps my body together.
Anyway, upon my recent return to ballet as part of my physical (and emotion, really) rehab, I learned that I had to change the expectations I had on myself. Previously I had felt pressure to do blog posts all the time, and progress in ballet all the time, and I realised I was the one putting the pressure on myself or allowing others to put that pressure on me.
And all that pressure was making me get more and more resentful of my health conditions. The more I focused on progress, the more I felt my restrictions and the more I hated my restrictions.
It all just ruined my experience of ballet. And that made me so sad about ballet, my health and my life.
This time, as I said above, I knew I had to change my perspective or I would end up feeling all pressured again.
This time I have changed my focus from progress to enjoyment. I still want and enjoy progress but it isn’t my priority.
Well, I am focused on progress, but health and strength progress primarily — so I I’m more concerned with being able to stand up long enough to complete a class, than whether or not I do a pirouette properly.
It’s SOOOO hard to change that perspective. But it was necessary and it has helped me.
I still look on Instagram and see people making all kinds of amazing progress and getting to real classes. I see people who can stand up longer than 5 minutes. And it all makes me feel pangs of jealousy for a moment.
But because I’ve change my expectations and perspective, I remind myself that I’m not on the same journey as everyone else, and that keeping my unique perspective allows me to keep doing ballet, and I just know I need to shift back out of feeling jealous and just feel happy that I can do any ballet at all.
And that truly changes how I feel. It takes away the resentment and the loneliness and the sense of hopelessness that I’m never going to be *that* dancer.
And it helps me to feel so much happier about ballet and my where I’m at.
It’s not easy. But it worked for me.
Again, this might not help you at all, but I read your post and related so much, I just felt the need to share.
P.S, you’re a beautiful dancer.
Take care xxx
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I don’t have the adequate words to express how much I appreciate your comment! Your story is seriously inspiring, and just knowing that I’m not alone in this lifts the burden more than I can express.
I get so caught up in expectations, which is no ones fault but my own and absolutely unnecessary. We have a company and do shows as well and it’s so easy to few the pressure to improve faster than I may be able to or push myself harder than I should to meet expectations there, when I’m again doing it to myself.
I need to be grateful to even be where I am instead of trying to pressure myself to fill some void I feel is there since I didn’t have these opportunities when I was younger. I feel like my time is ticking because the older I get, the harder it gets. Your comment helped remind me that my story is mine. I can never be the people next to me. My story will never be theirs and theirs will never be mine. We’ll have different opportunities. But that doesn’t make my story any less worthy of sharing. It doesn’t make my experience any less mine. My accomplishments will differ but that doesn’t make them any less of accomplishments. And just because people don’t always see my illnesses or injuries or can’t always tell that I’m fighting them all the time doesn’t mean that I’m not.
Thank you again, SO so much for your comment. I treasure it.
Thank you for being inspiring and motivational. You’ve definitely left your mark in my life and in my ballet journey. ❤️❤️❤️
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Your words perfectly expressed your gratitude. Thank you. I am very touched by your reply and happy that I helped a little — I didn’t want to intrude into your space if you weren’t wanting to hear that kind of advice.
Your story is not only unique but you will inspire many people. Keep talking about it. Keep sharing it. Just do it at a pace that is helpful to you, not hindering of you.
It is so tough having chronic invisible illnesses. So tough.
It’s not fair, either. And it feels sooooo not fair when you see other dancers around you progressing more than yourself.
It’s really helpful to acknowledge your own struggles and your courage and strength in continuing to do whatever it is that you want to do.
But do it because you WANT it. Enjoy it as much as you can.
I’m glad we have found each other. I look forward to continuing to cheer you on from the sidelines/my lounge room.
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I appreciate your friendship! And I’m so glad you commented. Definitely not an intrusion in the slightest. I appreciate it and you!
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