So, if you have read any of my posts so far, you may be wondering, what in the world started this whole whirlwind of life-changing adjustments in order to return back to ballet? Here is that answer. It is a long answer so I will split up into two parts.
I wish I could give you a poetic story at the heart of my inspiration filled with swans, tutu’s, and sugar plum fairies dancing in my head. The reality is something much more everyday…it was YouTube. Yep…YouTube…It was one of those days you click on a link to YouTube and one video leads to another to another and the next thing you know it is two hours later and you’re not sure where you are at the moment.
(Yep, that’s pretty much how it went…)
What kicked this whole thing off was this single video I found of a Russian dancer, Elana Pankova, with the Kirov. It was of her in rehearsal of Don Quixote. I was totally mesmerized watching her doing these crazy difficult movements with the ease of floating on air. It brought back memories of me watching the senior company and principal dancers in rehearsals and wishing it was me. I always found the rehearsals more magical than the performances for some reason. I was able to witness the actual creation of their art and it was beautiful. I saw the girls I knew in the halls and sweating it out at the barre transform into their characters. THAT was the magic for me.
At that moment, a heart string was plucked that I had not heard the tune of in many years. It is a painful one as a part of me has regretted all of my life that I stopped dancing even though I had been badly injured when some idiot hit me with their car while riding my bike. I had terrible knee pain and the message I kept getting was that dancing was over. Did I try hard enough? Could I have gotten back to my old self over time? By that time in my dancing career I was deeply unhappy in the company I was in, and there were not many other choices in my area to move ballet studios, and the injuries gave me a way to bow out gracefully.
So I keep tinkering around on YouTube and I come across this video of a young adult ballet beginner. I thought it was amazing how she started ballet at 19 and after a few years progressed to being able to go en pointe. Like a flashing light bulb over my head, it got me thinking. Is that something I could do again someday? I did take some classes 2 years ago and the floors didn’t cave in when I jumped. (Granted anyone I spoke to said how great her studio floors were) I do still have all my gear I bought then…hmmm I wonder…
For the next two or three days I find myself wandering back to YouTube and watching these beautiful and talented dancers and my heart is just aching. “Wow…what would it feel like to be back on stage or in the studio sweating it out again?” People my age don’t really do this with any seriousness, we just to do it for the exercise, right? Well no, thanks to the wonderful blogs I have discovered, I quickly realized many adult beginning dancers take it very seriously. Check them out in the menu bar to the right.
Dance reaches down deep into our hearts and souls and takes root. It doesn’t have to always be about dancing in a professional company or taking the stage as Odette/Odile. It’s about striving to dance the best we can dance, pushing our minds and muscles to exhaustion, and being glorified in the moment of it all. That it is ok to reach for that dream of a personal pursuit that had been long packed away like a child’s long-loved toy doll and only to be allowed to be taken out to admire and then carefully packed away again. Not this time…no way…no how…It’s time to just go for it. If I am going to dance, I am going to go all out. Lose the weight, get back in shape, take weekly classes, and one day be back en pointe. Like a fellow blogger, Beauty. Grace. Strength said so eloquently, “I can either keep my dream bottled up inside my tiny head, perfect and safe, and die filled with regret. Or, I can do the hard work and attempt something beautiful and amazing.”
Yep, pretty much.
Stay tuned for part deux!