I’ve officially made it back to the competition floor after an entire year and debuted at the Open level in Smooth! It was quite a day at Embassy Ball, full of emotions high and low.
I was at a dance lesson a little over a week ago, and Teacher was talking about some of the more intricate details of our open Waltz routine. These were the details that add another layer of quality and performance to the dance.
It had nothing to do with making steps fancier or more complicated. It was about activating the body in the right way at the right time to demonstrate control and awareness. Adding an extra little tick here or extending a stretch a second longer there would also demonstrate musicality and my ability to “play” within the confines of the choreography.
As he talked about one section, I thought of other sections where I knew I could go further, push deeper, or do more to create something that would make the audience go “wow.” This kind of talk excites me. It’s a deep dive into the art of the dance and gives me more opportunity to work my creative muscles.
At the same time though, as I pictured myself adding those intricate layers to my dancing, I felt a twang, like anxiety plucked one of my heartstrings.
Do you ever feel like you’re going nowhere fast? Like you’re stuck in a hamster wheel or walking the wrong way on one of those moving walkways in the airport?
That’s how I feel on the tougher days. Those days when I feel like it doesn’t matter how hard I work, I just can’t seem to make any progress. My to-do pile at the day job is growing faster than my done pile. I practiced over and over, but I still can’t seem to get that move right in my dance lesson. I’m doing “all the things” to grow my business, but the return still feels small.
This month’s guest is a fellow writer/dancer who has explored a variety of partner dances for almost 20 years! Her latest passion is Argentine Tango, but from every style, she’s found another piece of the puzzle that is her true self.
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Karen Kaye.
I’m just going to get straight to the point with what I want to share because I can’t think of a good lead-in. Teacher had another surprise for me at the end of my lesson on Friday: a second anonymous sponsor. This one didn’t just pay for my lesson; they wrote Teacher a check that covered over six lessons!
It was too much this time; I had to go sit in the bathroom so I could cry. I sat in the stall for so long, the motion-sensor light went out on me! Even now, thinking about it, I’m a little teary-eyed.
For 2017, I decided to start monthly interviews/guest posts. I want to share other ballroom dancers’ stories. Some have been inspired by ballroom to start other passion projects. Others found ballroom to be their saving grace. We all have one thing in common: a passion for ballroom dancing. If you have a story you want to share, please let me know!
To start the year off, I’d like you all to meet Cindy Muller, ballroom student and owner of My Ballroom Boutique! Cindy and I met virtually through this blog and Facebook, and we share similar financial struggles in making our competitive dreams come true.