Updated: Apr 12
Day 5: THURSDAY
Lesson: There’s always room for improvement.
That was one of the most emotionally draining things I’ve done in a while. Why do I do this to myself??
I spent the morning working on the blog and other stuff while having the performance stuck in the back of my mind. At 4 o’clock, I drove over to the studio for my last lesson with Kris before our performance at 9.
It was painful.
I decided to jump right into things, so I didn’t warm up properly. I put on my heels and started working up a storm. Kris’s instruction was great, but throughout the whole thing I felt like something was wrong with my heels, or I looked weird, etc. I felt super uncomfortable, and to make things worse, I turned into a tomato!
This always happens when I work out really hard!! Is there something wrong with me??
Even though we practiced with slower music and I tried focusing on keeping my ribcage closed, and my knees working, the message didn’t transfer until before the performance. I was beyond frustrated after the lesson. I felt like I didn’t want to perform. I was stuck on a tape of negativity. My feet hurt--the blisters had popped during my dancing, leaving me cringing at every step (TMI but that’s life). My tomato face was getting too much attention--none of the instructors had seen me in my tomato-sweat state. The fact that they noticed it and commented on it made me want to sink into the ground.
One instructor had a different response to my tomato face. He said he’d be happy if his students turned red like I did because at least that meant they were putting their all into the lesson. It was nice of him to say that, but all I could think about was how un-sweaty I needed to be for the performance at 9.
At that point, I just wanted to go home.
How the hell I was supposed to perform? I looked like a mess, I felt like a mess, and all I wanted to do was curl up in my pajamas and treat myself to some Netflix. That’s when I became sick of myself. Of making excuses for myself. I can’t fully explain the monologue that went on in my head, but basically I forced myself to snap out of it. In my head, every coach I’ve had, both in ballroom and ice skating started yelling at me to snap out of it.
I woke up.
I put some makeup on, put my sweaty hair into a ponytail, put on my practice shoes, and assisted in a beginner lesson. I started to feel better, and a lot of it had to do with the makeup! (who knew, right) As someone who is a large advocate of less is more (literally. I hate wearing makeup sometimes), putting a some on really helped me get my act together, and I was extremely happy with the finished look:
Assisting in the beginner lesson was also a great warm-up, and helped get me back into the zone. By the time we ran through the routine, I was in full competition mode (even though this technically wasn’t a competition...).
During the performance, all I thought about was keeping my rib cage closed, knees working, and eyes on my partner. Honestly, it was the most stable I’ve felt in a while--dancing with a partner, I mean. Maybe it was the rib cage thing (It really works!).
I watched the video afterward. I always hate how I look the first time I watch my dance videos, but I have to agree with what Kris told me: for three lessons, it wasn’t bad. There’s always room for improvement, but from a non-dancer’s viewpoint, the performance doesn't look bad.
This past week has been a journey, to say the least. I hope parts of it have resonated with you! I doubt I’ll push myself like this again (well actually, you never know...).
Leave a comment, like this blog, and check out the video from tonight’s performance! To my amazing (but few) readers, thank you for following me on this adventure! Good luck with your dance (and life) journey!
P.S. There’s more to come! Subscribe to stay updated!