But Do I Miss Dancing Every Day...?

When asked how I am coping with no longer dancing, I am often unsure how to answer.


Am I happier?


Yes!


But do I miss dancing every day?


Yes......


There is without a question that desire to create and dance the way I once did in my heart.


Fortunately for me, I've been able to channel that into teaching for the better.



My passion for ensuring future ballet students have a positive experience in the studio keeps me going everyday, even in those moments where I am stumped as to where I fit into the puzzle that is the dance world.


Without knowing the full story of my life, people will likely cling to simplifications of my journey-


"Oh, she didn't have the dedication to become a dancer"
"She failed"
"She didn't have what it takes."

Let's say all of those statements are true ... so what?


I have found myself believing this narrative about myself-

It would be difficult not to when the narrative of dancers who stopped their pursuit of dance is often described as such-


but these statements couldn't be further from the truth.



 but these statements couldn't be further from the truth.

I have dedicated every ounce of my blood sweat and tears for majority of my life to dancing. As my therapist describes it, " I sold my soul"


I truly had no autonomy over myself.


In all honesty, despite my words online, I still lack the ability to act with a true sense of purpose.


When it comes to my students I without a doubt do not hesitate to ensure their emotional and physical safety- but I struggle with advocating for myself.


And to sum this blog up, that is why I am no longer dancing.


I cannot be a professional dancer because deep down I know that I will lose my self time and time again to whomever is at the front of the room.


Even when there aren't those pressing expectations on me by an authority director, I place them on myself.

No matter how much joy dance brought me, nothing is worth destroying my life for.


That feels so strange to type into words, because I feel as though I am letting younger me down. A large part of that guilt I can acknowledge is my Eating Disorder trying to keep me trapped, not that it makes it any easier.


But I am advocating for the sake of younger me knowing everything I have been through to get where I am typing this blog today.


I am far from being completely "healed" or "recovered."


But one thing is inherently clear to me-


I need to set a good example for my students, future dancers to come, and my younger self. I never gave her the compassion she needed growing up and I need to do my best to repair the damage I allowed her to experience.


Like I mentioned earlier, caring for myself is probably the hardest task I've taken up to date- and that includes a lot of difficult choreography and serious injuries I've persevered through.


I can acknowledge that I am a dedicated teacher and have always been a passionate dancer.


Just because I am no longer a "professional" does not make my experiences or where I am now any less valid.


All dancers have value no matter where they end up in life and I will continue to shout that from the rooftops to whomever needs to hear it.



All dancers have value no matter where they end up in life
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