CPYB: Tuesday of Week 5

CPYB: Tuesday of Week 5

So its Tuesday of Week 5 and I think I finally used my abs. They’re sore today but I have a feeling they should have been sore Week 1 or 2. I really need to engage my abs more. Funny how that’s the first thing you forget when doing a million things at the same time – straight legs, seat engaged, head, shoulders down, elbows facing the back wall, etc. Oh abs?

I can’t believe it’s already Week 5. I’ve been waiting for this camp since February and now it’s all but gone. Today we had our last pointe class with Robert Steele. I ended up going despite last week’s bruised toe event. I wore different padding this time and it was definitely an improvement. I wasn’t sinking and I was able to make it through class. At the very end he had us rise into first and second without the barre and that was painful but I don’t think I was pulling up enough. Maybe I worked my abs during pointe since I was really trying to hold my weight as much as possible?

I’ve been obsessively watching Dance Academy. I’m in episode 17 of Season 2. I could watch it all day…and have been. I’ve been avoiding my online class and avoiding writing a statement of work for work and avoiding blogging. Avoiding everything but dance.

I moved back into my original housing. Things seem ok. I stay in my room more and let the girls fend for themselves. I don’t regret leaving even though it put a small hole in my wallet. I needed the quiet. I haven’t seen my host mom all that much so I’m not sure if we’re totally ok but I just want to go for cordial.

I’ve decided not to register at CPYB for the year. This program seems more suited for people who have time…for young people…and that I am not. Realistically, could I afford to quit a good paying job with benefits to move to a small town, be an RA and attend a school that probably won’t work with me because of my age, bad feet, and bad turn out? Not that CPYB is a bad school, clearly it’s not but I fear I don’t have enough time to give them. I’m going to try and enroll in a program at a local studio – one with a syllabus, with goals, and pointe work. Brookline Ballet maybe? This way I won’t have to quit my job. Everyone I’ve talked to has said the economy is only getting worse and that there are so many people without jobs. I guess I have to play it smart. I have loans after all. So it’s back to the same old same except this time I’ll have to make dance a priority.

Physically, I feel stronger every day. I used to have a good side and a bad side and I find myself not remembering which is which. I think that means I’m working both sides pretty well. I’m still putting weight in my heels but that’s a habit that’s going to take longer than 5 weeks to break. Even though I feel stronger physically, ballet is still so demanding – mentally and physically. I’ve had multiple moments of “what the hell am I doing?” I could be in my cushy, soul-deadening 9-5 job just waiting for my 2 week vacation rather than pushing myself to be better at an art form that demands perfection.

A girl from night class in B4 came up to me last week asking how old I was. When I told her 25 and asked her why, she said “Just wondering. You know you look like Misty Copeland.” Maybe in the face, I told her, and she responded “No your whole body.” Maybe the hyperextended knees but that’s about it my friend. Maybe secretly but not so secretly I was hoping that there was a ballerina waiting in the wings. Maybe this camp and coming here year round would give me the opportunity to train hard and somehow get into a small, unheard-of company. I would aspire for no more than corps because even that would be amazing. But what would the timeline be – if I were to train intensively for 5 years, would be that be enough? When is enough, enough? When do you just say “I’m done?” How do you quit said perfect job? How do you quit said perfect dream?


2 thoughts on “CPYB: Tuesday of Week 5

  1. I became friends with a guy who had a professional contract with the company attached to the pre-pro school I take classes at. He started in his late teens, but trained in the summers at some pretty prestigious schools. He had dreams of moving up the ladder professionally.

    But somewhere in his two-year stay with us, he came to realize he would probably go no further and I say the joy of dance, of ballet, leaving him.

    His father owns a winery in California, so he decided to go back into the family business. He found a job that he loves. I remember telling him before he left us that I hoped his love of ballet would return. He really is a good dancer.

    He swore he probably wouldn’t dance again, but after being away for months, he started taking classes at a school and is performing again. He’s back in love with it since there is no pressure to move up the ladder, that he can just enjoy as part of life while he does something else for a job.

    Whatever you decide, I hope you don’t lose that joy for dancing. I admire you for pursuing that dream, just like I did him. It’s not easy to pursue it when you start a little later than everyone else, especially if you’re a female dancer (for guys, the curve is a little different).


    1. Hi there. Thank you so much for your comment! I really appreciate it. I’m glad your friend got back into dancing. I’m still trying to figure out what to do with dance. I was starting to think maybe I should just give up ballet all together and focus on getting out of my current job but I don’t think that’s possible. I really want to try and get into the Young Dancer’s Program at a local studio so I can give it as much as I can. I already regret never getting serious at 5 and then again at 15 do I want to add 25 to the list? No, sir! I’m going to one of the studios tomorrow to ask if they’ll let me do a placement class! We will see how it goes!! 🙂

      What about you? How do you find the right balance with dance and life?


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