What Are You Waiting For?

Monday, January 7, 2019


After losing my mother-in-law in the fall of 2017 it became very clear to me that time is not something we should waste. I realized how much I took advantage of time, when really none of us knows how long we'll get. My goals with ballet came to the forefront of this since physically this could have an expiration date at some point! Since then I've been trying to push myself to the places where I let fear keep me from. "I'll do it eventually" - NO. Who knows if we'll have eventually. I will do it now!

So this brings me to share with you the great things ballet has brought to my life since I came back to it in June of 2005. I was so nervous to return to the barre! I had put off coming back because I had gained a bunch of weight and felt like I wouldn't belong anymore. But with some encouragement from my soon-to-be-husband, I showed up for that summer session! And you know what? I met some of the most encouraging, positive, ballet-loving people that I am still friends with! And of course Ballerinas By Night would not have happened had Abby and I not met through adult ballet!

Pointe class with Abby! - 2016
My fourth year dancing Waltz of the Flowers as an adult - 2009

Working on placement - 2015
Physically, ballet has helped me gain muscle and flexibility. I've learned what muscles to engage and why. I've learned where my weaknesses are so I can improve them, but I've also learned I have strengths! I also lost all my college weight when I first started back which was a welcome bonus! I've gained weight back over the years, but it sits on me differently than it used to (see paragraph after next).

Mentally, ballet has helped me focus on the task directly in front of me. The stresses from work or social life become less important the moment I step in the studio. It's helped my confidence as I accomplish difficult steps. I used to take critiques super personally, but ballet has taught me that corrections only help us to get better. This helped me immensely outside of ballet class too!

Ballet has helped me accept my physical appearance, and even like it sometimes! :) It's easy to stand in front of the mirror for an entire class and only notice your "flaws", but to overcome that and see the breakthroughs and the progress before the flaws, is such an empowering state of mind.

Penché in the snow - 2008
If I hadn't started back to ballet 13 years ago I might still be telling myself I stopped dancing because my body couldn't do this or that or I didn't look the "right way". I wouldn't be able to say that I finally built up the courage to do a pirouette en pointe or get to perform in a tutu on stage!

So, as cliche as it sounds with the start of a New Year, I encourage you to start the things you've been saying you've wanted to start! And if ballet is that thing for you, I'm here to ask you one thing:

What are you waiting for?!

Jana

2 comments

Pointe junkie said...

After my mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and my ex husband having a cancer scare yes life is too short not to do what you love. I live in a very small resort town in northern Canada. There arent many good dance schools up here that have qualified teachers for pointe.

Pointe junkie said...

I was part of a pointe class and got asked to leave due to a mom not thinking I should be in with 12 to 17 year olds. I am heartbroken there's nowhere else to dance. I saw your meetup video and it brought me to tears so wonderful what you ladies do inspire the rest of us to keep going. I would love to meet each of you, people who love what is my passion.

April-pointe junkie

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