I’m an unlikely ballerina. The successes I’ve had still shock me. I know I have limitations because they’ve been pushed in my face my whole life… For example: “you’re too short” or “you don’t have a dancer’s body type.” Of course I didn’t let that stop me. I’ve had a determined little voice in the back of my mind saying “I’ll show them all!”
Of course, that’s not the only little voice I have. I also have a little voice that sees the truth in those comments I pretend not to hear. This little voice is mean and repeats those comments back to me when I try to fall asleep at night. This mean voice has been particularly strong lately as I have fought my way through audition season. It likes to point out that I’m not in my best shape, that I’m not as young as I want to be, that I’ve been out of a company all year… It tells me to be realistic. To prepare for the worst… Expect rejection and it won’t be such a let down when it happens. This is a big part of my life. I fight for what I want, but I’m always preparing for when I don’t get it.
I’ve spent so much time preparing for rejection that my successes still shock me.
I was shocked in my early teens when I was suddenly considered an “advanced” student and given my first solo. I was shocked when I was accepted into a respected university dance program. Really shocked when I got my first professional contract while still in school, and shocked when I landed other professional offers later on as well.
This audition season the mean little voice has been back to helping me not get my hopes up… But, as I am beginning to get positive feedback from the companies I have visited, I realize I shouldn’t have to worry so much about not getting my hopes up. After all these years I shouldn’t have to be so shocked anymore that people like my dancing. It might be time to allow myself to daydream a little about what I can accomplish if I really just throw myself into everything I do. To shoot for the stars and actually believe I’ll end up somewhere great. After all, doubt has a way of pulling you down, but dreams have a way of lifting you up!
I think I need a new little voice. When I’m getting down on myself from listening to the mean voice, I will now allow another voice to remind me “but what if they like you?”
I have completed my auditions trips now. More different content on the way! The “What’s in my Dance Bag?” post will be up soon!
Thanks for visiting! Don’t forget to shoot for the stars!