as a preface to this post, i do believe this is the first time i have ever participated in “throwback thursday.” will wonders never cease? anyway…
the other night, dan and i were in the mood … for a documentary. luckily, we have about eight thousand queued up on netflix that we want to watch (or re-watch). we went with one that has been on our minds ever since dan bought me tickets to our first ballet performance – first position. aside from floating my memory back to sweetly nostalgic childhood memories of dance lessons, dress rehearsals, costumes and recitals, the movie jarred another, more melancholy mood in me as well.
the camera follows several young ballet hopefuls through a grueling “grand prix” competition that potentially leads to recognition, scholarships to top ballet schools or even full-time positions in ballet companies. we watched these children pour their hearts into their life’s passion, wincing as they danced with injuries and smiling when they performed flawlessly.
these dancers, even the 11 and 12 year olds, showed a level of dedication and patience for their craft that i’m not sure i have ever applied to anything in all my 28 years. hours of practice, countless sacrifices and all with the knowledge that at the end? it could amount to absolutely nothing. dance is one of (if not THE) most competitive arts to break into, and a very small percentage of people do. all that work and toil just to be told that your feet aren’t the right shape? or to have an untended stress fracture sideline you for years?
at the end, i was left feeling both exhilarated and a bit sad. after all, by ballet standards, i am ancient and have no shot of ever getting my body to bend in the ways that it did when i was a small dancer of 10 or 11. fortunately, my dream isn’t to become a professional ballet dancer (it WOULD be pretty cool though, right?). the wistfulness i felt stemmed from a lack of dedication, drive and ire that this move was full to the brim with.
the great news is that it isn’t too late to remedy that. renewing my zeal is a lifetime project that i am eager to get back on track. i’ll make lists, find inspiration, make plans and put them into action, all the while, remembering to aim as high as i can. isn’t that what it’s all about?