I’m reallllllyyyy good at finding the negatives. I fight a constant battle replaying moments in my life I wish I could take back, wonder why I said/did that or overanalyse thinking that people will have misunderstood me or think I suck.
Yep. I’m a basketcase. I know this already.
I also often hate the process.
For much of university the happiness lay within the destination: graduation. I like to be accomplished and often do not enjoy the hard work involved in achieving something. Even when I was working towards my Leadership Qualification for Girlguiding, I probably thought more about the tedious paperwork, tick box exercises and *shudder* learning how to do the accounts than I did about enjoyment of volunteering. Now that my LQ is done, I’m remembering why I volunteered with Girlguiding in the first place, and not thinking about how I can tick off elements of my Qualification while creating a term plan.
Ballet is my first love. I fell in love with ballet at the age of 3 or 4, and remember going to the Edinburgh Playhouse when I was around the age of 7 to see Scottish Ballet’s production of Sleeping Beauty. I had a tape album of Tchaikovsky’s ballet suites of Swan Lake and The Nutcracker – and I would choreograph my own ballets in my bedroom. My Mum couldn’t afford to take me to classes so I got a book out of the library (The Usborne Guide to Ballet and Dance) and tried to teach myself using a towel rail in my grandparent’s bathroom.
As you do.
Eventually I got to go to dance classes and started training in Modern Dance at the age of 10 and when I got to Grade 3 my Modern Dance teacher requested that I start going to Ballet classes to help me with the Grade 3 syllabus. When I turned 15 I got a part-time job and that combined with pocket money funded additional classes in Modern and Grade 6
Ballet at another dance school on Tuesday nights. The teachers also used to get me helping with the little kids Modern, Tap and Ballet classes on Wednesday afternoons and Saturday mornings. I looooovvvveed it.
But when I went to university there were no options to stay in dance school. I lost my technique and skills.
This week I discovered there is happiness on the way of travel.
I wanted to go back to Spanish classes this term, but it wasn’t to be. The only class I could fit into my schedule was cancelled. However, I noticed there was a drop in ballet class at the DanceBase National Centre for Dance – which happens to be a 10 minute walk from where I’m doing placement, and my current place of work. I decided to go along.
I was terrible. My balance sucks, I’m not supple, I struggled to remember the different sequences. But I enjoyed it so much.
But Happiness wasn’t in being an accomplished ballet dancer (though it would be nice). Happiness was in doing something I loved – even if I’m rubbish at it!
I’ve now signed up (despite the fact I don’t really have the money to pay for it!) for a Ballet Improvers course after trying their class a couple of days after the drop in class. I wanted something with a bit more structure, and the teacher was so nice but also technical that I decided the challenge to stay awake and not go home early would be worth it. I hope so anyway.
The bonus is that at both classes, everyone attending was super friendly. For years I’ve gone to Pilates classes, zumba classes and nobody talks to each other! Yet here, everyone chats away in the changing room, notices when a regular misses a class and asks if they are ok. It’s lovely and refreshing.
I’m now happy to be on this journey of dancing again. Returning to my first love, and just enjoying the process and not caring where the destination is.
Is there anything you’ve found that reminds you to be content and happy in the journey?