As a studio owner for almost 17 years there are few things that are “firsts” for me, however, recently the scariest moments of my life have occurred. If you asked me at any point in my life what I wanted to do, the answer was always a sharply given, DANCE! There had never been a question or even a flicker of doubt from the age of 5, when I began my dance journey.
Recently, I woke up one morning and it was gone, just pulled out of me like a an amputation of a body part. The love, the passion, the desire for anything dance was snuffed out. It was not brought on by burn out, stress or any superficial issues going on within my dance world that I could explain away. I spent many days panicking about what to do until I finally gave myself the kindness and grace that I needed and thankfully, the same way it disappeared, it came back, out of nowhere. Now, I still have a little PTSD from it because never did I think that there was anyone on this planet that loved dance more than me. I had seen and mentored many a young dancer going through this in my career but never did I think it would be me. I learned that it’s okay and things that are meant to be do last. I still can’t explain it other than it needed to happen because now I feel reignited and excited for the future.
So, I say all of this to say that if you are a young dancer, teacher, choreographer, studio owner and you get to this place, show yourself some grace and give it time. It may come back and it may not, both are alright. Sometimes you need a wake up call to reset the path that lies ahead. I think that this must happen to other people and I think it is something we should all be open and acknowledge and support each other through. This blog may have helped me more than you, but just know that the dance community is a powerful one and you are never alone.
Reach out for some support and you may even find it in the hug or gentle reminder from one of your own former students as I did. I love the moments where the teacher becomes the student again if even only for a brief moment. I have always felt that I learn more from my dancers than they learn from me. Sometimes things really come full circle and for that I am grateful. Let’s take this Holiday season to acknowledge the areas in our own lives that may need a re-focus or re-charge. After all, life will not always be a clear straight path, there will be challenges and bumps in the road. So, hold on when needed and let go when needed and give yourself the grace and power to know the difference and begin again.