I’m not going to lie, this year’s summer intensive is super intense. My last post was certainly an understatement of the rigorous classes we received over the past couple of days. The classes in the older group is so advanced I couldn’t quite keep up. I know it was because many of the steps were new to me, ones I’ve never heard or have physically tried before and that got me frustrated a lot since I couldn’t attempt most of the centre work because of it.
My self-esteem and confidence really plummeted today, because the ballet classes have been extremely hard. Initially they were the classes I really wanted to enjoy and improve on. I felt so down halfway into the centre work but of course I didn’t sit out and decided to carry on. I was aware there was other people in the class, who had more years of experience but still that got me down. Now reflecting back on it, I have only done ballet for a year and a few months. I can’t believe the things I have learned in such a short time. I felt like ballet has been with me longer, i don’t know exactly why..
Today, we had a wellness talk. It was so eye opening and thoughtful. Our teacher Zoe talked about her own journey in becoming a professional dancer. She told us how everyone believed she had an easy path in becoming professional since she was accepted into ENB at 16 and eventually graduated. But what nobody knows is her struggle to be accepted into the company itself. At the end of her graduation she was given a contract that had to be renewed every 3 months. Imagine how nerve-wracking it was to be constantly on the balls of your feet-literally, trying to make sure you did your best everyday all because of that one contract. She began to get panic attacks and at night she was constantly awake unable to fall asleep.
When it wasn’t renewed Zoe was devastated and didn’t want to dance anymore. She couldn’t look at herself in the mirror or want to teach any of the girls she was teaching as a side job. Over the couple of months her health was becoming less normal. She ate less and had anxiety and panic attacks. She believed if she wasn’t accepted into the company it was the end for her.
But life moves on and even things that really matter to you will seem like a distant memory to you one day. Zoe eventually found a job in another company-Ballett Vorpommern. She was still alive and breathing but most of all she was dancing. Perhaps it was a better opportunity for her. She was given the opportunity to dance lead roles that ENB would never have. Recently she was accepted as one of the members of Royal Ballet Flanders. If you are not a ballet enthusiast, ballet flanders is actually a pretty prestigious ballet company known around Europe. In my view it is part of the top ballet companies around not only Europe but around the world too.
I think the most important thing I learned from this talk isn’t Zoe’s journey itself but what she learned throughout the process. She told us no matter what we are going to do were going to be criticized anyway no matter what you do, especially if you are pursuing something unconventional. There will be ups and downs in life, those who don’t are not doing anything with their lives and not taking any chances or risks to fail.
In my opinion,I think looking in the past for guidance is something we should all do, but looking to the future is more helpful. Even if you aren’t a dancer I encourage you to find what you love to do. If you are truly passionate about something there is always a place on earth for you to share it with the world. I know this for a fact because you were born here for a reason. Everyone has a beautiful purpose here on Earth and it’s up to you to fulfil it.
I myself am trying to find my passion. I don’t know how dance is going to fit into it. But I know for sure it is something I truly love and am passionate about. With time my heart will tell when my mind is ready to listen.
I hope you liked this post! I really love writing inspirational posts and I will certainly do more in the future.