warrior

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Dancers have a very different relationship with their body. I’ve always known this but I’m coming to understand it more these days.

Last Monday something popped in my knee during ballet class and despite the pain of it, I continued to dance on it. On Tuesday I told my cubicle-mate (who also is one of the conditioners/assistants in the conditioning studio) that something in my knee popped but I didn’t want to be a baby about it. She told me to not be that kind of person and make an appointment with the physical therapist that we have in the dance department every Wednesday.

I wasn’t sure I’d get in to see her (or even that I wanted to), but I’m really glad I did. I explained to her what happened and she said she’s not positive, but she suspects an injury that I need to see an orthopedist for. And that’s when I started thinking about how as a dancer, I have a very different relationship with my body than most people.

I started doing physical therapy on Thursday and by Friday morning, I was having trouble just walking up the stairs, much less actually taking dance class.

Friday morning I made an appointment with the orthopedist at school for Tuesday, and I felt stuck. I didn’t know what was wrong and couldn’t do anything about it. I couldn’t take class, and sitting and observing class when you’re injured is a little demoralizing because you can’t do the thing you love, and you have to sit there watching other people do it. I couldn’t explain to my professors exactly why I’m not dancing because I don’t know except that it hurts.

This is when the PT I was working with and I had a really interesting conversation. First, she read me a Pema Chodron quote about trusting your inner warrior. We then began talking about the way dancers view their bodies.

It’s not just that I might need to do physical therapy and observe dance classes for a little while, it’s that when a doctor says to you that you can’t do the thing that you love, your heart breaks a little bit. Your livelihood is taken away. In some cases, your bread and butter is taken away. Our bodies function as our instrument, and an instrument that we are constantly working to perfect in our craft.

We’re raised in dance culture to believe that we are expendable because there are a million other dancers out there, so when we’re injured we should keep dancing because if we don’t, someone else will. And right now I’m struggling with that mentality because I do feel inept for not taking class full out, or dancing in rehearsal full out, or for having to say to my professors/choreographers that I can’t do it right now.

So, after a few tears, a bonfire with smores, and an appointment scheduled for Tuesday, I’m trying to take it one step at a time because I need to remember this poignant question: do you want to dance today, or do you want to get healthy and dance forever?

your sweatshirt says it all

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Two assignments stand between me and the end of my first year of grad school. How scary is that? I’m not 50% of a master of anything!

These last two weeks have been a whirlwind.

An insane, amazing, heartwarming, nerve-wracking mess in the best way possible.

One of my best friends, and roomie for lyfe got ENGAGED! I got to celebrate my soulie’s TWENTY FIRST birthday with her! I’m taking chances I thought I couldn’t take! I’ve spent every night for two weeks surrounded by old friends, new friends, more than friends, best friends, puppy friends, and everything in between. I’ve celebrated birthdays, engagements, dancing, music, and just the enjoyment of the company of the people I adore in my life.

The end of the school year is always hard for me. Or it always has been because the time in my life has been dictated by the passage of time in a school year.

It’s hard because we all have to move forward, and I’m going to miss those who are graduating this year very much as they move on to bigger and better things. I’m watching my sisters grow up and leave the Agnes nest for new adventures. I’m seeing these dancers and choreographers that I’ve gotten so close to move on to dance and research and cultivate themselves as artists away from the only place I’ve known them. I’m seeing one of my best friends having just gotten engaged to the love of her life. I’m giving myself to things that I actually want and even better I’m actually articulating what it is I want.

This post is just a hodge podge of my excitement, and considering the fact that this is my break from brain-stuff and finals, forgive me.

I’m constantly happy and nervous and overwhelmed by everything happening in my life that I want to step back and just look at it but I can’t.

I’m too busy participating.

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LOVE, B

Busy buzzy bizzing bees

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I don’t know what that title means, but what I’m getting at is my love of being occupied. This semester is totally kicking me in the pants, but in the best way possible. I am dancing, I’m reading about dance, I’m writing about dance, I’m sleeping, eating, breathing, metabolising dance. You know why?

BECAUSE IT’S MY TRUE LOVE

true story.

true story.

Glad we got that straightened out. What I mean is that I have between 12 and 14 hour days 6 days a week, and I spend almost no time in my apartment (awake), and I’m the tiredest of tired lions and yet I don’t feel worn out. I don’t feel exhausted. I don’t feel bad.

I feel amazing.

I remember once in modern in undergrad we had to go around and say all the reasons we danced, and when everyone had gone around I turned to whoever was sitting next to me and said “Huh, I guess we’re all junkies…of adrenaline.” and I think it’s true.

Dancers/performers/artists, we thrive off of this sense of accomplishing something, and I really do think that because the reward is so great (that sense of accomplishment) it doesn’t feel like work.

Maybe that’s how I know that I’m doing what I love.

Love, B

scariest.

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Happy Halloween everyone!

Tonight has been spent in my bed with some candy that my roomie got to give to kids (hey now, I’m a kid at heart) and loads of reading and paper writing. And watching Hocus Pocus over and over again because that’s the only movie ABCFamily feels like playing tonight, and it’s one of my favourites!

Here’s to hoping that all of you are successfully in the sugaryiest sugar high, and continue that through tomorrow when I know you’ll go and get Halloween candy at amazing discounts. (As my darlingest, mle puts it, “Tomorrow is the greatest “holiday” of all. Half-off Halloween candy. Celebrate.”)

Off to write more sections of my project proposal.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!!!!

rooms

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I have two wonderful roommates. One of my roommates likes to blog and after reading one of her entries about making happy lists, I decided to make a happylist of my own! I’ve been thinking a lot about, as she puts it, “shutting up and realizing that life is fabulous and there are plenty of reasons to be happy.” Even though I sometimes make it very difficult to order anything in a restaurant, and I happen to like some sense of order, this is going to be a fun little list of happyness.

There are my awesome roommates, by the way

1. Sitting on the floor, eating carrots, listening to matt nathanson, and folding laundry with my roommates.
2. Dancing across the dining hall to contact-improv with one of my dance girls in which we dance in each others negative space and end up on the floor.
3. A good cuppa tea (even when it can’t be my mom’s, Tazo Chai comes close), while teaching people Gujurati phrases
4. Reading T.S. Eliot poems out loud to my roommate while she strings paper cranes to hang up in our apartment.
5. Rolling down the windows and singing Defying Gravity over and over again while driving through the ghetto to get to wal-mart (even when I can’t find the harmony).
6. spending time with the cutest little baby I know. Especially when she grabs my nose and squeals out of excitement.
7. TheDailyLove.com, and the daily emails that remind me to spread love and joy in the world by first loving myself.
8. Crossing things off my to-do list. all day, errry day. It’s just so satisfying to scribble through “Read 120 pages in [such and such] book”
9. Getting packages in the mail unexpectedly, especially when they’re from my sister for DIWALI
10. My niece (the one who told me I should work at wal-mart after I get my masters <3)
11. pizza, in any capacity.
12. Cute, sleeping puppies!!!

That’s all for now folks, but I hope everyone is happily getting through midterms and all of those fun things.

Love, B

photo

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I wasn’t able to post any pictures while I was abroad because I was working from an ipod and couldn’t get my photos onto my ipod to post. That being said, I wanted to share some on this blog, so every now and again look out for a photo or two and a short story about my adventure.

I’m back in Atlanta now, but I feel different. I’ve been feeling different ever since I got back to the states just three weeks ago. Maybe different isn’t the right word. Maybe the word is better. Better than what, though? I don’t even remember. I’m happy to be here though, happy to be starting school, happy to get to impact my dancing and my writing with all the things I’ve learned.

On writing, I’ve learned this:

The purpose of poetry is to remind us how difficult it is to remain just one person, for our house is open, there are no keys in the doors, and invisible guests come in and out at will.