Fear is a Terrible Thing

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So remember when I said that I’ve found that this can help me get my head together.  Believe it or not, I need to do that again.  I’m really getting whipsawed by this cha-cha routine and I ended up way inside my head tonight.  Got a lot of stuff to straighten out.  I’ll try not to sound to whiny but you never know.  Funny thing was that my instructor at the end of the lesson was telling me a story about her most recent comp where they didn’t do so well and she was relaying that to someone else who told her to just change her headspace.  Which is what I need to do but if I had an instant remedy, then I wouldn’t have half the issues I do.

Bottom line is I’m afraid this cha-cha routine is beyond me.  I feel like it highlights all of my weak points and none of my strengths.  There is some fast footwork required with weight changes and places where I have to not move my feet but have to institute another action on the beat.  There’s a lot of syncopation and there is a section where they want more hip movement out of me.  There’s a section at the beginning where we aren’t dancing in frame which is totally new to me.  We still have not managed even a rough complete walk through yet.  Oh, and did I mention that I’m supposed to demo for the studio in three weeks.

Tonight we were working on a certain section and it was like she was speaking a foreign language.  I probably was a little psyched out going in but I didn’t feel that I was that far inside my head but when she kept trying to explain and it just wasn’t clicking, I just ended up getting really frustrated.  To her credit, she kept working on different ways to explain her points but nothing seemed to fit.  The good news is that I had several places where I could have tossed in a snarky, sarcastic comment but I managed to hold my tongue which kept things from getting totally derailed.

It probably didn’t help me much that she had just come back from a comp and so she was fired up and in super dancer mode where she put a lot of flourish into every step.  This just served to heighten my insecurities because the gap between her effort and how I perceived I was looking clunking through the thing was pretty wide.  I know I’m never going to match her but she’s giving me a glimpse of what this looks like when done right and I’m so far from that which just makes me really afraid that I’ve hit some kind of limit.

I am really struggling with the appropriate way to learn this.  I’ve taken so many different learning style assessment to try and figure out what works best for me and they all come back inconclusive or mixed.  Sometimes, I can learn by watching her but she has a habit of exaggerating her moves to illustrate her point and I can’t just copy what she’s doing.  Sometimes, I can learn by listening but things weren’t making sense to me.  I do go a lot by how it feels but, as she said, I have no idea how it would feel to do it right and, a lot of the time, the differences are so subtle that I can’t pick up on them.  Then, I can’t articulate why something feels awful which doesn’t give her anything to work with.

I’m totally frustrated because I think I’m good enough to get this and I don’t know why it isn’t coming sooner.  It leads me down the path that maybe I’m just not good enough and that this is some kind of limit.  She always says the only limits are those we put on ourselves but I’ve seen enough Dancing with the Stars to know that certain people hit limits even when they are practicing as much as other contestants. I don’t have the kind of body control that I really need because I’ve never had to learn it before and maybe it is true that you can’t teach old dogs new tricks.

Anyway, the bottom line is I’m afraid I can’t do this and I’m afraid I’ll disappoint her.  I don’t really want to bring this up to her because it won’t go well.  She won’t accept my negative thinking so I guess it is just up to me to find some way to get around this.  In a way, I’m glad I have the rest of the week off because of Thanksgiving so my next lesson is in 9 days (unless I try to get one early next week).  Hopefully, that will give me some time to figure out how to deal with this fear.

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