Tough Love

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So there seemed to be a subtle change in how they were handling me yesterday.  I know I can be “difficult” at times.  Is there a male equivalent of a diva?  It really just comes down to me dragging my heels when asked to do something that I don’t perceive as fun or if I don’t feel comfortable doing it.  There was a lot of frustration leading up to Showcase and it boiled over a few times with both Kid T and Sunny.  Lots of reasons for it.

Anyway, I was working on the Mambo with Kid T and she starts getting on me about the one part I talked about before and peppering me with questions about why I didn’t think I could do it and so on.  I touched on this before but I’ll just state it again.  It comes down to me not wanting to be laughed at.  Whenever I have to try something that doesn’t feel natural and when I’m not sure how to actually do it, there is a risk of screwing it up and ending up in some awkward position that might strike someone as funny.  That happened with Z all the time and I hated it each time.  It is safer to not do it and so I dig my heels in and I dig them in hard.

But can I say that to Kid T?  Yeah, not right now.  Some of my problems and my feelings are mine and they are deeply personal and deeply private.  Sharing them is reserved for someone I know and trust at a very high level.  I know that this creates difficulties in this situation because she needs to know what is going on in my head but I can’t bring myself to tell her.  In part it is because I’m a little embarrassed to admit this.  Besides, what if she laughs at me when I tell her?  I tried telling Z this and she just managed to turn it into another joke.  I know Kid T is a different person but I’ve still got my shields mostly up.  Again, that also goes back to Z.  I got caught up in the emotional mess that is the dance student/teacher relationship and assumed a connection where there was none.  That also makes it much harder for me to want to open up.  Besides, Kid T is 21 and Sunny is 20.  It feels a little weird for someone my age to share that kind of stuff with two kids.

Then, after a 20 minute conversation about this particular move, we spent the rest of the lesson practicing the routine as it is.  At the end, she’s back on me wanting to know how I feel about it.  And, if I’m not going to commit to doing it, she needs to know now so they can take it out of the routine.  This after spending the entire lesson telling me that she thinks I can do it.  Guess she was giving me a chance to put up or shut up.  If I agree to keep it in, then it has to get done with no complaining.  This hit another part of me which doesn’t like to shrink from challenges.  And, she also said some things that made it seem like she’d take it personally if I didn’t do this step.  So I said keep it in.

Then she starts in on the rest of the Mambo routine to ask what I like and what I don’t and basically what could be changed and so on.  There was no way I was going to say that my basic impression was “meh”.  Sorry, but it doesn’t speak to me.  There is too much of it that is me posing while she does stuff.  But, I also know that they’ll hit me with the “yes, but you need to learn to use you height and take up more space” so this is all about me getting comfortable standing there and looking “macho”.  With me, something has to grab me right away.  If it doesn’t, I can learn to do it but it is never something I’m going to be passionate about.  At one point, she says to me “You said you liked Mambo”.  Hate it when they do that.  My experiences with Mambo were limited to the closed routine we do and the one open routine I did with Z and I liked both of those.  This is nothing like either of those and doesn’t yet feel like a Mambo.

Well then OwnerGuy was with me and Sunny for the Quickstep.  Well, he made an appearance towards then end.  We ran through it a couple of times and Sunny tells him we’re ready and he says “I thought you’d need 20 minutes to warm up”.  So we did it a few more times and then he’s busy talking with one of the instructors.  He does finally show up and we have to do the routine one more time.  He starts with a particular part telling me that he likes step x but not step y.  I’m a little confused because I’ve never heard Sunny call it step y.  So I had this blank look on my face so he did a little demo and I noticed that his feet were not doing what Sunny had told me to do and the step was rotating in a much different way.

But aside from a little bit of choreography, he just drilled us on frame and pulling my center up and keeping her on my right side.  I don’t remember the exact discussion but I may have been whining just a bit about having to keep my frame that way for an entire lesson and he just hits me with the famous “I thought that’s what you wanted”.  And I tried to say “No I don’t WANT to do it because it isn’t fun.  I just know that doing it will make the dancing smoother and that’s what I want”.  But all I got out was part of the first sentence and then he comes back with “Well nobody is holding a gun to your head and forcing you to take dance lessons.”  Told you they were giving me some tough love.

So now I get to dance Quickstep with a 19 year old girl attached to my right side.  Yeah, I know that is how it is supposed to be danced but … Victorian  … it can still feel a bit creepy.

But, even with all the bitching I’ve just done, there is the meta message and maybe I have been a little to preoccupied and bitchy lately.  There’s been a lot of things going on outside of dance and it crosses over.  Plus, I’m do need to just get over the resentment at not being the favorite anymore.  And maybe having one foot in two studios is not the best thing in the world.  Or maybe it can be if I just stop feeling like I’m cheating.

And maybe it was fate that my lesson tonight got cancelled because of a scheduling snafu.  It gives me an opportunity to skip the party and take a four day break from dance.  Next week is a short week and I’ll only be at the Famous Franchise on Tuesday for party.  (Got family in on Wednesday so no lesson).  That means a longer break from lessons.  I think that’s what I need to sort through some things.

One comment

  1. I just want to say that I think there is nothing wrong with telling them the mambo feels “meh.” It shouldn’t be a problem to come up with a routine in which you’re more active and not just posing. Dance should inspire and motivate! Not feel meh. :p Hopefully the holiday break helps!

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