Between a Laugh and a Tear

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OwnerGuy had given me the weekend to think about doing a limited number of heats at Showcase. To be honest, doing a limited number would probably be worse for me than going all out. There was a comfort in having multiple heats per dance because if you screwed one up, you could fix it on the next one. Sometimes it took two or three tries but if you walked away with one good run, it was worth it.

The other problem is that doing a limited number would leave a lot of blank space during what is a very long day. That leaves too much time sitting on the sidelines and too much time to think about all the things that are crashing around me. No, that wouldn’t be a good thing.

He was going on about how hard we’ve worked to get these patterns to this point and how he didn’t want me losing momentum by waiting until the next one. I have to be honest here. I’m not sure how much of this is a real concern and how much of this is just pushing a studio event. I could be totally wrong here but I know there is a studio coming to this Showcase from pretty far away and they are supposedly bringing a big crowd. Part of me thinks he just wants to match them. Maybe some in studio competition. Maybe not. I just can’t tell anymore. Probably some of both.

In a way, it is kind of a sign of where I am because, in the past, I would never had considered skipping a Showcase. But I’m starting to have a whole bunch of new thoughts around ballroom and where it really does fit in my life. More on that later.

It is true that the closer we get to the end, the stronger the emotions get. We got an email from the HR person directing us to the rooms that have been reserved so we can turn in our badges and computer equipment and sign the release papers. The last final act of employment. This is really going to happen.

I may or may not have had my last workout session with one trainer on Tuesday. I didn’t keep real good records of how many sessions I had left but I thought I had at least one more. She’s not sure either so we shall see. But there is only one Tuesday left before my final day so, if this wasn’t the last one, then there is just one left. Its the whole concept of “this is the last time I’ll ….” that is kind of jarring.

I happened to run into someone from my team Monday at the Fitness Center. We both had the same idea which was to make maximum use of it. After all, we paid for it. I’m not even sure how they are going to handle the fact that I’ve paid for the entire month of May but won’t get to use it. I don’t know if there is some kind of pro-rated amount but, to be honest, I just don’t care enough to try and run down the answer.

Anyway, I was talking with her about our whole adventure. And she said that she’s not angry about it ending because it was such a great ride. She’s just sad that it is over and apprehensive about the future. I think that mirrors a lot of what I feel.

Then I had one of those moments when the universe tries to speak to you if you are listening. Was driving back from my lesson last night and my normal choices were playing things I didn’t like so I got to my last pre-set which is an 80-90’s country station. I did have a country music phase in my past. Anyway, the next song up was “I wouldn’t have missed it for the world” by Ronnie Milsap. While the song was about a breakup, the general idea was happiness over the good memories and that those made the whole experience worthwhile even if it didn’t have a happy ending. Its a strange mix of happy and sad and that’s where I am right now.

So back to Ballroom for a bit. I was pretty sure I’d never do another Big Dance Event and not being employed kind of makes that a reality. It seems like they’ve gotten bored with the one that is within driving distance so now OwnerGuy and Z want to pick the ones that are farther away. I guess they’ve got a number of people who’ll go to any event so they can pick the more exciting ones like one in Hawaii early next year. I can’t justify the cost of flying out there in addition to the cost of the event itself.

I know they talk about turning it into a vacation and there is always that possibility. The problem with that is they run events on Friday and Saturday night and you can’t do any type of ala carte pricing. The only thing you can opt out of is typically the first night event. And my wife would have no interest in attending the dinners on Friday and Saturday. So I could do my dancing during the day and then ditch out of those events but I’ve already paid for them so there is no cost break.

So if I’m not going to be doing any more of those, should I really keep with the nine dances I’m doing? I mean the only reason that you pick those nine is because that’s how competitions are set up. If I’m not competing, why keep them all? Other than I enjoy most of them and they are the ones typically played at parties.

Or should I get into something different that would be more fun. Like some country dancing. I’ve done my share of Two Step, Country Waltz and Shuffle and those were fun. The only problem with those is they never play songs at parties so you don’t really have an opportunity to dance them just for fun. I wouldn’t mind getting back into doing solo routines but JoNY doesn’t seem to be as into it as Kid T was. Or maybe we just haven’t talked enough about it. I enjoyed the whole idea of doing a little show rather than just picking a dance and doing that. The costumes were a big part of it and that doesn’t seem to be something JoNY is all that serious about. Although I do need to just bring it up and see where it goes.

The biggest thing is just finding some confidence again. I’ve been too focused on my shortcomings. Well I’ve been focused on the things I can’t do because of the knees and that’s leading me to doubt what I can do. This is another part of the spiderweb of things I’m feeling that leave me not wanting to do Showcase right now. It doesn’t help that there are times when JoNY doesn’t remember our pattern and I lead something and she’s expecting something else and then I’m all “did I screw up”.

Anyway, I’m just in a place where I want this job thing to be over. I want to put that past behind me and then start working on the future. But I’m also not sure that the current path for ballroom is the right one and I’m thinking about what needs to change there as well. Of course, I don’t deal with change well. What a mess.

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