Monday, September 28, 2015

Class report 1

So I told a lie the other week - TONIGHT was my first class. We were on an alternate schedule for 2 weeks so I couldn't make it.

Class was good, it was good to be back, even if it was so hot and I was so over heated I felt like I was going to puke. I didn't, so we will consider that a win.

Amazingly, I remembered more of my SPD then expected. On the down side, I totally space-cadetetted, on my new light jig that I had started learning at the end of last year. The silver lining to all this is they are both dances that I need to work on, specifically SPD, which is my last dance still in AB. Light Jig is just a good place to start the ball rolling on my plans to dominate novice.  I already know the step, I just need to remember it, and, according to the teen teacher's helper that was drilling me, make it more bouncy, hop into the air more, keep my feet pointed down on my kicks, pull my knees up higher- pretty much everything. She was actually super helpful and sweet. I don't mind when she is the one drilling me; she actually pretends to laugh at my stupid jokes and is abundantly patient with me when I am literally crawling on the floor out of breath, or when I am completely fumbling the step I had right just a minute ago.

I am taking a lot of signs and opportunities this year. I only signed up for once class a week. I know this may sound counterproductive to you multi-classer types, but it always ended up being "Eh, I am not up for class today, I will just go hit the Wed. night class - wedsnday classes are better for me anyway cause that is the adult class." And then, when Wednesday night would roll around "Tonight's class is just so late and I have been at work all day, and I have to work in the morning and and and . . . ." Needless to say I had the exact same excuses for Saturday classes too.

So, one class a week, all or nothing. If I don't go tonight, I don't go this week.

I have also resorted to self-bribery.

If I don't skip a single class (barring actual illness and previous commitment) between now and December, I will treat myself to some new dance clothes and sports bras.

If I don't skip a single class (again, skip by definition meaning not going just cause I am lazy or moody, not any valid reason) for the entire year, I will let myself consider buying a new wig at the end of the year.

If everything goes through on this house that we made an offer for, and we get in there and I have darling husband build me a practice floor, there will be some other kind of bribery to get me to practice at least 2 times a week between classes. Just not sure what that bribe will be. I am open to suggestions. Any thoughts?

Goals until next weeks class: review the second half of the first SPD step, and remember to make my LJ more bouncy.

Literally taking this one step at a time here. . . .

Cheers all, I am exhausted.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Announcement: I am NOT retiring

Not that anyone has been asking if I am planning on it, but I have been considering it. But, let me rewind here.

The last we talked, I was packed and ready to go to Feispocolypse 2015. I woke up early that morning, looked at the schedule, saw I wasn't set to dance until a little later in the morning, puttered around, ate some breakfast, and some how managed to come down with my first ever panic attack. That was not fun. I physically could not get myself out the door. I was CRYING for pete's sake - crying when I should be happy and excited and maybe even nervous, but I was none of those things - I was CRYING. The only impetus that I was feeling to consider going was the fact that I needed new laces and didn't want to pay shipping by buying them online!

After calming me down (first having to wake up to find out why I was crying) Husband took me out for some breakfast and talked me through what I was going through.

I just wasn't prepared. Not in technicalities. Not in mentality, Not in emotions.

Now, anyone who has followed this blog at all knows that I normally I am no where near prepaired enough to compete. I never have time or space to practice, and I some how always manage to miss a bunch of classes before feis-time.

I have gotten as far as I have in competition with sheer determination, enthusiasim, moxie and/or giant balls. I just go and brazen my way through it, confident in what I know, and confident that I am good at hiding what I don't know. Sometimes I still make an ass of myself, but I have some kind of something as a fall back.

I didn't even have that before this series of competitions.

So, with placing out of my Slip Jig at North Coast I am no longer straddling three levels (I still technically have my SPD in Advance Beginner, but I will worry about that  . . .at some point). It's pretty easy and straight forward - LJ, SJ, RL, and TJ are all in Novice and somehow, HP is in Prizewinner.

But here's the thing - I don't know ANY of my novice dances 100% yet. Normally that is not a problem for me. Hardly ever are any of my dances at 100%. But usually, I have my baby Beginner 1 or 2 steps to fall back on that I can do in my sleep, so I at least feel like I have something to fall back on.

I didn't have that this time. I had been working so hard on learning the new Novice steps, that I hadn't been drilling the old AB steps.

I basically was an Irish Dance version of Jon Snow - I knew nothing! No new steps, no old steps. And I just sat at my desk wondering why I was even contemplating going!

So over coffee and eggs, Husband, being the pragmatic, reasonable person that he is asked me a series of questions.

- Do you WANT to quit? . .. .No
- What DO you want? . . .  to not suck at this any more
- What do you need to get this? . . . to practice more, to not miss so many classes, and to be more talented
- Is signing up for feiseanna helping or hurting? . . . helping in that it puts on pressure to practice more, hurting in that I don't respond well to that kind of pressure.
- Can you give up competitions? . . . . I could, but not if I want to continue to level up
- Ok, so what do you NEED to not suck any more and to make competitions less stress full.

So here was the plan we came up with. I needed more time. First I needed a little time to decompress. Luckily summer sessions were starting, so I was basically on a 3 month break from class. While I knew I was going to despretely miss it, a little hiatus was probably a good thing. I also needed a little more time IN class. If I am going to compete in Novice, I actually need to BE in novice. I need to have a couple solid months of class under my belt before I compete again, so I am planning on sitting out all other feiseanna until 2016. I need practice space outside of class, so he's promised me once we finally get a house (we've been shopping seriously for a few months now) he's going to build me a dance floor in the basement. I need him to be a little pushier too - he's always been super supportive, but when I am saying that I might just be lazy and not go to class I need him to kick my butt out the door.

Husbands are highly encouraging and wonderful dance support. I recommend them over Feis Moms any day, if only for the fact they can't ground you and are pretty fun to kiss too. . . .

But at any rate. . . .

Classes start again tomorrow. I am rested and excited and of course a little nervous to be going back. I've gained another million pounds over summer break. I've not exercised at all. But I have retreated, fallen back, regrouped and am ready to attack this again. I have from now til the end of the year to get to where I need to be, and then Novice - I am going to kick you ass.  . . .