Wild Wednesday: Missing the Moment
But first, Killer Class.
This morning, I took a shower for once (to clarify: it’s not that I don’t wash myself; I just don’t usually shower in the morning). While showering, I found myself thinking, “Gee, we haven’t done saut de basque in a while. It would be really cool to do saut de basque.”
Apparently, the Divine Killer B read my mind, because we not only did SO MUCH PETIT ALLEGRO (which I managed mostly to do right), but we did an awesome grand allegro combination with sauts de basque and cabrioles.
So, basically, it was an awesome day. I also learned, by the by, that I’ve been over-crossing my arabesques, which makes my penché glitchy. Killer B came over at one point and was like, “Try not to overcross,” and moved my foot over, and then it was like, “OHAI, FLOOR!” So that was awesome, too.
On the other hand, I really missed the bus on what could’ve been a meaningful thing at DanceTeam practice.
One of the girls, who is actually a really awesome dancer when she gets out of her own way (with which, being middle-schoolers, they all struggle), randomly said while I was drilling some choreography with her and her friend in a breakout group, “I feel so fat.”
Aaaaaaand, I totally dropped the ball.
There are so, so many meaningful things I could’ve said — and while it’s true that probably none of them would’ve taken hold immediately, it’s important to hear those messages.
I could’ve said, “Don’t worry, there’s no one right body for dance,” or “The right body for dance is whatever body you’ve got” (though that one can sound a touch judgmental) or “All kinds of bodies are beautiful” (though, honestly, that might be a bridge too far for someone who’s in seventh grade and wrestle with all the stuff that people wrestle at that age). I could’ve pointed her to some amazing dancers that are shaped like she is, if I wasn’t so terrible at remembering names (1)
- Honestly, I am stunnnnnned that I’m actually remembering the names of ALL my DanceTeam girls; it’s a bleeding miracle.
Instead, I sort of choked and said, “You look fine!” and then, over the course of the conversation, reiterated the things that I think are great about her dancing — she has attitude for days and she’s really expressive, which means she has awesome stage presence; that she’s naturally a great mover for the kind of dance we’re working on.
Maybe I should’ve just asked, “What makes you say that?” and tried to listen, but on the other hand, we were trying to get a lot of choreography tightened up in not very much time.
On the other hand, it’s cool that some of the kids feel like they can say stuff like that around me, given that they really haven’t known me very long. It makes me feel like, against all odds, I’m doing okay making connections and putting them at ease (2).
- Probably the smartest thing I’ve done so far was to admit that I don’t know from Hip-Hop; that they get to teach me there.
Anyway, I’m going to have to think about this: how not to be caught off my guard the next time something like that comes up, and what to say that will be both concise and, in the long run, helpful. I’ll also check in with AS about that, since she (as an actual middle-school teacher) might have some insight.
So that’s it for now. I have to run off and suffer … erm, I mean, go back to Trapeze 3 after a not-really-intentional two-week break. Eeeeeeeek.
Posted on 2016/10/26, in adulting, balllet, body diversity, body positive, dance, dance team, ID-10T errors, life, mistakes, teaching, weight and tagged l'esprit d'escalier, middle school is hard yo, middle school problems, missed opportunities, the best body for dance is whatever body you have. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.