Ballet And You: Partners In Recovery

Start up. Lift out of your heels. Don’t sink. Pull in. Push out. Breathe. Smile, and remember your choreography. That’s it. That is all you have to do and you will succeed. You will be what some like to call…. perfect. ( by the way, that doesn’t exist )

There is so much that goes into ballet technique, it can take years and years to build the foundation that will last you a life time. You cannot skip over the basics, for it is the basics that give you the ability to execute advanced movements.  You want triples? Show me a clean single. Want a perfect 90 degree or above, without lifting your hip? Then show me a clean 45 degree develope. 

Your audience does not witness the hours of classes you take everyday, but they see the results, and so do you.

So how does this relate to recovery?

Recovery starts with one single step

The decision to embark on the crazy journey of recovery starts with you saying “I will try.”   “I am going to do this because I don’t want to be sick anymore,” or “My parents are making me,” or “I really don’t want to die.” ( that’s a motivator). For whatever reason you are stepping out into the unknown, it’s kinda like stepping on the dance floor for this first time. (this place is weird, what’s up will all the mirrors?) You learn to stand at the barre, not too close, not too far away. You learn posture, breathing, discipline. You learn the basic skills needed to dance. 

In recovery you will learn how to feel your feelings, your hunger, and respond to your needs. You will learn that your problem isn’t your problem, it is entirely different. Skinny is what I thought I wanted, when really, I hated my Dad and that is how I chose to deal with it. So, give yourself permission to be a beginner. Give yourself permission to be confused, to slip up, to not get it right the first time around. You can do that in dance, so why can’t you do that with your recovery?

Recovery requires balance

We all have our “off” day’s, right? The days you step off the barre and you still haven’t found your center. Even a tendu from fifth ain’t happening! Where is that balance I had yesterday? Ugh…I must have left it at home. Then, there are days where you can’t come down out of your piqué arabesque even if a strong wind blew through the room, you would be there in all your epaulement glory! Move over Dusty Button! You do 6 pirouettes…..but no one is looking! How could they have missed that!

Recovery is the same way.  A balance of good and bad days; it’s called normal. Part of recovery is accepting there is no good or bad, black or white. There is rainbow’s and fun combinations. There is balance on your plate, balance between starving and stuffed and balance in self talk. You can tell when you are on, and you can tell when your off. That is awareness, and it’s needed in both ballet and recovery.

You and ballet are partners in recovery. Learn from each other, challenge one another. Your recovery is there to move you to the next step in your life.

Just breathe….

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