Shame, a Dance Nazi and a New Game Plan

I was so uncoordinated tonight. Not that I expect to get every step immediately, especially in this advanced class. But I felt so off kilter, like I couldn’t even tell right from left. I think part of it was pure brain fog from lack of sleep. I’ve slept maybe three hours each night this week. Every so often I go through a bout of insomnia, so it seems it’s that time again.

But feeling like a total klutz in class is a good thing sometimes. Feelings of shame and inadequacy are a good kick in the pants to do some serious practicing. So I’ve got a game plan: get myself on a regular sleep schedule again (which isn’t going to be easy because I’m a naturally nocturnal creature), buy some character shoes to practice in and then get my butt back to the studio.

Character shoes, you ask? Let’s go back in time a bit and I’ll explain. I work at a university and the good folks in the dance department allow me to practice in their studio when it’s not occupied by students or faculty. The studio I use is used for the tap classes, so the faculty studio manager assured me it was fine to use my flamenco shoes there. I had been using the studio periodically for about six months with no issue. But then, the day before our show last month, a small woman with a big voice busted in on my session and scolded me for using nailed shoes on their floors. “But I got permission from …”, I tried to explain. To which she responded, “NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!” Dance Nazi. I was busted. But after yelling “NO!” a few more times, she did say I was welcome to come back with tap shoes or character shoes, so I’m going with the latter.

I’m just glad I can continue to use it at all because it sure beats the heck out of dancing barefoot in my living room. Doing footwork in character shoes won’t quite be the same, but I’m still grateful to have this great space with nice floors and mirrors, all to myself, free of charge. None of my companeras can say the same. I’m very lucky.

In addition to feeling ashamed and inadequate, I’m actually feeling sleepy now. Time to go mimi and get a good rest, because tomorrow I put my plan into action.


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