Sunday, January 24, 2010

clearing space

I taught my first "Basic Ballet for Adults" class yesterday. It was lovely. The adults were sublime, really. I fell a little bit in love with each of them. I hope they come back, but at the same time, I am preparing myself for the fact that they are adults with busy schedules. Not being as obsessed with dance as I am, other things may take priority.

Today, I am indulging in the simplicity of a Sunday morning shielded with a refusal to start doing anything productive until I get bored of: laying in bed reading, drinking a large cup of coffee, and staring out my window at the Inner Sunset Farmers' Market. What BLISS.

Ran in to an acquaintance last night at a dance show, a fellow dancer. We come from opposite sides of the training spectrum: I am classically trained, he comes from release dance and the AXIS syllabus. I wouldn't say I know him well, but when we do run in to each other in the dance community, I feel as if we meet with a mutual respect and understanding. A feeling of, "I know you. You are someone else who is doing it; you are someone else who is pursuing this odd and beautiful choice of lifestyles." And when we run in to each other, we seem to often talk about... our day jobs.

He's a physical trainer. He works approximately 3 hours a day (I think?), standard work hours are from 6-9am. Then there's time for class, and then, as it goes rehearsals and performances, which are things which can keep him awake until almost the start of the next day. He once told me that the only way he makes it work is with "a rigid napping schedule."

It's interesting to see how we all concoct our lives. I don't think that anyone who's involved in the meat of it thinks it is or ever can be easy. I'm sure we all at times would rather give in, and I know I have been there at several points in my life. Currently, despite the fact that I can blanketly place "busy" as the culprit, I am feeling like I'm always giving in on something, always compromising one point to make room for another - leaving me feeling constantly behind, in debt, and ill-equipped to take on it all. Often this means that I don't get to enjoy the fruits of my own labors: as soon as it's done, something else is sitting there waiting to take my time and mental energy.

One of the things I'm trying to include in this constant struggle for my attention is down time. This means I have to ardently refuse to let anything take over. Right now, I am firmly insisting on taking the pleasure of a Sunday morning including: the dregs of my coffee, one more chapter, and the sight of two golden retrievers and one black lab wagging their tails at each other next to a pile of oranges.

Friday, January 8, 2010

things considered

I started reading a book over my vacation that now sits, two-thirds finished, next to my bed. It was a pleasant distraction when I was home, but now that I'm back, I really don't think it's that much of a book.

But, anyway, tonight I was thinking of one passage from it, about a man who prays and prays to god to let him win the lottery until one day, finally, a frustrated god replies, "My son, BUY A TICKET!"

I was half thinking about this because my friend, who gives my a ride home from Oakland a couple times a week told me that when she gets super frustrated with her job she sometimes buys a lottery ticket and hopes.

I think that... my life has several lottery tickets taped to the sides, the biggest thus far being the one wherein I decided to quit my degree program, move to San Francisco, and do everything I could to self-define as a dancer. With a gritty amount of desperation, I really really hoped that that would work.

(It has?)

I feel like I've come to a crossroads of frustration and lack of clarity and I need to buy another ticket. I'm just beginning to see what this one will look like, and it's as terrifying as it is exciting.