When Teachers Make You Want to Cry
The start of my competitive dance journey was not an easy one. I had just turned 6 and although I had been dancing for four years, I was used to having super sweet teachers who showed me encouragement in a loving and kind way. Imagine my surprise and shock when I started team classes and was faced with a teacher who yelled a lot and told us exactly what she thought and how she felt. I developed a strong case of anxiety every time it was time for her class. I had convinced myself that she didn’t like me and didn’t feel I was good enough because she called out my name in class and gave me corrections in front of all my teammates. Now, I wasn’t the only one she did this to but as a really young kid who wasn’t used to this, I wasn’t thinking about everyone else. It was embarrassing for ME. I cannot tell you how many tears were shed and I wanted to quit.
I have to thank my parents for making me stick to it even though it was such a difficult time for me. Because you see, she’s not yelling out my name because she hates me. She’s not giving me corrections because she thinks I’m a terrible dancer. She’s doing it because she sees potential in me and wants to see me soar. It took a very long season for me to come to understand that the pushing and the corrections and everything that went with it (that I saw as a negative) came from a place of love and belief in me.
In the time since, I’ve learned so much and come so far. And while I enjoyed my time as a recreational dancer, I have come so much further than I ever thought possible as a competitive one and I can’t wait to see what’s ahead. So for any other young dancer out there who may be struggling with the new expectations of competitive dance here’s something that I now take with me wherever I go: don’t worry if they call out your name and give you corrections left and right. Worry when they don’t. As dancers we are always learning and growing. Find those people who are going to make you soar to greatness.