Coming to Aerial Dance has given me SO many gifts. One of those is the gift of learning to trust the process and in that, learning to trust myself. My entire adult life has been a lot of decisions based on reacting to someone else’s decision. Not so much that I haven’t been able to choose options freely, but that my options were limited based on actions others in my life have taken. Actions that have caused me to feel I need to fix and keep everything together. I’ve begun to realize my actions have actually been reactions. Because of this path, I’ve also learned I don’t fully trust myself. I’m not fully confident in my choices when I am able to pick based on just me. This epiphany came to me my first week of intermediate pole.

We were going to work on elbow stands. My first thought was “There’s no way I’m going to be able to hold myself up.” Not thinking that I had completed beginner and my arms were strong enough to hold me on the pole (which looking back now, took me a while to trust that I could do that). We started by holding onto the base of the pole. I could do that. Then walking our legs closer to the pole to make it easier to kick up. I could do that. Next was to kick up our legs and steady ourselves by wrapping a foot around the pole. Roadblock. I knew the pole was there. From dancing all my life I knew my legs could kick up. But while on my forearms? Different. Not me. I can’t do that. I tried once, barely kicked off the ground. Tried a second time, closer but was more concentrated on getting my feet back on the floor. I sat up and said “I know the pole is there, I know my legs will find it, what am I afraid of?!” Everyone in class was so supportive and encouraging! I realized it was me- I was afraid of me. I needed to trust that I could do this! So I grabbed the pole again, and really kicked up! And it happened!! I connected to the pole, my foot wrapped, and I was upside down, supported by my own arms. I was amazed at the fact that my arms- a body part I had never been fond of, could support me. I could support myself (another epiphany). I was strong enough. Me. I could do it. I CAN do it. And I am confident that this feeling is helping me realize I can do so many other things in life!!