We are almost a week out from the Student Showcase! It is exciting and terrifying at the same time! I have performed several times with Aerial Dance in the Christmas Show and in Student Showcases, but my experiences this year for training and practicing with Steve have taught me a great deal.
I learned/found a new kind patience when working with him. Dealing with injuries is a literal pain. Doubles hoop is really hard when you do not weigh the same as your partner….. COMMUNICATION IS KEY! It is easy to become frustrated with your partner, especially when they are your significant other. New aerialist do not have the stamina to maintain energy and strength for a long duration of time. They also have to kick desensitization into over drive…..
The biggest lesson I learned was that working so closely with your significant other either causes you to crumble or pushes you to grow together. Our road to the Student Showcase has not been an easy one. In the beginning of our training Steve came down with Influenza A, draining essentially all the energy and life from him for a few weeks. Thankfully he is feeling much better! There were times I thought we were going to fall apart, but some how we managed to work together to accomplish our goals without killing one another.
Working on Me
Like I stated before, this Student Showcase has been an adventure of firsts and I have experience a lot of personal growth. I can easily say that I am only human and have constant room for growth. Ladies, if you are interested in having your man come to the studio with you, you need to constantly remind yourself that he is new to aerial and he is TRYING. Below you will find a little snippet of my own over assumptions for Steve.
Steve and I had our first few lessons, during those lessons I found myself getting frustrated that he couldn’t keep up, after all we were only practicing for an hour….. In my eyes that should have been pretty easy, because most of us train anywhere from two to three hours at a time.
Steve struggled to even string three doubles moves together before needing a break. Here is the crappy part…… I forgot that he is/was brand new to the aerial world, our first lesson was only his fifth, FIFTH, actual class at Aerial Dance.
During our second lesson things were not going as planned. Steve had slept funny and irritated his back a little, but there he was giving it his all for me, to support me and my love of aerial…. During that lesson, I was frustrated and all I could think was, “Why isn’t he working/trying harder? Hoop doesn’t hurt that bad?” What an awful person I was and how wrong I was about hoop hurting…. I know hoop HURTS! It can hurt like a S.O.B. So, I am not sure why I thought he was immune to pain. At the studio I always encourage beginners to persevere and take their journey as it comes. Here I was pushing Steve to meet me at my five years of experience level in only five one hour classes…….. Palm to Face! What was I thinking?????? He was and is still busting his butt for me!
I reflect back to that lesson and kick myself. I was not as supportive as an aerial partner as I should have been regardless if he is my fiance or not. He needed my support, not my frustrations. My attitude was only making things worse. Steve is a strong person and works out, but he is not accustomed to taking class upon, class, upon class.
At the studio our classes interweave strength and cardio together, so we are able to train and maintain strength as well as stamina throughout classes or routines. We have spent years conditioning for our sport where as Steve decided to toss himself in full force without all of the necessary building blocks. This realization caused me to think about how I needed to change and grow to support him on his journey.
As we make progress towards the Student Showcase, I am going to keep myself and frustrations in check. Steve is doing the best that he can and I am truly beyond grateful that he is even willing to do this with me. He has taken time out of his busy schedule to fully embrace my aerial sports. I cannot thank him enough for breaking through is comfort zone to try.
Even if our routine is not perfect, I will still be over the moon that he and I got to share this experience and grow not only our love for each other, but we are continuing build a life long friendship. So, ladies if your man is willing to embrace your sport, support him, encourage him, and be patience with him. We all deserve a chance to grow!
Until Next Time,