This weekend Kurt and his dance partner will represent Diversity Dancesport in Oakland at the April Follies dance competition. Last year I joined them and took pictures (If you’d like you can watch some of the videos).
Being around the dance scene (and the memories it brought back) was bitter sweet. Suddenly, in my mind I was at my first dance competition getting ready to step on the floor.
In fact, however, I was watching that same expression of excitement and fear cross the faces of the dancers as they got ready to perform, knowing that I would never be able to be in their position again. No more fidgeting with costumes, no more applying industrial quantities of product to ensure my hair didn’t move at all, and no more fake tanning: the Cheetoing Up that virtually all dancers do to look thinner, more muscled, and so judges can more easily distinguish their bare body parts from the pale color of the floorboards.
I was glad that trying to get good shots of all our fabulous dancers kept my mind occupied. It was between rounds, when I had time to process what was going on, that the sadness set in. Even though he was busy with his own dancing and helping the students, Kurt noticed I was down. He understood.
In the break before the evening program, I was able to download all the photos. I brought my computer with me to dinner so the dancers could see right away what they looked like on the floor. I remembered what it was like to have to wait for photos, and I knew how much it would mean to them. They were so happy!
Before the competition I told Kurt that I needed to go shopping to find a top to match my new vintage necklace. When I wore the necklace that night, one of the competitors complimented me on it. It felt like Kurt was behind it, and it made it all the more touching.
I ended up ditching the evening performances. It all became too much. I went back to the hotel and went to their tiny little gym and rode that elliptical until all the frustration was worked out. I felt so much better after that.
Although overall my trip memories are positive, I couldn’t go again this year. My wish to all the dancers is that they are able to do their best and be in the moment. (I’m sorry but I refuse to tell a dancer to “break a leg”, which is traditional, but sounds too tragic … and possible!)
Have you ever had a time when you discovered that you really can’t go home again? or Has anyone ever seen a fake tan that looked natural?