Last week, for school, we had to write a short paper on what we would be willing to work for over a two-year period. Me, being a ballet-head, decided to write about pointe shoes. I would like to share with you my paper! Keep in mind that this paper was written to be presented to a class full of non-balletfreaks ;)
I am a dancer. Once I became a dancer, nothing could pull me away from it. When I am dancing, there is nothing like the feeling of soaring through the air in a grande jete, spinning round and round in speedy pique turns, and high assembles. When I am dancing, I feel invincible. I can fly to the farthest corners of the earth, and swim to the deepest parts of the ocean. When I am dancing, I lose myself, and all of my worries vanish. I don’t mind the sweat, aches, sores, and pains, as long as I am dancing. One day, I will have my own ballet studio, and teach people, young and old, to love dance like I do.
Every dancer’s biggest dream is to go en pointe. Going en pointe is graduating from soft, canvas ballet shoes, to sturdy, satin ballet shoes, called pointe shoes or toe shoes. These shoes allow a dancer to stand on her tippy toes, elongating her figure, and creating the illusion that she is floating. But before a dancer may go en pointe, she must consider a number of things like strength, technique, and mental and emotional ability. If a dancer gets her toe shoes too early, then she could suffer permanent nerve damage that would end her dancing forever. An average dancer would go en pointe after 2-3 years of ballet training, depending on their foot type. They must undergo agonizing exercises, pass numerous exams, and struggle emotionally to keep it up before they are able to get their toe shoes.
I am one of those dancers who longs to be seen gracefully bourreeing across the floor in glorious toe shoes, but just as any other dancer, I must work hard for them. Taking classes from an excellent teacher is one start. If I can’t dance correctly, it would be harder to dance en pointe. Even if I have good technique, I might lack in strength. Every day, I will have to exercise my ankles, toes, calves, and even my brain to be strong enough. Doing these exercises for an hour a day is excruciating, but in the end, it will be worth it. I have to manage my time, so that I can do these exercises every day, and that I won’t be “too busy”. In the future, I will have to save my own money for dance classes to be able to keep up my training.
Even after I have these mastered, there are many obstacles to dodge. I know I will spend days in the studio, leaving me sore constantly, sometimes so sore, I would hardly be able to walk. I know that I will miss out on events that I am invited to, a movie, a retreat, a day to go shopping, to be able to take more ballet classes. I know I will have to spend birthdays and holidays working in the studio. I know that I will face emotions when one of my classmates gets her toe shoes before me. I know I will have to battle envy in numerous situations. I know that I will make sacrifices for those beloved shoes.
But throughout these toils and troubles, the hard work will be worth it. I can see myself, lacing up my ribbons and stepping onto that stage in the Fabulous Fox Theater, a glorious place where the most prestigious of companies perform. The ceiling has a deep blue hue, so deep; I can imagine myself flying up to the stars. As I walk onstage, I hear the soft clop of my shoes on the vintage hardwood floor. I start to shake, and I give myself a quick pinch to make sure I’m not dreaming. With the spotlight on me, I have everyone’s attention. My mouth goes dry as I hear the first elegant creak of the orchestra’s violins. I begin to dance to a glorious tune, with my shimmery pink tutu moving gracefully with my body, and when I step out for the final curtsy, the crowd startles me with an uproar of clapping, shouting, and tears. I feel my eyes becoming moist, and I raise my arms, motioning that that dance was for God’s glory, not mine. I am dancing for the Lord who made me to worship him with the body he skillfully made to be a dancer.