I don’t have much physical activities at home because I’m an only child and the adults were all so protective and cautious that they always panic whenever I try something a bit daring. I can’t climb, they said I should just ask for the things that I can’t reach and they will bring it to me. I can’t try splits, tumbling, bending, jumping, running, like most other kids do. They were afraid that I’d fall, I get bruised, I bump my head somewhere, and I learned to be scared to get hurt, too, so I stopped trying those things.
Then my parents enrolled me in ballet classes. I always see children learn ballet and I watch them through a large glass window in a mall. My parents noticed and asked me if I wanted to try. So I did. I always imagined myself in a tutu, and I got all excited when I learned that I’ll be joining those classes that I used to just watch. I was around 5 years old then, and my classmates were just 3 and 4.
In class, I felt left out because there a lot of exercises that I can’t do. I cant split, I can’t bend, I can’t bridge, I can’t arabesque. My classmates were all younger than I was and they can do much more than I can. Soon, my grandparents got worried that my bones would break because of ballet, so I stopped.
I never tried to be flexible ever since. I just accepted that I wouldn’t be able to do some things. I was part of the school dance club in highschool and we were taught some stunts. My mom always reminded me to take extra care and just not try anything dangerous. Growing up, I already learned to be afraid of falling, breaking a bone or even hurting for a bit, so my mom’s reminder just became an excuse for me to avoid learning to do stunts. I had really small tolerance in pain, and I saw some friends fall badly, break legs and wear casts at school, my avoidance were all justified. “I don’t want those kind of things to happen to me, I’ll just not try anything,” I said to myself.
Good thing, information is now easy to acquire. I learned that I can still practice and eventually be flexible, although now it will be harder for me, I know it’s still possible if I only try. I’ts never too late to try and do something, and this I learned watching my boyfriend train for his races and for triathlon. I can search online, watch instructional videos and learn how to safely and properly stretch without breaking a muscle or a bone. So now, I’m trying to bend and stretch so that someday I will be able to do the things that I thought I would never be able to do before.
So to see my progress, I started to take pictures of me while trying to do the splits and bridges. Someday, I will be looking at these pictures and remind myself how much I tried and be proud that my hard work paid off. I actually am already proud that I can now do these, since I was a lot worse when I first started pole dancing.