My Childish Rant

So here goes. I wasn’t sure about posting it because I seem like a petulant child and Teach seems like a jerk. But not every relationship is calm all the time.

Since I had skipped a few weeks of dance to finish up the homeschool year with my daughter, I scheduled a double lesson last Monday. It’s smarter to do this since my commute is so long, but my foot and fitness level aren’t quite up to the challenge yet. So I think I’m going to just do weekly lessons again.

My first lesson was with the positive Mr. R. I really love how he teaches. We went through Rhythm (except Swing – no one is willing to go there yet). He reinforced the swivel idea and then taught me four variations on a cross body lead in Cha Cha. It was so much fun to try and figure out what he was doing next and my swiveling and footwork are coming along nicely.

Then I had my first lesson with Teach #1 since February. Yes, it’s been that long! He decided to review Smooth with me. I haven’t done much Smooth since my injury and I’ve almost forgotten how he dances (remember the eye stuff), so there was more than just remembering technique, I needed to relearn our connection. Here is where my rant starts… He was on me like a drill sergeant. NOTHING was right. My feet weren’t together enough. My frame could be better. Get lower. Now I’m too low. Head too far left. Everything was wrong. Everything. It was completely discouraging. I know I’m rusty, but the delivery of this information was NOT good. He was whining at me. I’m incredibly sensitive. Gentle reminders are ok. Whining and harping at me and telling me that I’ve been so much better doesn’t do anything but get me depressed.

It also gets me thinking. This is dangerous. I started thinking about our lessons this year. I thought about what I would have written here about my lessons. There should be something to take note of after each lesson. You know what? I wouldn’t have anything to write. I’m either making zero progress because I’ve reached my personal high point, or, Teach #1 hasn’t been teaching me in a good way. Every week I should get a new step to help reinforce a technique or I should get arm styling to use with a step I already am comfortable with. Something! Do you know Teach #1 hasn’t taught me a new step this year? I’m barely Intermediate Bronze, there has to be something to play with. Teach #1 is obsessed with my feet being together. It’s his thing. If my legs and ankles aren’t making love every moment, he’s going to just keep harping on it. Then we get nothing else done. I know this needs to happen. My feet need to get together. You should see the scars on my feet and ankles where my heels have scratched flesh over this. But here’s my whine (as if the rest isn’t enough), I’m paying a lot of hard earned money to this studio. I feel like there need to be some balance here. After last week, I’m feeling a bit like I’m pissing it all away. I could go on some beautiful vacations to hear the same thing about my feet being together. I KNOW. They just don’t always listen during warm up. MOVE ON for a minute. I grasp many things quickly. Why do I have to devote hours to something when a simple reminder will work?! Or, just wait until after our warm up to start harping at me. It’s a warm up for a reason.

I want to talk to him a bit, but this past week I was so discouraged and was feeling so lousy about myself that I didn’t have the guts. Maybe I’ll be able to tomorrow. I’m still a bit raw. So, my childish rant is over for now. Another cup of tea would be lovely.


3 thoughts on “My Childish Rant

  1. Can I give you the same internal pep talk I gave myself? Don’t feel lousy about yourself and don’t consider this a childish rant. While your teacher is certainly an expert at ballroom dancing, that doesn’t necessarily make him a great teacher or even the right teacher for you. We all have different personalities and learning styles and we will all relate better to certain methods.
    You don’t like the drill sargent and being harped at. THAT IS OK!! That is who you are and there absolutely, nothing wrong with that and nothing you should feel lousy about. Don’t fall into the same trap I’ve been in for all these years.
    And, as others with much more wisdom told me, you are the paying customer! That gives you certain rights and one of those is to speak out when you aren’t happy. If you are anything like me, I know it won’t be easy, but, it is far better to speak out early and not keep hoping things will get better.
    I only hope Teach #1 is a little more receptive and willing to try to respect your feelings.
    Sorry if you only wanted to rant and didn’t want people jumping in with opinions. As you can probably guess, I’m a little sensitized to this issue right now and parts of your post sounded an awful lot like things I was telling myself.
    Good luck.

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