10 June, 2014

The I in Insecurity.


At the beginning of the month we rocked up to Sunrise Celebration. I say rocked; we had an epic journey. One which should take just over an hour, took over 6 hours and included an exploding caravan tyre on the middle of the Severn Bridge and multiple police officers changing said tyre in the pissing rain. Loooong story. But we did arrive and when we did I instantly wondered why I was there. We were there officially to teach workshops and perform, aerial and hula hoop, but that niggling feeling of doubt appeared the minute we drove on to site.

It's the kind of festival that is full of circus performers, and who am I? Someone that has been pole dancing for a mere 2 years and doing aerial and hula hoop for much less time. Who am I to teach anyone anything? Who am I to get up and perform? Probably in front of people who know what it's all about. 
Once we scoped out the talent I relaxed a little. There were some amazing hula hoopers for sure but they were really nice and taught me some new things (I'm still working on nose hooping and foot breaks, Amy!). We met and watched some truly amazing performers. It felt inspiring rather than demoralising. 


When I first started pole dancing it was for fun. It didn't matter how fast I progressed. It didn't matter if there were people out there who were better than me - all that mattered was that I got better week on week and that I enjoyed myself. That is the most important thing after all. Very few of us will ever be at the top of our chosen career or art form. But so long as we are constantly working hard and going forward, so long as we are better today than we were a week ago - that is amazing, that is progress, that is life.

I tell my students this all the time.
But it initially feels like a very different kettle of fish when you step in to the world of teaching and performing. Now you HAVE to be the best. Or at least good enough. So you go to these events where there are other pole dancers, other hula hoopers, other aerialists and suddenly your brain screams FUCK I REALLY FUCKING SUCK. Hey, check out the girl hula hooping on her NOSE, why can't you do THAT? You moron. 

In my own little bubble, at my studio, in my little part of the country, I am good at what I do. One of the best possibly. But step outside of this, in to the big wide world, and I am really nothing. But so what? Teaching and performing is fun too. I don't need to be the best - just good enough and I am. I have something to teach people. So long as my students go away feeling they have progressed, so long as an audience are entertained - I have done my job.