10 Things I Am Thankful For (J.O.D. Style)…
On Thanksgiving Eve I find myself once again at home. My parents’ home. The fact that I have two homes brings me pride and happiness in itself. I have created a life for myself that revolves around my passion, and I am independent – something I never thought I could achieve on this career path. Despite all that, it is a different holiday for me. Rather than reports of roles and accomplishments, I instead have stories of doctor’s appointments and x-rays. But I am still thankful. And this is why…
1.) My feet. Despite all the grief my ankle has given me the past twelve weeks, I am lucky I am able to do what I do and am still in good health.
2.) “You have such good posture! Are you a dancer?” The perpetual stance I assume is an open 4th or 1st position…#tooblessed with turnout.
3.) The fact that “a day at the office” entails putting on workout clothes and a Yumiko leotard and arming myself with caffeine and a protein bar.
4.) I’m still able to dress up as a princess at the age of 26. And I can do a killer French twist with my hair.
5.) I’m not afraid to “air bite” onstage (That’s right, you know it’s true, and you’ve probably witnessed it).
6.) I can improvise…anything.
7.) Multiple children I know refer to me as “The Ballerina.” Teaching young dancers is never easy, but it is a joy. My little ballerinas keep me laughing every day, and I hope that I am able to teach them something new and beautiful every class we spend together. I love sharing my passion with my students, young and old. The process gives you more insight than you realize. We not only help our students when we teach, we also learn about ourselves.
8.) I have a support system to back me that is unlike any other. I have made countless friends through my dancing, and my family has forever instilled their confidence and love in me as well. They help me learn and pick me up when I am down. They desire and celebrate my success just as much as I do. Without these people, I would not be where I am today. None of this would’ve been possible.
9.) As of this year, I not only have my physical movement to express myself. I also have a working dance blog that voices my thoughts, opinions, and experiences as a professional dancer. The J.O.D. Blog is as much a piece of me as my physical artistry is.
10.) No matter what happens next, I have put smiles on faces and helped people connect to dance in an emotional way. I am a part of an art form that is bigger than me. It is for the greater good. Art is something that endures. That strengthens. Even in times of turmoil, we all need something beautiful and profound to believe in. We have J.O.D.
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!