Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Dance Class: Take Two

Karan Johar said it best: life is Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham (translation, sometimes happy sometimes sad). Apt, right?

Last week, zero people showed up to my dance class. I was pretty gham.

This week, a couple of friends had said they'd come. One person had seen my post on MeetUp. So I expected three people. I was happy with three, because it was not zero.

In fact, ten people showed up. TEN. I was downright bamboozled.

So is it time for khushi? Am I happy? Well...

Kind of. I do know from prior experience that you can have ten people one day and two the next. So part of me is just stressing about next week's class.

And part of me (some people call it the inner critic, I call her Little Fucker, ) is nitpicking at everything that went wrong:

Like: the wires in the sound system was shot, so the music got super soft right away. It was like doing Bollywood in a church, so hush hush. Luckily, my dear friends fixed it by ramming my towel through the wires till the wiring was just so and the music was louder.

Like: I had a make-up fiasco- smeared eyeliner. It looked like a plane had landed on my eyelid, then skidded off the side of my face. During class, I wiped it off and went on, but for some reason (inner critic), I was upset by this inside.

Like: I went too fast. People had to ask for clarification for some moves.

The good news is this is all inner critic talk- the super ego, my therapist said. Mine's a little...large. So I have to keep her in check.

There were so many good things happening too:

Like there were TEN PEOPLE there.

Like my friends came. Made the long trek from SF at the end of a work day. To support me. I could feel the love in the room.

Like six brand new people came.

Like I had the foresight to make a sign up sheet that also asked how people heard about this class, which was marketing genius.

Like many people had seen my flyer. The one I'd distributed all over town.

Like the one person who saw my flyer at a restaurant. I had felt kind of silly leaving a Bollywood dance flyer at a Chinese restaurant, but it worked.

Like the people who came came from the MeetUp group I made last week- the group I made after assessing and improving things, instead of just giving up and complaining.

Like my friend hanging out after, so happy to see me.
Celebrating with beer and corn cake (yes, corn cake)
It wasn't till hours later, after my inner critic had feasted on my soul, that I watched the video we'd made for the students to practice with. I was shocked. Everyone looked so good. I sounded so confident. Like ... a dance teacher. And whose awesome choreo was that? Oh yeah, mine.

You couldn't see my make up. You couldn't tell I may have rushed some choreo. You just saw people dancing. A teacher teaching. Why couldn't I see the full picture right away?

Why do I get so bogged down by the not-perfect?

This inner critic is a cruel little monster. And she's just there, inside us. Mine can carry me away, like that scene in Up, like I'm attached to a bunch of balloons, floating away against my wishes. And even though a smaller, gentler voice calls to me from below, reminding me of the good, sometimes, I am too far gone to hear that voice.

But if I want to do this venture, start not one, but three new endeavors, I am going to have to beware my inner critic. See her. Acknowledge her. Not get swept away by her.

I am also going to have so much patience. A friend told me it took him a year to build his following. I'm on week two.

Let the games begin.