Have you ever had a flying pig moment? I have. Let me tell you about it.
First off, if you think all it takes to be a successful ballroom dancer is executing syllabus figures; if you think it’s all about impeccable technique, style, grace, poise, posture and practice, practice, practice, think again. Sure training is vital, but I’m going to let you in on a secret: there’s a whole lot more to this ballroom business than meets the eye. You think we dance divas are born bedazzled? HELL NO! It takes blood, sweat and tears to get garishly gorgeous and with Capital Dancesport Championships approaching fast, I’m overwhelmed just thinking about it.
There’s the hair. And the makeup. And the eyelashes. And the tan. And the shoes. And the ballroom-specific jewelry. And the fishnets. And let’s not forget the pièces de résistance: the obscenely expensive Swarovski crystal-laden dresses. [RELATED POST: Say Yes to the Dress]. And it all happens before our pro-am patooties (emphasis on the am) ever hit the dance floor.
The thing is, I’ve spent the better part of the last two decades scrubbing red clay from baseball pants which left me little time to primp and preen in front of the mirror. Heck, I was lucky to brush my teeth and run a comb through my hair on most days. Ruminate over my eye shadow pallet? Fugedaboudit. I didn’t even OWN more than one shade of eye shadow until four months ago, let alone contemplate which one to wear with which dress.
The ballroom pre-game routine is an arduous undertaking, even for the most seasoned professionals, but to say I’m a little out of practice is an understatement. I struggle. Really struggle. It takes me hours… HOURS… to get ready for a competition. And that’s not even counting time allowed for my morning coffee and daily constitutional or the thirty-seven attempts it routinely takes me to properly adhere a pair of false eyelashes to my lids so they indeed look like eyelashes and not some errant millipede on steroids traipsing across my face.
There’s hope for me though. With four major ballroom competitions under my belt, a routine that used to take four hours, now takes about two. And not only that, I’m actually beginning to enjoy the process. Just last week I bought red lipstick. Really red. And I said the words pedicure and mascara and sparkly headband in the same sentence. And then I saw a pig fly by.
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