Monday, 1 July 2013

My Days At Dance

Hi Guys,

I mentioned in my first post that I danced. I wanted to write a post on what was a big part of my life. I tried to keep it short but I found it hard to summaries.

I did Irish Dancing for about 15 years starting at age 8. Now before you go and get the wrong impression maybe search on Youtube for World Irish Dancing Championships and see what it is all about.

I still remember my first day at dance class. It was held in a primary school classroom. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing and spent the lesson skipping around having a blast.

The years passed and I just loved to dance. My parents tell me that I used to dance around the house, the shops and even up and down the netball court (a little embarrassing to admit now).

About 5 years in I was given the opportunity to dance in the Australian Irish Dancing Championships (mainly for the experience because I wasn’t that good). The training was a huge work load for a 12 year old. I am pretty sure in the lead up to the competition I had at least one emotional breakdown (drama queen much?). I ended up having the best time at nationals with my friends and wanted to do it all over again.

I competed in the national championships every year after that with my last year being 2012. I had some great successes and some disappointing results over the years but Irish dancing is subjective. You quickly learn to just accept that your results are based on a few people’s opinion and it is not the end of the world if you don't get what you want.

Presentations at the Australian Irish Dancing Championships 2009

I have also been fortunate enough to travel to America 3 times and Scotland once toI competed in the North American Irish Dancing Championships (twice) and the World Irish Dancing Championships (twice). Every trip overseas was a great experience, very successful and I learnt a lot.

Training for nationals or an overseas competition was not easy. It required hours and hours of practice every week. To be part of the team we all had to sacrifice our social activities to make sure we were at class. I won't deny that sometimes it all seemed too much and I would go to my mum and cry about it but I never wanted to quit.

It wasn't all competitions and serious business. We also had a bit of fun with concerts and even a tv show (which didn't end up airing) giving Irish Dance a modern twist.

At the end of last year I felt it was my time to finish up dancing I had found myself not feeling motivated for class and I didn't really love what I was doing. It really upset me that I was starting to feel this way about something I thought I could never give up. I think I stopped at the right time. I only wanted to dance if my heart was 100% in it. I still love to teach and watch the dancing but I also enjoy being able to experience life without restrictions.

Dance has given me lifelong friends. I have also learnt valuable skills such as resilience, organisation, patience and how to work hard to achieve a goal. 

My best friend Caitlin and I a tiny bit delirious after a a whole day of dancing 

My dance teacher always said 'it is the memories that you remember not the placings' and she was right I will never forget the good times I had at dance.

Have you ever danced? Have any of you had a similar experience with your sport or hobby?

I Hope you have a great day 
Bridget x

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