I can’t quite believe this is happening. My room is packed up into about a thousand bags and boxes (who knew that I had that much stuff), I’ve said goodbye to my housemates of three years and finally hoovered under my bed. It’s farewell to 136A Chapeltown Road and hello to Denmark, oh and Headingley when I’m back in Leeds.
I’m currently sat in the departures lounge with Ben in tow waiting for our flight to Copenhagen. We’re gonna do a little exploring, and then I’ll make the trip up north to Holstebro where I’ll start with Black Box Dance Company for a month. It’s finally happening, it’s here, I’m going!
Back in the middle of May I wrote a blog post called Metaphors to hide the Truth. It was a little bit of a veiled post, and I didn’t want to write an angry post about failing, but it came about at a time when I genuinely hated dancing. I didn’t want to go to Northern and do ballet at 9 in the morning, because I felt dejected, frustrated and super sad all the time. It’s so so hard to keep losing out at auditions. Trying so hard, spending so much money travelling there, and giving it everything only to leave feeling awful about yourself. Questioning whether you’re good enough, whether you’ve got the balls to keep going, whether you’re cut out for this life.
But you so are, if you keep going. This year I did thirteen auditions. I haven’t included the amount of auditions I applied for but didn’t get invited to, in which case I would be up to maybe 25 attempts. Twelve times I got knocked back before they even saw me dance. Twice I got through the first round, but then no further. For me it was lucky audition number 13 (or 25), and even then I was reserve and had to fight for it even more.
I thought that every time I got rejected it was because I am a bad dancer. But after I got cut in the NDCW audition and was sat sobbing down the phone to my parents outside Euston station waiting for the train to meet Ben’s mum for the first time, I realised I am more than this. Crying every time I don’t succeed is ludicrous. There are also more important things in life than an audition. I was waiting for a train to take me all the way to Southport for the first time, which I had been so excited for before the bloody audition. There’s also puppies, fresh coffee and Rae Morris in the world, so how can I possibly be upset?
Someone once told me that if they don’t pick you in an audition, it’s not because they don’t think you’re good, it’s just you’re not the one for them. Which at the time I was like yeah whatever. However, I do think it’s very good advice, and trying to believe that this is the reason sort of puts my mind at rest after I’ve cried myself out. There’s so many reasons why you may not be picked. Hell, even stupid things completely out of your control like you’re a girl and they had a boy in mind. Therefore, I think the moral of the story or the crux of the advice is don’t take it personally. Treat yourself to a coffee, whilst cuddling a puppy and listening to Rae Morris and appreciate other things in life, and then come back raring to go. Also, your time will come. When I wrote that post I thought I had a year of working part time, endless amounts of auditions and scrambling to take class whenever I could facing me. And then literally two weeks later, my whole year flipped upside down.
I’m now doing an MA, performing with an internationally touring company, living abroad, meeting new people and trying to learn a new language. I also get to move in with Ben in our own little flat, live in Headingley which I’m super psyched about, spend half my year in Leeds and keep working at The Grand and The Dance Studio Leeds. I’ve really fallen on my feet, and I feel so lucky. The journey here, however, was hard. Not knowing what you’re going to do with your life for the first time is a horrible feeling. But I made it through and you can too. You just have to keep going.
Now, is 10am too early to have a pint?