The Zenness of The End of April

Peaceful does she sleep
 For tomorrow is May 1st 
The challenge is done

Shhhh…I’m meditating.

No, that’s a lie. But I will be in a place of peace upon publishing this because ’tis the last day of the A-Z Challenge.

But wait! That doesn’t mean you can fall asleep in corpse pose, (oh, excuse me, “shavasana”), we’ve got work to do on this blog yet! Have you heard of the half-moon-happy-crow-baby-tree-hugging-astronaut-warrior pose (ookatsawhatthephookasana)? Exactly! There’s work to be done here yet.

Tomorrow I’ll be posting the summary of The A-Z Challenge and the new blog schedule, so don’t you go anywhere, young bloghopper. I’m going to try and keep up this daily post business, because besides the fact that it stresses me out, it’s actually very calming….like meticulously grooming a bonsai tree.

Just kidding, I’ve never groomed a bonsai tree. I have, however, killed a bonsai tree. I have also run over a yoga teacher while rushing to not be late for class. (Her response, after recovering from being winded and lying face down on the ground: “Namaste.”)

Anyways, green tea, chakras, and cherry blossoms, readers; see you in May!

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Y is for “You”, “Finding Yourself”, and The Forks in The Road

So today is ‘Y’ day in The Blogging A-Z April Challenge, which means it’s over tomorrow with ‘Z’! And, well, I’ve been thinking, no better time than the present to open up and tell you all my dirty little secrets, yes?

I’ve been dancing since the age of two, and when I graduated high school, dance took me to New York and Toronto, and then back to my hometown of Vancouver.

Here’s a silly video of footage from a couple years ago that makes me cringe, but is usually passable for the general public:

Anyways. So I come back to Vancouver summer of 2012 to a summer dance intensive aaaaand…

The first rule of shitty situations is to make sure you joke about them so others aren't uncomfortably sympathetic around you. Eg. "They're getting the Mars Curiosity to detour over to my knee."

The first rule of shitty situations is to make sure you joke about them so others aren’t uncomfortably sympathetic around you. Eg. “They’re getting the Mars Curiosity to detour over to my knee.”

This happens.

I swear it didn't hurt that much, but maybe that's the drugs talking.

I swear it didn’t hurt that much, but maybe that’s the drugs talking.

Long story short, the world’s most uncommon knee injury; in which the ligament actually is so strong it pulls off a piece of the kneecap and carries it over to nomads land where it must be recaptured and reattached to the rest of the patella with screws through surgical procedure.

Mmm.

Anyways, though I’ve healed a HUGE amount since not being able to walk etc, I’ve been in a dance program that I can’t do most of, and I’m starting to realize that everything happens for a reason, and maybe I’m just being ignorant to the huge slap in the face life gave me.

To be honest, the biggest slap in the face is the HALF banana you're given post-op. You'd think after all that you'd be deserving of a whole one...but 'tis not the case.

To be honest, the biggest slap in the face is the HALF banana you’re given post-op. You’d think after all that you’d be deserving of a whole one…but ’tis not the case.

And here’s where finding yourself comes in.

Now, I’m no hippy, and I don’t think you are necessarily going to find yourself on top of Mt. Kilimanjaro, in the Irish countryside, or buried in the sands of a Thai beach, but rather, that finding yourself might mean losing a piece of what you thought you were.

My whole life I have been a “dancer.” I was always “the dancer” among my friends, and I was always introduced as being “the dancer.”

Then all of a sudden, I couldn’t dance.

By the logic that I am “a dancer”, I should have ceased to exist. But I didn’t. I’m still Kat. So it occurred to me that we are more than how the outside world labels us. We aren’t completely defined by what we do or what we say. Even our specific likes and dislikes are rather superficial. I think that mostly, who we are is in our outlook; in our beliefs.

For most of my existence, I’ve been so caught up in being a dancer that I’ve never even tried to figure out who I am beyond that. I’ve hidden behind the label and let it speak for me, instead of speaking for myself. Labeling yourself makes it easier for others to see you as another thing that already exists, instead of the unique person you are.

I need to take at least a year off of dance. Maybe I’ll go back to it, and maybe I won’t. If I do, I believe that exploring different ways of fulfillment will only make me a better artist. After all, dance isn’t all about having pretty feet and working knee joints.

So it’s a fork in the road, (a ‘Y’ in the road, if you will). There’s a million things I want to try, and a million places I want to explore. I want to do everything; meet everyone; taste all the ice cream flavours, you know? If the path I’d been going down hadn’t cracked at my feet, I would have just stayed on it because it’s the only one I’ve ever known. It’s only now that I see the network of possible trails that is in front of me.

I mean, consistency in life? No, no, that’s where we all get fooled. Because life itself is defined by change, growth, and diversity.

(Added bonus ((or perhaps the opposite)), here’s a voice cracky, key changey, acapella version of “What I Wouldn’t Do”, by A Fine Frenzy, dedicated to all the ‘you’s, and everything that comes and goes 🙂 )

https://soundcloud.com/sohelpmekat/what-i-wouldnt-do/s-5J6KY

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X’s and Oh Dear’s: A Journey Through My Elementary School Love Life

This post is part of the “Blogging from A-Z April Challenge”! The “X” themed inspiration for today is “XO.” Enjoy this embarrasing look into the boy-crazed days of my youth (Kindergarten-grade 7):

I kept things pretty chill for Kindergarten, but by the time grade 1 struck, I was madly in love.

His name was George (no it wasn’t, but the first rule of elementary school crushes is to go to the grave without giving them away, so all names have been slightly changed.) Looking back, he was nothing special, and yet, he was the first.

Tall, (for a first grader), dark, and handsome, I like to think George was a strong, silent, troubled-artist type in the making. I don’t remember much more than that about him, just that the first time he talked to me was after I had gotten a nose-bleed from plugging my nose while hiding behind the garbage can in hide-and-seek at recess. I was sitting in class with the TA’s kleenexed finger shoved up my nose when he came over and asked what happened to me.

I was too shy to say anything, and, you know, I had someone’s finger in my nose, so the TA replied, “she fought a bear…and won.” I don’t think George was very impressed, but no matter, by the last day of class we were holding hands, sitting on top of our desks watching “Return to Oz”, and I was in Heaven. George switched schools after grade one and I never saw him again. Except that the world is a creepy, creepy place, and he somehow found me on Facebook. (All of the guys I mention in this post are my friends on Facebook and how I WISH I could insert pictures of them…but no, Kat, that’s terrifying and illegal.)

In grade two, I was left not only boy-less, but friendless due to the departure of my two besties. I remember begging the universe to send me a best friend and a boyfriend, and I kid you not, within a week we had two new Australian students. Catherine, my new best friend, and Damon, my new love interest. Thus began my lifelong love of Australians. (Seriously, they are all amazing.)

Damon and I would play this game every recess break with a few other kids where we pretended to be puppies. One day, puppy-Damon and puppy-Kat both got run over by a car and had to be sent to the corner of the schoolyard, (the “vet’s office”), to heal. We just lay there together, cuddling, and it was really weird, (puppy love, folks, literally) , so after recess I decided I didn’t like Damon anymore and quit “The Puppy Game.”

Unfortunately Damon didn’t take this too well, and called my house that night, leaving a voicemail saying, “Hi, it’s Damon. I was just wondering if Kat was still playing the puppy game?” My parents couldn’t make out anything other than “Kat”, because of his Australian accent, and I was mortified and told them I had no idea who it was or what he was saying.

I avoided Damon for the rest of grade 2, until he told everyone he had to go back to Australia and gave me a really cute Valentine’s day card, but by the time I wanted to get back together, he was gone. (Notice a recurring theme here?)

Tell me that doesn't melt your heart.

Tell me that doesn’t melt your heart.

In grade 3, it was the new student, Matthew, that caught my eye. He came in halfway through the year and liked my friend, Ali, because they happened to have the same last name. I was heartbroken. Also, it was weird, and felt mildly incestuous of them, so by the end of grade 3, Ali was no longer my friend, and I was on to bigger and better boys.

KSCN0014

Yeah, grade 3 was a lonely year.

Such as Randall, the man of my dreams in grade 4. (I’m not going to lie to you, I’m still kind of in love with this kid; he was my first long-term secret soul mate, and yes, he’s a babe now.) This was bad timing on my part because Randall had been super into me in grade 3, but now that I was over Matthew, he was over me. My best friend Catherine (the Australian!) had a crush on Randall’s best friend, Jack, so WE COULD HAVE HAD THE CUTEST DOUBLE DATES, but it totally didn’t work out for either of us.

Randall was a sort of dweeby, skinny brunette, but he had the best smile in the world, and this laugh that make his face scrunch up in a funny way, like he was trying to hide that he was laughing. I remember the first time I noticed it, when he went up to hand in his math homework at the front of the class. I melted.

In grade 5 I continued to be in love with Randall, and it became one of those things where I was totally fine with telling everyone, EXCEPT for Randall, so I mean, obviously he knew. But we never talked about it, and in grade 6, I was over him (well, over him for the first time.)

Because in grade 6, things got steamy. KENTON: A new kid with flippy blonde hair, no upper lip, and a cute, slurred voice that made him sound constantly drunk. Grade 6 also saw the invention of MSN chat, so you can bet, every night I was alllll over that, getting WAY too excited whenever his name popped up online. I have vivid memories of listening to “Collide” by Howie Day, and sending excessive smiley face emoticons to Kenton.

At the beginning of grade 6, one of our teachers mentioned that we might have a dance at the end of the year, and that thought made us all crazy. It was all we talked about. A month into the school year, the first boy had already asked his crush to the dance, and the pressure was on. Of course, one of my friends spilled to Kenton that I was head-over-heels for him, and he asked her if I would say yes if he asked me, and so she came and asked me for him. I was terrified, and though I loved him, I liked to do so from afar, and couldn’t deal with ACTUALLY dating a boy, in grade 6 no less. So she told him no for me, and within 3 days he had asked out a different girl. Typical.

Anyways, the dance didn’t end up happening, because the teachers got really weirded-out about how intensely we were fretting over it, and in the end, all that pressure had been for naught.

In grade 7 I fell back in love with Randall, but he knew, and he made fun of me for it. We didn’t end up going to the same high school, but he did end up making out with my best friend at a party before the summer of grade 8. Not cool.

Thus ended myelementary school crush timeline, and I entered high school, never to see most of the above boys again. But I’m not going to lie, I can still truthfully say I have a soft spot for quiet boys, Australian boys, nerdy boys, boys with weird voices, and boys that don’t like me. So, maybe, even though I’ve long since gotten over the kids listed here, things don’t really change that much.

BUT SERIOUSLY RANDALL. NOT COOL.

(Also…call me?)

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To The Weirdos,

This post is part of the “Blogging from A-Z April Challenge”! The “W” themed inspiration for today is “weirdo.” Enjoy!

Dear Weirdos of The World,

Keep doing what you’re doing; it’s freaky and I like it.

…Well, for the most part. Some of you are just absolutely terrifying.

Here are a few brief letters to my favorite and least favorite weirdos that I’ve had the pleasure/misfortune of noticing/interacting with.

Dear elderly woman who walks around downtown, whispering to a pet chicken you push around in a stroller,

It’s messed up. It’s also kind of cute.

Yes.

I like it. I don’t get it, but I like it. We all need to love someone, and if that someone is a chicken, I’m still all for it. If it was of the Kentucky-fried variety, however, I would be concerned. But this makes me happy. There is genuine love in your eyes and it moves me a little bit, like a really messed up abstract art installation that I don’t understand but really, truly, appreciate.

Dear man who followed me on the subway and then chased me down the street with an orange screaming, “I love you! I don’t have flowers, but take the orange!”,

No.

No.

NO.

I don’t want your orange, I don’t want your love, and I REAAAALLLY don’t want you running after me.

Sincerely,

No way in Hell I’m telling you my name.

Dear couple that approached me at the drugstore to ask if I was interested in egg donation,

So, the answer was NO, but I still can’t help but feel touched that you “want your child to look like me.” Actually, that’s very weird and creepy and your approach was probably not the best, but I do think you’re quite nice anyways, and I wish you two the best of luck.

Also, I’m insane, hopelessly klutzy, and my hair does some freaky stuff, so you dodged a bullet on that one.

Dear gentleman who apparently came into work at least once a week and was able to recite my last 30 nail polish colours IN ORDER,

What? I mean…WHAT? I mean, thanks…for noticing? I will say that I’d feel a bit guilty, though, if you forgot some actually important things because you used all your brain space to memorize what nail colours I’ve worn.

So I would just…you know, take it easy on that if you like.

I imagine this is what the inside of your brain looks like, and it’s concerning.

Dear Korean couple roommates from Toronto that I met on Craigslist,

The fact that the only time I understand you is when you’re grunting in the shower late at night, is kind of an issue. Not because your English is exceptionally rough, but because I need to use that shower in the morning.

Dear nun on the bus that tried to get me to become a sister,

If you were really able to get me to change the entire direction of my life AND become religious in the time it takes to drive two bus stops down the road, I wouldn’t think you would want me in the church anyways. Because I would have to be a complete nutcase.

(Like you.)

Dear homeless man who got me to role-play “Polar Express” on the subway on Christmas Eve,

A pretty accurate visual of what went down.

Yup, best day of my life. It’s like you read my mind. There’s nothing like a real life chorus of “Hot Chocolate” with (slightly less graceful) acrobatics on the most magical day of the year in the strangest place in the world.

P.S. Are you Santa Claus?

 

Dear man who chased me down the street yelling at me to tie my shoe,

For example, if this is you, you can stop running; I’m not going anywhere.

First of all, you guys have got to understand that chasing women down streets works in 0% of situations, unless you are an attractive male actor in a movie who just realized the love of his life is getting away from him. Which you are not. Also, whatever point you are trying to get across, does not get across, because YOU ARE CHASING ME DOWN THE STREET AND THAT’S TERRIFYING. Furthermore, I know my shoelace is untied, and I would love to stop and tie it, but unfortunately I’m trying to avoid being potentially murdered by you.

Thanks.

 

Dear taxi driver that wants me to choreograph a “Hip-hop/bollywood/jazz/ballet fusion solo that also incorporates breakdancing”,

If you let me add a little flamenco and give me my cab ride free, it’s a done deal.

 

And perhaps most importantly:

Dear Kat,

You’re writing a letter to yourself, so that in itself constitutes weirdness.

I must say I wish you were a bit more “weird in a cute way” than “weird in an old lady living under a bridge, collecting animal carcasses from along the highway, naming them, and pretending they are her children, type of way,” but hey, at least you’re not normal.

Much love, kitty.

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(Also…X tomorrow? There’s a whopping FOUR words in the dictionary that begin with X. Excellent. Or should I say…X-ellant?)

The Vulgar (Presumed) Visa Violation

This post is part of the “Blogging from A-Z April Challenge”! The “V” themed inspiration for today is “visa.” Enjoy!

My life is ridiculous. It makes very little sense, I will admit, even to myself.

Last year I realized that the natural unbelievability of the truth of my existence causes some major problems with those that are trained to undermine the sketchy stories of liars.

…Such as the lighthearted, easy-going breed of folk known as US Border Patrol Officers.

(This true story preludes “The Grand Escalator Exodus of NYC” by one day. Truly, friends, I was on a real winning streak that week!)

Anyways, before I get into the incident, I’ll briefly explain the story that did not go over well at the border. Keep in mind that I take full responsibility for my stupidity:

I live in Canada; Vancouver specifically, but from October-December 2012 I lived in New York City on a student visa, taking part in a three month dance program. Going home for the holidays, I had planned to return to New York in February to dance for the rest of the year, again on a student visa.

However, less than a week before I was scheduled to return to NYC, I got an offer from a dance company/training program I was really excited about in Toronto. So, I decided to scrap that first plan and instead move to the Canadian East Coast.

I already had my plane tickets booked to New York, however, and I had left some of my belongings with a friend over there, assuming I’d be back in the new year. I decided I would use the flight I had already booked (Vancouver-Toronto-New York), grab my stuff, say my goodbyes, and then bus up from New York to Toronto. (I also had no accommodation set up for my arrival in Toronto, an equally hilarious story, but, I digress.) I hadn’t booked the bus up yet (stupid), but I knew I wouldn’t be staying in New York longer than a four days.

Looking back, I can definitely see how lame this story sounds, especially to a border officer trained to assume everyone has pure evil intentions. And yet, hindsight is 20/20.

Anyways, I arrived in Toronto, grabbed by bags, and went to go through immigrations so that I could transfer to my flight to New York.

It’s always kind of intimidating to talk to the officers because there’s this look in their eye and tone in their voice that makes you feel like a disgrace to the human race, even if you’re explaining how you’re going to rescue kittens and give them to children with cancer while simultaneously teaching them yoga.

Knowing this, but not thinking much of it, I stepped up to show my passport, assuming I would be waved through and onto my flight.

But no. “I used to live in New York and now I’m just going to grab some stuff and then bus back to Toronto to move there,” doesn’t go over well, apparently.

“What stuff?”

“Well…just little things, a toaster, and some shoes and books, and I think there’s, like…a blanket? I don’t even remember really.”

And so I was waved into the detainment section of the airport.

Border detainment isn’t exactly a club in Ibiza, let’s just say. Walking in, dejectedly, I found myself waiting with a selection of burly old men, confused foreigners, and a handful of normal enough looking people with baggage in strange and unconventional shapes.

Then there was me, an 18 year old girl carrying my life in two hot pink, Hawaiian flower printed suitcases with baggage tags in the shape of tutus.

After about half an hour of waiting, I was jarred from my thoughts about what on Earth was barking from inside of the black suitcase of the man sitting beside me, with a loud and angry voice yelling:

“Katrina-however the hell I’m supposed to pronounce this last name, come up here NOW!”

Oh God. So I grabbed my two suitcases that kept falling over and awkwardly tugged them behind me toward the officer who I was quite sure was not going to be very sympathetic.

Before doing anything he made me lift my suitcases up onto this table, laughing as I tried, and demanded I open them and take out every item. Upon doing so, he told me to put everything back inside and get the suitcases off the tables ASAP. He hadn’t even looked at what was in them.

“So you’re going to fly to New York for what, a toaster?”

From there it was all downhill. Basically, as I hadn’t booked a bus ticket back to Toronto, he assumed I was going down to New York to live and work illegally. He actually got quite creative with his very specific assumptions, including that I would be working at a bar under the table, and was some evil Canadian mastermind who had this all sorted out. Though really, if that was the case, I probably could have come up with a better story.

He asked me if I had any emails of proof of the company I was joining in Toronto, and excitedly, I told him I did. Too bad they were on my phone and use of electronic devices are prohibited in detainment centers. I also did not have proof of accommodation in Toronto. “Life’s just a little crazy right now,” is also not a good choice of words when trying to redeem yourself.

It’s the worst feeling to not be believed. It’s like when you enter your password wrong too many times because you don’t realize the keyboard’s on Caps Lock, and you get locked out of your own account. “But, no it’s me! It’s really meeeee,” you want to scream at the screen.

Finally, he let me go on the condition that I be back in Canada within two days time. His last words to me were, “you can’t just get by on a pretty face these days, girly.” Then he leaned over the counter, inches from my face, looked into my eyes and closed with, “I. Know. What. You. Are.”

“I know what you are.”

And with that, I tried to run out as quickly as possibly, but ended up helplessly limping, dragging/falling over my suitcases and towards the gate of the flight I would have to reschedule.

I almost would have liked to see what would have happened had I stayed longer than two days in New York. It would be kind of exhilarating I think, being on the run from the government. A Canadian undermining the entire U.S. Constitution by working under the table at Duane Reade. But within a day, you can bet I was out of there.

I didn’t even end up getting the God-damned toaster.

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Utopia

This post is part of the “Blogging from A-Z April Challenge”! The “U” themed inspiration for today is “utopia.” It’s a monster post…but it’s probably one of the most important ones I’ve written.

I do not remember the saddest day of my life.

That’s not to say I don’t remember exams, or deaths; broken bones, surgeries and scars. I certainly can’t forget about heartbreak, failure, disappointment, and all those unexpected lasts, and I know too well of the scariest stretches of days where nothing went wrong at all, but everything felt terribly off.

But when I think back on this small little history of my tiny life, the truth remains; I don’t remember my saddest day.

What I do remember, is my happiest day.

I must have been around 13, and my family was on summer holidays on a beach off the west coast of Canada. Our car had broken down and we were forced to stay longer than we had anticipated. One day before lunch we all went down to the beach. I’m not sure what we did, but the moment that materializes in my memory when I think of happiness is this:

I’m lying on a towel in my bathing suit on this huge, expansive, west coast beach. It’s warm, but not hot, and I have that relieved and sleepy feeling one gets after swimming. There’s a slight breeze and I can hear the soothing rush of the ocean; a background to my thoughts. I’m reading a book, but I’ve paused for a second to realize something: how content I am. There are no fireworks, there is no man of my dreams, I haven’t won the lottery, and yet, here on this beach quietly surrounded by my family, I am the happiest I have ever been. I just take a moment to notice it. ‘This is Utopia,’ I think.

Sometimes I wonder why we look back on the past with that warm nostalgia; why we call to mind the good quicker than the bad. And I think I’ve solved it. Sorrow is part of the deal we have with this strange thing called life. There are a lot of acceptable reasons to be sad.

Bad stuff happens to us, in sometimes overwhelming doses, but I don’t think in such states we are in a calm enough state of mind to really notice: “I am sad.”

But happiness? That’s ours whenever we want it. Contrary to sadness, unprecedented, overwhelming incidents of happiness are rare. Sadness is often an occasion. Happiness is a state of mind.

We are more present in our happiness than our sadness, because I think it is, more often than pain, something that we must will into being. It’s something we project, perhaps not often, but it’s something we tend to recognize because the feeling itself gives us the clarity to do so. Realizing your happiness, is the greatest level of fulfillment.

I feel as if sadness is a build up inside of us, like a clogged drain. Happiness, however, isn’t something else completely, it’s just a working drain. An unclogged drain.

So, yes, I remember the happiest day of my life, and I realize it was no Utopia. I realize Utopia can’t exist, because it can’t be some external, physical place or thing. Happiness comes from yourself, and that, whether I realized it as a 13 year old or not, is to what I was referring.

Still, there is something kind of perfect in realizing that the positive prevails, while the sad days come surely, but then fade away.

Just like debris floating away from the drain.

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(V, W, X, Y, and Z…the end is in sight! Though I have nothing planned…stay tuned for the wildly entertaining spectacle that is, “Kat flying by the seat of her pants”!)

The Trauma of Teaching Toddler Tap

This post is part of the “Blogging from A-Z April Challenge”! The “T” themed inspiration for today is “tap.” Enjoy!

I used to teach dance at an old studio in my hometown. When I say dance, I mean the styles that I was familiar with; ballet, mostly, and jazz. However, I had a friend who had just started teaching tap to children ages 3-5, and when I say teaching, I mean never showing up and having to get a substitute.

When I say substitute, I mean me.

I barely do tap. Compared to my involvement in other styles of dance, there’s no need to be polite; I suck at tap. I barely know a shuffle from a flap.

Yet here I was, week after week, faced with the trauma and terror of mini humans with weapons of mass eardrum destruction strapped to their feet. Bombs just itching to detonate.

There were three levels to the studio this all took place at, and every week toddler tap was sent downstairs, banished, essentially, to the dungeon. From upstairs, no one would be able to hear me scream.

It seemed as if the parents didn’t care what I was teaching, so long as I took their children away at 3:00 and brought them back, alive, at 4:00. They would meet me, happily, at the top of the stairs every week with their well-behaved children quietly waiting for class. Then, at the stroke of 3:00, they would wave them off down the stairs, releasing them into my hands, where each and every one of them transformed into terrifying, tapping trolls.

Let me explain simply: you can’t walk quietly in tap shoes as a normal human being. But you simply can’t even EXIST quietly in tap shoes as a toddler.

Every exercise I taught started out semi-decently, but quickly degraded into a thrashing and dissonant, clanging symphony of stomps. To the kids, tap was exactly what they were doing; just a bunch of jumping around excitedly making random noise. They didn’t understand that there is choreography involved; that there are specific movements they needed to be able to replicate.

Time did not pass in that class. I considered the fact that the parents were blissfully unaware to what was going on downstairs, and that perhaps I could just lock the trolls in a sound-proof closet, turn off the lights, and have a nap for an hour.

And yet, I powered through. Though truthfully, by 3:30 we were already playing freeze dance and four corners, and by 3:45 tap shoes were off and I was handing out stickers for being “good.” At 3:55 I was pushing the kids out the door and up the stairs with a smile and loud exclamations such as: “Great work today!” “We got so much done!” “Wow you’re all learning quick!” “Pros by next week!” You know, the kind of thing parents like to hear.

Each week at 4:00 I thanked the universe for allowing me to survive and swore I would never sub toddler tap again. Until the next week when my friend would inevitably be unable to again.

But from all of this, I did learn something important. As we get older we listen to higher-ups, we follow the rules, we fear making noise. I’m not saying to tie on tap shoes and go to town, but just to remember when you were a bratty, fearless child; confident in everything you didn’t know, and taking on the world. When you have something to say, make a noise. And if no one hears you, stomp on the floor a little more.

As for my friend, she ended up teaching one class, going crazy, and then quitting. Thankfully, though, we found a new teacher. I’m not sure how well she handled it, down there in the dungeon, but she always went down with a smile on her face and came back up with the same grin.

I’m guessing she locked them all in a sound-proof closet and took a nap.

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