Dancer’s feet

The story that touched me today happened early in the morning. I teach 7 am and 7:30 am classes twice a week. And this morning, as sluggish and tired from the day before, I made my way to the studio quarter to 7. And a little slender girl was waiting for me there.

She looked young and shy but I didn’t think much of it. Throughout the class I noticed how incredibly mobile she is, and her almost animal like angular big feet.

After class we talked a little and she told me she was 15, and she was a professional ballet dancer. It was her day off today, and unlike any people that I personally know, let alone a teenager, she told me she wanted to keep discipline, so she gets up early and go to yoga classes.

Before I realise, I blurted out and told her “oh, that’s why you have so nice feet”. She was a little shy, and said “they are not the prettiest, ballet ruined them”. She has these incredible, muscular feet. They are not the feet of a person with normal daily activities. They are big, strong, muscular and at some parts quite angular. Like she says, it’s not in anyway, the traditional pretty feet. But when I said that she had nice feet, I meant it. And I said it without even realising that was the choice of word that I used.

And in the way to the other studio this afternoon, I found myself thinking about her. Thinking about being a teenage girl, who’s in her growing years and needing the most sleep, on a day off from her probably very intense professional training, wakes up at 6 something in the morning, and go to yoga. And then it strikes me that this little girl, she was there at the studio before I even do.

And I reflected on the kind of teenager I was – lazy, reckless, bad tempered. And sure as heck not fit or discipline in any way shape or form.

I have what my husband calls: feet that don’t walk very much and hands that never lifted. And here I am, absolutely humbled for her dedication, for her discipline, for her (what I assume) love for her passion.

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