Step by Step

Jan - Flemington, New Jersey
Entered on November 22, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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Butterflies filled my stomach and excitement sped through the air. The room I strolled into was packed with many other people, dressed exactly like myself in tights, a leotard, and ballet slippers. It would be my first Ballet class in many years. I took a place at the ballet barre behind my friend as class was about to begin. My teacher was graceful with her movements and glided swiftly, barely reviewing what certain terms meant. First position, third position, grand plie, coupe, chasse, and other French words she continuously repeated. From that class on, I knew that the rest of the week would be completely baffling.

Just as the day before, I tumbled into class, being my clumsy self. Quickly, I skipped to the barre again and watched my teacher go over the movements. The sound of piano music muffled out every other sound in the dance studio. Focusing, I tried to imitate her flowing movements, but unfortunately failing. An hour later, I arrived home and wished that I could be an experienced dancer, like most others in my class were. In reality though, when trying to accomplish a goal, you cannot expect such things to happen automatically.

The ballet classes following the previous days were very much alike, fast moving, strenuous, and difficult to understand. My teacher’s French ballet phrases were still uneasy to comprehend and it frustrated me. I took several more classes after that to try and improve and slowly, I’ve learned. I believe that if you want to reach the top, you have to keep climbing, no matter what obstacles are put in your way.

It has been two months since my first ballet experience at my dance studio and now ballet occupies most of my Tuesday afternoons. Every class, I still stumble in, always being my clumsy self. I still take my place at the barre dressed in my tights, black leotard, and pink ballet slippers and do the daily warm ups. “Third position, right foot front! Grand plie and stretch. Chaînés back and front, back and front. Suck in your stomach, tuck in your bottom, and get taller!” says my teacher to the class. Sometimes, I still get my movements mixed up and do first position instead of third position, but it doesn’t bother me as much now.

From experience, I have learned not to quit or back out when you are lost or confused. You should always try your best and put your all into whatever you want to accomplish. Yes, you might trip, muddle, or even topple over yourself on the way there, but the only way to stand up, is to fall first. Success is one step backwards and two steps forward. I am only one in a million, and it may not matter what I say or do, but I believe that in order to succeed, you must get up and make it happen.