(originally posted 9/2/2015. libbysfitnutrition.com)
I have this photo of myself in tap shoes
at the age of one.
My mother was a dancer, and I am so thankful she put me in dance lessons at an early age (I love you, Mom!). Though I had my "dance is boring" periods where
I would take time off (age 13-16, 19- basically 26),
after a while I would find myself depressed and yearning to move my body. As a child I took the usual combo classes (tap, Jazz, ballet, lyrical), as a teen
I attempted hip hop and break dance, and as a young adult I found ballroom, swing, and social salsa.
In college I taught beginning ballroom, competed in swing, and was eventually known for my dance ability at the University of Minnesota (never thought that would happen when I first got there!). After college, between working, starting a married life, and not having the funds, I fell out of dance. I don't have to tell the dancers out there that I felt something missing - not expressing myself through music fueled my depression. I wish I had figured that out quicker.
Pulling me back up, re-awakening my love of dance, was musical theatre. My first show since moving to CA, "A Chorus Line" kicked my butt with rehearsals from our amazing, but challenging, choreographer. I was hooked once again.
Getting back to studio dance as an adult was far harder than I expected it to be. I had once moved with ease, carrying myself proudly. Now I had an extra 30 lbs, and couldn't find my balance. It stung to think I had once been as good as the little teens literally pirouetting circles around me. Maybe ballet was not a good idea after all...
I am not ready to give up! My body has re-awakened, and I have found contemporary - my new love, allowing me to feel emotion in the music as I do in acting - and tap which I now have a real drive to excel at.
My message is for adults, and those who have stopped doing what they love: It is never too late to get back into doing what you are passionate about. Whether it is dance, sports, art, writing, or other passions, don't let age or time stop you!
I'm pulling for you!
"Dancer's dream with their feet."
P.S. I offer nutrition counseling for dancers!
Libby is a Registered Dietitian focusing on student eating disorder treatment and prevention. She is working on the central coast to create wellness in individuals and the community.
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