Times Are Changing

Life saving passion

“Oh as a kid I was a wicked chubber”. I’ve said this line many times in my life. When looking at the children of today, looking at chubby babies, so on. I wasn’t an overly obese kid, but I wasn’t the “rail thin” kid either. The sad part is, it wasn’t that my parents didn’t try. Veggies with dinner every night, fruit in my lunch and “Amy go play outside it’s beautiful out there”. For some reason it just wasn’t tempting to me. And then I became very involved in dance.

That’s right for 13 years I danced ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, lyric (contemporary these days) and some ballroom. By the time I was 16 I was at the dance studio 22-24 hours a week. I worked for my classes and I danced for myself. But in case you weren’t aware, being a “wicked chubber” in the dance world was not the easiest thing to deal with. I never got picked up and thrown, I was always on the bottom for support and I hated the days that we got measured for our dance costumes.

The sad truth was I always looked in the floor length mirrors and thought how gross I looked. I didn’t have the stomach of the other girls or the boobs or the arms. I felt like I was a horrible dancer because I wasn’t rail thin. A grossly misconstrued conception of the dance world. When I was 15 my director very delicately told me that if I wanted to dance on pointe I had to loose weight because it would be bad for my feet. A legitimate concern.  But I tail spinned. After a rough 6 weeks I got my act together and ate better and worked harder at dance.

The harder I worked the better I got. The better I got the more confidence I had. I taught so many young girls and all of them precious to me. I had this one girl that was slightly bigger than my other students. I saw myself in her every class. I tried so hard to teach her and show her that you don’t have to be a rail to be amazing. After a recital her mother came to me with tears and hugged me. I asked what was going on, she said “You taught my daughter so much by just being you. You don’t let your size get you down, you float across that stage as if you weight nothing. My daughter looks up to you and wants to be like Miss. Amy. She was always down on herself because of her size. I just want to thank you for giving my daughter herself back. You gave her her beauty, I can’t thank you enough”.

Dance saved me. It gave me confidence and it gave me purpose. And with an amazing director and mentor that I am forever in debt to, the idea that I can do anything. Sometimes we really let what we look like and feel like keep us weighted down. When really in life we’re always told to go above and beyond. I’m beginning to teach dance more and more again and my only hope is to show these girls that they are above and beyond. My hope is to show them that dance isn’t a size, it’s a passion. What’s your passion? Do you put a size on your passion or do you soar above the norm?

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  1. * Paul says:

    This was beautiful and made me ferklemp (sic). We are so proud of you and what you have done with your dance. If people could see your senior recital (we do have a copy if anyone wishes to see it) they would see what you accomplished with your dance. We love you.

    | Reply Posted 12 years, 7 months ago
  2. * Amy says:

    I love you guys too! You were always so supportive, even sitting through the gerbil dances 😉

    | Reply Posted 12 years, 7 months ago

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