Mirror Mirror…

Last night’s ballet class caused some serious body-image issues. Perhaps it’s because pink (not hot pink/barbie pink/neon pink but ballet pink obviously) is not a flattering colour. Not only was I wearing pink tights and my most scooped-back-non-sleeve leotard but I was wearing my new beautiful pink Tulips by Tracy skirt. It took twenty minutes to pluck up enough courage to take off my warm up shrug despite being absolutely roasting in the studio. At one point I even rolled the sleeves up to form 3/4 sleeves. Who am I kidding, it’s made out of wool.

I am perhaps a little more sensitive about lumps and bumps than maybe most people and most of the time I can just get by. But last night the mirrors were not my friends. Especially when I caught myself doing pliés in fourth. Bad thigh day

It didn’t get much better in the centre either. While concentrating on turn out, improving positions of the arms and actually trying to USE to mirror to correct these things the thighs just kept coming back at me. Bottom heavy. Pear shaped. Curvy Bottom. Not at all shaped like a ballerina. A little short. Dumpy even. Muffin top. Love Handles. You name it, I could have pointed it out.
The reasonable side of me would like to shake myself. In reality, or to the rest of the world, I am 5’2 and a UK size 8. Hell, the lack of boobs (this is a good thing for ballet) means I can get in a UK size 6 top. Friends say I am tiny. I am still waiting for the mirror which shows me this. It certainly was not in the studio last night. Part of me wonders if I will ever be happy with what I have got. And getting into my last year or so of my twenties I often think that I need to start appreciating what I have NOW because in ten years it may be very different.
I am still struggling to see it.
I walk to and from work every day which by the end of the week is 22.5 miles as well as taking my regular ballet class. My legs have never been so toned, even when I was doing a lot of running they were never this toned. I am actually proud to show off my ballet calf muscles to anybody who takes an interest. My posture has never been better. Even my teacher once said I had ‘beautiful’ legs.
I don’t think my brain is wired properly.
The above pictures are MY legs {PICTURES WHERE ON ORIGINAL POST}  The same legs that I disliked so much in last night’s class. They were all taken three months ago. Nothing has changed. I need to remember that. And I need to remember that in these pictures I actually like them. I was quite surprised when I first saw them. They don’t really look like the legs in the self-portrait. And they certainly don’t look like they legs I see in the mirror. But apparently they are. My problem is that I want to legs and the bodies of the professionals, the ones that have been dancing since they were five years old, and the ones that dance EVERY single day.
So, maybe I should learn to give them a break? And while I am doing so learn to use the mirrors for what they are there for. Correcting turnout, posture, positions, improving port de bras, and actually seeing how far you have come. After all, I guess those legs didn’t always look like that.
(Tell that to my brain…)

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