When I was younger, I always wanted to become a professional dancer. As I got older, that dream became that of a professional working in a Christian company to bring the art of dance to a rather (at times) closed door Christian society.
When I was 18, I went off to college to get my degree in English education (bookworking - my second passion!), hoping and praying that dance would stay a part of my life somehow but not sure on the "how." That door did open and I worked all the way through the college as a ballet teacher at a Christian owned studio.
And then I started teaching high school. And within a month, I knew that something had to give. And even more, I felt like God was saying to me, "let go of this. It is no longer for you." And so reluctantly but with the realization that I literally could not both teach school and dance, I let go.
But I've missed dancing so much. I don't really miss performing; I just miss dancing. I miss the smell of the studio, the movement, even my pointe shoes (bloody feet, blisters, and all). While I've tried to keep up at home, it's not been the same at all. There's been a few times when we've had dancers in church, and just watching them has hurt so much because I wanted to be there.
This past spring, an opportunity arose to become a part of a new studio in town that had opened up just a few months before. It's a Christian studio, not just in terms of ownership but in terms of what it is for. The classes start with prayer; the entire focus is for worshiping the Lord through dance. Beautiful.
I was asked if I could get involved in some of the directing of the studio as they had plenty of teachers but there directors were having issues. I prayed about it, Chris prayed, and seperately we both felt that God was saying, "no." So, I turned it down. Since then, obviously some good reasons for why it wasn't right have come forward - namely being that physically I would not have been able to handle it.
However, this past week, I've been offered the position again. And while I've been praying about it, I don't feel like I'm getting a good answer on what to do. Maybe that is my answer, I don' t know. It would be a purely volunteer/ministry kind of thing.
Because I'm a "list" person, I've tried to analyze it as best as I can. But I just don't know. And I need to make a decision - yesterday!
Option 1: Be the Performing Director (choreographer, performance planner, etc) w/o the responsibility of the academic/Studio Director (administrative side - phone calls, bills, etc)
- This would allow me to be involved with less of an initial time commitment (Saturdays 2-5 through October, November, and half of December, some planning time but I can set my own hours, performance days (19th of December I believe).
- This would be a good way fo rme to get to know students/parents closely
- I would be dancing again.
- I haven't been dancing, other than what i can do at home, for the last few years. I feel out of practice and out of shape.
- I've not been able to really exercise the last few months because of my stomach and how much it's been hurting - totally out of shape in general not just in dance.
- I'm not familiar with the studio yet, and that can make it challenging in choreography (although this is an open audition, so people from all over could audition so I'm not really stuck with 1 style).
- Saturday commitment which means that I really won't have a day off during the week at all because Sunday's always wind up with various home things that need doing.
Random Thought - truthfully, doing this kind of scares me, and I don't know how much that is affecting my view of this option. At this point, although I know I'm qualified, I don't really feel very qualified because of how long I've been out of that world.
Option 2: Studio Director w/o Performing director responsibility
- get to know students/parents quickly from all levels not just those performing in show
not physically demanding
- allow me to get to know the studio/style etc without direct dance involvement
- Big time commitment. (minimum Tuesday and Thursdays for 3-4 hours after work; probably need to be there another day as well, plus being able to answer questions, etc throughout the week nearly every day).
- Not actually involved in dancing again (although that could open up in the future).
- I've been praying for the right ministry door to open; is this my door? What about some other thoughts Chris and I have had about ministry opportunities? There's no way I could do something else along with this.
- I'm concerned about how this will affect my health; I'm still not doing all that good - is this going to be beneficial or hurtful?
- I gave up doing my master's program at this time so that I can be more of a support to Chris while he's in school. This is something that's going to take me even more out of the house and out of Chris' life. Big time commitment - possibly very stressful - how will affect the home?
- Looking at the hours/need, I can't help but think they need to hire someone full time for this position. Trying to piece-meal it is only going to hurt the functionality/success of the business.
- Am I supposed to be a part of this world again? If I were just doing administrative type stuff and not actually dancing, would I be okay with that?
So that's it folks. I need to make a decision, and I don't know where to go with this.