July 23, 2017

awaiting the recall list

I asked Curly bright and early that morning how she felt.  She shared that she was just a bit nervous, but mostly excited to dance in National Championships.  It was the morning of July 9th.  The day we had been waiting for.  She was ready.  Lots of classes, private lessons, and at home practicing.  Most nights we had to yell up the stairs and ask her to take her bath and STOP dancing in the bathroom.  We assumed it was just a matter of time before she broke thru the dry walled ceiling and danced right down into the kitchen.  

I was also ready - ready for this day to be done.  Here you can read about a few of my past frustrating experiences, which explain why Irish dancing competitions make me jittery.  OK, so that's a HUGE understatement.  Since I had woken up at 2:30 am unable to fall back to sleep significantly, I was ready too.  I just hoped that Curly would dance her best.  I knew that if she made a mistake or let nerves get the best of her, she'd be disappointed.  She'd been preparing for this competition for months . . . mostly.

Boot.  Bummer.
In early May, Curly ended up in a boot after a possible stress fracture.  Coach explained that stress fractures don't often show up on x-rays.  One night she complained of pain in the top of her foot.  The doc saw nothing on the films, so she put Curly in a boot for three weeks.  She called it a possible stress-reaction.  We were relieved that her boot sentence wasn't longer.  By the end of May she was back at class, and back at pounding away in the privacy of the bathroom before her bath.  We hoped that the three week hiatus from training had healed her and wouldn't interfere with her Nationals performance.  

I keep busy at these big competitions by giving pep talks, forcing bathroom visits, offering smart snacks, suggesting water swigs, making supplies available (like sock glue, tape, scissors, bobby pins), changing shoe laces as necessary, designating warm up time, and keeping the dress clean and ready to zip into just before stage time.  If Coach is present, then I dedicate some of my time outlining the dancing day for him.  Despite the fact that we've been involved with Irish dancing for about 8 years, the aspects of big competitions elude him.  Sigh. 

My bag of tricks:  sock glue, leg tanner, bobby pins, tape, scissors, band aids, tiara, Kleenex, etc. 
Curly danced beautifully in the first two rounds of competition.  Hard shoes.  Done.  Soft shoes.  Done.  Then we waited for hours for the recalled dancers to be announced.  Of the 76 dancers in her competition, the top half would recall.  That meant they would be invited back to dance one more time for the 7 judges.  All recalled dancers would place.  Those not recalled would go home empty handed.

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