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Sunday, October 9, 2011
Never Try To Out Dance A Natural- Part 2
It's time for the sequel, and since my whole purpose of writing the previous post started with a thought of my childhood after reading a Peanut post over at ShrinkingTheCamel.com, Shrewd As Snakes and Innocent As Doves. It reminded me of a time in music class, maybe more of an all around 'Artistic' class in the day (before funds were cut). You can check out Part I before reading this post.
Mrs. Ball, I cannot really remember if she wasn't a Ms. Ball, well she ran a top notch class. We were all probably scared to death of her, because I remember pulling up my socks, combing my hair, pulling my skirt down and tucking in my Catholic like uniform before walking into her music room.
She announced we would be learning to dance, and she was going to make it a competition. She taught us a few steps, then she played piano, we attempted the steps. She taught a few more steps, played and so on. Till we learned the whole routine. I was a visual student. No problem. However, during those times I was also a bit on the shy side. Who me? Yeah right you are saying, many people find it hard to believe, but I was.
My second grade teacher tried to talk my parents into holding me back a year. She told my mom that I never displayed much interaction in her class with students or the work. I was too quiet to be smart. My mother knew better. At home I was a thriving eight year old. I talked. I interacted with the family. I even fought with my siblings on a regular basis. My sister Mary and I kicked my brothers butt on a very regular basis. Sorry Alton.
Well they did not hold me back, but after raising my own son who is a pea in my pod, they should have listened to my teacher. I struggled academically. I did excel in physical activities- like day dreaming, drawing, writing (my hands moved), and what ever else came my way, outside the class room. I loved swings.
Back to the competition...once I get going, you can't stop me. There were a few people in Ms. Ball's music class that verbally bullied me on occasion. And today was no different. I was proud of myself this day, because this was something I could do well. No one could or would stop me. Even if it meant I was going to get my rear end kicked in gym class later on.
When the dance competition began it was like the Kentucky Derby, or at least the carnival version. Ms. Ball's fingers touched the keys...we were off! Five of us lined up, legs begin kicking, feet moving, our bodies were reeling. A few slip, a few fall down, and then it's me and another girl. The bully girl. But she didn't have a chance. I stood proud and received my wreath and trophy, well in my imagination. My father always said I was his horse even if I never won a race. All I really got that day was on Ms. Ball's good side and a boost of self confidence.
I ran home and proudly announced to my dad about winning the dance competition. Ms. Ball had also announced I was going to be in the Christmas Pageant that year. I felt so good I asked for a guitar and lessons. A stretch on my father and mom's budget, but hey, it doesn't hurt to try. The high fives from fellow students were always plenty in music class that semester, at least until Ms. Ball pulled my brothers ear for something he said, or didn't do and my father marched down there and pulled hers back.
The roll of royalty was short lived. My parents also decided to move us to another suburb of Dallas. Way north. Carrollton. I remember thinking Where the hell is Carrollton? It had to be a city of Zombies right? Or worse, full of Zombie bullies I had to fend off for years to come. I was sure moving there wasn't going to be a Footloose kind of experience.
I didn't get to be in the pageant, nor did I teach my new found bullies in Carrollton how to dance, at least until much later. But I learned to play guitar, found 'Spoken Word' and open mics, married a fellow music lover and we will dance in our hearts for the rest of our lives.
I retreated back into my shell after we moved, and eventually lost it somewhere between here and eight grade when I slapped a boy in the hallway for calling my friend a not so nice name. I got respected in high school, the real bullies left me alone. Another story. I am not too proud of that.