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Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

I am a dancer with Minneapolis based James Sewell Ballet, a small, contemporary ballet company. I also choreograph independently.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

My Left Calf

Last night, or early this AM, I was awakened with the onset of a Charlie Horse.

A Charlie Horse is a cramp, I think almost always of the leg, that is like the last, heart-pounding moments of nearing the top of a rollercoaster hill combined with the inevitable fall, downward, to where you think you’re gonna die. That’s exactly how it is with a Charlie Horse.

The worst is that transitional threshold where you know it’s coming, you’re falling. There’s nothing you can do to stop it, and no one can help, not even my cat who kneaded next to me in sympathy. It’s not like a sneeze or an orgasm, where you think it’s going to happen yet for whatever twisted reason of fate, doesn’t. No, this onset is guaranteed.

And so it happened. I put my hands over my face and succumbed. It’s best if I can relax the rest of me, but that’s not always possible. Just having returned from NYC, the concrete walking combined with my Robert Battle workshop (fantastic!) did a number on my body, not to mention the many subway steps with my suitcase over the two days it took to get home.

Charlie Horses have periodically plagued me. Sometimes I’ll go a whole year without one. They usually occur when I’m in the midst of some hard dancing. This one though, while somewhat dance related, was also pure emotion. Some stuff exited the building, and I am glad.

As I was rendered motionless with my hands over my face, pressing, I remembered that yesterday was my, our, wedding anniversary. That was hard to swallow given that things in that department are coming to a close. J and I had lunch and an easy and then hard conversation. I’m so glad and proud that trust is there between us like a safety net. I can always fall into it, no matter what. But it’s still a fall; it is indeed inevitable and inevitably painful. Here too I place my hands over my face and wait it out.

Like my left calf, I know I’ll feel the residual emotional effects today. I’ll have to periodically stretch out in anticipation of class tomorrow, and I will perhaps shed a few tears in some random Fringe show. It’s all good. I am stronger for it all. Bring it on, just not so often that I can’t recover in between.


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