I know that my last post was also about school, but with the semester a mere six days away, it is the thing that is most consuming my mind. I am completely torn. A part of me is so unbelievably excited to start choreographing and moving again since I have been out of commission for bit. A second part of me, however, is extremely apprehensive: will my ankle hold up? will I be able carry out my thesis and create a memorable piece? will I survive??
You see, last spring, I endured an excruciatingly painful ankle injury. I had been struggling with Peroneal Tendonitis throughout the semester, but with ACDFA (American College Dance Festival) and Orchesis nearing, there was no time for rest. Eventually, my tendon snapped, and I found myself in a situation where I was not only unable to dance, but I wasn’t even able to walk. I was on crutches for about two weeks, but the pain is something I am still working through which is especially concerning to me.
Because my tendon tore in mid air, I had no support upon landing, and I immediately collapsed to the stage beneath me. An MRI showed that the pressure caused me to have Talor Dome Leisons. Apparently, it is a pain that I will be able to live with but one that will never completely heal without surgery. I am not prepared to let someone cut open my feet, so I opted for natural methods which have included: LOTS OF PRAYER, physical therapy, Glucosamine, Chondroitin with MSM, and lots of rest.
In keeping with this decision, I did not take any dance classes last semester - that's right, I have not even stepped foot in a dance studio in over ten months! As much as I have hated not dancing and feeling a little left behind, I do think that this time off has been exactly what my body was in desperate need of. My ankle seems to be healing nicely, and I have not been feeling any of the intense pain in a quite some time. On the other hand, the time off has set me back a bit and I will now be graduating a semester later – that is, of course, considering I do not encounter any more unexpected derailing along the way.
In order to make up for the technique classes I have missed due to my injury, I now have to double up on both Modern and Ballet for the next three semesters. This is possibly the thing that is fueling my nerves the most. I am very out-of-shape, and I have not had a rigorous dance schedule since before my injury; I am praying for God’s strength and loving mercies to pull me through the semester as well as the rest of my time at Weber.
As this is my forth year, I will be working on my Senior Thesis: Creative Synthesis in Dance. It is a capstone thesis project somewhat similar to that of a Master's Program. Thankfully, there are six of us that will be embarking upon this journey. While we each have our own projects to manage, it is still comforting to know that my friends are experiencing the same sense of emotions. Our thesis projects consist of selecting a committee, holding periodic meetings with our committee as well as with the production staff, formulating a thesis, writing a formal prospectus, auditioning and selecting dancers to perform and help feed in the brainstorming as we create a five to fifteen (or so) minute dance piece that will explore our thesis and be shown in fall Orchesis concert, keeping a detailed journal of the experience, creating a hard copy/paper style portfolio and a video montage of our work thus far at Weber, and writing a formal, Chicago-Turban style fifteen page synopsis of our experience throughout the creative process – what worked, what didn’t work, how we felt, what changed, what we have learned… why we should graduate. We will then present all of these works to our committees in an oral defense at the end of the semester where we will be graded. I am a tad nerved that I may not be able to successfully accomplish my thesis while maintaining my other classes.
Again, I find myself taking 18 credit hours – crazy, I know, but it must be done. There are certain classes in my major that are only offered every other year at best, so when they come around, I have to jump on them. One of those select courses is Dance Kinesiology. I need that class, and it is happening this semester; therefore, I could not let it pass without registering for this difficult yet exciting class. I am also registered for Human biology, Physics 1010, American Sign Language 2010, Rehearsal and Performance 4910, Dance for the Camera, Modern I, Modern II/III, Ballet I, Ballet II/III, and of course, Creative Synthesis in Dance. Whaaaaa~~~ Perhaps I will survive the stress with high flying colors, or perhaps I will find myself in the crazy wing in a tight white jacket with several little belts around it. Either way, this semester is coming whether I like it or not, and at much quicker pace than I would prefer…