These days I am lucky enough to be teaching ballet again. We're talking Creative Movement, guys. Some Pre-Ballet. Maybe a Ballet 1A. Half the class is spent trying to convince little Kaitylyn to come in the studio and the other half is spent trying to untangle tiaras from leotards. Nothing majorly hard, right? Right. Long gone are the days when I could do something like this to impress little glitter bedecked princesses:
...or this spiffy number:
...or even this:
Umm, not entirely sure that last one was ever possible.
But nowadays, as my bones snap, crackle and pop their way down into the splits, I look more like this:
I am not sure when old age crept up on me, but creep it did. In fact, old age is a creep! Yes! I said it! Take that, Mother Nature! Or is it Father Time I should be blaming? They're probably in cahoots, staying up late at night conspiratorially muttering ways to wrench my hip, slip a disk in my back, and pull my hamstrings. Not to mention cause wiry gray hairs to grow in places I didn't use to have hairs. Ahem. Anyhoo.
I swear, today I was sitting on the floor with my little angel monkeys in a side split - a REALLY pathetic one, at that - and as we pretended to paint the air with beautiful colors and then stretch over to our neighbor's feet, I about passed out. My legs were screaming obscenities at me and my back let out a crack that was heard round the world. And I didn't even know my legs could cuss! They used to be well behaved legs who would never dream of cursing in the ballet studio. Back before Old Age hit.
"Can we do leaps now, Miss Melyssa?" the little pink whippersnappers clamored.
"Miss Melyssa has fallen and can't get up, kids...umm, how about a water break? Don't you guys need to go potty? It's been like, three minutes, for the love of Baryshnikov, someone's gotta pee by now, right?"
"Leaps! Leaps! LEAPS! With crowns and wands and fairy rings!!"
"Absolutely," I croak, and try to raise my head off my knee where it has been stuck, "Just help Miss Melyssa up...and I'm gonna try to not throw up. Yep. OK, I need another minute. Leap without me, girls. I'll be right there. As soon as I pop my hip back into place. AAAAARRRRGH! There we go, my little tutu-ed drill sergeants...I'm back."
Yes, indeedy. I'm back.
And I need some Motrin, a heating pad, and a bottle of something red, STAT.