I saw last night that everyone was posting their #nationaldanceday pictures on Instagram, and as I searched for mine something kinda big occurred to me. Making the decision to quit dancing at 19 years old before I even gave myself the chance to see if I could have a career as a dancer was one of the most brutal and terrifying decisions I've ever made. Every moment of every day of my life was fueled by my dream to dance for a professional ballet company. My body simply wasn't as convinced as my heart though. One day while I was icing my ankle (a twice daily requirement after my ankle surgery), I decided to "quit." I was sitting on my kitchen counter with my foot in an ice bath in the sink, and I thought to myself, “I will be doing this every day for as long as I’m dancing.” Within a few weeks, I had packed my apartment, jumped in a Uhaul, and moved to a new city hoping I'd quickly forget about dance and all of my years of training. 20 years later I’m finally realizing that I didn’t quit anything, and no matter how hard you try you simply can't forget your past. I realize now that I was unofficially studying movement and preparing for my Pilates career all along. One of the reasons I love the picture I posted above is because it reminds me of a yearly ritual from my dance days. Dancers have to take a picture in 1st Arabesque every year for audition season, and this was back in the day before you could review how a picture looked on your camera before you had it developed. When I went to pick up the pictures (3 days after I took them), I would panic that they would suck. If they did I’d shoot them again and again until they were good enough. I would study the pictures for hours and decide what I needed to do differently to get better results. My eye for form and movement along with my determination to always be improving shaped my future as a Pilates instructor. Today I’m choosing to rewrite the records that have played in my head for years about quitting and failing as a dancer. I now see and accept that I didn't quit, but I did a pivot turn. A badass, old school, jazz hands in the air pivot turn towards the career I was truly destined for.