Dreams do come true. Everyone in their lives has a dream or some type of goal that they wish to achieve. Finding the way to achieve your dreams, goals, and aspirations is an epic journey all on its own. It takes discipline, determination, and self-exploration. This is the tale of the journey I am currently on.
As the bright lights flash and the roars of the audience echo throughout the theatre, I realized how far I've come to get here. I finally had the ability to understand how much hard work really does pay off. This can be as simple as a first-grader studying her spelling words and getting a one hundred on her spelling test, or an employee working day and night to finally reach the promotion she or he has been longing for. This is why I believe hard work pays off.
As a child I always wanted to be in the spotlight; I always wanted to do something special in my life that made me stand out and I have this thing where I have to excel past everyone, especially my family. It is not because I want people to think I am better than anyone, I just have this thing where I have to accomplish everything that my heart longs for. As a child I had a fear of being around people and felt really anxious whenever I was in a group of people. Growing up I had very little confidence in myself, or some say, no confidence. So, when I was about 20 years old, everything was about to change for me. I realized that entertaining people is what I am all about. Since I was never really good at telling jokes or talking to people, I thought about trying my dance skills. I have always loved dancing around alone in my bedroom and I have always enjoyed music videos like Michael Jackson's "Beat it," so I thought why not? What did I have to lose? With not much support from anyone, not even my family, I followed my dreams of being a dancer.
Like any experience we remember all the details of the events. I remember my first dance class at Christine's Studio of Performing Arts in hip-hop class. I was under the instruction of Miss Ashlee Pavao, who was one of the best hip-hop teachers I had known. I was 21 years old and thought that the class was awesome. Now if you are under the impression that I was great the first time around, you are wrong. I was that one goofy awkward kid who was just there having fun in dance class. That first day in the dance studio felt like heaven, being in that tranquil place where no one judged me whether I was too old, too fat, or far from good at dancing. All I really noticed were the other kids paying attention to Miss Ashlee's every detail as she taught the choreography to us. It really felt nice! I was finally on my way to following one of my biggest dreams. Miss Ashlee thought that I would be gone by the end of three months because I could not really keep up with the choreography or make my body move the way the other dancers could make their bodies move. She was just glad that I was there having fun and being a good student. According to some people, since I started at a later age, I was not supposed to be any good at dancing. People told me that it was just a waste of time for me to start dancing because it is something that you have to start while you are young.
However, just six months after starting dance, something happened to both me and my dance ability. I was put on the competition/performance team, and then from there I just kept excelling. I went on to win a platinum award for my first hip-hop solo at 'Sophisticated dance productions' dance competition in 2016. The following year in 2017 I went on to win a regional and national title for a dance solo that I performed at two different competitions, the first was "Dance Ovations" - where I received my first ever dance trophy and given the regional title and crowned 'Senior Miss Dance Ovation.' The next dance competition was for "Diva Dance Competition" - where I received the National title and crowned 'Senior Miss Diva Dance.' Every year up until now, I continued to follow my passion and kept on dancing, despite the many struggles I also endured. No one ever said the road to following our dreams would be easy, if that is the case everyone would be successful overnight. I found my niche with dancing and found my hidden talent. I just kept excelling because of my hard work and dedication to dance.
If you try really hard, you can achieve your goals. You can basically achieve anything you put your mind to and if you work hard enough for it. I worked hard not only in the dance class; but I would take my hard work home with me. As soon as I got home from dance, I would immediately start practicing what I previously learned. I would spend hours and hours trying to perfect my dance moves that I was taught in my dance classes. I would ask some of my friends or family to sit or stand in front of me and correct what I was doing wrong. I loved to be corrected in a constructive way. Practicing every day this way since I first started dancing really helped me. It helped me to be able to remember my dance routines more easily. Even though I started off with only a few dances my first years of professional dancing, I still practice every day. Now that I have about 12 or more dance routines each year for my dance recital, I am able to remember them easily because I taught myself the discipline of practicing every day when I first started dancing.
Hard work requires patience. If you are going to commit and work hard for something, it will consume a decent amount of your time. Working hard may not sem at all fun at the time that you are trying to achieve a goal, but in the end, it is all worth it. I promise! Just like when I started practicing my dance routines after coming home from dance class, because I wanted to make sure that I was perfecting the dance moves I was taught previously in my dance classes. I practiced the dances basically every day just so that I could know my dance routines well enough to perform them, and be as good as the other dancers. Not only did I know the dance routines, but I made the competiton team! This memorization helped me in the future of today as well. Since I was so well at practicing and trying to remember my dance routines when I started learning how to dance, now at age 26 I can pick up dance choreography in a heartbeat. So, as you can see, hard work does pay off in the end and dreams really do come true. Most importantly, dance opened up a whole new life for me and made me into this totally confident person. My recommendation to everyone, especially the young people, go for what you want. It is no doubt going to be hard work and you are going to be required to work, but I promise, in the end it is all worth it!!!