Pointe Shoes

November 8, 2010
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To any ballet dancer, her first pair of Pointe shoes is precious and magical. Pointe shoes are like the bat mitzvah of the ballet world; it marks the transition of maturity and your dedication into the seriousness of tough grueling Pointe work. Even just “applying” for a pair is difficult- in order to be selected, you must pass each hurdle the panel of teachers test you on. The hurdles vary on different degrees, starting from your physical stamina to balancing on one leg for at least 30 seconds to a doctor’s approval. “Next year,” the teachers would always tell me. “Just a few more months!” But I wanted those pretty pink satin shoes… Who cared about all those tests? I just danced for the thought of being like one of those mythical figures that dance in Lincoln Center!

After long months of waiting, asking, drooling over older girls’ shoes, and begging, on an unsuspecting thirtieth of April, I finally obtained the permission I had anticipated so much. On Pointe Shoe Day, the name I had dubbed the special occasion, I waited impatiently for forty-five minutes in the store, eagerly bouncing up and down on the balls of my feet just to slip on a pair of those dreamed about blocked shoes and rise up on my toes. But it didn’t come that easily. To my surprise, Pointe shoe fittings were much more complex than I had imagined. I must have tried on at least 20 pairs of shoes, always looking for the correct box (the hardened tip of the shoe) that I could rise up all the way over onto my toes or the right shank (a hard piece of wood that supports your foot on Pointe) that would mold to my feet in a matter of time. But in no time at all, I stood outside the store, cradling my new Grishko 2007’s, size six and a half, XXXX Medium shank. Wrapped securely in plastic, snugly fitted into a box were my Pointe shoes! Finally my own pair! Gone were the days of drooling, envious stares, and daydreaming over older girls’ feet; I now had my own, and I could hardly wait for the first class.

Those pretty satin shoes lasted me fourteen months, an unusually high number before they became too soft to work in. They lasted through my first major Royal Academy of Dance Exam, the judging of ballet, and my first double pirouette on Pointe. Through disastrous falls and painful blisters, my first pair of Pointe shoes were magical. I guess I really am lucky, compared to people who have no chance to dance at all. I still have them now, sitting on display on a shelf artfully arranged with a small bouquet of wooden roses my best friend gave to me after a performance. When my friends come over and they see the display, they smile and understand. Those shoes are my proof of the tears, pain, and laughter dance has given to me, and even just the memory of slipping them on in the store brings on a flood of smiles.





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AddieDay said...
Jul. 10, 2011 at 10:39 pm
 I know EXACTLY what you mean about your first pair of pointe shoes because I do ballet too. At our school, you have to talk to a teacher months before hand if you want to go on pointe, so they can spend time carefully watching you. She has to recommend you for pre-pointe, a class that spends half the year stretching and strengthening your feet before you even see a pair of pointe shoes. Then there comes a day (I called it pointe shoe day too) when she tells the class who can get pointe sho... (more »)
 
rayray!! said...
Nov. 16, 2010 at 8:18 pm
yayy! I luv it! I knew u would be published!!
 
Val :P said...
Nov. 16, 2010 at 5:45 pm

AMAZING, WAWA!!!!!!!!!!!! (as always) Keep on dancing and writing forever! :) 

~ Miss Perfectionist

 
Kaitie_Doolittle said...
Nov. 16, 2010 at 5:33 pm
WAWA!!!!!! OMG!!!! I love you so much! this is beautiful and i actualy read the whole thing in case u were wondering! it's inspiring! i cannot believe you are a published author!!! I know how important dance is to you and i know how much you love to write so this combination must be truly amazing!!!! Keep on at it cuz i <3 u!
 
WaWa29 replied...
Nov. 16, 2010 at 6:09 pm
OMG Thanks so much! Keep reading the blog! See- posting on the blog WILL eventually get me published! :)
 
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