My Misstep Didn't Miss a Step; PLOT TWIST, and move on with McKenna Chappell

In dance it seems as though it is almost impossible to avoid an injury no matter who you are. I was on my last year of dance and I still had not experienced any type of serious injury that was caused by what I was doing and it seemed to me that I was going to be one of the fortunate ones. I look back on it now and think that I should have known better, but at least I do now. 

I was performing with my Lyrical group at a competition in Edmonton, and everything seemed to start off the same as it had every other day. We ran on stage, found our starting positions and began dancing as soon as the music came on. I found myself to be a little more shaky than usual so I tried to ground myself by sinking deeper into my plié and focusing on my breath. It seemed to be going alright until we had to transition from a side layout to a back roll, I lost my balance while going to the floor and instead of tucking my leg and rolling onto my back I lost my balance and landed right onto my ankle with all of my body weight on top of it. I immediately felt a sharp, stinging pain in my entire foot and lost all of the feeling in it for a few seconds. I looked at the wing which was close to me and debated running off stage but we had a lift coming up and thought that if I left and no one noticed that I was gone that the lift would go badly so I hopped to my spot for the lift and kept going until the end of the dance. 

After our performance I sat in the lobby with ice on my foot and realized how much pain I was really in once my adrenaline wore off. Normally, it would not have been a big deal but I had another performance that night with my Novelty group, and we were performing in the finals. We would be doing our Sponge Bob number, and I was Plankton, so naturally I did not want to sit this one out, but I couldn't see anyway to get around my injury considering I could barely go on rise. This upset me greatly and I couldn’t help but feel like I would be letting my team down if I couldn’t perform with them and I became even more frustrated with myself and wondered why I didn’t just run off stage as soon as I hurt myself. I was about to give up when my amazing teacher thought of a solution that would allow me to perform without having to further my injury. Since our number was Novelty, which revolves around lip synching to the music, we figured that I could just walk around the stage and focus all of my energy on my face to make it the most dramatic as possible, as Plankton is. We even had props so when our big group section came along I was able to sit on them and act my little heart out, and even though I wasn’t able to do everything everyone else was doing, but I still had the time of my life because I was with my team.

Even though I felt like I was letting my team down, they all had my back and we were able to think of a solution that helped keep the dance the same, while also changing it. My misstep helped me realize that sometimes, although a situation may seem bad, you can always find a way around it and still have fun and that the most important thing is not what you are doing, but the people you are with.

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