Hello again Gorgeous,
Previously, in Chapter Six of My Journey…
I was driven to prove both the naysayers wrong and to myself that I CAN have credibility in both worlds. So, I entered the Bellydancer of the Year Competition. Déjà vu struck as I made it to the finals but didn’t place. My performance was described by one judge as Haitian Voodoo.
If you missed Chapter One of My Journey read it HERE, Chapter Two is HERE. Chapter Three is HERE. Chapter Four is HERE. Chapter Five is HERE. Chapter Six is HERE.
Here is Chapter Seven…
I returned home from the Bellydancer of the F*ckin’ Year competition and decided that I was gonna be super, laser focused on studying, training, and winning competitions. I know, I know… I sound competitive, right? Well, that’s cuz’ I am. But it’s truly because I’m competitive with myself and maybe mixed with a little envy too (wink). I know one thing’s for sure though… I ain’t winning the “Miss Congeniality” award! (Why does that award even exist?)
Anyway, for the next 3 years I worked really hard. I studied, trained, and entered 7 bellydance competitions. I was busy. At one of the competitions, I was hit with a truth smack that totally changed my dancing forever…
It was the Bellydance Entertainer of the Year competition in Reno, NV. There was a woman from CA that I knew who was vending at the event (damn I forgot her name). Anyway, we were talking and I was complaining to her that although I made it to the finals, I was still worried that I wouldn’t place (remember, I’m trying to prevent déjà vu again). I was whining like a baby about how much money I spent on flights, hotel, entry fee, yada, yada; how if I didn’t win or even place, it would’ve all been a waste of time and money. Well, she lit her cigarette, took a puff, and said, “Oreet, you are an amazing dancer and your east coast style gives you a competitive edge. But, you gotta calm the f*ck down!” I was like, “Yeah I know, I’m trying, but I easily get emotional.” “No sweetie”, she barked, “Your dancing! We don’t need so many spins, shimmies and jumps… less is more!” I immediately rewound back to the “Voodoo” episode 2 years back and thought, “Maybe that judge WAS right”. I thanked her for her gift of truth and got to work (It’s killing me that I can’t I remember her name).
The finals were happening in 2 hours and I decided to revamp my performance; changing all double turns to singles, leaps to extensions, and the timing from double to half time. I needed to enjoy the slowness, embrace the simplicity, and just DANCE.
Well, that truth smack paid off cuz’ I WON that sucka! Yours truly was crowned Bellydance Entertainer of the Year 2006.
I continued this new concept of “calming the f*ck down”, and ended up winning 5 competitions out of the 7 that I entered. I felt pretty damn accomplished. By the end I had the following titles under my belt: Boston Bellydance Diva, Jewel of the Nile, Bellydance Entertainer of the Year, Middle Eastern Dance Champion of North America, and got my ass back a 2nd time and won Bellydancer of the Year!
So, do I have cred now? Yeah… I guess. But there was always more to strive for and new sh*t to figure out. Like… why am I actually doing all this? And what the heck was my WHY?
Stay tuned for the next chapter of my journey about the contemporary dance company that I have always dreamed about dancing for and the pivotal moment that made me realize that “I made it”!