When Constance told us F would be taking us for one of the classes, our little hearts fluttered with fear. You see F taught three of us at the beginning of our ballet journeys. F was my first ever ballet teacher. I went into class literally not knowing what a plie was and I can honestly say I came home each night after class in tears as I couldn't follow F's instructions or combinations. She did everything so fast and she never repeated instructions. It was terrifying and stressful. I remember the very first day of class she sat us down and took out some pointe shoes. She explained what was involved in pointe work and then told us we'd never be en pointe. Never never never!
So when I heard she was going to be our teacher I was immediately transported back to that first day in class where I must have looked like a ridiculous, useless, ungraceful lump to her. But there was another niggling feeling present. Embarassment.
I was embarassed that I was en pointe after she'd told me I wouldn't ever be. I was embarassed because I know, deep down, I shouldn't be en pointe.
Since it'd been some years since she'd taken the class I was in, I held onto the hope she wouldn't recognise me or the other girls, who were equally filled with trepedation for their own reasons.
Of course, the second F walked in she knew who we all were right away. I looked for signs of surprise or horror or judgement on her face as she realised it was us who were in her pointe class. But none came. Infact, she seemed pleased to see us! It ended up being one of the most useful and productive pointe classes I think I've ever had. She didn't judge us at all and took the job in hand and treated us as she would have treated a young person beginning pointe. She pushed us in the right places and even told us how beautfiul we all looked en pointe! She was surprised to see us en pointe certainly, but in a good way. I came away feeling postive and invigorated.
Since those first classes she'd progressed as much as us, as she now repeated exercises and demonstrated combinations first, so it was a million times easier to follow, taking much of the stress out of class for us. Of course, back then I had no clue was a tendu was so of course any combination would have been impossible for me to follow.
So in the end, it worked out well and it turns out I had nothing to be embrassed about.