And I Wander

The birds chirp at this side of the world. :)

Ariana Grande “Problem” Dance Choreography by Mother & Daughter

Here is Achilla and I’s first choreography together! Short and sweet. 🙂 We did this in between household chores, homeworks and playtime so, if you are OC like my husband Spiderman, some items in this video will be an eyesore. Ha-ha! (Like that lone tsinelas, and the bass guitar case lying around)

We also featured our Origami Owl Living Lockets as blings… because we love ’em!

Hope you enjoy this video, and maybe dance with us! Thank you. P.S. Ariana Grande favorited our tweet about this! Yay! 🙂

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March 13, 2015 Posted by | Achilla's Corner, breakdance, dance, hip hop, Philippine Allstars, Youtube | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

PHILIPPINE ALLSTARS — THE FIRST YEAR


I have a confession to make. I was the Philippine Allstars’ memory-keeper. For years, I was the one opening and managing our online accounts (from Friendster to Myspace, Multiply, and finally, the [retired] OG’s Facebook page). I was the one replying to fans’ questions. I was the first to receive verbal punches from haters & critiques. When fans have questions to any particular member of the group, I would answer for them. If it was personal, I would ask the intended member to open the account her/himself and reply to a fan. Most often, they would not do it. So I would eventually do it for him/her. When Chelo came back from the UK in 2007 and became active again, she shared this burden with me, and so you would find blogs on our sites (especially on Multiply) authored by her. It is usually us girls who would be active online, except for Lema who was busy managing the group. The boys you could not count on because, well, boys were hardwired for physical tasks. They would rather train, choreograph, sell shirts, ccok, drive, or anything but go online. (Although now, you could see that they are pretty much active on Facebook. Mas maingay na nga sila e, haha, ehem Maya, Pat, Renz & Reagan)

Anyway, this is one of the posts that I really worked hard creating… and protecting. I believe the first year has defined us as a group. Everything that followed was a result of each of us’ decision during our first week. And everything else was, I don’t know, just divinely directed (for a year). That is how I believed it to be. I salvaged this post days before Multiply shut down and was able to repost on Facebook and another blog. This time, I guess, to secure a place on my own blog, I’m REposting it here. So here goes… the story of the OG’s first year. 🙂

DISCLAIMER: This was created in 2006. All of OG’s debt has been paid of since.
* * * * * * *
A remembrance of PHILIPPINE ALLSTARS‘ journey from being highly addicted to cyphers in the underground Hip Hop & Breakdance scene… to being highly dedicated to a cause which, through their love of dance, they make anything possible. A year in their life where everything changed, from being financially well-off & having the means to splurge on material things to being really poor (having gone deep in debt) but having the means to splurge people with words & acts that matter more; and from being almost satanic to being a follower of God, “BestFriend”. This is our story…

 

In June 17, 2005, 12 people came together and dared to dream….
[from top L-R: Kenjhons, Reagan, Jhong, Laurence, Patrick, Chelo, Sheena, Ivy, Kyxz, Michelle, Lema & Maya]

Everyone dropped their jobs to try to do a competition piece… Kenjhons taught us ‘sarap lang,’ sometimes he & Laurence would sing for us in between breaks.
[Chelo’s crib]

After a month of putting together a dance piece & learning to dance as a group (as everyone were freestylers), it was time for battle.
[Maximum Groovity II]

The piece was “hilaw” (raw), but we had fun… Sarap lang! =)
[National Competition]

We were up against really good teams like The Crew, Flipthrillaz & Letran. But in the end, we were pronounced as Champions!
[National Champions!]

Afterwards, everything weren’t laid out easy for us. The organizers said that the sponsors backed out so they could not fly us out.  They did promise to send us to Italy next year though… just. not. to. the. US. this. year.
[Gold’s Gym]

Added to that, 3 of us (Chelo, Sheena & Pat) got denied of US visas. Heartbroken, Chelo went on to pursue her studies in UK.
[Chelo’s despedida]

Still, amidst all these, we believed that destiny cannot be broken… That it was our destiny to represent the country in HHI.
[1st music video by AF]

–so despite being financially hard up (having borrowed money for plane tickets), we went on…
[1st music video by AF]

–to the US to rep up the PI…
[4th World Hip Hop poster]

–and show the world what we’ve got. What Filipinos got!
[2005 Eliminations, Manhattan Beach, CA]

The people took notice, and loved us…
[2005 Eliminations]

We placed 6th (out of 26 teams) in the eliminations, and it kinda went into our heads…
*We would have placed 3rd. We got a deduction for late start & offensive moves (hands on our crotches hehe!). So guys learn from us, no offensive/lewd movements!
[Interview for a local news channel]

–that it affected our performance during the finals. So we remained in 6th place.
We were kinda disappointed. Who wouldn’t? But acceptance soon followed as we realized that we weren’t ready to be Champions. Coz lumalaki. ang. ulo. namin. (proud/arrogant) We were really mayabang that time. But we learned.
[2005 World Finals, Redondo Beach, CA]

After the competition, we had no place to go. But kind pinoys, Floyd & Mags Evangelista, who have heard our story from our friend Marc Nelson “adopted” us.
[with Floyd & Mags Evangelista]

–so we were picked up by their limo & brought to their house… yeh God is good!
[In a stretched bling bling car]

–were fed food & fattened up…
(coming from starvation in the PI–yes, the stories are true: sometimes, after practice, a pizza box would just slide through the doors & it will sustain us for the day; and after clubbing & passing out hats to collect money for commute & food the next day, and getting hungry, we’d just say “Bahala na si BestFriend.” Then a friend would pass by and ask “Allstars! Have u eaten?” & he’d treat us ALL dinner… Sometimes He sends angels like Jaimie (a client of Gold’s) & Tim Yap in our midst as if to say “Just hang in there.”)
[Good catch Reagan!]

–given a place to sleep… hehe!
[Maya at Pechanga suite]

–and a place to stay and do girly things… hehehe!
[Floyd’s crib in San Diego]

Of course we went around LA…
*(other times, some pinoys would tour us around) Thanks to Kae & friends for bringing us there!
[Maya & Kyxz at Venice Beach]

–jammed in the streets…
[Venice Beach]

–and dropped by the Millenium dance studio. we had no money to pay for classes so we were content to just dance in the street… but Mike Montoya of La Dekada (2005 US Champs) was so kind that he rented a studio & taught us some La Dekada moves. =)
[Millenium Dance Complex]

We also had a taste of LA’s night life (with Mike of La Dekada, Shane & some –friends who had connections to let us in the VIP). 
[Downtown LA clubbing]

–and we’d jam with them boys from Sickstep…
[clubbing in Hollywood]

–then it was time to go home & face reality. We went back to the Philippines humbled (with the whole experience)… and in debt…
[ALLSTARS’ way]

–but some people believed in us and helped us out, like Levi’s…
[LEJ tour, San Beda Alabang]

This gig was instrument to the conception of what was to be one of our routines (the motor) & part of our music for the next HHI.
[LEJ Free to Move launch]

Then we went around to perform in schools…
[LEJ tour, St. Louis College]

Oh how we loved to perform for and jam with them, especially the kids!
[LEJ tour, San Beda College Makati]

We would share with them our love for cyphers…
[San Beda College]

We would have so much fun with them… Those were really one of our best gigs…
[San Beda College]

The Evangelista’s were still there for support…
[E-Real fam gig]

–along with Adidas…
[Adicolor press launch]

–and people of Sports Unlimited, especially Dyan Castillejo & Marc Nelson…
[Sports Unlimited]

After almost a year, Hip Hop Open d’Italia was coming up… Everything was still not easy for us. Our problems got bigger. Sometimes, conflicts would come from inside our circle. We would always fight & argue about everything. We would be faced with struggles, dilemmas &… choices… But in the last minute, everyone would decide to go head on with whatever was thrown to us…
[Gold’s gym]

Except for Eye Vee who decided to choose a different path… teaching kids & pursuing her bgirl dreams. =)
[Eye Vee]

After deciding to go on (we were told that there MAY be plane tickets but no place to stay in Italy), we still kept faith & we resolved that no matter what, it was important for us all to be on a same page…
[Sleepover at Jhong’s]

We busted our asses off by jogging at 6am almost everyday… rain or shine.
[Jogging at the UP campus]

–then go straight to practice to perfect our ‘motor’ routine, hehehe!…
[Gold’s gym]

–experiment moves…
[Gold’s Gym]

–and stunts… ha-ha!
[Gold’s gym]

–it was exhausting physically…
[Kyxz, Gold’s gym]

–and mentally, that sometimes…
[Jhong, Gold’s gym]

–we would spend a lot of our days at Gold’s… sleeping.
*eventually, being one of the sponsors that would send us to Italy, Gold’s gym eventually became our second home. (Grateful to Ms Ley & Ms Mylene)
[Kenjhons, Gold’s gym]

–and of course we never forgot Him. In fact we became closer to Him & would attend services. One of our favorite was the ABS-CBN fellowship. We will never forget Pastor Jessie’s blessing, and his words became our “baon” to Italy.
[Pastor Jessie]

This time we had plane tickets, but no place to stay… We were ready to sleep in the streets! We even brought a lot of blankets & century tuna! Nothing could really stop us, so we said to ourselves, “Bahala na si God.”
[praying before taking off, Lufthansa Air]

True enough, He provided… Filipino Community in Turin had heart…
[Torino, Italy]

–and one of them couples moved out so we could have a place to stay for 5 days… grazie!!!
[Daddy Aries’ Apartment]

They offered a place for us to hold our last rehearsals, inside their Church.
[infront of their Church]

We loved them Europeans!!!
[outside PalaRuffini]

Of course, we can’t NOT play with the bboys…
[PalaRuffini]

–and the kids…
[PalaRuffini]

This time we danced for Him…
[Hip Hop Open d’Italia Finals 2006]

–and so we won the Gold…
[Finals]

–and their…
[after the competition]

–hearts…
[after the competition]

Shempre we went around for a well deserved celebration… with a scoop of gelato!
[Torino, Italy]

–went sight-seeing…
[in one of their lovely Piazzas]

–and girl-sighting… hehe! Belle ragazze!
[Laurence & Reagan]

Then it was time for the World Hip Hop Championships… We were surprised to find ourselves in their poster!
[5th World Hip Hop poster]

But of course, we knew we were facing bigger obstacles ahead… We still had to pick out the 8 people (World Event only allows 5-8 members per group), we still had to polish our routine, we still had no (NADA!) sponsors, we still owed people money… Well basically it’s more, again, of a financial crisis. As always.
[Patrick, Kyxz, Laurence, Jhong]

Stubborn we may be, we didn’t let those burden faze us…
[Kenjhons]

We practiced (we gave time for teachnicals since we sucked at that) a lot…
[Gold’s gym]

–talked a lot…
[Gold’s gym]

–prayed a lot…
[ALLSTARS’ way]

Shempre, not forgetting to have fun…
*this is our third home, Madelle’s studio. By this time, she was already part of our core.
[Brewing Point]

–enjoy life…
[Laurence, Brewing Point]

–and sleep (while still having fun! hehe!).
[Jhong, Brewing Point]

God really has humour. Sometimes, everything would be difficult that it seemed like He was testing us to see how far we would go. But ALLSTARS are a crayzey & a hardheaded lot; we wouldn’t give up! So then everything would be provided. Same as last year, ticket fares were paid on the last minute of the booking deadline.
[ALSTARS’ way]

So in July 27, we found ourselves in the US again, this time with Sheena & Pat who were denied visas the year before, and our new members, Madelle & Deo.
[backstage with Floyd & Jun]

Philippines had 3 representatives, The Philippine Allstars, The Crew & The UP Street. Ang saya!
[the HHI 2006 official Philippine Representatives]

It was so overwhelming to be able to share the stage with some of the best dancers in the world…
[Opening Parade, Finals, Redondo Beach, CA]

During the eliminations, we placed 1st out of almost 30 dance crews in the world. And so we performed last during the finals…
[World Hip Hop Finals 2006]

And so, as we have been promoting the Man up there, He promoted us.
[2006 World Hip Hop Champions]

We were champions. Truly, destiny cannot be broken!
[2006 World Hip Hop CHampions]

It was a special night, not just for us…
[Allstars with Luther Brown]

–but for everyone present in that room…
[One Big Circle after the Awarding Ceremony]

–that night, the world became smaller…
[Suave of Hip Hop Connexions Chicago & Kenjhons]

–everyone became united in their love of Hip Hop…
[Kenjhons]

–and for their love of God.
Yey.
One Love. One Hip Hop. One God.
We’d like to think that each one walked away a champion. =)
[Kenjhons]

It has been one crazy year that seemed to have spanned a decade…
{Boys]

–like a roller coaster ride…
[Boys]

–full of ups…
[Kenjhons]

–and downs…
[Jhong & Kyxz]

–a year brimming with…
[muscles]

–moments of…
[Kenjhons with Balara kids]

–love…
[QC Detention Cell]

–trials…
[Lema]

–friendship…
[Jhong & Kyxz]

–fights…
[Michelle & Kenjhons Hulk]

–celebrations…
[Motorcade]

–struggles…
[waiting]

–glamour…
[Pimpin’]

–or pure baloney… hehe!
[Sheena, Reagan, Michelle (& Maya behind the bush)]

–and of course, cyphers.
*We want to preserve this culture coz this is where we can find Hip Hop dance in its raw & purest form.
[Cypher]

Look at how we’ve grown in a year!
[Before & After]

From being mere friends…
[late dinner at Something Fishy]

–we became brothers & sisters…
[Big Pat & Jhong]

Our family gets bigger. Niko & Prince officially became our trainees.
[Niko & Prince]

The tards (retards hehe!)
[Sheena, Michelle, Madelle & Lema (Chelo was still in the UK)]

–and the loids (mongoloids ha-ha!)…
[the boys]

–will go beyond the cyphers…
[Jammin’ w/ percussionists at Rockwell]

–to improve the country’s standard in dance…
[spot number in Wowowee, a very popular noontime game show]

–promote originality & creativity…
[CADS concert 2006]

–educate the kids, especially the less-fortunate but equally talented ones…
[Pathways workshop with public HS kids]

–and the ardent followers of this art…
[Sunday class with Kenjhons]

–and of course, most importantly, to spread His words & share His blessings…
[with kids at E-games event]

–coz bottomline, we know that we can hold it up on the dance floor…
[Kenjhons vs Lema at Jaipur]

–or in real life…
[Lema & Sheena vs Jhong]

–as long as we keep our faith…
[Kenjhon’s shirt “God’s got mah back”]

–coz we know that God’s got our backs. That’s as permanent as Laurence’s tattoo. =)
[Laurence]

* * * * * * *

VIDEOS:


Our first competition piece.


Announcement of winners, HHI 2006.


Video montage from our first year.

November 20, 2014 Posted by | Blogroll, breakdance, dance, hip hop, Jesus, life, Philippine Allstars | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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June 17, 2012 Posted by | dance, introspect, life | , | Enter your password to view comments.

BURNT OUT

.los angeles.california.usa.

BURNT OUT

This is what I want to do for a whole month.

* I’m not in good terms with Dance today.

* & same w/ Music. Sometimes I freakin’ get annoyed listening to anything. I just want to be deafened by utter silence.

* I realized that the reason why I’m so fickle w/ my dance career is this: BURNT OUT, but I can’t freakin’ take time-off coz I feel like I don’t even have time to do that. Coz my “expiration date” is nigh. Ya know what I mean jamine? Hay. The pains of being a latebloomer.

* But thing is, I don’t want to stop dancing. I am always in search of that feeling when I get lost in dance & music. Am I at the wrong place? Am I being eaten by the system here? Coz hey this is The Industry capital… I think that is what’s scaring me off… that by riding along its waves, I lose myself in the process. And that is what’s killing me…

* But I guess, as what always happens, this is just a cycle… I’ll muster the strength to ride along those waves someday. At least I know for sure that I cannot compromise who I am and what I believe in. Ever. For art is art, and it stop being that if artists are gonna sell out or sell their souls. For now, I will just content myself on this shore, watching &hearing the majestic sound of the actual waves.

(books, pen & paper & pineapple juice images from google.)

April 17, 2012 Posted by | Blogroll, dance, life | , | Leave a comment

GIFT OF DANCE

.los angeles.california.usa.

Been watching youtube videos of myself from all these years… I have not always been the strongest dancer, I can even say that I am the weakest one. There are only a few “countful” times where I stood out (when fired up, I guess). I have always been the one who always falls  or slips. But despite this, I’ve gone so FAR… as far as I’ve never imagined I can ever go. 🙂 Maybe because I dream big. They say we all should keep dreaming coz dreams are free. I guess I horde a lot of dreams. I have befriended Sandman and he has kept me company all these years, even when I have seem to forget he existed in my life.

And more than anything, I have always been faithful. I may not have been His most ardent follower or His best student, but my faith has been unwavering. No matter what road I take, I just close my eyes and open my heart & mind to where He will direct me.

I mean who would have known that I will be in the dance world. Not my school friends. Nor even my family. I have not shown any slightest inclination to this art. Yeah I have danced for a school program or a school project, but who hasn’t, right? I have stumbled upon dance in 2000 when, out of nowhere, me and my friend Malove dropped by this lonesome dance studio at Shangri-La (Powerdance) and I caught sight a Pro-Jazz class. It was a sight to behold as I couldn’t take my eyes off them anymore. They had made me want to dance. I had no job back then, and my family & (then)boyfriend just left to the US for good, so I was open to anything that came my way. Right there & then, I decided to enroll in their summer workshop… then I was hooked. For life.

Even when I was already dancing, I never thought that I would go this far. I mean come on, I am short, I am bowlegged, I have incredibly long arms, I have weak lungs and a stiff back (scoliosis). I don’t think I can ever become a back-up for Janet or Justin (unless they put apple boxes for all their short dancers hahaha!). I can’t ever be part of Cirque du Soleil, or be that sexy exotic girl on a hip hop music video. But despite all these, I became a world changer (in my own way), had a voice & has inspired a lot of people. Even when I am not visibly part of the group anymore, kids still come to me which makes my heart swell a hundred times its size (or is it just my cholesterol-ed blood pumping in? :D)… And when I moved here, too, I had thought that I will retire from serious dancing and just do some usual gigs here and there, and just be a full-time mom with a full-time secured job. But no! I was given a scholarship where I will by trained for 6 months in different styles of dance (hip hop, jazz, ballet, contemporary, modern, theater jazz, house & salsa). It is a different world of dance again, with different set of people. I am like starting from scratch, and a NOBODY. Yet, in my own little ways, I am able to inspire, and they make me inspired too. I don’t know where this will lead me. At 34, I know I am too old for this. But He has given me a strong body & this youthful “beauty” (haha!) for a reason… And so I will blindly follow. Hey this is Hollywood anyway. Commercial or underground, there is always a spot for anyone who wants to dance.

At the end of it all, I will always be thankful. I am God’s little, clumsy dancer. And I think I will dance as long as I can move, coz dance is a gift, and through this gift I thank Him. ♥


1:21 I almost failed to get up from that locking get down.

1:52 I slipped.

October 23, 2011 Posted by | dance, Philippine Allstars | , , | 1 Comment

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June 19, 2011 Posted by | dance, Philippine Allstars | , | Enter your password to view comments.

ROOTS

 .marikina city.philippines.

photo credit: Mac Dimanlig & Alex Gutierrez

 

My Roots Battle experience:

Waacking, House or Bgirlin’? My gawd I am a confused little girl.

Thing is I don’t want to be so much like a purist. I believe that dance evolves and it fuses all styles. But yes I believe in learning all foundations before breaking them… Maybe I was just so impatient.

* * *

Because I sucked at hitting the beat, Brooklyn Terry came up to me and said, “Hey Tiny! (This was his nickname for me hahaha!) You think too much! You gotta just listen to the music & feel!!! Like… do you ever listen to music even when you’re not dancing?”

I said no.

There you go. “You have to make music your boyfriend.”

But yeah, this was just one snippet of lesson that this whole experience taught me. They have all this philosophies about dance & life that they spread, that I believe we already know. But I guess it had to take them to say it in our faces to really absorb it… And it has to take us to watch them live to really comprehend what they believe about music. Shoot, they were like making love to it!!! The energy just flowed through them, through the crowd, enveloping us with positivity. I was with Rycher Christian Alfonso & Maya Carandang that time, and I could see undeniable fire sparked in their eyes. Heck, it was the same fire I saw in Maya when we were competing at Worlds! I guess, for Allstars, it sparked something that got extinguished because of everything that has happened.

As for me, I still burn with so much passion & craving to learn everything in spite of lack of time & well, my age. I might have sucked during the battle, but at least I was in the cypher. 🙂

BILOOOOOOOOG!!!

CONGRATULATIONS & THANK YOU to Lema, Madelle, Prince & Vince for pushing this, making this all happen. I feel so sorry for those who missed this, big time. I have been to a lot of events/competitions/workshops where OG’s were present, but none of them were as special as this one. For it happened right here at our homeland. Nothing were out of place, not even the electrical breakout could kill it last night. Grabeee, sarap lahat from Pre-Selection to the Workshops, to hanging out with them, to the Finals.

CONGRATS to all the Champions, you all deserved it! Ian (grabe, kahelera ka na nina Prince & Vince!), Phil, Chris, Gadz, Haslah & partner, go out and inspire everyone! 🙂

Thank you to the Elite Force Crew, Bboy Ynot & Bboy Chen Chen, and our very own Eauj Corpuz (thanks for giving me a point btw, hehehe!).

Lastly, THANK YOU LORD for the gift of dance.



* * * * * * *


BOBBY MILEAGE’s reply to my photo blog:  🙂

WHAT UP TINY?? IT IS OK TO WANT TO DO MORE STYLES! YOU DO NOT HAVE TO FEEL LIKE A PURIST! PEOPLE GET CONFUSED WHEN WE TALK ABOUT FOUNDATION AND LEARNING!! WE SAY THIS SO THAT PEOPLE CAN GET MORE VOCABULARY AND THEN BECOME MORE CREATIVE!! … HOUSE ALSO HAS MANY OTHER STYLES OF DANCED INFUSED IN IT! AS WELL AS ALL OUR DANCES!! BUT LIKE I TELL PEOPLE BECOME GREAT IN ONE DANCE AND THEN MOVE ON TO THE NEXT!! I CAME FROM HIP HOP AND THEN LEARNED HOUSE FOR 7 YRS BEFORE I EVEN EVER CONSIDERED TEACHING IT!! LOVE IT, LIVE IT, LEARN IT, THEN SPREAD IT!! THIS IS THE PURIST IT GETS BEING FREE INSIDE OF THE MUSIC DOING WHATEVER YOU FEEL!! IF YOU CAME TO THE CLUBS BACK IN MY DAY YOU COULD SEE MANY STYLES ROCKIN IN ONE CLUB NO MATTER THE MUSIC!! SO KEEP IT AND DO NOT THINK ABOUT SO MUCH! DANCE FOR YOUR LIFE AND FOR YOUR FREEDOM AND MIND!!
YOU ARE NEVER TOO OLD!! I ALWAYS DANCED BUT DID NOT PURSUE THIS CAREER UNTIL I WAS 27 ALMOST 28YRS OLD!! SO JUST KEEP THE FIRE AND KEEP ON IMPROVING! DANCE IS LIFE!! MUCH LOVE TO THE PHILLIPINES!! THANK YOU FOR HAVING EF AND HOPE TO COME BACK AGAIN!!

November 7, 2010 Posted by | Blogroll, breakdance, dance | Leave a comment

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WHAT IS YOUR PROFESSION?

I am a dancer.

June 10, 2009 Posted by | dance, interests, Philippine Allstars | 2 Comments

SOLES

.quezon city.philippines.

Booo for my dansneakers. I went to Airdance’ company class yesterday (my first jazz class after a looong time). In the middle of an across-the-floor routine, something black came off my foot when I did a jete. When I looked back I realized it was my sole. Hahaha! I left a part of my sole on the flo’. 😉 Tsk. Ang mahal pa naman nito. Tagal ko kasi di nagamit. But I think it’s the reason why it’s so comfortable for dancer’s feet. Coz of those soft unsturdy soles. It’s not even coz of the prolonged un-used. Coz I remember, we’d spend some time before class covering our shoes with Leukoplasts to extend their lifespan. 😀 Oh I miss Leukoplasts too… These are my favorite things in the world of jazz.

sole

hello mr. quikie?

March 18, 2009 Posted by | dance, interests, rants | Leave a comment

IN HER WOMB: CONFESSIONS OF A DANCING FETUS

.sylmar.california.usa.

 

I am as headstrong as my momma. There have been a lot of instances when my health was in jeopardy because of her stubborness. But that is just the way she is, & I may grow up to be like her, for all we know! But then, being stubborn can also mean loyalty, or steadfastness, or sticking with someone til the end, no matter what. Somehow I am like her coz I’ve stuck with her from the time she almost lost me, to the time that she embraced me with fervour like a child not letting go of her first doll.

Pregnancy came to her like a thief in the night. She was not ready; she didn’t want me. But who would be, if you’re a dancer who started pretty late & it seemed you’re going against time coz even if dance is always there for you, it does not wait. That and her pregnancy made her in denial in the first few days. She didn’t tell anyone, thinking, even praying that she was only dreaming. As the mind can take on things to happen, she was hoping that the mind can make things UNhappen. But it was there. As cold as the truth can be on a midsummer night that will just send chills down your spine like an unwanted news.

She was in the middle of a summer workshop and was teaching two junior classes. She had to give up the beginners class she was handling coz that required her to jump around, and run after all those little kids who had shorter attention span than her lest she’d have a miscarriage. She was so glad that she could keep the other class, the more advanced kids to whom she could just teach something not too jumpy.

When I was 2 months in her womb, it was the time of their first choreographers’ showcase. It was heartbreaking for her to know that she might not dance at all. She wanted to. She thought she could. She was only in her 1st trisem after all. Her tummy wouldn’t show til the 5th or 6th month. She would force Kenjhons to cast her in his dance or would learn Lema’s piece. But they won’t allow her to dance for them. She would be irritated at how they had seemed to know better when it was her own body at stake. Eventually she realized that they really did know better. She didn’t know that the 1st trisem is the most crucial stage in pregnancy coz during that time I was still made mostly of blood. If she’d have spotting, I might have gone with those blood too. This and more she learned from her OB. And to her she listened. So she followed her advice and did not dance… no matter how much she wanted to.

She couldn’t perform but at least she could still choreograph! She thought of working with people whom she could draw joy & inspiration from, who could divert her from the painful fact that she couldn’t step on the stage… the kids. Allen, Charles, Gabi, Joey, Margaux, Trish, Dapdap, Tisha, & the rest kept her sanity for the rest of the rehearsal days. Good news came as the concert went near; she was given a chance to be part of two choreographies where she was given minor roles. It made her so happy. She was able to perform on stage after all in her 3rd month.

Then it was time for training for the World Championship. It was a good thing that her group has already voted (all-boys) for the top people who would carry the burden of the competition. But then all of them were still required by Kenjhons to train. It was a blessing in disguise that I was in my momma’s womb coz she was excused from jogging! Oh how she hated jogging. Though Ken usually isolated her & was given her own pace apart from the group coz of her asthma, it was still an excuse not to wake up early in the morning to jog. But she was there during training in the studio. Expectant moms in their late 1st trisem usually get exhausted easily, so a lot of times, after joining the group for a few minutes of dancing, she would lie down on the sofa & just watch. During those times, a wide space on the sofa was what comforted her, more than the dance space she so much craved as a bgirl. She would rather nap or just sit for hours. I guess that was how I took a lot of her energy & nutrients.

When I was 4 months in her belly, her 2nd trisem, she got back her energy & had more! There were gigs where she’d specifically ask Lema to let her join and lie to her & to others that it’s ok for her to dance. She remembers what her OB said, “Ok you can dance but when you start spotting, please stop ok? Or you’ll lose your baby.” That was what she was thinking. As long as there was no pain or spotting, sige lang. During those times, she did liftings with Reagan in their Hide & Sick choreo, she did her usual footworks in her solo bgirl part (except for the headspin), she did a 60’s ballroom dance, and an all girl choreo for an Adidas gig wherein nakipagsabayan sha sa mga bata … and it took a toll on her. She eventually had a UTI and was brought to the ER and was given antibiotisc. But she continued dancing again as soon as she felt she could move again. Then she went to her OB for a check-up and she found out that, because of the infection & her activities, she had a threatened pre-term labor. She nearly lost me coz her cervix was opening up & she had been having contractions. The OB more than ordered, but pleaded her to stop dancing. For my sake. She was made to stay in bed, confined to the 4 corners of her room. Two weeks of bed rest.

Those 2 weeks were the most difficult part of her pregnancy. Her UTI got worse & it gave her early contractions. She couldn’t walk or even stand up. Her only breaks away from her bed was when she had to go to the rest room where she had to be carried. During those times, my daddy took care of her almost 24/7. My daddy was, in those times, our hero… This was the point that she had accepted that she had to give way to me. That her dance had to give way to motherhood. She had finally let go.

When it was time for her & her group to travel to US for the World Championship, she was well & able & was given permit to fly. Being a pregnant Allstars member that time was a totally different experience for her (in the first 2 years, she was a competitor & in their 3rd she was one of the assistants or “yaya’s” ). This year, she was just like a ghost that could go in, past, out, up or above . She had the license to just watch, follow them around, ignore them, cheer with them, take pictures… She could do anything she wanted to do! But of course she didn’t take advantage of that. She still took her responsibility of managing their finances for food & lodging.  She enjoyed this year’s championship and more than that, her team claimed the Gold again. Sabi nila swerte ang buntis. But then they deserved it & they’d point up to BestFriend for all the glory. Cheers, I’m a champion baby!

I was 6 months in her belly when her group went home. She stayed in the US with her family. It was a hard decision, or fact for her to accept: staying where her family can take care of her and be away from the group. Coz she was thinking all along that it sucks to be a pregnant Allstar after winning Championships. Even though she couldn’t dance, she just wanted to follow them around.  I guess once an obstinate woman, forever an obstinate one. But she eventually gave in to the idea that she can just live vicariously through them as they celebrate their victories in the PI.

In those first few days that she got physically separated from the group, she was like in a limbo. She didn’t know what to do. She was suddenly left with nothing. Usually, when she’s in the US, she’d attend dance classes, or attend bboy sessions & competitions. But in her state, she couldn’t. She was like spaced-out for days. She couldn’t even just watch dance videos on youtube coz it only made her helpless. She began to divert her attention to things that she hasn’t done in a long time like reading, writing, learning photoshops, painting, learning different languages & brushing up on her sign language. She also played a lot with her nephews & spent quality time with her family! Viola, there was a lot to do after all!

I’m 7mos old now in her belly & momma’s doing well. She is excited to go back dancing as a mom. They said a dancer changes in some ways after giving birth. Aside from the physical changes it would take on her, somehow motherhood will mature her. The irreversible physical damage on her body she doesn’t mind coz she has long accepted that in the first place, she didn’t have the perfect “dancer’s body”; her shoulders & hips are too narrow, her arms too long, her height too short, her back too straight (scoliotic) and her lungs too weak (asthmatic). That was why she has grown to love breakdancing coz it embraces a dancer more with whatever body structure he/she has than jazz/ballet. It just boils down to how aggressive you train & how hungry you are with conditioning. And mommy’s like that.

Nowadays, as my mom has stopped dancing, I kinda miss the feeling of somersaulting in her womb. I was used to her moving about, doing floorworks almost like writhing on the floor, practicing her flips, jumpin’ around. Now with only the threadmill walk as her exercise, mas malikot pa ako! I even wake her up in the middle of the night coz i had to stretch my legs & the womb is getting smaller & smaller for me. But we both don’t mind this coz in 8weeks, I’ll be out. Who knows, I might be following my mom & dad’s footsteps & be a World Champion! But we’ll never know. Just like my momma never imagined she’d be in the dance world, to think that it was an alien world to her when she was 23 (my momma has never danced in her life before that). So who knows. 

October 14, 2008 Posted by | Blogroll, dance, family, pregnancy | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

   

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