I recently ran into an old friend that commented on my minimal involvement in the pole industry as of recent years. The truth is, for the last 2 years I have focused on slowing down and taking time for me. Time for me to heal, time to learn, time to love and time to focus on new energies and paths.
To be honest, in my whole 7 years of competitive pole dancing (9 years poling in total), I had never really thought beyond Miss Pole Dance Australia. From the day I began pole dancing, the MPDA crown was my dream but once it came true, I felt as though I had completed a milestone. I no longer needed to prove anything to myself nor felt the desire to. People always ask “What comp are you doing next?” and frankly, I don’t know because I don’t have any desire to go on and do comps for the sake of doing comps. I feel as though I have been so focused on dancing since the age of 18 that I have not allowed myself to experience what some may call ‘normal’ aspects of life such as love, health, knowledge and leisure. As much as I love to dance and perform and it will always be a part of my life, I feel as though that milestone was the perfect moment to stop and explore my life a little more.
After suffering from an eating disorder, I never really allowed my body to fully heal before I jumped straight into training. My obsession with pole dancing allowed me to focus my energies away from my body image but didn’t give my body that chance to settle before putting it back under a lot of stress resulting in secondary amenorrhoea for over 7 years (no periods). The signs from my body was obviously telling me to slow down but my mind had other intentions. I used to tell myself that it didn’t matter because I don’t want to have kids. Looking back, I can see the story I was telling myself as I was trying to hide a truth I didn’t want to face. Now, the thought of kids in the future fills me with joy however the battle of amenorrhoea continues all because I didn’t give myself the time I needed when I needed it. This is one of the reasons my last two years have been spent learning, resting and allowing my body the love and treatment it has needed. I was also always injured or in pain with a sore back, sore hamstring, bursitis in my knee etc. I trained through it all just because I had a comp to do. I look back and wonder if I had just taken a little more time, would I have needed surgery? Would I have been able to manage my pain better than taking anti inflammatory everyday? This is why I wanted look into my health and study it.
I have always been interested in healing the body naturally where possible and therefore I chose to study Naturopathy (Herbal Medicine) to increase my knowledge in this field. Not only did I want to learn about my own body and how to heal it naturally but also to be able to share my knowledge and help others heal. I am currently 2 years in to my 4 year course and have a lot of hard work ahead of me! I have managed thus far to travel for pole and maintain my studies but as it comes down to the nitty gritty of the course, I am going to have to spend less time traveling and more time studying!
Last year, I also completed my 200hr Yoga Teacher training in Bali which was something I had been wanting to do for a while. I used to think yoga was so slow and boring however, after learning more and more about the philosophy and meaning of yoga I have grown to love it. I find yoga challenging, calming, and revitalizing and I still feel there is so much more to learn and that I have only just skimmed the surface!
Leading up to MPDA 2017, I had just met Jake. Since my break up with a toxic relationship had ended back in 2013, I had never put myself in the position to date let alone get close to anyone. My focus on pole dancing was the only thing on my mind which kept me from getting into any sort of relationship. I found myself very lonely at times but continued on my path without going out of my way to make an effort. One day, in my one effort to find someone, I found Jake. Someone who made me realize how much more fun life can be with someone by your side. After MPDA 17, among the other things I mentioned above, I finally felt I had the time and energy to spend getting to know someone else and really fall in love.
This year, I have taken on a new role as co-owner of the Blackbird studio. This was an exciting time for me as I have been with Blackbird from the start and have always referred to it as my home. I will always be involved in the pole industry in some way as I could never leave my love of dancing, creativity and heels but I am proud to say that taking it slow has made me able to reflect on what a career I have had already and how proud I am of what I have been able to achieve at only the age of 27!
My life is young, and I could have 5 different careers from here if I really wanted but for now, I am blessed to be a part of this community and feel overwhelmed from the support you have given over the years! ❤