"I can't skate," I warned Coach as we stepped on the ice. Two weeks of load in, hang and focus on top of my work and skating schedule was taking a serious toll. I was physically and mentally exhausted, bruised and hurting in a lot of places, and Tech Week was still to go. "This show is killing me."
"If you think you can't skate by your lesson time, just let me know," he seemed understanding. (He's a former show skater.) He went off to teach a little girl for the first half of the session, and I went to play around.
Well, the little girl was off and on the ice, being a little girl. And Coach happened to look my way right when I got bodily lost somewhere between an inside edge and a mohawk and took a fall. "I don't think we should skate today," he laughed.
"I'm fine, I can skate!" I popped right back up, completely unhurt but shaky from Tired. "I'm tough." I don't know who I was trying to convince, but he laughed at me.
I took it easy from there on out. Whatever happened, happened, and if it didn't I wasn't going to beat myself up about it. There simply wasn't any point in expecting too much out of myself this week. I let it go. Tech Week was either going to go smoothly or not, but I can only focus on one thing at a time.
Coach came back to me again when his student went to re-tie her skates. "Let's see those mohawks." I can't express enough how happy his ability to squeeze every second makes me. So we did Mohawks while little girl retied. And he made them a little better.
Little girl came back, and he went back to her. I started playing the music we're going to use for Ice Show, and I got excited. Yes, Ice Show is going to start revving up pretty much right after Tech Week, so I'm going to go from a Late-Night Theatre Schedule right into an Early Morning Skating Training schedule. And I mean hardcore. I'm being given the Solo of my Dreams, and I want this right.
Little Girl finally left, and Coach came back to me. We worked on Spins, Forward and Sit, and those are starting to come together. And then we worked on jumps. My salchow is much improved and it feels way better. Not so scary anymore, starting to become fun. We worked on Toe Loop, and while there's a lot of room for improvement, it's well on its way.
Then we came back to Half Loop, one we haven't looked at in awhile. I started to protest, given how tired I was, but when I protest anything Coach acts like I'm not speaking at all. Which is kinda funny, because I can see he hears me, he just doesn't respond. So I just went with it. If it happens, great. If not, okay. And surprisingly, it clicked this time. Coach held my hand for a few tries, and then I let go. "I think I got this," and then I did a small one by myself.
What happened next was utter insanity.
"Okay, now do a waltz jump, but land it with your free leg in front."
"Okay..." I did that.
"Do it again, and then go right into a half loop."
"Fine." I eke it through.
"Do that again...."
"Okay..." I stumble through it again.
"Now. Do the waltz, half loop, then swing right into a sal."
"That's crazy. You're crazy. No."
"This is crazy." And I had to give myself a little push to make it into the salchow, but the coordination was there. I just needed speed.
So we did it until the Zam chased us off, and I was having an utter ball by then. I really hope this sticks, because he said, "We can put this in your program." He knows how excited I am about this solo.
So, here's hoping I get my music this weekend, so I can start putting one show away (at least until strike) and start work on my next!