Wednesday, April 9, 2008

A New Chapter...

Hello Blog World!!!
I graduated from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) in May 2006, Cum Laude, with a Bachelor’s in Communications (Journalism and Media Studies) an emphasis in Public Relations and a minor in Business Law. I jumped into Corporate America working for Target as a Human Resources Executive. However, I was still torn between the idea of “growing up and getting a real job,” and dancing. Three weeks after starting my job as an Executive at Target I called in late for a “doctor’s appointment” and went to an audition at the Caesar’s Palace Casino for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines (RCCL). The audition was tough, testing us in many areas of dance, including: ballet, jazz, hip hop, and Broadway. There were about 125 people there and they slowly narrowed it down to 5 dancers 2 boys and 3 girls… and I was one of those girls! I told RCCL I wasn’t available until January 2007, which was no a problem for them, and then I ran back to Target. As January 2007 was nearing I liked the “idea” of dancing on a cruise but didn’t really see it as a reality. John (my husband) was just about entering his last semester of college at UNLV and I was doing very well at Target and had in fact just received a bonus and had been named their Executive of the Month (for October). So I turned down the RCCL contract to dance on the Mariner of the Seas which was cruising the Caribbean.
I started to regret this decision more and more as the months went on. Target made “promises” that were not coming to pass and I was unhappy. John did graduate in May 2007 and began working at Trendwest a timeshare company, where he upgrades existing owners. (He is still doing this and is doing well for himself) So with this new job security I was finally able to quit Corporate America! Wow, what a relief! I wanted to find employment in the things I love, dance, teaching, and helping people, but with a flexible schedule that didn’t tie me down too much. So I found a creative combination that truly made me happy and very busy! I worked as a dance teacher at a children studio and at a gym teaching adult jazz, a substitute teacher for the local high schools, a hotel nanny for VIP guests, and finally my most favorite job was working at the Rape Crisis Center as the assistant and classroom facilitator for the Child Assault Prevention (CAP) program.
All of this was wonderful, however I did burn myself out a bit because I just kept adding things to my plate and I kept being plagued with the desire to professionally dance myself and to stop teaching. I also had this overwhelming feeling to experience a new path in life. So I discussed my concerns with my hubby and we started coming up with options and the “cruise idea” came up and I was thrilled at the thought! John and I decided that together we would go work on a cruise and then come back and “start real life again.” So I contacted RCCL again thinking I didn’t have any sort of chance to get rehired, but to my surprise they remembered me and sent me a contract to dance on the Navigator of the Seas in the Mediterranean within hours!!!! I was ecstatic, but I still had to get John a job on the same ship. Well this actually turned out to be a lot harder than we thought. John was basically either too qualified or under qualified, and didn’t speak a foreign language… so we couldn’t get him a job. But John insisted that I still go and he supported me 100% and wanted me to fulfill my dreams to be a dancer. So we brought this scenario to our Bishop and to my dad and both were surprisingly very supportive as well. Then John and I prayed together about this scenario and we both felt a wonderful peace and feeling about me going on this adventure.
So here I am! I am in Hollywood, Florida (just outside of Fort Lauderdale) rehearsing for two months and then heading to the Mediterranean porting out of Barcelona, Spain. I live in an apartment with 6 roommates and am part of a cast of 14 (6 girl dancers, 4 boy dancers, 2 boy singers and 2 girl singers). We dance 6 days a week for 40-45 hours, with Sundays off, and a LDS church is less than a mile from the apartments … it is awesome! We are learning 3 shows titled All Access, Now and Forever, and Ballroom Fever. In just two weeks we have already finished our first show All Access which is an eclectic mix of 70s-early 90s songs from Queen “We Will Rock You,” to a Madonna Medley… it amazing! The dancing is so awesome and the singers are so talented! Tomorrow we start Ballroom Fever which is basically all partnering…which I have never done before! Wish me luck!!! :)
This blog is for my family and friends to see how I’m doing on this wonderful adventure and when I return to Vegas John and I will keep the blog going together. Please enjoy my shenanigans. :)