A Dance to Self-Identity – Vanshika

A Dance to Self-Identity - Vanshika

People told me, you can’t but I did. That’s who I am! They called my rigidity, stubbornness and my fragility, weakness. Now, they admire me.

That’s how I know that I’ve come a long way. Though a lot is left yet to go through.

Three years ago, a guy questioned my passion for dancing and told me to stop it once and for all. It left me blank and distressed. It hit me so hard that it made me realize the true value that dance holds in my life. I gave up everything else to prove myself. It felt great to acknowledge my soul-calling in the form of dance.

The lockdown urged me to do hands-on training. It was a whole new experience, as before I was on a contractual basis. Since April, I have done sessions on online training and I’m excited.

As I am also a journalist, and a content strategist, to be specific, I had to work hard in the digital marketing firm, initially. To balance out my work and dance is a challenge. I started working about a year and a half ago. Before I was working, I was attending dance classes, various workshops by day, and making videos by evening. I didn’t believe in sparing the nights so I was working on my technique and movements by then. I was training myself with the help of stretching as I felt I wasn’t flexible enough. As I aspire to be a performer, I have a bucket list. One of my dreams is to perform for a crowd of thousands.

From a young age, I learned the Harmonium, Tabla, and other instruments out of curiosity. I also learned Kathak for two years, which was a truly enlighting experience.

While I was still in college, I performed in a few fests outside, including T-series Stage work, and was selected. I was overwhelmed to see the kind of appreciation I got for my act.

I think the reason people find it easier to judge me is perhaps I’m bold and straight forward. It starts with the way I walk, continues with the way I dress, and ends with the way I speak. However, none of it could stop me from pursuing my calling in life, and this lockdown urged me to do hands-on training. It was a whole new experience, as before I used to do only wedding choreographies. Since April, I have done online training sessions, and I’m excited enough for the things to come in my way.

As time passed, people came into my life, judged me, put me down and I had left them behind. In the beginning, it bothered me but with time, I’ve grown a thick skin. Their judgments barely matter now. The turning point came in my life when I understood that I was the sole author of my life and didn’t need anyone’s hand in it. It wasn’t easy for me as I had to convince my parents about the nature of my job and my passion for it. It took them some time to understand in the same way that I dealt with other’s opinions and comments on me.

Admist all the mess, I tried my luck to the place I always dreamt of learning from, Shiamak Davar Academy. Fortunately, I got selected. I was amongst the top 20 people from all over the Delhi NCR to get selected. I was happy and sad at the same time. Happy because I had just achieved something I had dreamt off and sad for the fact that I wouldn’t be able to go. Due to the financial crisis, my family was going through, I couldn’t muster the courage to even ask for it from my father. The next year I tried, again I got selected but couldn’t go due to some unavoidable people and circumstances.

Now, when I finally tried for the third year, I was proud as well as overwhelmed that I got this opportunity again and satisfied. I finally understood that there is no person or situation that can stop me from doing it.Gradually, I created a YouTube channel and it has been going well for more than two years.

I have grown to become more confident, and I have learned many things in the process. One of them is to stop getting bothered by what people say or think, for I do not owe anything to anyone. The second is to take risks and try things, do what your heart says and leave no regrets. The third is putting that lovely smile on my face more often and loving myself more because, why not?

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