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  1. #1
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    Default Recovering from illness, returning to dance

    A request to my fellow instructors out there who have experienced a gap in their dancing due to illness or injury: can you tell me how the lay off affected you, what you found most difficult about the recovery, how you dealt with both the emotional and physical aspects of enforced layoff from dancing? Please note that while I adore student input at normal times, I am particularly interested in hearing from teachers and professional about this.
    Thank you. Shanazel

  2. #2
    V.I.P. Yasmine Bint Al Nubia's Avatar
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    Hi Shanazel, I'm glad that you making progress in your recovery! I haven't had personal experience in regards to your question, but my teacher suffered and MI(heart attack) last fall. Using my observations as nurse and instructor, this is my take on her situation. She had a speedy recovery with only minor complications(fluid on her lungs which was tapped w/o difficulty). She still has problems wtih fatigue and shortness of breath at times. I also noticed increased irritability, especially after a long day.
    From an emotional perspective, she 's having a hard time knowing that her body won't respond as it has in the past. But her recovery will take more than a year, patience is important in any recovery. This week she is finally taking a vaction(after 6 years). I hope she will focus on herself and her family and understand there are other things in life other than dance. Balance is the key.Also starting slow and letting your body build up endurance and stamina is important, trying to rush this process will only delay physical healing. Good nutrition, fluid intake and rest will give the body what it needs. I hope this helps but finally, listen to your body.
    Yasmine

  3. #3
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    I had an accident in Dec, 2005, was really sick half of 2006 and could not dance. But step by step I was able to walk, first evry shortly and covered with a scarf, so that I could not see anything else than straight ahead. Gradually, I seemed to cope and was walking more than ever before in my life and after, also with "nordic walk" style where we use sticks to get some exercise to the upper body also. To recover mentally, which was a part of the thing, I did chi kung and learned some relaxation and breathing techniques. In the beginning of 2007 started very slowly to dance again, or to move my body like dancing. And like a miracle, I am back to business totally now, can do 4 hours workshops and spinning without any problems. I thank God for this and feel overwhelmingly happy about my situation now.

    What did I learn? My dancing has changed a lot, everybody sees it, I have more of "my style" which I want to develop. I also have better understanding of my body, I will treat it differently now on, if it says I need a rest, then I take time to rest. I also now understand that some day - there will be a day- when I have to stop dancing and let it go. I know now how I will feel then, because nothing can compare to dance. I tried all I could but it is so part of me. But I am more prepared for the moment now.

    What else do you want to know? most difficult part was to start again, because I was scared to be really really sick again if I try. And I could not do only a small training, because I am used to do it with full effort and skill. I had to go back to beginners class style to understand how slowly I have to start again. Ok, I was sick a couple of times for making too much, too quickly. So I learned that when I dance, I have to put all thoughts positive
    and not to think about the possibility of falling again, just look forward and believe.

    I have no idea of your situation, but my heart is there with you, whatever the problem is.

  4. #4
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    Thank you both very much for the responses. I had to cancel my summer session dance class this week because I am not well enough to teach it, and so have been feeling particularly crushed. In all these years, I have never had to cancel an entire session...

    I am a bit better than I was several weeks ago, but nowhere near normal, and it helps to know others have survived major illness to teach and dance again. There is still no clear concensus why I am so ill, but perhaps the Highly Educated and Incredibly Well-paid Individuals I have consulted will be able to figure it out before too long. I will remember what you wrote, Tuija, about too much, too fast. I keep thinking, "If I just put my mind to it, I can IGNORE this illness and keep dancing." Pretty silly, I know.

    Thanks again, you all. Shanazel

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    V.I.P. Lydia's Avatar
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    Hi Shanazal...i was missing you and was wondering if you was on holiday....I realy do think that you must use the summer months for your self to get back on track....when you go back to dancing,teaching to fast you will take much longer to recover....when you train alone you can take it slow and be carefull what you are doing ,i think you must let your body recover first, and than start very slow....dont worry work will wait for you....give your body time if you go to fast perhaps you will relapse...take rest till you are realy much better than start slow work on your streching first, only after that think about tecnics and last when all is done try to get your stamina back...rest, eat good ,sleep good vitamine,s extra drink lots of fresh juices and water you must give yourself time......i was not well 5 years ago i hade slipped disks and went back to work to soon and it toke my 2 and half year to recover properly,and hade to stay on painkillers and heavy medication...if i hade give myself time i am sure that i would have been better much faster...summer holiday,s are a good exuus for you to take a nice break....i hope you get well real soon...hugs Lydia

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    V.I.P. janaki's Avatar
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    Hi Shanazel,

    First of all I wish you speedy recovery.

    I woudl like to share my experience with you. I was injured before I started bellydancing. My injuries relapse from time to time and I need to stay away from dancing for few days. I will miss teaching few classses when I am in pain. This really upsets me. My injuries also affect my dance. I can't execute few moves with clarity. I do get depressed sometimes. But I am thankful that I am not crippled ( I could have been). I remind myself of this over and over and I am thankful that I can still dance. In life "HEALTH AND WELL BEING COMES FIRST". When I am not dancing, I do other dance stuff like watching videos, researching about the dance, chat with other dancers ect., so that I won't miss my dancing.

    Pls keep telling your self your health comes first than getting anxious and depressed about not dancing. Yasmine, Tuija and Lydia gave great advise on how to recover. Good luck!!!!

    Cheers
    Janaki

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shanazel View Post
    Thank you both very much for the responses. I had to cancel my summer session dance class this week because I am not well enough to teach it, and so have been feeling particularly crushed. In all these years, I have never had to cancel an entire session...

    I am a bit better than I was several weeks ago, but nowhere near normal, and it helps to know others have survived major illness to teach and dance again. There is still no clear concensus why I am so ill, but perhaps the Highly Educated and Incredibly Well-paid Individuals I have consulted will be able to figure it out before too long. I will remember what you wrote, Tuija, about too much, too fast. I keep thinking, "If I just put my mind to it, I can IGNORE this illness and keep dancing." Pretty silly, I know.

    Thanks again, you all. Shanazel
    It takes time to heal. Especially with how sick you were...Just take it easy and rest and do a little bit at a time. You will be back to yourself in no time.

  8. #8
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    Hugs to all of you for your advice and encouragement. It helps a lot. (Cue music: "I will survive")

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