New SASS and Chair Burlesque Classes – Summer 2019

The new studio has such a great vibe. I love that it is so much closer, so I’ve been able to attend more classes and more regularly. Most of the girls from old location have come to the new studio and there have been a lot of new faces too!

I have been able to attend chair burlesque classes and have been loving it. It is using a completely different apparatus to dance with but it incorporates a lot of the movements similar to ones that I have learnt in pole choreography classes. Using a chair to dance on and around is harder than I thought it would be. It takes a lot of coordination and balance. But it also makes me feel very sexy and confident. It has also given me a lot of bruises!

When My Two Worlds Collide

When I was working at a car dealership, all the sales people were asked to make a promotional video for social media. I said I wasn’t comfortable speaking on camera, but I could do something aerial. So I came up with the idea of rigging my silks in the dealership and making a video based around tricks on silks. I think it’s safe to say that when I was performing tricks for the video, my coworkers were quite impressed. I was quite happy with the how the video turned out.

When the dealership was a vendor at a local event, Floatfest in Welland, I brought my aerial rig and hoop. I set up the rig beside the cars we drove to the event and I performed hoop to help draw attention and promote the dealership. It was a lot of fun hanging out with my co workers at the canal while being able to do what I love to do. I even got a picture in the local paper!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then I began working at a local radio station selling advertising. Like in any sales job, it is easier to sell to people you know first. The first radio advertisement package I sold was to my silks studio Paradisaea. It was fun working on the advertisement with the radio producer and then to hear the ad play on th radio.

However, both car and radio sales didn’t end up working out for me since they were 100% commission based. I had to find something with a more stable income in order to support my family and my hobbies. Although, I hope that in future envendeurs, I will be able to incorporate my aerial and fitness abilities into my work life again.

Finally Progress – Killing It In 2019

I am achieving the goals I set for myself at the beginning of  year. It seems changing my diet has also contributed to building muscle and strength.  I can check off titanic, aerial shoulder mount and ayesha! Those are 3 big ones that I’m so proud of.  And I got my nemesis…handspring!  After 3 years of frustration and thinking that it will never happen, it finally did happen.  I did exactly what I planned, I left handspring for a bit, got some other tricks, and then returned to handspring with renewed determination. The first time I did a successful handspring at SASS, all the girls cheered, as they know how hard I’ve been working on it.  It felt so good.  In silks, my aerial inverts are getting much stronger.

All the hard work is finally paying off.  I have finally got past the fear of trying new pole tricks and have had fun learning new things again.  I now can do headstands and getting close to handstands.  My love for pole has returned.  I’m spending 10-15 hours a week training between pole, silks and other workouts.

Last on my list is brass monkey! I will conquer.

Falling In Love

I seen a few pole dancer videos and I thought it was so beautiful.

I just had to try it.

And then I finally did.

And I fell in love.

Pole is where other girls support and compliment each other . We bond doing the most incredible crazy things with our bodies. We can be sexy. We can twerk. We can do the splits. And we also celebrate each other. We laugh and cry together. We share bruises, we share goals. We get each other.

Pole is a beautiful community.

The days that I don’t want to go to class are actually the days I NEED to go to class. It’s the days that I’m feeling down that I need pole the most. In class, I strip down to my itty bitty pole clothes and have to look myself honestly in the mirror. It’s when I can be myself and let go of my daily stresses. I am surrounded by strong, beautiful and kind woman. They help me remind myself that I am all of those things too. By the time I leave class, I am always smiling and proud of myself. I overcame the negativity that fueled my mind earlier.

I’m looking forward to the adventurous to come in the new SASS Studio in St.Catharines. A group of us had volunteered our time to help paint the studio, which is an example how polers come together to help each other and the sense of community it is.

Road Trip and Strip Club – Summer 2019

I live for the summer. It’s what keeps me going throughout the winter. I feel like I really come alive in the summer. This summer flew by way too fast.

I booked time off to go to a 4 day music festival near Barrie that was called Roxodus. Less than a week before the festival, it was cancelled. I was devastated. I bought tickets with 2 pole friends and we have been planning for this for months. So since there was no festival, me and my husband decided to go on a little road trip. We drove to Vermont and then to Montreal and had such a good time!

Vermont is such a beautiful little state. It was just so serene and relaxing. We did some exploring, shopping and even went to the Ben and Jerry’s ice cream factory.

In Montreal, I suggested to go to a strip club, as I have never been to one. I always would joke that I’m a pole dancer, but have never been in a strip club. Since that’s where my craft originated, I figured it’s about time I go to one, and there was no place better than Montreal.

The dancers were not very good, there was only one girl that was really able to pole. I left feeling really sad for the strippers, most looked strung out and quite obviously didn’t want to be there. There is such a huge difference between pole dancers and strippers, but at the same time, we have a lot in common. It’s a very weird paradox. Here are the similarities:

☑️ Dance using a pole, performing similar tricks

☑️ Need to wear little clothing for grip

☑️ Wear heels to look good, feel sexy, accentuate legs

☑️ Often stigmatized

The differences:

❌ Strippers get paid for dances; pole dancers pay for classes

❌ Strippers may not practice much on the pole; pole dancers train extensively

❌ Strippers use the pole as prop in their jobs as part of their sales pitch for private dances; pole dancers use the pole as a fitness apparatus

A lot of the tricks and movements pole dancers do, come from strippers. It’s important for pole dancers to appreciate strippers as we have a lot of commonalities. Nobody is better than anyone else. Stripping is nothing to be ashamed of. I just know it’s a very hard life, that often involves drugs and mental and/or physical abuse. Strippers have no employee rights and they are often used and abused. It’s an extremely difficult job.

Through pole, I have met strippers and girls that have done porn. They are some of the nicest and sweetest girls I have ever met. I have learnt not to judge or look down upon anyone based on what they do to make money. We are all grinding to make a buck, some people just happen to have a more difficult time than others and have to take sex work jobs just to be able to survive in this world.

This city, this whole country, is a strip club. You’ve got people tossing the money, and people doing the danceRamona Vega from Hustlers

Diet Changes – 2019

Last Thanksgiving, I went on the scale and got really down on myself.  I weighed 135.  I couldn’t believe that despite working out so much, I keep putting on weight.  A few weeks later, I ate pasta at work for lunch, and right away my belly got bloated.  The last few months I have been feeling quite sick, lack of energy, sleeping lots and moody.  It then dawned on me, what if its the food I’m eating? So I tried a little experiment where I cut out gluten for a few weeks to see what happens.  Well, just in a few short weeks, I was feeling better and I lost weight.  Then when I ate a food with gluten, I would feel sick and get extremely bloated.  So I have a gluten intolerance.  I also have discovered that along with gluten, I am intolerant to soy as well.

Going gluten and soy free has been easier than I thought it would be. There are lots of substitutions now so I don’t feel like I’m missing anything.  The hardest part is when I am eating out, at an event or social gathering.  I can be tricky finding something I can eat.

Seven months later, I have lost 20 pounds! I am no longer getting sick. I have so much more energy. Life is back to normal.

I have been getting so many comments about how good I look.  Really, I’m just back to the weight I typically always was.  I think I have been intolerant for 5-6 years, I just wasn’t listening to my body.  I attributed the throwing up, mood swings, depression and lack of energy to stress.  Wrong.  The weight gain was very gradual, a few pounds here and there gained.  I attributed it to muscle gain.  Wrong.  Lesson learned, listen to my body better.  I went through so much suffering just because my body didn’t like what I was putting in it.

End of an Era – June 2019

The SASS summer showcase was a bittersweet one. That is because it was the last showcase, and very last day at the Stoney Creek SASS studio. The amazing part is the opening of the SASS studio in St.Catharines.

I choose to perform a pole silks routine. It took me a long time to choose a song, ended up getting inspired when I seen the band Live in concert, so choose the song Lightening Crashes. I had the basic structure of my routine choreographed, left the spins to freestyle.

The routine went well, everyone was very impressed with the pole silks. After the show, we took a few group photos as we said good bye to the Stoney Creek studio. I’m really excited for the new studio, but also sad as not all the girls will be joining us at in St.Catharines. Overall though, I’m looking forward to having the studio much closer so I can attend more classes.

Paradisaea Summer Recital – June 2019

The Paradisaea end of semester showcase was June 15th and the theme was Through the Eyes of Tim Burton.  The Sunday night class I’m in did a routine to a song from Beetlejuice.  This routine was exciting for me, as I got placed in the middle because I was the one consistently getting the tricks.  It was big for me since when I first started silks, I was given easier tricks to perform at the recitals, now I’m being challenged with more advanced tricks and being placed in the center.  I felt like I practised enough and was ready, wasn’t even really nervous. The showcase went really well and so did our routine.  The only disappointing part was I didn’t have any friends or family there to watch me.  I work so hard and I don’t think people realize how much it means to me to have them there to support me.

Dropped it like its Hot – May 2019

2019 IS my year. Wow. I was hired to dance on stage at a Snoop Dogg concert!!

Lets rewind a bit and start with how this happened. I follow an exotic dancer, Onyx, on social media who has been an inspiration to me. I seen her perform at a few Verticalove shows and she blew me away with her strength. She had posted on Facebook that she was looking for dancers for a few upcoming Snoop Dogg concerts in Ontario. I sent her a message that I was interested in the Sudbury concert. I figured, what’s the worst that can happen, I don’t hear back or get a no. But you never know unless you try, right?

I had forgotten about it as a few days had passed. She replied back 3 days later, asking for my Instagram, so I gave her my handle. Again, a few days had passed and then I got added to the Snoop Dogg Dancers group chat. I got really excited. I called my husband and asked him if he could fly me to Sudbury next week. I explained why, he said make it happen, and he will make sure the plane he just bought is ready to fly. The next day, I was officially confirmed for the Sudbury concert!!

I called my mom and we made arrangements for me and the kids to stay with her in Sudbury for the weekend. During the week, I spent a lot of time figuring out what 3 outfits I was going to wear. I walked around my house in my heels and practiced freestyling to Snoop songs to prepare. Of course I got my nails done and spent some time tanning as well.

The day of, my husband just got the proper documents needed just in time to be able to fly. It was super cool flying in our own private plane to go dance for Snoop Dogg.

My husband went back home as he had to work so he would come back to get us on the Monday. Once we got to my mom’s, we took the kids to the park since I had time before the concert. Of course I found a pole to play on!

I met the other 3 girls at a hotel and we all went to venue together. We had our own designated parking spot in the restricted parking lot. We met the tour manager and he brought us into the arena and showed us our dressing room. This is when everything hit me, this was really happening.

We were given backstage passes so we could go anywhere we wanted. There was a table full of food and drinks. We met Snoops 2 regular back up dancers that we shared the room with.

Since the 4 of us were novice to this type of event, we had a few drinks while getting ready to help with our nerves.

My lingerie outfit was a costume I originally bought for a showcase that I didn’t end going to. I thought it was perfect for this. I felt so sexy in it!

While waiting backstage, watching Snoop onstage and looking out at the crowd, my nerves were in overdrive but so was my adrenaline.

I was onstage for 3 songs: I Wanna Fucc You, Gin and Juice and Drop It Like It’s Hot. The songs went by so fast and then we had a little dark spot to change outfits. The other 2 outfits was a wife beater and booty shorts and a bathing suit. I really struggled changing into my bikini, as it had a lot of straps. Lesson learnt there, make sure costumes are simple to change into.

After the last song, we went back to the dressing room to get changed. I was kinda sad I missed the last song Young Wild N’ Free, as it’s one of my favourites. That is when we we got our $200 US each for performing.

Then….I met Snoop!! We entered Snoop’s smoke filled dressing room, and again, I thought to myself, is this real life? Well it certainly was! He asked us where we all of us are from and we each got photos with him. He was extremely chill and very nice.

As we exited his dressing room, the guy that plays Snoops mascot Nasty Dogg onstage had a massive bag on weed with him. He gave each of us a take home “Doggy” bag of Snoop’s own personal weed.

I had some drinks and food with some of the girls and then went back to my moms. I could barely sleep that night, as I kept replaying the nights events in my head trying to process everything.

While me and the kids were in Sudbury, we visited with my brother and his family. We also went to the Big Nickel and had some fun exploring the area.

The reason why this whole crazy experience happened is because I seized the opportunity when it was available. My photos and videos on my social media that I’ve been building is what got me selected. You are in control of your own destiny. Nobody is going to come knocking at your door handing you opportunities when you are sitting on the couch. It’s up to you to live your best life. Stop waiting and start living!

Inked – March 2019

I got new ink! And of course it’s pole related.  I have been wanting another tattoo for years and keep putting it off. I made a pact with myself that 2019 is the year I am going to get things done.  So I did some research on artists, found one I really liked.  I took her my idea and booked it.  A few short weeks later, it was actually happening.  The design is a pole dancer in the middle, with Matthew Good lyrics from the song “Fearless” Stay Yourself and Nothing Less Stay Fearless around the dancer.  Flowers and music notes are integrated around the lyrics and dancer.   The tattoo took almost 5 hours to complete, which was a lot to sit through.  But it was worth it, as the end result is beautiful.  Now I have a very meaningful words and a dancer on my side, to remind me to Stay Fearless whenever I could use encouragement.