Fall Semester 2019

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This semester was harder than I ever expected, but I learned more life-lessons within the past sixteen weeks than any of the other semesters combined. Looking back, I am not really sure how I made it through everything, but I couldn’t be more thankful for the experiences that helped me become who I am today despite the challenges.

I always use to tell myself that nothing is impossible and that I could do anything I set my mind to if I was determined enough. This helped me achieve great things in the past, but this semester humbled me to realize that some things truly aren’t possible. I was pushing myself harder than I ever had before, and I was setting unrealistic expectations for myself. This year, I took a full semester at the college through dual-enrollment while dancing full time as a professional trainee ballet dancer. Though I had done this before, my academic courses were more difficult this time, and the demands were a lot higher. I was only getting about five hours of sleep every single night just to keep my feet on the ground, and the exhaustion/stress really started to take a toll on my health.

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I learned that “you can do anything, but you can’t do everything.”

The problem was, I was trying to give 100% effort at both school and dance because I didn’t know where I would end up or what I even wanted anymore. A professional career in ballet is extremely competitive, and universities are also highly selective; I needed to be perfect at both. It was about mid-October when I realized that something had to change because I physically couldn’t do everything anymore, and I was wearing myself out… I had some big decisions to make. After thinking everything through, I decided to no longer pursue a professional career in ballet after Nutcracker which was one of the hardest decisions that I have ever had to make. Even though it is a huge change in my life, I know that I made the right decision, and I did what it best for me. Since then, I am so much happier, and I passed all of my classes!

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Through it all, it truly was bittersweet to walk off campus for the last time knowing that some of my friends wont return in January… From the coffee shop shows, Friday morning laughs, “flying squirrel” (inside joke), study groups, and hot chocolate chats, I couldn’t have hoped for a better group of people to hang with. I made some great friendships, and I am so thankful for all of the wonderful memories! It certainly wasn’t an easy semester, but we got through it together. The Fall semester is officially complete. I can’t believe it, but we did it!!

It’s been awhile

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Hello.

It’s been awhile.

How have you guys been? I know this isn’t the first (unintended) hiatus that I have taken this semester, and it probably wont be the last if I’m honest. However, I really hope that you guys stick around because I am not abandoning the blog! Life has just been quite crazy lately…

I have spent more hours in the school library than I can even count, and chemistry is definitely proving to be an “adventure.” I like all of my classes and professors a lot, but the work load/studying is much more intense and time consuming than previous semesters. I also took my SAT this morning, and I am beginning to narrow down universities that I want to apply/transfer into. I am really anticipating the score because it was my first time, and I really wonder where I will end up… On the other hand, I forgot to tell you guys that the college, where I am currently dual-enrolled, has selected me into The National Society of Leadership and Success!! I am incredibly honored to be a member of this reputable program, and I am so humbled for the opportunity.

Lastly, The Nutcracker will be brought to the theater in one month, so that is quite nerve-wracking. Rehearsals are well underway, but there is still a lot of work that has to be done! I will be sure to keep you all posted, and I hope that you are doing well. Also, an October playlist will be released very soon, so keep an eye out for that…

What have you been up to? How are your classes going so far? Are you a member of the NSLS? Are you planning on watching or dancing in The Nutcracker this season? Thank you for reading this super long post if you are still there!

*Photo: Flashback to last year’s family trip up to the apple orchard.

Dryads & Shades

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Excerpts from two beautiful ballets filled the stage last week as dryads instantly transformed into a kingdom of shades.

Right after floating through the dream scene of Don Quixote, I only had a few seconds to recover before jumping into the first shade variation of La Bayadere. I had performed it before, but I forgot how physically demanding it was especially in addition to the corps de ballet work. It is one of the fastest variations that I have ever done, so maintaining precise execution of each step, despite the fatigue, is an incredibly challenging endeavor. However, the encouraging cheers from the audience gave me so much energy, and I finished stronger than I ever had in rehearsal. When I hit my final pose, I couldn’t hold back the giant smile that radiated from my face… It was a great show!

Father’s Day 2019

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Daddy,

I cannot thank you enough for all that you have done for me, and I am so blessed to have such a loving, caring, giving, inspiring, and amazing father. The past few years have been filled with memorable adventures that I will cherish for a lifetime, and I am so grateful for all of your support to do what I love. You have shown me that I can do anything that I set my mind to, and you have taught me so much throughout the past seventeen years. I learned that superheros truly do exist because I am looking right at one… I love you so much, and I hope that you have a fantastic Father’s Day!

~Maysa


Happy Father’s Day to all of those super awesome dads out there!

au revoir

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It is so bittersweet to say goodbye to people after graduation and watch as they begin a new chapter in life… My friends have proven to me, time and time again, the true outcome of hard work as they receive job offers, college letters, and other opportunities that lead them to their dreams. I want to congratulate everyone in Class 2019 who has reached this milestone, and I wish you the best of luck as you go off to make a future for yourself.


~Thanks, Tiff, for inviting me to your graduation party last night. It has been so neat to watch you grow throughout the years, and I wont forget all of the memories that we made. I cannot wait to see what your future holds, and I hope that you have an awesome experience next year. Congrats, and good luck with everything!

au revoir.

College: Freshman Year

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College Year 1: OFFICIALLY DONE!

(Casually doing an Arabesque at school…)

I cannot believe that my freshman year of college is actually complete, and I am about one year away from attaining my associates degree in Marketing Management. I have learned so much in the last two semesters, and I am just so thankful for this opportunity to attend this awesome school as a dual-enrolled student. It was certainly a challenge to manage a full college schedule on top of my other responsibilities, and I have no doubt that I pushed myself harder than ever before… I recall doing assignments at 2 AM while Nirvana and Pearl Jam blared out of my headphones, studying vigorously in between rehearsals, hauling a load of math problems to the tutoring center before exams, reading textbook pages for hours in the library, and reviewing papers with friends before submitting them to my professor. It was hard, but this experience really allowed me to grow as both a person and student which is really rewarding in the end. It was a great year, and I am so lucky to have had such awesome people to share it with.

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I have a few weeks on break before the summer semester kicks off, but I am going to embrace this sunshine and blue sky while it lasts… Summer vibes are in the air; it’s a beautiful day!

Has your summer break started yet? What was your freshman experience like? Who else is a Marketing major? Do you enjoy bubble tea? 

Behind the Curtain

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13 hours in the theater. 6 quick changes. 3 performances. 2 dress rehearsals. All in 1 busy day.


I glanced at the bruises forming on my feet, and my body was overcome with a state of pure exhaustion. It was my eleventh hour in the theater, and I stood behind the curtain listening to the constant murmur of the crowd as they made their way to their seats. The final show of “The Little Mermaid” was about to begin, and I was minutes away from tackling another ballet with the very little energy that I had left. It is expected that every performance has the same quality, and the audience deserves the same experience every show because tickets all cost the same. This is where it gets challenging and stressful for us, dancers. At the end of the day, fatigue and aching muscles must be concealed by bubbly smiles and seemingly effortless movements which is extremely difficult. I don’t think the audience ever truly realizes what actually goes on backstage, and the beauty of this art form can be very deceiving by the graceful image that we portray.

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All in all, it was great to be back in the theater, but I think ballet officially kicked my butt.

What did you do this weekend? Have you had any performances recently? Are you ready for summer?

My Survival Kit

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Lately, several people have asked me the same exact question, and I began to realize that this might make a really interesting blog post. People catch a glimpse of my overflowing list of of day-by-day tasks on my weekly planner and look at me wide-eyed…

“How do you do it all?”

My reply is always the same: “I don’t even know.” In reality, however, I guess there really is a method to manage this madness, but it is not easy! I will be completely honest and tell you that there have been many nights that I have gotten under four hours of sleep as deadlines crept up faster than expected, so I don’t want you to get the impression that I have mastered these strategies because that is far from the truth. For the most part, however, I think this survival kit has really been the reason that I have been able to “do it all,” so I thought it might be neat to share with you.

1: Staying Organized:

My agenda/weekly calendar is actually color coded so that I can quickly see the homework load for each class. I also write down the important projects, papers, quizzes, and exams for that week in a black pen and highlight it in bright yellow so that I don’t accidentally miss them or forget to study. My friends think I am a bit crazy, but I actually color code my notes as well by the units or lectures.

2: Managing Time:

I always go to the campus library at least 30 min (sometimes even an hour) before my class begins to get a head start on homework for that day. I use every free moment that I have to get things done, so I frequently work Friday nights or even weekends as well. Time management is extremely important, so use extra time to your advantage!

3: Routine:

I also think following a routine helps me a lot because my body has gotten use to the wake/sleep times. This doesn’t mean that I am never tired, but it just means that I don’t feel like a walking zombie everyday because my body has gotten into a relatively consistent schedule.

4: Support:

Family and friends have significantly influenced me to keep working hard because I know they believe in me. This ultimately helps me believe in myself too, and it really does feel good to have someone there to encourage me through difficult times with a “you can do it!” attitude.

I also wanted to let you all know that I am scheduled to get my braces off on March 15!!!

I hope that you enjoyed this post, and thanks for reading!

How do YOU manage your schedule? Would you like to know my tips for studying late at night without getting tired? What was it like to get your braces off? 

College Lessons: Semester 1

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My first semester of college was such a neat experience, and I am just so grateful to have this opportunity to attend classes as a dual-enrolled student. Although it was quite stressful and exhausting at times, I am excited to continue working for my degree and getting to know all of the amazing people around campus. It is a bit late, but I thought you still might enjoy this post… These are lessons that I have learned from myself and other students throughout my first semester of college. Hopefully you find this beneficial!

Read the Syllabus: You can’t expect the professors to remind you about homework assignments or specify every upcoming due date in class. They provide a detailed syllabus at the beginning of the semester that contains a list of everything you must complete and when. If you don’t look through it, you will likely have a lot of missing homework assignments which definitely won’t help your grade.

Learn on your own: In two of my courses, there was not enough class time to cover all of the material on the exams, so it was extremely important to read and look over all of the chapters on our own. DO THE WORK! It was definitely not fun to be reading textbook pages at 1:00 in the morning, but it really paid off in the end.

Meet New People: The experience is so much more enjoyable if you establish a small group of friends to spend time with between classes. It is also quite interesting to learn about different people and their post-graduation goals, so talk to the person sitting next to you! Build relationships with other students in your classes, and you will have a much more enjoyable experience.

Stay Organized: I don’t know about you, but I get really bad anxiety when I try to keep track of too many dates and times in my head. I was, honestly, shocked with how many students didn’t have an organized method to group all of the day’s assignments together. Many people just scratched things off of the syllabus, but that means at least four important packets must be carried around everywhere (and not misplaced). It is also easy to skip or miss things especially when you’re taking multiple classes. I recommend a weekly planner or agenda!!! You will relieve yourself of so much stress…

Ask for Help: Don’t be hesitant to ask your professor or other students for help! My friends thought I was a bit ridiculous, but I got almost every paper read by another peer or professor before I turned it in. I learned so much more by taking feedback, and I was much more staisfied with my grades when they came back on those assignments.

And lastly… BE YOURSELF:

“Just be yourself. Let people see the real, imperfect, flawed, quirky, weird, beautiful, and magical person that you are.”

~Unknown

If you have any questions or things to add, feel free to drop them in the comments. Thanks for reading! 🙂

Alice in Wonderland Casting!

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We are switching gears at the studio as we begin to prepare for our February production if Alice in Wonderland. The Nutcracker, snow, and peppermint offerings have been replaced by a giant Cheshire cat, mushrooms, and small cups of tea… Right after the busy weekend in the theater, casting was released, and we started to learn the first few dances of this ballet. I am looking forward to performing as Alice’s sister, maid, and deck of cards lead. I am so proud of my friend who was cast as Alice, and I cannot wait to watch her shine on that stage. It is going to be a great show, and I am excited to watch this magnificent story unfold.