Trapeze isn't a sport where you compete, really (although there are amazing elite circus competitions). And that's not to say that aerialists aren't competitive. We're supportive and friendly to each other, and excited when someone does something impressive or unique. But we are competitive.
It's a little like ice-skating. Or gymnastics. And a little bit like dance.
But there aren't necessarily specific tricks that are benchmarks. There aren't meets or races; there isn't a scoring system. Measuring progress can be difficult sometimes.
One reason I do trapeze is the way it pushes me to constantly challenge myself, to push myself past a comfort level and do things which scare me.
You learn some tricks in safety lines, so that you can be caught when (not if) you fall off the bar or land awkwardly in the process of learning a trick.
Today, I finally took a trick out of safety lines that I've been working on for a very long time. It's not actually that difficult, just somewhat risky. From standing on the trapeze to ankle hang.
Finally out of lines.
There's a glass of bubbly on the coffee table to celebrate tonight. Only one -- I'm running a 5K this weekend and working on my routine for an audition for the circus center's showcase. The one I'd hoped to do in August, before the ankle went kerplooey.
But I am grinning. Finally. And it felt good. Solid. No hesitation.
That's a milestone.