First it was gentle hints, then it was concerned talks, finally it was outright threats of dismissal: lose the weight or lose your job. And that’s how Jenifer Ringer ended up an overweight, out of work, deeply depressed, ex-ballerina.
In Dancing Through It, Jenifer Ringer shares her story of being a promising young ballerina with the New York City Ballet, winning coveted roles and receiving good reviews, until her relationship with food derailed her career. Binging, fasting, obsessively exercising – Jenifer was in a terrible cycle she couldn’t break even though her work life became an endlessly humiliating series of too-snug tutus, lost roles, and stern reproofs from her ballet masters. In her year away from professional ballet Jenifer finally realized that she had let so much go – her church, her friends, a deeper relationship with God – in her immersion in professional ballet that she needed to renew her Christian faith and relationships in order to become healthy.
Jenifer’s personal struggles with food addiction are honest and inspiring, but equally interesting are the fascinating behind-the-scenes glimpses of the world of professional ballet. From her meticulous pre-performance rituals including hair, stage makeup, and pointe shoes, to the nuts and bolts of how dancers learn and remember their complex choreography, Jenifer Ringer gives the reader an insider’s view of the hectic and demanding life of a ballerina.