Being from California, I was at first unsure of how Texas culture would differ from my own personal experience. However, I came into college knowing that if I wasn’t failing, I wasn’t trying many new things and stretching myself. At first, I auditioned for the a-capella team, Southern Gentlemen. I unfortunately didn’t make the team, but I was not going to let this singular defeat dishearten me in my quest for assimilation. So I kept looking for a club or group to join. Then, I thought to myself, what would be the most Texan thing I could do… I know; I’ll join the country two-stepping team the Mustang Mavericks. I knew that it was going to be a challenge, as I have never danced competitively before, and certainly not two-stepped before. I show up to the auditions and I was very nervous. First of all, I had to dance with girls I don’t know in a partner setting. As a freshman, this can be a little daunting. I would like to say that I was super suave and cool but, of you have seen the scene form “Inside Out” where the boy’s head is freaking out when he has to talk to a girl, it was probably a lot like that.
At the tryouts, there were people who danced competitively in high school and were very familiar with two-stepping. This clearly did not relieve any anxiousness as I was already nervous about making the team, it didn’t help that I had stiff competition. Although I was nervous, the team couldn’t have been nicer to me throughout the entire tryouts, reassuring me that many of them never had any experience before either. Although it was a bit unbelievable because they were doing flips and all sorts of dance stunts, it was encouraging to know that I might be able to do this one day, too.
By the end of that day, I had made the team and was making new friends. It has been by far one of the most life changing experiences as I have made life long friends from Mavericks; I even was a groomsmen for a member’s wedding in Austin this year. I am so glad that I put myself out there and was not afraid to fail and because of that courage I have bettered my collegiate experience and made lasting friendships.