Retirement letter read at US National Dancesport Championships 2017
The term “bittersweet” has never felt more applicable to our lives than it does at this particular time. The “bitter” part comes from stepping away from something which has been so profound for us, but the “sweet” comes from the memories we’ve created and the new opportunities that lie ahead.
Nine years ago we began dancing together as college students attending Brigham Young University. It was during this time that we dated, fell in love and got married. Soon after, we started competing professionally and quickly felt like little fish in a big pond. But what an exciting adventure we had begun!
Through hours upon hours of hard work and perseverance in the studio, we were able to make small steps towards achieving the big goals we had set out for ourselves. In 5 short years we accomplished more than we thought possible. Our dreams became a reality when we became National, World and Blackpool Smooth Finalists.
We owe a big part of our success to our wonderful team of supporters. We want to publicly thank those who have played an integral part of our professional career.
Our sponsors Dore, Atelier Ella, Lenqiue, Designs by Kalina, Alex Rowen with Dancesport Photography and DancelifeUSA
Our studio owners Matt and Lisa Brown of Sway Ballroom Dance
Our coaches Kasia Kozak, Anna Trebunskya, Jonathan Roberts, David Hamilton, Viktor Kanevsky, Marzhena Stachura, and Curt Holman
And a special thank you to the two women who have literally been by our side every step of our journey, Toni Redpath and Heather Smith. We love you both. Thank you for believing in us from the beginning and constantly inspiring and challenging us.
We also want to acknowledge our fellow competitors who we have felt honored to share the floor with over the last 5 years. You have pushed us to be our best selves and we have great respect for your individual talents and abilities.
One of our most treasured gifts from our years of dancing is the many friendships we’ve developed that we will continue to hold dear to our hearts. We want to thank our best friends and possibly our biggest fans, Travis and Jaimee Tuft. We love you and cherish your friendship. Thank you for believing in us and encouraging us through tough times. We wish you all the best in the pursuit of your dreams and goals.
We must also share our gratitude for the love and support of our family. Thank you for paying for all those dance lessons when we we’re young and encouraging us to pursue our dancing dreams. Thank you for being here tonight to share this memory with us.
Our decision to retire may come as surprise for many, but from the beginning of our relationship we have had a desire to have children and grow our family. We are looking forward to start that chapter in our lives in Spring 2018.
Although our competitive career has come to an end, our dance journey will continue for the rest of our lives. We know there is more to learn, to grow, and to share. We look forward to staying involved in the industry and hope to continue our influence in the style of American Smooth by encouraging future dancers young and old.
With love and gratitude,
Kyle and Allie Spinder