Cheryl Burke Admits to Having 'Major Nerves' Competing on 'DWTS' Sober: 'This Has Been Really Scary'

"If I said to you that I was just so excited and not nervous, that would be a lie," she said

Cheryl Burke is opening up about how she really feels about returning to Dancing with the Stars after getting sober.

Burke, 37, posted a candid Instagram on Monday ahead of the DWTS season 30 premiere, admitting that she was "nervous" to hit the dancefloor.

"Confession time — this may be my 24th time doing #dwts, and even though I'm SO excited, I also have major nerves," the dancer captioned her post. "Doing this show sober has really made me realize my every insecurity and the amount of pressure I put on myself, which is tough."

Burke noted that she "just wanted to be honest" with fans because she's aware that "sometimes it can look like this stuff is easy for us, but that wouldn't be real."

"That being said, I love my partner and love all of you so it's going to be a great night," she continued. "Thanks for always supporting and get those voting fingers ready for tonight!"

Burke's written statement accompanied a video post where she talked to fans about her pre-show jitters.

"If I said to you that I was just so excited and not nervous, that would be a lie. Of course, I'm nervous. Of course, I have my thoughts getting the best of me," she said while sitting in her car. "But hopefully by 5 p.m. when we shoot here in L.A. that that's not the case. But I am nervous. I am feeling insecure and I am scared. And I know you guys are going to be like, 'Why? You're fabulous,' which I thank you for so much. But I want you to know, since being sober, this has been really scary for me."

"Obviously, I'm so clear-headed and I am really honestly grateful for this opportunity. But to say that I don't have these insecurities, my body dysmorphia, my feeling of wanting to throw up or finding the nearest exit is definitely a lie," she continued. "But I love you guys and, you know, I do this because I love it."

Burke then addressed her future with the ABC competition series, noting that her potential retirement isn't "definitive" at this time.

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"Yes, my body hurts. Yes, my mental state at times might not be up to par sometimes to what this show expects, right? But, at the end of the day, I have to remember and put everything into perspective that this is just a dance show," she said. "But, you know, after doing it for so many seasons, all every one single person in this show wants to do is be able to succeed."

Burke — who has won the dance competition twice — said that it's "not about winning" and that the "intense" pressure she puts on herself to come out victorious is "just not realistic."

But nerves aside, Burke said she's still excited to hit the dance floor. "I'm so excited, my partner is so excited and I can't wait to show you guys what we have in store," she added.

Cheryl Burke
Cheryl Burke. Kelsey McNeal/ABC via Getty

Burke was paired with Peleton instructor Cody Rigsby. They performed a tango to "Physical" by Dua Lipa, which earned them an overall score of 24 from the judges.

Burke got sober in 2018. In the years, since she has been quite open about her journey to sobriety, attributing her decision to stop drinking to her late father, who fought and overcame alcoholism in his life.

Recently, Burke revealed that she's endured multiple "triggers" in her life that have made it harder for her to maintain her sobriety.

"I'm here to confess that lately staying sober has been a little bit of a challenge for me. And recently I've been thinking a lot, I have to admit, about drinking again," she said in a YouTube video. "So, I decided to hold myself accountable by confessing my anxious feelings."

Despite her recent challenges, Burke said she's "really committed to staying sober."

"I know the first thing to do when you have those anxious feelings is to be able to talk about it," she said. "Some days can be harder than others. I know that my feelings are completely normal, so I'm trying not to feel shame or judge myself, but it's hard."

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please contact the SAMHSA substance abuse helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.

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