The Hardest Thing

Today, I was driving down to work, mulling about things, and my thoughts turned to dancing. There’s been a dearth of dancing in my life lately. I’ve been preoccupied with other activities like running my first race and my 5 year anniversary. But according to my meandering thoughts, dancing is never far from my heart.

I was contemplating the hardest thing about dancing. Balance? Frame and consistent connection? Maintaining a pulse and communicating rhythm? Maybe aerials and all of those high flying moves? But I don’t think the hardest thing about dancing has anything to do with technique, and has everything to do with life. For me, the hardest thing about dancing is being vulnerable.

Sure, many of us go to dances just to let loose and have a good time. We aren’t always looking for something deep and meaningful. For some people, dancing is an escape. But for me, the best part of dancing happens when I let my guard down, when I feel safe with my partner, when my partner feels safe with me and lets her guard down, too. In those music-wrapped moments, I have always found my profoundest dancing experiences. Those are the moments when the true joy of the heart can be released and the true sorrow of a soul can be exposed.

For me, that willingness to show up with everything that’s going on in my life, everything that I’ve buried inside, tucked away, locked up, and hidden from the world…that’s the hardest thing to do in dancing. But its transformative. When the heart is released, a kick can be a burst of joy or an act of anger. A turn can be a tender moment or a bit of heartbreak. I get that it isn’t for everybody. Its hard. Its risky. Hell, you may even just hear it as my pretentious ramblings on my sense of expression and artistry in dance. But for me, its the hard thing that makes it most worth while.

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2 Comments

Filed under Aesthetics, C-Jam

2 responses to “The Hardest Thing

  1. Stacey Insley

    Beautifully written! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  2. me too…I realized after 8 yrs of dancing that I’m almost always completely detached from my partner, in my own little world, unless my partner does something to make me feel comfortable i.e. make me laugh, engage me in convo, etc. Even w/ my boyfriend, I find myself detaching & closeted in my own “safe” haven. I was dancing w/ a dance tchr this summer and on our 1st dance, he asked, “Ok, so what creepy guy makes u dance like this?” And I was astounded how quickly he picked up on that. So I replied, “Well, I was raped as a child.” And to my utter astonishment, he very sincerely replied, “Me too.” So shocked there bcuz he is so incredibly connected to each of his partners. So I figured if he could heal that completely that there was hope for me too. So now each dance I go to, I try to find again, what unhinges that closet door so I can stand & dance freely. This past Fri, I went & helped a friend setup for a party b4 the dance. It was a small environment and I felt quite safe, chatting w/ him, his roommates, & the other ppl setting up the party. Then when I went to the dance afterward, I was much less closeted. Previous weekend, I had many leads ask me to dance, all in a row, many that had asked b4 and a few that hadn’t. One asked me 2x so sweetly by just making eye contact w/ me across the room. Knowing he was an incredible lead & he WANTED to dance w/ me 2x was a euphoric experience for me.

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