The Dancer In Me

Every now and then, the dancer in me wants to come out.  She comes out through the nod of my head on a certain beat, or the flick of a hand to emphasis a note.  She comes out when the emotions I have bottled up inside find a perfect song to express themselves to through movement.  Sometimes, I can only envision the steps this stiff, inflated body would perform if it could.  Sometimes I surprise myself with the lasting strength of my center and the momentary extension that leaves me sore.

I was never a phenomenal dancer, but dance did something phenomenal for me.
It gave me a coping mechanism.
It gave me strength.
It gave me confidence.
It gave me passion.
It gave me peace.

Nothing has ever felt more like home than a stage- even if it was the makeshift stage I created in my sunken living room.  Whenever I was home alone growing up, you could bet I had the music up, burning holes into that living room floor with the soles of my feet.  No matter what I was feeling, I could find the right music to tell my story to.  These moments of dancing clarity were for myself and myself alone.  The moment I heard the slam of a car door, I turned off the music and went back to doing something less emotional.

In college I got to choreograph for a "dance club" that I started with a few other girls that needed their fix.  There was nothing more thrilling than seeing my combinations coming to life before me.  Sadly we were never able to get a group to consistently commit to coming.  Post college, I took the occasional dance class when money allowed.  When it didn't, I moved furniture aside when I need to clear my head and once again, my living room was my stage.

Nothing has changed.  I still find myself choreographing my emotions until somehow the movements help me make sense of my feelings.  Music has always had a away of giving me all the answers I know in my heart.  Sometimes I ache to find a room with wooden floors and mirrored walls if only to spend five minutes leaving everything I am on the dance floor.

Today is one of those days.  No, nothing is wrong.  I am not dealing with one of life's challenges.  I am just dealing, and the plain and simple truth is that I "deal" better when I am barefoot and spinning.

I am my best when I have dance to look forward to.  Someone once told me that they could see the joy that dance brought me because after class I always sparkled.  I need to sparkle again.  I think it's time to find myself a place to dance.

What is your passion?  Are you doing that thing that makes you sparkle?


Bethann Wagner said...

Great post, Ashley. It has me reminiscing of my high school years when I would close my bedroom door and dance in front of my closet mirrors for hours on end. Maybe I should get back to that. Probably healthier than shopping! xoxo, Bethann

Mrs. Jones said...

Writing is my passion, and I get to do it every day (well, most days) at work, and I'm so grateful for that. But I need to get back to happy blogging - where I'm always getting that "me" time in while writing!