Politics of Dancing (1/2001)

Sometimes it is good to forget who you are and lose yourself completely because you will, eventually, have to find yourself again. As it turns out, I lost myself. It was a long long time ago, I must have been thirteen years old. Ok, so maybe not a long long time ago :) Long enough that I was able to pass on doing what could have eventually been the greatest job I ever loved, or who knows- I could be another person all together. It could and does happen to any and all of us. We make a decision somewhere along in our life that carves the way to a future based on that decision. Either we make good decisions based on solid thinking or we do the more common thing, act on bad thinking. Bad thinking requires forgiveness in order to move in a more positive direction.

Often we are hard on ourselves and resist letting go of our negative thinking and actions. To move beyond those decisions we first must face the fear of noting the existence of pain and regret, then acknowledge the painful thoughts and choices then welcome the darkness into our minds and hearts. Cry your insides out, yell till your voice is absent, feel through it all. That is the only way to moving beyond the shit thinking and into a world where we are responsible for our happiness and respect. The most feared route is what we need most naturally - to feel - to be present with ourselves and our hearts.

I became seperated from my heart and body the day my father looked at me while I was dancing and said to me "You could never be a dancer, you don't have the right body for it". Those words haunt me till this day. It took me years to react to them. I was so hurt and shocked that my father, a person who had always told me "You can be and do whatever you want in life", would say such things. I believe his statement became a precursor to some decisions that I made. Such decisions as: something was wrong with my body, I hate my body, I can't do what brings me joy in life, and I could never be a dancer. If you ask any of my friends today about my dancing they will easily say that I am 'one hell of a dancer', but despite their believing in me and my talents I was taught to doubt them. I have doubted myself and my abilities.

It is a painful experience to have a parent that one looks up to, diminish the life force inside of oneself. I started dancing the day I was out of the womb, it is part of my earliest memories. I used to dance in my room and pretend I was auditioning to be in videos and on television. In high school my gym mates would beg me to reenact the Madonna video Dress You Up. I was always up for it because it got us laughing and it was more fun than running in circles. There were nights when closing up Pizza Hut (fun high school job) that quarters would be dropped in the jukebox, for the express purpose to get me dancing on the salad bar. Anything to be dancing for people. It is as natural to me as breathing and it is essential to my spirit as believing in a god. I am in a place now where I am responsible for bringing that joy back into my body and making better decisions. Part of it is about continually nurturing that grieving part of myself and by giving back to me.