My mom put me in ballet when I was an awkward pre-adolecent. She thought it would give me grace and some control over my limbs that felt too long for my body.
It gave me oh so much more than that.
In dance I found a way to not just move my body but to move my soul as well. I had what I think are the world’s best dance teachers. They focused on pure technique. They didn’t believe in recitals because they felt it detracted from time in class that could be spent learning rather than perfecting one single routine.
They made sure our form was perfect, from the point of our toes to the tips of our fingers and the tilt of our head. I could have lived at that studio. The teachers were tough but kind. We had to memorize terminology and were frequently quizzed on it. Every once in awhile we had parent’s week when parents were allowed to come and watch a class and we could show off what we learned.
I learned so much in those classes. I truly wish I could have taken classes there forever. Unfortunately our family started falling apart for awhile and with it my stability in being able to commit to classes at any given time from week to week.
I didn’t stop dancing though.
At the time I was blessed to be at a church that had a very active dance team. We had classes and made up routines and performed them during services. Again, I was able to express my soul through dance. It was therapy in an extremely difficult time in my life.
When I turned 18 I moved to the Netherlands and started the next chapter in my life. I didn’t look into taking dance classes there because my life was so full of so many new adventures there didn’t seem like there would be room. I did make time to frequent clubs though and was able to again, dance my heart out.
Europe has the very best dance music. It’s a fact.
Then I fell in love, got married and moved back to the Midwest. While I was gone, the dance group I had been a part of was ripped apart at the seams in a very ugly church split, so it wasn’t there for me to return to. Being a brand new married couple we barely had enough to afford the essentials so paying for dance classes never really entered my mind. Then flying created such a random schedule that it again didn’t seem practical.
And suddenly it’s been years and the only time I’ve danced is the occasional wedding.
I don’t know why I didn’t dance in my living room. I have once or twice and it felt beyond amazing but I never made it a regular thing.
I missed it. I missed it like my lungs miss air in water. You know when you’re swimming and even with your head above water if your chest is covered you never can quite get a deep enough breath? Like that.
So when I saw a LivingSocial deal for unlimited dance classes for $19 dollars I bought it almost immediately.
Last night was my first class and I was beyond nervous. It had been so long since I’d danced at all, let alone in a formal class. Once the class started though it was like inhaling pure oxygen. I moved and stretched and couldn’t wipe the huge grin off my face for the entire two hours. It was a beginner level adult class so the steps were easy to do and remember. I was able to not concentrate on the physical motions and just dance.
I can’t believe how good it felt.
I was made to move. I’m not the most talented person in the world but nothing makes me happier than dancing.
I can’t believe I let myself forget for so long.
I haven’t been fully happy in a long time. I’m taking my happy back piece by piece and this was a giant piece that was missing.
It’s good to have it back.