Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Turn up the bass

When last did you do something with utter abandon?  Anything!  Run, play, laugh, cry, love with abandon?  Danced like you're wearing jazz pants from eighth grade and you're home alone and what do you care if you're bothering the neighbors?  You're just dancing, hair flying all around, spinning chaînés around the chairs and tables in the living room and then the beat drops and you drop into a split you can still just about do...  When I was a kid and into highschool, I used to dance around in my bedroom, utterly uninhibited.  Mostly, I'd just practice pirouettes and the splits and whatever I could fit into my small, square room.  But I would dance so hard - I can remember collapsing into my giant green papasan chair, out of breath and laughing and loving the fact that my body moves like that, can move to music and for a few brief minutes, absolutely nothing else matters.

I was never a great dancer; I was always a little chunky and off-balance.  I loved ballet, envied the grace and ethereal beauty of prima ballerinas, such that I even danced en pointe in high school.  But I was better at jazz and lyrical, and my favorite was jazz a la Bob Fosse: sexy, deliberate, each movement loaded with meaning and feeling.  More of my personality came through when I was onstage than perhaps when I wasn't.

And then what?  Life changed everything, took me in an utterly unimaginable different direction.  I haven't danced with any instruction in over seven years, haven't danced on a stage in almost nine.  I'm not even that old!  How does one's life change so abruptly that everything you thought made you "You" just fades away?

Perhaps, though, that isn't quite true, either.  I no longer perform, but that doesn't mean I don't still want to.  I am less goofy but more joyful.  And tonight, dancing by myself in my living room, I was reminded just how amazing it feels to let go.

Life should be less about the things that stress us out, the daily wear and tear that brings us down.  Jobs, the weather, our relationships or lack thereof - we put so much emphasis on certain things and expect them to fulfill us.  Shouldn't life be more about dancing and laughing and enjoying the moments you have with people you love?  I think so, and I am going to try and embrace that sentiment once more, and dance, once more.  So, please, go blast your music and let your endorphins and inner child dance freely for a few minutes.  And have fun!