~Sharing (2o) in the Progression Into Beauty project~
I am noticing that, since I made the commitment to move my body more this month, I have had a plethora of opportunities open up – more than I’ve had in a long, long time – to move my body in my most favorite way: DANCE. Yesterday was one such experience, as I attended the African dance class at the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center. I used to attend this class regularly and, for one reason or another (most likely, money), I stopped going. My favorite thing about these particular classes is that the dancing is done to the accompaniment of live drummers. Delicious!
At any rate, I really got into yesterday’s class and enjoyed every minute of the low-to-earth Congolese movements we were doing. My body was lit up and I couldn’t stop smiling. 90 minutes later I felt so alive and vibrant. That feeling lasted throughout my day and changed the way I viewed everything I did. Each person I related with was more Light, I felt so compassionate and loving. It was an incredible experience that lingered through to today when I awoke feeling just as vibrant and loving as I felt after class yesterday.
Then I went to get out of bed…
Oh holy snort! Hello glutes and hamstrings and sartorius and abs and iliotibial band! Oh. My! I suddenly realized that I had muscles in areas where I had forgotten I had muscles. The lactic acid had set in and I was stiff, tight and achy. In the past, that would have been a signal to me to be very, very still – to not move a single muscle because of the agony. This time, however, I decided to do something different. Instead, I opted to move my body. I did yoga.
While doing yoga, I had my headphones on listening to meditative music. On that playlist was a song called Nara by E.S. Posthumus. Their music is so rich, cinematic and such a visual experience for me that every time I hear this particular song, I see a grand dance production with impossibly difficult positions, movements and grace. I feel the dance building inside my body and I yearn to dance the movements I see in my mind. I feel the cool air of the theatre as I wait in the wings to enter the stage, the velvet of the curtains kissing my skin. I smell the scent of years-old dust, sweat and wood. I feel the inexplicable underlying tension of readiness and awareness as I burst onto the stage, moving my body in harmony with the lyrical notes, percussion and woodwinds. I am the music.
And this morning, I allowed myself to follow that impulse. I danced that dance I could see in my head as tears rolled down my cheeks. I let my soul sing the brilliance from within through the movement of my body. Suddenly, I was young again and all was right with my world because… I. was. dancing.
I cried because of how often I’ve denied myself the joy of movement. I cried because I’ve stopped myself. I cried because I’ve not let myself feel this love. This very thing that brings me to life and lights me up and helps me to burst into the world as I am meant to do! I cried because… I have denied myself and, therfore, I have denied my Creator. I have turned off this gift of healing through movement and have told myself I am too old or too fat or too… whatever the “too” is. I’ve bought into the lie and I’ve let myself stop living.
And then, I a memory surfaced… a time when I was in drill team and dance company… my senior year in high school. It was time to pick roommates for drill team summer camp. I don’t know why this memory came up while I was dancing a dance that was unlike anything related to drill team. But it did. And I faltered in my steps, lost my balance and felt the emotions crash through me as I realized… everyone had a roommate but me. No one wanted to be my roommate. The team captain sighed, rolled her eyes and said reluctantly, “Ok… I’ll be Angie’s roommate.”
I remembered the feeling… how my heart ached in that moment. How I looked around at all the pairs of girls who were so excited to be roommates and me… the last girl standing. Alone.
Now I was crying because I didn’t cry then. I didn’t let on then how much it hurt to have no friends. I didn’t let on how much I wanted to be out of my shell… that angry shell that was supposed to be protecting me from getting hurt was continually hurting me. I cried now because I couldn’t cry then. I cried now because I was grieving the process of letting go of my then-dreams of being loved for who I was. No one could have loved me for who I was because I didn’t know who I was. I didn’t want anyone in. Especially girls… I didn’t like girls. I didn’t trust them. Down through the ages, my maternal line of ancestors has been a long line of women who believed women were only interested in destroying one another. I cried for them. I cried for me.
And… even though I faltered as the tears fell on my toes, tripping me and throwing me off balance… even though I stumbled and almost fell… even though I felt dizzy although I did not spin… even though my heart ached for the lonely girl I once was… and, sometimes, still am… even though… I. still. danced.
By God! I danced until the memory faded. I danced until that young girl I once was looked up, met my eyes and finally understood the truth… Angie! You are amazing! God made you the miracle that you are! And then I saw a tear slide down her cheek and I knew that she knew.
And, still, I danced. I danced until there was no more movement in me and then I danced some more. I danced myself through the pain of unmet dreams. I danced myself through the broken hearts. I danced myself through the abandonment. I danced myself through the infidileties, the violence, the betrayals. I danced myself into life and… I croed as O damced/ O fe;t ot a;;/ O p[emed i[ amd fe;t ot a;;/ O damced omtp ,u spi;d amd amdamced imto; O cpi;dm
t catcj ,u breatj/ Imto; ,u bpdu saod/// pl/// we
re jere//// empigj/// upi dod ot/
And then I sat and cried. Because… no matter what I’ve done to me… my body has just been waiting for me to wake up and find that I love myself. I forogt tjhat fpr a ;pmg to,e amd/// ot
s gppd tp re,e,ber/
And.. since I am sobbing as I write this with my eyes closed to get the lingering feelings out… I just looked up and realized that some of the time my fingers were off home-base and that has made some of it be gobbledegook. That’s okay. I’m going to leave it. My soul knows what it needed to get out.
And it did.