Tag Archives: trust

The Dance-O-Rama post, part 2

3 Sep

[This post got to be waaaayy too long, so I’m breaking it up into two parts. Here’s part two. Read part one here.]

So I got home from Dance-O-Rama, exhausted, way overtired, and completely lost. Lost in who I am, what kind of dancer I am…pretty much no confidence in myself at all.

I had this whole week off, which was good. I figured I would need some time to process it all. And wow was I right.

I slept 11 hours on Sunday night and Monday night each. That helped. But I was still unsure of it all. I was feeling incredibly down. I was starting to feel a bit glad I went to Dance-O-Rama just to have had the experience. But I was still thinking that I wasn’t a good dancer.

Then I started thinking about a few of the conversations I had at Dance-O-Rama. I started thinking about what those people said and what they meant.

My teacher talked over the weekend about how the Dance-O-Rama experience was so emotional because it makes you grow as a dancer and as a person. And growth hurts. Dance-O-Rama is like the equivalent of 40 lessons, he says. For me, the personal growth came in doing something so different and so outside my comfort zone.

My friend JA talked about her Dance-O-Rama experience which was similar to mine. She was a bit overwhelmed at first and was ready to pack it all in by lunch on Friday.

My friend AL kept texting me all weekend. She reminded me that making the finals didn’t matter because I had finally made it to Dance-O-Rama. She also reminded me that I was technically associate bronze for this competition. So I was technically competing at a higher level and sometimes in the age category younger than me. So really I was doing well just holding my own. She also said that I should just think “wow, this is my life, everyone else is working right now and I’m looking like a rock star ballroom dancing at a competition.”

My friend JF who came to watch part of the competition told me to just have fun and stop thinking.

And I also remembered what my friend ND said when he came to Showcase. He said that he enjoyed it because it was so great to see me at my happiest.

None of these things were helping though. I was feeling so poorly of me as a dancer, I skipped the practice party on Tuesday. I was so down, I figured no one would even miss me if I weren’t there. But I had a lesson on Wednesday that I knew I had to go to. So go to it I did.

I got my scores at that lesson. First my solo. There were three judges for the solos. I got very nice comments, and scores of 92, 93 and 94. Supposedly there are very few 94s and above given for solos.

Then the closed heats. Those are scored first, second and third place. If you don’t get any of those, you don’t get a score. I got firsts in my lindy heats and in one full bronze heat. (Sadly, I can’t remember which dance. Foxtrot? Rumba?) I got a few seconds and a couple thirds too. So I placed in maybe 7 or 8 heats out of 24.

Then the open heats. Those are scored gold, silver, bronze. They give more than one of each, depending on how many entries there are in the heat. So as I told my friend KB, gold means firstish not first. I got golds in all my associate bronze heats and in one of my full bronze foxtrot heats and in my lindy heats. I also got a few silvers and bronzes. So again, maybe 7-8 heats total out of 30?

After I got my scores, we started our lesson. And my teacher asked me why I was so emotional after getting such good scores. And I started crying again. I told him my confidence was so low and the whole thing was just overwhelming and that I felt like there wasn’t one thing I could do better than any of the other students who were there. We chatted some, but I knew he couldn’t really help me. Which made it feel like I was on my own fighting this, which was a very different feeling. Before, he always been able to say something in such a way that I could hear it and believe it. And I didn’t feel like he could this time. He did comment on how much my dancing improved over the course of Dance-O-Rama and how that improvement came home with me. We started working on some smooth technique in waltz. He mentioned that he would love to see me come early to events to practice these things now. And I told him that with the way I was feeling, I didn’t know if I’d be making it to anything except my lessons for a while.

The next day (Thursday), it hit me. I have been waiting for someone to say the right compliment about me and my dancing to fix this whole feeling. I have given up fixing it myself. I kept expecting someone else to fix it for me by saying a magical phrase that I would hear and instantly believe and feel better. And that’s never going to happen.

I have the power to fix this. Why have I been giving that up? I have turned into such a downer of a person because of the negative spiral. No confidence in anything, getting upset all the time, depressed and anxious. Who wants to be around that? And why am I waiting for someone to make me believe I’m a good dancer when it’s really up to me to believe it?

Then I got mad at myself but only for a short bit. Yes, I had let things go and not dealt with anything. But getting mad about that wouldn’t fix it or change it.

So I decided to choose to believe. Fake it to make it for a bit, if you will. I went to the group class and practice party on Thursday thinking I was a great dancer, a fun person, and not a shy downer.

And you know what? IT WORKED. I had a blast at that party, and my dancing was relaxed and fun. My teacher commented towards the end that I was dancing like someone who believed in their talent. He also mentioned that he was glad I was there because after our lesson the night before, he wasn’t sure I’d show up. Which is always nice to hear. That he was glad I was there, I mean. No one wants to hear someone isn’t sure they’ll show up.

So, Dance-O-Rama. I’m so glad I went. I wish I had thought about this sooner, or at least come to some of these realizations earlier so I could have had more fun there. But in some ways, I needed to go there and in a way hit bottom to start to pull myself out of the deep thinky place I’ve been in. Being there, regardless of my feelings at the time, I got to experience something awesome that very few people ever get to do. I bonded with my friends that were there because of that shared experience. I realized my scores told the truth: I am a great dancer who was up against some tough competition, including a lot of people who do Dance-O-Ramas all the time, and I held my own. I more than held my own; I kicked some ass in some heats.

And it’s not about being better than others. It’s about being as good of a dancer as I can be. Which is a great dancer, considering my talent. I just have to work hard and remember that the days of easy fixes and learning new things quickly are long gone. But I still can do anything my teacher gives me to do; it just might take longer than one lesson to get it. (Side note: we spent Friday’s lesson working on technique in bolero which it turns out is silver level technique. And I was getting it. Man, I hate it when he’s right.)

I’m feeling so much better now, both in life and about dance. I think Dance-O-Rama really helped to start to pull me out of the thinky place. And as I told me teacher, this isn’t a permanent fix. I’m sure I’ll slide back there at some point and probably often. But I just need to continue to fake it to make it and actively think and remind myself and BELIEVE. In my dancing, in my teacher’s faith in me, and in myself.

And stop wallowing. And start being me again.

The Dance-O-Rama post, part 1

2 Sep

[This post got to be waaaayy too long, so I’m breaking it up into two parts. Here’s part one.]

Last weekend was Dance-O-Rama.

I’ve been having trouble putting my thoughts and reactions into words, hence the lack of a post til now. There is just so much to sort out!

It was an incredible weekend. And an exhausting one. And an emotionally-charged one. And a thrilling one.

I did not sleep much the night before we left. I had to be up early, as I had to be at the airport by 8:30. I had my packing list all done and everything laid out on the table. So that morning, it was just check the item off the list and throw it into the suitcase. I had figured out that my dresses would fit in my garment bag which would actually fit as a carry-on. Sweet. So no need to worry about my dresses or my shoes getting lost.

Thursday had some downtime. We had a few hours after checking in before all of us from our studio met, then we had a few more hours before dinner. Downtime at an event like that is not good for me, especially since I didn’t think I’d have any so I didn’t really bring anything to do during downtime. And me plus nothing to do equals thinky place.

Put me in thinky place in a social situation, and my shyness kicks in. So at dinner, due to the thinky place and this event being outside my comfort zone, I got shy. And quiet. Started shrinking into myself again.

But dancing started the next morning. I was very excited for that. Breakfast was at 8, dancing started at 8:30 (my teacher wanted to do warm-ups at 7:30), my first event was a solo at 8:32. Thursday night, I got to sleep around midnight and was planning to get up at 5:30. I woke up at about 2am and couldn’t get back to sleep until 4. So I started the competition on about 3-4 hours of sleep. Awesome.

My solo was the foxtrot open, which had been going well in practice. And it went very well here. The floor was bumpy; my heels got caught in the cracks a few times. But my posture was good, and I felt like I nailed it. In fact, my text to KB was “first solo done. kicked its ass”.

Then the heats started. The first day was closed, and the heats started with smooth. So I took the floor with my teacher (at around 10:30), and we started dancing.

And the traffic killed me. They had so many entries, they had to do two heats at a time by splitting the floor in two. So it was about 8 couples trying to do smooth on half a floor. Lots of near collisions, a few actual collisions, and I got flustered. You can’t practice for that kind of traffic. Everyone else seemed to be doing so well and handling the traffic so much better. The afternoon was rhythm, and it didn’t get much better. Lots of arms flying around. I just felt like I was the worst one on the floor during my heats and that I couldn’t deal with the traffic issues, and I felt like that all day. Except for my lindy hop heats. Those seemed OK.

But overall, my confidence took a big hit that day. My teacher thought I was doing well, but in my head, it didn’t seem like it.

That night we had the costume party dinner/dance. It was a ’50s theme, which was fun. I hadn’t really recovered my equilibrium yet, but tried to have fun anyway. I was also worried about the all-around heat I had that night – at 10:38pm. (The last heats that day were right before midnight.) The all-around heat started with a semi-final round. It went well – my teacher said it went great and was the best dancing of mine of the day and was the best I had done the cha-cha ever – but I didn’t make the finals. Not that I expected too at that point.

That night, I got to sleep shortly after midnight. I had to get up at 6 the next day. And once again, I woke up around 2 and was up for 2 hours. And at that point, I was going to quit dancing. Period. I thought that there was no way I was good enough to be a dancer, I wasn’t good enough to be at that competition, and I wasn’t fun enough to have people want me around. (Can you tell I was deep in the thinky place?) That morning when I got up, I started crying in the shower. I had wanted to cry all day the day before but kept fighting it. And I fought it in the shower because I didn’t want to have red eyes for everyone to see, plus I felt like if I started, I wouldn’t be able to stop for a long time. I mentioned to my teacher at breakfast that I was very close to a breakdown but that I knew he couldn’t do anything to help me because he had to dance so much.

The heats that day were open. And I knew my opens were solid. At the point of the competition, I was better at dancing open than closed. So I knew Saturday would be the better day for me. Plus, my friend JF who lives in Chicago came to see my morning heats. Which was an awesome boost for me.

But once again…half a floor. Lots of couples. Traffic. Thinky place. Feeling worse and worse about my dancing, my ability to hold my own against the other couples on the floor, and about me. Frustrated I couldn’t pull myself out of this and angry that I was getting in my own way of having fun.

That afternoon, the rhythm heats started. At one point, my teacher had a long-ish break. (With five students there, he didn’t get a lot of breaks of any sort.) I don’t remember what he said to me, but I told him about my closeness-to-breaking-down and what I was feeling. And I started crying. (Did you know you can cry with fake eyelashes on? Yeah, I didn’t either. Turns out you really can.) And as always, he was incredibly supportive and helpful and direct with me. We talked for a few minutes then he had to go dance. I had about 20 minutes before my next heat, so I just stayed in the area outside the hotel ballroom. Because I couldn’t stop crying. Tears were just overflowing my eyes no matter what I did to try and stop. Then my friend JA, who is another student from my studio, came outside. I had had some brief conversations earlier with her about the emotions of this event, and it turns out she was experiencing some of the same thing. We talked for just a few minutes, and then bless her, she started trying to divert me by talking about fun IPhone games like SongPop. (Which, yes, is awesome and I now play it.)

Then I went back in to do my closed rhythm heats in full bronze. And at that point, I was so tired and I wasn’t fighting a breakdown, and I knew my teacher was concerned for me. So I just danced. I was resigned to not doing as well as the other couples, and I was a tiny bit relaxed because I had gotten out some of that emotion. And the opens actually felt good.

Dinner-banquet-awards that night, followed by the professional competition. Which was amazing. Jaw-dropping. Mind-blowing. And very fun to watch.

Breakfast the next morning wasn’t as a group, so I actually missed a lot of my group. My friends MS and CS were there as was my teacher. MS and CS and I were trying to get on an earlier flight. We did but it wasn’t until 3pm. So we walked around the city for a bit, and it helped to just spend some time with them. Then off to the airport (which took over an hour) and then a quick lunch. Then get on the plane and go home.

I was exhausted when I got home. I unpacked, got Chinese food with my roommate, and then probably just watched Netflix all evening – I really don’t even remember. I went to bed kinda early, I think. I did take my insomnia meds so I would be sure of getting a decent night’s sleep.

Then I woke up the next day (I had the day off work) and started to think about it all.

To be continued…

The line was a dot to me

10 Mar

This week has been a tough one. I screwed up with one of my friends big time on Tuesday. In the course of conversation with him, I asked him a question that was more personal that we typically talk. And as soon as I said it, I knew I shouldn’t have asked it. And of course, it was right as he was going into a meeting, so I couldn’t talk to him then.

It may not sound like a big deal, but he has a very strict, thick line about some personal information. I respect that line. I think it’s a bit thicker than it needs to be, but it’s his line and I respect that. I think he was offended that I would cross that line.

I called him the next morning and apologized. Me: “I know that I crossed a line yesterday and I’m really sorry.” Him: “Yes, you really did.” I just felt HORRIBLE. Because of my childhood, I often have a fear that people are going to leave me and not be my friend anymore when things like this happen. It’s hard in a moment like this to not have that fear rear its head again. We talked it through, and by the end of the conversation things were cool.

Except I’m having trouble facing him. I just feel terrible and disappointed in myself. And I don’t know how to get back to happy and jokey with him. When I saw him Wednesday, he was very nice and kind and was trying his best to be normal and get us back to normal. But I’m just not able to get there yet. I’m hoping that I can work through this today in my therapy session. Because it sucks to feel awkward around friends. And there’s a bigger issue of why do I still have this fear of people leaving? And why am I beating myself up so much about this?

Of course, during this week, this whole situation of crossing the line reminds me of this:

I know time will make this better, and eventually our friendship will be back to normal.

How do you believe?

18 Feb

Believing in myself is a very difficult thing for me. I can intellectually tell you all the things I’m good at, but I struggle emotionally to believe what I’m saying.

This shows up in a lot of ways, but especially in dance. I’ve been told that I’m a very good dancer (excellent even) and that I’m am very talented at it. But I struggle believing that. I can tell you all the things that I’m not doing correctly, and to me that’s proof that I’m not as good as my teacher says I am. I also feel like it’s his job to keep me motivated and happy, so there’s a tiny part of me that always doubts compliments from the staff. When other students compliment me, I feel like they’re just being kind and supportive. And when my nondancer friends compliment me, I feel like they just don’t know because they’re not dancers.

Again, my brain can tell you that everything they’re saying is true. My heart struggles with believing it.

This came up again in my lesson this week. And we actually had an interesting conversation about it. To me, there is no empirical evidence to show that I’m as good and as talented as my teacher says I am. Dance is very subjective, as are most art forms. I don’t trust my own judgment and assessment about this; that’s something just leftover from childhood. So without outside empirical evidence, how do I start to believe in myself more? My teacher’s answer is that you just believe. Maybe a bit of fake it to make it? An intriguing thought.

My teacher has said all along that the biggest thing missing in my dancing is the belief in myself. And he knows why I struggle to believe in myself. And he does his best to help me believe. But ultimately, no one can make me believe in myself but me. And yes, I’ve talked to my therapist about this a bit, and I think I need to talk to her more about it.

Because I want to believe. I want to be able to say with my brain and my heart that yes, I am quite talented at dancing and I am an excellent performer and dancer.

I get a tiny bit of that feeling on days that I perform. Super Saturday and Showcase are days that I KNOW I’m great at dancing. But how can I spread that feeling from those four days a year to the other days in the year? And I don’t want to get cocky or egotistical about it. I just want to be able to believe in myself more.

What’s interesting is that I have no trouble with this about work. I know I’m good at my job. I am confident about that. My therapist and I have talked about the difference there being that I’m not emotionally attached to work so it’s easier to believe. Dance and other things in my life, I’m emotionally attached to them, so it’s harder to believe in those situations.

I think the other thing that makes it difficult for me to believe is that I have always had the assumption that if I can do it, it must be easy. Algebra and calculus? Must be easy. Baking? Easy as pie. (Get it???) Dancing? Must be easy. And I know this is an assumption I need to change, and I’m trying to change it. I need to recognize and believe that some of these things aren’t easy for others and therefore I must be pretty good at those things.

So I need to figure out (with professional help most likely) how to believe in myself more.

Weekly roundup

3 Jan

Last week:

*Survived Christmas with my family – barely.

*Fell into a funk that I think was depression and it made me wonder if I even matter to the world and to the people I know.

*Got to have a cocktail at home!

*Shared my secret to infusing awesome flavors into vodka.

*Had the week off work to relax.

*Realized that my family history adds to my inability to trust compliments and that I don’t know how to ask for help when struggling.

*Worked out 4 out of 6 days last week – YAY!

*Recapped my year.

*Went out for New Year’s eve for the first time in 15 years.

*Wrote my resolutions I mean things I want to refocus on.

*Got bit by a dog at daycare. Luckily he didn’t break the skin, but I have a lovely purple and yellow bruise on my arm.

*Baked cookies.

*Spent most of the week in the thinky place.

*Caught a cold.

False compliments

29 Dec

I have a very hard time accepting compliments. I usually don’t fully trust or believe them.

Blame my childhood for that. But I’m working on it and I’m getting  a bit better.

Except for compliments from my mother. When she compliments me, I immediately have a reaction of disbelief. Thankfully, not outwardly, so she doesn’t really know I don’t believe her. (Can’t imagine how that disbelief would be another example of a bad daughter in her world.)

I think in my childhood, especially elementary school, I had examples of people being mean, talking about me behind my back while being nice to my face, and falsely building me up to knock me down later. That has all stayed with me in huge ways, and I work very hard to not let those memories and feelings impact me now. Sometimes I’m not real successful in that.

I had an epiphany today. I also get some of this from my mother’s compliments. When I was a kid, she complimented us all the time. I think they became meaningless because no matter what we did, we got a compliment.

This morning, she told me my hair and my look was especially pretty today. Now, I have the day off work, and I don’t have to be anywhere until 5:00pm today. Plus I knew I was going to spend most of the day making earrings with beadweaving. So I did shower today, but I barely dried my hair so it has some weird waves in it. I didn’t flat-iron it so it’s kinda big on the bottom. I have my glasses on and no makeup. I’m in my Sunday jeans, which are a pair of jeans that very comfortable but about 3 sizes too big right now, and I’m wearing one of my ex-husband’s long sleeve t-shirts that he didn’t want when we divorced. In short, I’m a bit of a mess and can’t really go out in public right now. There is no way my hair or my look is pretty, let alone especially pretty. NO WAY. I don’t know a lot about fashion (ask AL and RM about that), but trust me, there is no way.

When she complimented me, it immediately took me back to being a kid and not believing her compliments. I think the one today was proof to me that her compliments aren’t based on reality; they’re just words she says to try and make me feel better. I know this isn’t an entirely rationale reaction, but there it is. Couple that with my childhood experiences in school, and it’s very hard for me now to believe compliments.

Add to that the issue of when my dance teacher compliments me. I don’t believe his compliments because of everything I just described above, and part of me feels like it’s his job to make me feel good about my dancing so of course he’ll compliment me. Rationally, I know that’s not true and he doesn’t compliment unless he means it. Emotionally, though, really hard for me to believe.

Sooo…it would appear I have yet another area to work on. I need to start trusting that when people compliment me, they really mean it. Of course there are times when we compliment each other to make the other person feel better, even if we don’t totally mean it. But for the most part, people generally mean it when they compliment someone. So I need to work on trusting that.

And I need to remember that even if my mother’s compliments are not based on any sort of reality, she’s just trying to do something nice.

And I should trust people more that they’re not going to hurt me the way I was hurt in elementary school and junior high, and they’re not being false.

And I shouldn’t get down about having another area to work to improve myself. At least I’m aware of these areas, right? That’s half the battle, I think. At least I hope so.

Because I think this area is going to be a tough one to overcome.

Dance anniversary

22 Oct

Today is my dance anniversary – two years ago, I walked into the dance studio for the first time – and totally changed my life.

Prior to starting to dance, I had made a lot of progress on myself, my anxieties, my issues, but I still had a long way to go. I had also ended a relationship a few months prior to that, and I was depressed and lonely. I decided to try to find a new hobby that was also somewhat social to try and get out of the house. I had always loved Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire movies, so when I walked by the studio one day, I thought why not?

I knew I had zero coordination, but Arthur Murray claims that they can teach anyone to dance. I checked out their website and saw they had a free intro lesson. What the hell – let’s give it a go.

I had my first lesson with Shane. The beauty of Arthur Murray is that they break down each dance into such a basic step that you literally are able to do the basic step of a few dances (foxtrot and swing in my case) by the end of your first lesson. After the lesson, I got the sales pitch from Barb, one of the studio owners, about buying a package of intro lessons. I had been bitten by the dancing bug completely by then, so I signed up for 12 intro lessons.

I decided to try a group lesson too. At the time, I had some bad social anxiety and going outside my comfort zone was not an easy thing for me to do at all. (It’s kinda amazing I was even able to walk in and try a lesson.) But I knew I’d have to do a group class at some point, so I sucked it up and went. I remember Jay was at the desk when I got there, and I remember telling him that it was my first group class and that I didn’t really know what to do. He was so kind and helpful – he was actually teaching the class I was going to, so it made it easy. They’re all so good at putting you at ease. It was great. At some point I went to a practice party but I don’t really remember when that was.

I had two more private lessons with Shane. Then Barb came to me before one of the parties and told me that Shane had broken his leg in a motorcycle accident and would be out for a long while. In the meantime, Nate would be my teacher.

And the rest is history.

Working with Nate has been so fantastic. I think his teaching style fits my learning style very well. Plus we have similar senses of humor, so we end up laughing a lot. But the main thing about Nate is that he is so willing to help me through the issues I encounter through dance. And believe me, there have been a lot. Performance, leaving my comfort zone, Cuban motion and expressing that side of me, having very high standards for myself and a short timeline by which I expect to meet those standards, arm styling and feeling awkward, getting stuck in the thinky place, doing things outside my comfort zone (I know I already mentioned that but believe me it should be mentioned twice!)…so many issues. And Nate has been there to support me, help me, and occasionally drag me through whatever wall I run into. Truly a supportive person. I’ve learned a lot and grown a lot. I honestly believe I would not be as good a dancer as I am or have made the progress in myself and my issues if I had been working with another teacher.

The rest of the staff has been awesome too. Amy and Rachel were (and continue to be) so helpful in teaching me about clothes, makeup and how to be a girl. When I started dancing, I owned a hair dryer, a curling iron, a brush and a comb. Now I have (and actually use at various times) a hair dryer, two curling irons, a flat iron, three brushes, two combs, three kinds of hair spray, hair tonic conditioner, mousse, heat protectant spray and curl-making spray. I also own and use about triple the makeup I used to use.

I’ve also made so many good friends with the other students. Going to the studio is an opportunity to catch up with people. I go to dinner and get together with them outside of the studio too. It’s like a whole another family for me – a family who understands me, knows what dance means to me, has a common interest with me, and just accepts me for who I am. The studio is where I feel most comfortable being me. And what’s weird to me is that people see who I truly am and think I’m fun, I’m funny, I’m smart, I’m talented, I’m kind and they enjoy being with me. That’s a whole reality I’m not used to experiencing.

My first performance was Super Saturday in March 2010. I had not done any sort of solo performance since I was about 8, and I had a really bad experience with a piano recital when I was about 4. Add to that my lifelong behavior on trying to stay in the background, and I had no idea how I would react to doing a dance performance. I worked with my therapist on some techniques to lessen my anxiety and make it a good experience. But I also was very up front with Nate about it, and he did whatever he could to help me. I usually tell him about issues I’m running into through dance because I think it’s important for him to know what is impacting me in dance.

I wish I could repay the staff and especially Nate for everything they’ve done for me over the last two years. They have no idea how great they’ve been, how much they’ve helped me grow, and how much I appreciate each of them. I know I can’t repay them for what they’ve done for me, so I try to pay it forward to other new students who come into the studio. I can try to do for them what the staff and the other students did for me. But I will always be grateful to the staff and especially Nate.

By starting ballroom dance, I discovered my passion in life. And for the first time in almost 40 years, I found something I was actually talented at and could do really well. And maybe become really great at. That was a new experience for me. And I still have trouble accepting the talent piece – am I really that good? That’s an issue I’m still working on.

And you know what? Turns out – I love performing! For me, I get such a rush performing, and usually my dancing goes up at a performance. I look forward to Super Saturday and Showcase each time. Showcase is like Christmas morning to me, every single time.

There have been a lot of benefits for me in dancing. Physically, I’ve lost weight, my posture is better, I have more muscle tone, I’m more poised and more graceful. Mentally, I’m happier, I’m more confident, I now leave my comfort zone more often and with more ease, I know that who I am can be interesting to others, I laugh more, I have more joy in my life, I have a happy place. I can’t imagine who I would be if I hadn’t started dancing.

Right now, I’m in Bronze III, and I’m a pretty good and talented dancer. The dances in my program are waltz, tango, foxtrot, cha cha, rumba, swing, hustle, west coast swing, Lindy Hop, and Viennese waltz. I think after Showcase we’ll be adding bolero and maybe mambo? (I can’t remember – Nate has the plan.)

There are so many things I love about dance. It’s graceful. It’s allowed me to express a creative piece of me. It’s a constant learning and improvement process. It’s social. It’s something I’m good at. And I try to allow dance to lift me, make me happy, and bring joy to my life.

And I thank God every day that I took that first step into the dance studio two years ago.

Post a week 2011, week 2: Is there anything you wouldn’t share…

28 Sep

Today’s topic: Is there anything you wouldn’t share with your best friend?

Interesting question. First of all, I don’t have one best friend. I have lots of really great, close friends. Different friends for different situations.

So absolutely, there are very few people in this world with whom I share everything. It totally depends on how I know them, what role they have in my life, and how I think they’d react to whatever the item is. For instance, I can talk to my friend NJ about anything – except emotions. He just doesn’t deal well with emotions. I can talk to my friend AL about emotions but not about money concerns. I don’t share everything with SR and NA, because although they’re close friends, I sometimes feel like they’re at different places in life because they’re 23.

I guess I think it’s risky to share everything with one person. I kinda like that in my world, those secrets and private things are spread out among a few people. There’s really only…let’s see…2 people who know everything about me? If one person knew everything, there’s a risk in that. It’s very vulnerable. But I also know that if I was in a strong, healthy, happy relationship, I would definitely share with that guy.

The biggest thing I don’t share is my thought process. I let very few people see the extent of my thoughts, my thinky place, my downward spirals, my insecurities, my anxieties. You all know that I have them, but you don’t see how they really affect me and what they actually look like in my life.

So if you’re one of the few who has seen that, consider yourself a very close friend of mine.

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