In 2007 I went to Michigan for SALTS. A huge celebration is held the last night of the week. After a lavish dinner, there was a time for dancing. There was much that week that I could have celebrated and danced over.
There was a huge floor where people got into a giant circle and took turns doing various things across the dance floor. All night long, people celebrated. They danced and spun and shook and shimmied and glided. That year I think I joined in on a group version of the "Hokey-Pokey" - but only because everyone was doing it and I didn't want to stand out.
For the most part, I stood on the sidelines and watched. I watched both old and young people making complete fools out of themselves on the dance floor - completely shameless. Just enjoying, dancing and celebrating. I wanted to be like them. I wanted to dance. I wished that I could have allowed myself to.
I think one of the things that has held me back from dancing is my weight. I carry most of my shame around on my body and it feels awkward. I wonder what other people would think about me if I were to dance as freely as others were. I convince myself that I belong on the sidelines or that I don't really deserve to dance. And if I dance, I will only invite myself to be ridiculed if I do so.
But, I don't want that to be my reason for not dancing anymore. It feels like it doesn't match my personality and who I am now - even with the extra weight. I've decided that I'm not going to let evil keep me from dancing anymore. I'm pretty sure I'm a dancer. I'm pretty sure I was born to dance.
I'll be going back to SALTS again the first week of May. There will be the same celebration dance that Friday night. While I don't know what that week will hold for me, I do know that I have much to celebrate. I have much to dance over. And I am hopeful that I will find the courage to step out of some of my old, familiar ways of thinking and be the dancing fool that's dying to get out.
What has kept you from dancing?