just dance: on authentic aliveness
My daughter, Hosanna, loves to dance.
Two nights ago, Christmas music playing (I think it was the Nutcracker Suite) and wearing her favorite Christmas dress, she fleetly floated around. Twirling, tip-toeing, feeling the music like it was coming out of her soul. A few nights before, she was rocking out to music she and I made together. Headphones on, in her pajamas, dancing all around like no one was watching. Elements of ballet, hip hop, and a bunch of moves that were probably her best imitation of me. Looking in the mirror with a focused face. Lost in the music. Oblivious to whatever else was happening around her.
When she’s dancing, Hosanna is being purely and fully herself, truly present, and luminously ALIVE.
She manages to get out of her head, is no longer stuck in or succumbed to her fears. She may still want us to watch, and still loves acknowledgements and appreciation, but she dances for herself. She dances because there is movement and music in her very soul that needs to be expressed.
I find the same is true for me. Sometimes putting on music and dancing unlocks things within me to be felt, to be expressed, and to be let go at the same time. There are many mediums I may use to open my heart, settle my mind, and be grounded in my body. Sometimes, writing affords a space to let my consciousness dance through pen and paper and bring to mind various elements of my being with awareness internally focused or paying attention to what is around. Sometimes, running affords me the space to elevate body and mind in a symbiotic dance of aliveness and awareness. I have found that a combination of movements and mediums is best for me and can keep me from getting stuck in a rut of perception, to get back in the flow of life and let the joy that is within come up and come out.
What I love about dancing is that it is expressive, embodied, and enjoyable.
Maybe the medium is different for you, though.
For your life to be a dance, it doesn’t mean you have to be a dancer in the ways that I’ve mentioned. It’s just a question of what YOU do to practice being fully alive.
Whatever you do today, I hope you can make some time to just be, and just dance.