Thursday, March 1, 2012

Stand. Just stand.

Today I remembered a little bit of who I was, I remembered my thing. You know that thing, that thing that makes you feel better, that get’s your juices flowing, that amps your energy, for some people it’s running, for some people it’s yoga… everyone has their thing. My thing was dancing. Not professionally or anything, probably not even very well in fact, but that was my thing.

As a child and tween I took the obligatory dance classes, anything from ballet, to modern dance, to flamenco. As an angsty teen I’d sit in my room with the stereo as loud as my parents could stand it and dance around, and around, and around… for hours. As I got older and more disciplined I went back to the dance studio and pliéed my way to something akin to a nervous breakdown. I flitted from class to class, spending time and money I really didn’t have as a college student, trying everything you can imagine, classical ballet, contemporary dance, modern dance, even something similar to African tribal dancing simply called Afro. All this of course seasoned with a healthy side of clubbing on the weekends, where I was probably the only one actually there to boogie rather than the drinking and hooking up that normally goes on at that age.

And then I got older, work got in the way, and relationships… because what guy in a relationship is going to take you dancing? And life in general, it gets in the way of what we really like to do. And then you start feeling self conscious and silly, at 36 I’ve managed to lose the simple pleasure of being silly. I get embarrassed, I feel like an idiot at the idea of jumping around the room with volume up, I’m too old, I’m a mother… I don’t think twice about prancing around my living room, neighing, with both kids on my back as I pretend to be a horse, but dancing, that’s too embarrassing. How ridiculous. How sad. When did I start thinking I was too old to dance? When does anyone get too old to dance?

This biblically long preamble to say that today I got in the car and Stand by Lenny Kravitz was playing and I got that giddy feeling one gets when the endorphins start pumping, I laughed out loud, and I imagined myself dancing (I was driving, I couldn’t actually dance), I even bounced around in my seat a little bit. And it was fun. And it made me happy, well happier than I’ve been lately anyway. When did I get too old for fun?

So I got home and I downloaded the song and I got the kids and we played it really loud and danced around the living room. I could see my reflection in the windows, I looked idiotic, I was embarrassed, I wasn’t sure what to do with all those limbs flailing about haphazardly. But it was sort of fun.

And my two kids, they had no compunction whatsoever about dancing around and being silly, more proof, if any was needed, that children are so much smarter than adults.

Now turn up the volume! (I linked up the Glee version of this song because I like this video better than the official Lenny Kravitz video, which is a bit ridiculous and won't let you concentrate on the music. Also here there are cute boys in suits dancing about.)


  1. You go girl! I met you when you were that college student running from one dance course to another and I remember how much I admired your energy, your spirit... and your figure. Hehe. Dance, just do it!
    A few months ago I finally bought a speaker stand for my iPod because I realized I just don't listen to music anymore (same thing, life got in the way: I don't drive a car, I don't use headphones when I bike for obvious reasons, I have stopped the habit of switching on the stereo like I did in the Nineties the minute I walked into the house...). Anyhow, now when we are all in the kitchen I put it on shuffle and we all end up dancing and singing around the kitchen and it is the BEST feeling every. Why did I wait so long? 

  2. Why have I never heard this song before!?!?!? Maybe by the time I started hanging out in your room you had replaced the batteries in your boom box with cigarettes.

    For a while I was having "dance parties" in my room with the kids and they would giggle like little loonies jumping on my bed and flailing about and we'd all be in a great mood for the next several hours.  For some reason we haven't danced in a loooong, time, but thanks to your post, I'll be sure to host a party tomorrow - might even run to Party City and see if I can find a little disco ball to hang from the ceiling fan! :) xoxo

  3. Such a fun post, nothing like finding your mojo anyway and anywhere you can ;)
    I've noticed the hubs and I must be getting old when we go to Egyptian weddings where dancing is totally de rigeur, and we're both too self-conscious to ever make it out on the dance floor.
    Such a shame, we really need to bust a move.
    Cheers, Alcira

  4. Terrible dancer here, reporting for duty!

    Glad you're feeling more like yourself:) I like yourself!

  5. I love how music has that power to take us right back and change our mood in an instant. Get dancing and enjoy it - you're right, you're NEVER too old to dance. x

  6. I only dance behind closed the dark...fully clothed and with a sheet over the mirror...