When I first came to Paganism in 2004, an important part of my life was dance. I danced to release tension, to find myself and once finding this spirituality; to take time for the divine.
Though I’ve never had lessons, not in gymnastics, nor ballet or Irish dance; I was a dancer.
Over the years, singing became a larger part of my life than dance and even then, health problems with my throat [and thus my voice] and my knees have all come to bring me down. I’ve not been steady at anything in my life; getting bored/giving up/forgetting all lead to failure at anything for which I had enthusiasm for. There’s no routine I’ve kept too – I don’t perform ritual every month nor pray every day; I don’t meditate each week nor do I always eat my 5-a-day.
Speaking of my 5-a-day challenge, today is the final day and I’ve three more fruit/vegetables to fit in today to complete it. I had only one slip-up, and that was due to being out of the house for so long; I only managed 4 of my 5. but instead of starting from scratch today, I’ve called it a learning curve and vowed to reach six today [Edit: achieved].
However, a few key themes really do seem to come back to me, especially when I’m stressed and the most common/noticeable for me is:
* Dance – this is something I had a real routine with a few years back; using staff and just letting the spirit take over my body. It’s my only free time; from my ever-chattering mind and myself. Dance is my escape; my truth where I find my insight. For me, it’s a breath of life I struggle to find. I believe we often reach for our power but in times of stress; it’s difficult to connect. This is my connection.
“uplifting and ego-transcending; it releases creative energies; it affirms the meaning and value of existence; it gives a sense of purpose to the individual; it gives a feeling of integration; it leaves a permanent mark on the individual, evidently changing them for the better.” ~ From her post, quoting Wikipedia.
On a separate note, I attended a talk on careers today’s and as with the rest of this week, it’s been reflective [appropriate for the end of the Pagan year, no?]. Questions were asked: Could I be a teacher? A psychiatrist? A psycholinguist? A policewoman? Enroll in the army?
I wasn’t thinking much about these questions when I arrived but I need no more encouragement to be true to myself than a house where I can turn my music up and dance without knowing people are below my feet trying to watch a movie. And I reached that transcendent space.
By the final song; The Night [Disturbed], which I’ve never danced to before and only listened to once or twice, I’d fully embraced the swing of it, whirling and swaying, leaning and twirling.
[I’ve a small room comprised of about 2×4 metres space… lots of turning avoids tripping over the bed and dancing into my wardrobe [which has no door, so I could even fall in].
The space I found opened like a flower and suddenly I could breathe on my own.
I think with such profound experiences over the last year I’ve become accustomed to the high of life:
my first gig, first wiccan ritual, first druid meet and ritual, first Handfasting, first pagan pub moot; the first chance to be myself and let go- my first opportunities to be open and free and not watch my every move; knowing I’m accepted with them- these have all allowed me to become an energy junkie and mixing with ‘normal’ people just doesn’t cut it.
I’ve always had just a few friends, very carefully picked out; whose energy lifts me and who passed many unconscious tests of mine before I let them in.
The experience of dance brings to light the energy I have; the potential within me, just as those few people can bring out the best in me.
Dianne also posted about her experiences with dance. As always, her words are much more eloquent and have a much softer flow. [i.e they include cohesion]
“I wanted to dance because, even at fifteen, I knew there was something there. Something between the rhythm and the motion…something underneath the cheesy techno remixes and the horrid Spandex unitards…something there, something elemental and visceral, something that itched beneath my skin, a knowledge, a hunger to move.“
Today I think I just came home needing to ‘scratch that itch’. My early blog names included Gaelic for “waterfall dancer” and “dance enchantress”, so it’s been with me throughout my journey.
Anyway, back to my point: This week’s transition has included reflection on my career. When I attended this talk about teaching today, a lot of the questions were along the lines of “could you do this? Does this click for you?”. I smiled at the questions, musing slightly but paying no major heed. I came home and as no-one was in, I danced. I put on Disturbed a bit too loud and danced. By the third time round of hearing ‘Indestructible’ I was exhausted. And I was grinning.
All the stress and annoyance and incomprehensible feeling [I couldn’t comprehend why it was here] of the last week and a half vanished. This is what I do. I danced a further four songs, so today’s dance count is at thirty-two minutes, and I’ll likely do another song before bed.
This is who I am; it’s my truth.
No matter what job, what country or how bad my health; no matter my religion, my labels or mood:
I’m a dancer and I always will be.