Saturday, October 15, 2011

Who Run the World (a post about dancing)

Who run the world? (Girls, Girls!)
Who run the world? (Girls, Girls!)
Who run the world? (Girls, Girls!)
Who run the world? (Girls, Girls!)

Picture this: Exuberant, somewhat exhausted, laughing-like-crazy Hilary, dressed in her yoga shorts and an old T-shirt, dancing like she is auditioning for Dancing with the Stars (without the hand-eye coordination needed...) to BeyoncĂ©'s "Run the World (Girls)" blasting from her computer, singing along.

I have been taking some time this weekend to dance around in my bedroom. For so much of the time, I wear neat pencil skirts and put my hair in a bun. I look both ways before I cross the street (though I do sometimes forget to look down at potentially hazardous stray bricks). I keep my music to a low volume, return my library books on time.

And I love being that person - most of the time. But there are these moments, when my feet start to move to every beat within a fifty mile radius. I catch a few notes of a blaring stereo on the Newbury St and immediately my hands want to fly above my head and I want to spin around in circles. I want to let my mane of reddish hair down around my shoulders and watch it twist in the air behind me. I want to kick off my shoes and have a dance party in the office, or on the street, or in my bedroom. No shame, no sense of what is "proper" or "perfect" - just jumping around like there is nothing in the world to do except dance.
(photo: Hannah Byrnes)

When I dance, I remember that joy is unselfconscious. It doesn't look at itself, or measure itself, or compare itself to others. When I jump around like an enthusiastic lemur, or try (unsuccessfully) to learn a salsa routine to Pitbull, I live the joy and I can feel it radiate out of me.

Sometimes I dream of starring in Step Up. I imagine that I'm the heroine who only knows classical ballet, and that a boy with an attitude but some killer dance moves teaches me to chase after freedom, and I teach him to love discipline. I imagine that I can pull off the leaps and twists, and that when I step in front of the audience, there is nothing except for me and that moment and that routine. I want to be the girl from Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights when they give their first performance and she shocks her parents with her routine. I want to be that daring, free spirit.

I think God wants us to be free, too. I think He wants us to be free of all our impatient ideas about who the "perfect" self is, and what she can and can't do. To be free from guilt, free from despair, free from the voice that tells me I'm not good enough, pretty enough, smart enough...

So I turn on the pump up music and start to dance. I sing loudly to Beyoncé. I practice my salsa steps, and trip and laugh and start over. I imagine I'm Nora, or Katey, or any of those other characters who dance their way to a free heart.

And for those fleeting moments, I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror, and I think - I'm dancing my way to a free heart, too. 

(photo: Mandie Sodoma)


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...