Photo by Christopher Nelson

An open letter to those who ‘don’t dance’

I love dancing.

I love it so much it is hard to explain, even though I’m a writer.

I can’t play music at work because it is too distracting, I want to dance along instead of sitting at my desk writing.

It is the best part about Christmas parties or banquets or awards ceremonies. It is the best part about going out partying, whether there is alcohol or not, in the evening.

If I could be dancing all the time, I would.

I once said to my life coach (yes I had a life coach, good investment, I highly recommend) that when I dance I feel like I am wearing my soul on the outside.

For someone who regularly feels like their inside self is much prettier than their outside self this is a liberating, scream happiness to the heavens feeling.

Even though I usually dance like an idiot and I often don’t know what to do with my arms, I feel beautiful.

I’ve always liked dancing. I took lessons as a kid and can remember wearing a t-shirt with a lolli pop on the front for out number to the song, you guessed it, Lollipop by the Chordettes, or some rendition there of.

From there I moved on to Ukrainian dance, with the bright blush, the flowered head pieces and the glued up knee-high red socks.

I often feel like I should have continued dance lessons, but when Grade 10 rolled around I dropped out to play basketball (which, for the record I was terrible at, I probably scored only 10 baskets in the whole three years I played).

The most ruckus I ever caused as a teenager at home was blasting the stereo and dancing and dancing and dancing when I was home alone.

Basically, for me dancing is beauty, freedom and rebellion all wrapped into one.

When I got to university and could go out dancing every night if I wanted to, I was often the first and only one on the dance floor.

And that is what I wanted to talk about. Somewhere along the lines that changed and, most of the time, I am no longer willing to head out onto the dance floor by myself.

I find myself treasuring the friends that will dance with me, as the more people I meet the more people will respond “I don’t dance.”

It is hard in a small town, to be the only one in a open space, moving around like a silly person. It feels like all eyes are on you. I’ve often felt like I’m being judged because the audience (who probably isn’t even paying attention) for being too drunk, but really, how is dancing harming anyone? How am I making a fool of myself?

It is my theory that the self proclaimed ‘non dancers’ feel that way all the time, even if there is a crowd on the dance floor.

Stop it.

I am telling this to myself as much as anyone else who might read this.

Just dance. Take a deep breath, close your eyes if you need to, turn your back on the audience-who is either not paying attention, thinking that your brave or jealous that you are having more fun than them-and dance.

And, if you see me out there, or if I am anywhere in the same room as you and you want to dance, come find me because I will definitely join in.

For the ‘non dancers’ I encourage you to take a few seconds and think about why you don’t dance. If it is because you genuinely hate everything about the act, fair enough, move on, but if you secretly love to dance and are embarrassed or think you don’t know how, give it another go!


 

@JDoll_Revy
jocelyn.doll@revelstokereview.com

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