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Saturday, January 18, 2014

Learning to dance

Dancing hasn't always been my thing.  For the longest time, I was afraid of looking silly, and of being the only person who didn't know what to do when the music started.  In the thick of adolescent anxiety, I felt too uncomfortable, too vulnerable, to express myself with dance.  So I didn't.

Aside from just growing up, there were two things in particular that helped me kick my fear of dancing and of self-expression.

First, I was introduced to Qoya.  Qoya is a movement system created for women.  It's little like yoga and a lot like creative, expressive (even meditative) dance.  When I first tried Qoya, using online videos for guidance, one principle really resonated with me: it's not about how it looks, it's about how it feels.  Home alone, curtains drawn, I closed my eyes and let myself stop caring about how my dancing looked.  And then, something magical happened: I started to enjoy dancing.  It took intentional silliness and dancing like no one was watching--because no one was watching--to shake (quite literally) my fear of looking silly.



The other thing that helped me let go of my anxiety was deeper transformation and growth in my life, assisted by homeopathic remedies prescribed by my naturopathic doctor.  As she explained, homeopathic remedies help to combat a "stuck" feeling.  Sometimes, we can see ourselves behaving in ways that are not consistent with our true natures, because of old habits or conditioning.  A good constitutional homeopathic remedy helps break through that, and lets us choose how to respond instead of sinking into the groove of old behavior patterns.  In my case, homeopathic remedies helped me to overcome my old pattern of meekness, and to find my voice.  I am growing into myself.

This growth is evident in my recent activities:  I went to my first dance (ever!) this August, though I didn't do anything particularly interesting.  A month or so ago, I danced as part of my role in a play.  And then, the crowning jewel: as a perfect symbol of the growth I've made over the past year, I welcomed in the New Year with dancing--adventurous, bold, joyful dancing with friends at a New Year's party.  I have a feeling 2014's gonna be a good year.