When I was in high school my family got Dance Dance Revolution. Its an arcade style game that teenagers everywhere were raving about in the mid 2000’s. That game was so fun, for several reasons. The game brought people together, and as long as you follow directions and keep a halfway decent beat, you stood a fighting chance.
I never have been a good dancer. I’ll be honest, my dancing is more about being goofy than looking good. I can’t actually remember ever dancing as a kid or teenager, but that changed in college. I don’t remember exactly when it changed, but there were some significant dance moments that, looking back, changed me from a non-dancer into a dancer.
One of the most memorable dance events happened my sophomore year of college. I came home from picking up some food and to my surprise a dance party was happening in my kitchen. It was winter and the doors were open because 6 or 7 of my friends spontaneously broke out in dance and were getting pretty sweaty. Naturally, I dropped the bags of groceries and jumped in. That was the best.
Sometimes it takes just the right person to get things started. When I think of a person to get things moving, I think of Luke. Luke and I have been dancing together for over half a decade, at weddings, company parties, and many living rooms. His dancing is so strange and confident that he really gets things moving. I love this about him. He is not afraid to be the first one, and it gives me courage to be the second.
The only thing as good as dancing with your favorite people, is dancing alone. If you haven’t tried this, then stop reading right now, put on some music and get to work. I remember anytime things got stressful in college with assignments or studying I would often break it down in the living room or kitchen to let loose a little. Don’t you think there is something rebellious about dancing in the face of exhaustion and stress? It helps. Im telling you.
Starting in September, I spent about a month traveling from California to Virginia. Traveling takes it out of you, and I was feeling particularly worn thin. I was feeling tired and dry when I stayed the night with some dear friends in Bend, Oregon. If I’m being honest, I just wanted to eat dinner and crawl into bed. Instead, we went to a music festival. He started dancing, and then my feet betrayed my fatigue. I couldn’t help myself. And I felt better. Still weary, but a little more alive.
There’s an emotional connection that happens when people dance together. For me, my soul feels lighter, freer. Dancing is one of the most vulnerable art forms, and we need more people willing to show their soul. So if there’s a dancer in you, let that guy out every now and then. The world needs more dancers.
Maybe you’re the first one on the dance floor, or maybe, like me, you need a little coaxing. All I know is when I watch people who dance with all their heart, I can’t help but want in on the action. Isn’t that the same way with life? When we see people who are willing to really live, doesn’t it give the rest of us an extra ounce of bravery? I hope that my willingness to live as fully as I know how pushes the people around me to live a bigger, more open kind of life.
So, let’s dance. I’ll follow you.