It’s been a soul searching kind of month :). So many things have come up! I’ve had to deal with lots of disappointment and with the realization that some of my dreams weren’t really mine and really needed to die. And that process has been hard. It’s been a constant job to maintain my happiness and hopefulness. On all levels, mind body and spirit, I’ve been struggling to stay afloat.
But through this tumultuous month, I’ve also realized great comeback moments. I’ve been reminded constantly of my value AND of how I shortchange myself. I’ve seen first hand how my own perspective clouds a situation and creates an entirely different false reality. I’ve had so many opportunities to practice my word for the year Courage. There have been so many ways, all in the space of 20 something short days, to put every aspect of my will and belief in myself to the test. And when I have looked and have operated on faith and have trusted, help has been everywhere. And the whisper of intuition and the Universe has been in my ear, on my mind, and in the words of other people to me guiding me to the light that comes after the little deaths.
I want to tell you about one of those conversations today. If you’ve been with me for a while, you probably know how important a holistic approach to life is for me. You might be familiar with my particular struggles with mental illness and you might also know that I believe taking care of your mind body and spirit is necessary for a happy, healthy soul that can overcome mental illness’s hold over one’s life. You also probably know how important being a dancer is to me - how vital to my life it is and how much I’ve worked and sacrificed for it.
Well in my work that spans the worlds of mind, body, and spirit, I’ve often had difficulty figuring out how to bring my dance life into that work. It felt like there wasn’t a place for dance in my holistic beauty, health and wellness training. I felt like I just wasn’t sure how the two meshed.
I toyed with the idea of creating a community of dancers that all cared about learning more on holistic beauty and wellness and for a time I did that - but kept feeling like it wasn’t gelling. And so I let that idea go for a time.
Then a week or so ago, I was fortunate enough to meet a wonderful kindred spirit who brought all of it back to me and showed me the way to do it. See, I used to have a non-profit organization years ago where I taught all about holistic living, natural health and wellness. My focus then was lower income communities because I felt like they were the ones getting left behind. What this kindred spirit helped me to see is that there are a lot more people being left behind and I, with my unique background, could serve one particular group very well.
Dancers. Yes, I could serve dancers who inevitably deal with so many mind, body, and spirit issues.
I looked back on my time traveling and performing every other week and boom - I saw it all. Being rail thin and thinking I was as big as a house. Feeling inferior to other dancers for no reason other than skin tone or hair type or body type. Starving myself and being on the extreme side of strict to fit a certain aesthetic. Dealing with horrible skin breakouts from stage makeup and bad eating habits. Syking myself in and out before performances, auditions, and competitions. Asking God, the Universe, anyone what I was was supposed to be doing in this dance world and feeling lost and unanswered.
So many things that I know other dancers deal with day to day.
I realized that I have a unique voice that can speak to them and I realized just how much I would have benefited from a voice like that when I was in the thick of it.
And so this is my new project. Am I am ecstatic about it. I’ll be perfectly honest. I don’t know how it’s going to unfold. I don’t know how I’m going to manage it with everything else. But I do know that some things that I thought were so important just aren’t anymore. I’m letting them fall away no matter how scary that is. I’m getting done with NOT looking forward to the things on my to do list. The old adage that life is too short and too precious is true no matter how you look at it.
So the fact that the thought of this fills me up with excitement and a rush that I can’t explain in words is THE thing that drives me and is THE thing that is important. Feelings like this are what we live for. Feelings like this are what make everything else possible. They are the fuel for the impossible.
I had to go through a lot of little deaths, disappointments, stark clear moments, and deep dark places to get to the light again. Getting to the fuel sometimes requires that, but if you let yourself flow through it all (that’s what I call operating on faith), I know you’ll find yours.
What’s helping me today is realizing that I’m allowing this thing to mean something that ultimately boils down to invalidating me. I’m allowing this occurrence to make me question my value and place the decision maker outside of myself. And although that’s so easy to do, it’s never the right thing to do.
You really have to get to a point in your life where your sense of value is maybe shakable but never breakable.
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