I asked 4dancers contributor Karen to share a few words with us today about what dance means to her…here’s her reply…
It’s funny….when I was a little girl, my mom wanted me in dance classes. However, I–being the rebel–wanted nothing to do with them. And yet, I was the girl who secretly danced for years in her bedroom (although, once I stole my mom’s black patent leather pumps and showed her my little routine to “What’s New Pussycat”).
It wasn’t until I was in my early 20’s that I really found dance. I realized then that dance was more than just ballet and jazz. And the more classes I took, the more I fell in love, even if I felt the class was challenging. Today, I still take classes as well as teach and perform and my love for dance has not weakened in the slightest.
As I grew as a dancer, dance began to have more meaning to me. Dance has become food for my soul. Yes, I know it sounds cliché, but it’s true. I feel lost when I can’t take a class, like something is missing. It has become my piece of mind. When I went through a very rough time of taking care of my mom, dance was the one thing that kept my stress down. When I danced, I felt free. My mind could relax and focus on something else for a moment and become recharged.
My mom knew and understood this and she made it a point to make sure that even though I needed to be there for her, I needed to be there for myself as well. So I still danced. Even after losing her, I can still hear her voice every now and then telling me to make sure I dance. Dance is therapy for the heart, soul, mind and body. And in my travels, I’ve talked to a lot of women from various parts of the globe who all feel very much the same. Some discovered dance after their spouse died, or after suffering from a stroke; it filled a void, helped their memory loss, and in essence, gave them their life back. It is that powerful.
Dance is as essential as drinking water. I would feel very empty if dance was no longer in my life.
Karen shared some very personal thoughts about dance here…what does dance mean to you?