Dance Like Nobody’s Watching
We’ve all heard that mantra before or shared the meme on Facebook or Instagram..but have we ever really tried living it?
I love to dance, always have and especially when I was younger. Back then in my 20’s, I was like a free spirited whirling dervish on the dance floor. I would be completely lost in a song and having fun with my friends and dancing as if no one was watching.
Then one day in my 30’s someone snapped a photo of me at a party and with my hair flung about , my arms outstretched and a goofy look on my face, I vowed never to dance in public again. I thought I looked terrible and silly and began to wonder had I looked like that all those times I was having fun? I chalked it up to growing up.
Still every time I was at a concert or a show my feet would tap and my body would move to the music but I steeled myself to stay seated. I wasn’t about to embarrass myself again no matter how good the beat was!
Then February happened. I was asked by a dear friend to be in her wedding. I had only been in one wedding before so the chance to redeem myself with a much prettier bridesmaid’s dress seemed a good idea. The wedding was beautiful, the bride was radiant and the groom got teary eyed saying his vows. All in all it was a perfect day. As we all gathered for the dinner and reception, soon the DJ was spinning songs and the dance floor was filled with people.
Me? Yep in my chair , smiling and swaying. Then the DJ said he would take requests. I don’t know what came over me, maybe it was too much pink lemonade cake or a momentary lapse of reason but I got up walked over and requested “Tell Me Something Good” by Rufus; an old song from the 70s that I had been playing a lot of on my iTunes. I just knew the crowd would love it. The dance floor was full and then I heard the beginning of the song and somehow my enthusiasm came over my fear of embarrassment and I ran onto the dance floor to dance. The only problem is as soon as I got on the dance floor everyone else left. So there I was by myself in front of the wedding party and the guests. I paused for a moment as the wedding photographer’s flash was going off I could feel the panic rise over me. What to do? Slink off the dance floor? Go hide behind the gift table?
Well maybe the years have made me more mature or perhaps I was just really ready to dance, but I glanced at the DJ who smiled at me, and I went for it. I danced like nobody was watching in a room full of people watching! And you know what? I survived and more importantly I had the time of my life. As I swirled and swayed I remembered how much I had really loved dancing and at the end of the day, it wasn’t about how good or bad I was, it was about the joy…the pure, unaltered joy it gave me. Towards the end of the song a former coworker smiled and laughed and then joined me on the dance floor and we danced together.
So to the bride and groom, if you’re reading this, I am sorry I was THAT guest at your wedding.. but for everyone else? Try it…just once pretend no one is watching and you may just reconnect with a part of you that you thought was lost.
When you find it again, don’t let it go. Life is short, go ahead and dance.