Friday, June 14, 2013


Folks, I have been challenged to a "Dance Off". And anyone who knows me, knows that I MUST dance. There is something in my genetic makeup that makes me wanna shake my bon-bons anytime I hear a funky beat...even if it's just playing in my head.
Now, first let me say that by "dance", it's really more of a shake-around-jump-stomp-fling-the-hair-stick-my-tongue-out-and-wiggle kind of thing. We aren't talking ballet, here. Nothing quite that classy. And I know that I look utterly ridiculous whilst doing the aforementioned dance moves. But hey - no worries, right?
I grew up in a house where I never, not once saw my mother dance. I still haven't. And I've never heard her sing, either. And part of me has always been sad about that fact. My sister is the same way -- she doesn't sing or dance either. I can only assume that I am the possible product of our old mailman, because I never really fit into that household...what, with all my groove-shakin' and tunes-beltin'. I always felt a little stifled, and more than once I caught eye-rolls sent in my direction when I went off on one of my groove fests. But you know what? I kept on doing it.
I am not a good singer. There, I said it.
I am not a good dancer. OK, that one hurts a little :)
I am, however, OK with that. Dancing like a moron makes me happy, all right? And maybe sometimes I like to sing Song Sung Blue by Neil Diamond while doing my best impersonation of a 70s icon...complete with feathered hair and gold chains. So what?

The point is, that it doesn't matter if other people think it's goofy, or if they don't 'get it'. All that matters is that it makes you happy, and maybe gives you a little inner peace. Or at least an outlet to obtain that inner peace.
I have a little boy, and he is 3 years old. I think he is the funniest kid on the planet, and he says I'm his best friend. We.Dance.ALL.the.Time. I mean constantly. Every Friday night we have "dance parties" where we turn music on and dance like goobers in the living room. We typically listen to something Putumayo (if you  haven't discovered this music, GET IT NOW), and we don't understand any of the words because mostly they aren't in English. The point is THE MUSIC. It's pure music, in all its beautiful, enigmatically cultural forms. And now (good, bad, or indifferent) my kid dances ALL THE TIME. The kid has moves I've never even seen before, and he cracks me up. One of his best moves involves him putting his hands on the ground and kicking his leg into the air....I have no clue where he got it, but I may have to incorporate it into my "Dance Off" tonight.
I love that he loves to dance. I don't want him to grow up in a house where it is thought of as being 'weird' or 'ridiculous'.
He also sings. Off-key, warbling, and perhaps he makes up his own words - but he gets no judgment from me. No eye rolls. No twitches. And I usually join in. Because my kid is awesome.
He's probably going to be the weird kid. My husband and I joke that the poor kid doesn't stand a chance, because he and I are both pretty quirky individuals. And I'll be honest with you - in school, sometimes people weren't very nice. Because noone likes someone who is different. But I think that it's not always a bad thing -- it's OK not to be mainstream, and it's OK to not be one of the cool kids.
At first I felt stupid - I cocooned myself into my mind and left myself there to fester. Then, slowly, I started to feel cool in my own head. Until it didn't really matter what anyone else thought. I realized that my mind worked on a different wavelength than most of the people I was around -- family, classmates -- and I learned to be OK with it. It was a long process, and I still have major anxiety issues. But most of the time I deal with it and move on.
I will be attending a "Dance Off" tonight with several ladies I don't really know, alongside my BFF KDay. I am nervous. I am anxious. I don't feel comfortable around new people. But I need to deal with it and move on.
So my plan for the night = Dance my ASS off.
I may get laughed at. I may get made fun of for months to come. But I'll know that it's because they're all secretly jealous of my flawless dance moves and Jhirmack-bounce-back-beautiful-hair.

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