M. has always wanted to take dance lessons.
So off we went the other week, to our local Arthur Murray studio, conveniently located just a quarter-mile from our house.
“I’m really uncoordinated,” M. told our teacher.
“My brain just doesn’t pattern directions,” I told our teacher. “I’ve always been uncoordinated like that, even in aerobics classes. I think it’s like a learning disability.”
We began our lesson. As expected, I ended up on the wrong foot.
“That’s because you aren’t shifting your weight when you step,” our teacher pointed out. She demonstrated.
It was like dawn broke. I could see exactly what I had been doing.
I got it. I changed my steps. I did it. Fine. Perfectly, even.
Learning outside turns, the same thing happened. Once she broke it down and showed me that the turn was two steps instead of my three, I could do it. Instantly. Perfectly.
Some of us live for decades making assumptions about ourselves. It’s refreshing at this age to find that my longtime image of myself — as someone who was a) unable to do a pushup and b) unable to pattern dance steps — has been dashed to pieces.
How many of us have an outdated vision of ourselves? One that we haven’t tested for many, many years?
How would it be to test that image now?
And by the way, dancing is fun. So much fun!
And when we practice at home, Riley wants in. He loves to dance with us and if he sees us doing steps and we don’t pick him up he stands on his hind legs and pokes us to get him.
And the three of us dance.