Sometimes I think it’s really healthy to not take yourself too seriously. Well, most of the time, I think it’s helpful.
But sometimes we can choose to really, really, put ourselves out there in the, “let’s see how unserious I can be (aka: am I really doing this?)” land.
So I did.
My 40th birthday was coming up. I could go one of two ways: wish I wasn’t turning 40 and have a hissy fit about it, or really celebrate – in a BIG way – that I’d made it to 40.
I chose the latter.
And not with just any party, but a ballroom dancing party to celebrate – including having my ballroom dance teacher teach a swing lesson at the party.
Me, being a recovering perfectionist, wanted to work on my dancing technique before hand – you know how couples do before their wedding dance? That was me.
To prepare, I wanted to learn how to express myself with a more feminine style, you know, like Ginger Rogers, the way she moves her hands around so gracefully like a beautiful scarf being blown gently by the breeze.
So I decided to take a ballet class.
I call the dance studio in town, and ask, “Do you have ballet classes?” “Yes” she replies “How old is your daughter?”
“It’s not for my daughter, it’s for me.” I state. “Oh”, she says, not sure what to say next. “Well, you can take the princess class – you’ll be dancing with 8 year olds.
“O.K. I said, “Sign me up!”
Was I really going to do this?
“Yes, I am.” I thought
“What do I wear, a tutu? No, I’m not going that far, how about a pink shirt?”
Decision made. So I arrive at the studio dressed in my best princess clothes I can find and walk into the ballet class. The girls look at me with wide eyes, their bodies come up to the top of my legs.
Wow, do I feel awkward. We grab the bar on the side of the room just like in the movies, “O.K. girls, we start with a plie.” What’s that, I wonder.
This isn’t really me – but it gives you the idea!
I try to keep to the tempo: “1 & 2 & 3 & 4,” and find I’m still on the 1 when she and the girls are on the 4.
Not feeling too princess like right now, more like the jolly pink giant. I had two choices, to laugh or to cry. (I chose to laugh because crying would be too embarrassing in front of the girls.)
Four weeks later I have mastered a plie. Well, not mastered, but can keep up with “1 & 2 & 3 & 4,” and notice my hands are flowing through space like the beautiful scarf I imagined.
I still haven’t gotten a tutu, but ask the teacher about getting ballet shoes. She asks what size. I respond, “A women’s 11.” She looks at me, eyes wide, and replies, “I don’t think they are made that big, but I’ll see what I can do.”
“Great!” I exclaim, imagining a nutcracker performance in my future.
Now forward to my 40th birthday ballroom dancing party. The music is playing and my dear friend Elaine walks in, fairy wings in hand.
She says, “Wear these so you can fly.”
I put them on my back, and the next song is a Viennese Waltz – oh, one of my favorite dances. I’m brought to the dance floor delicately by my dance friend Tom and with a smile we start the dance, twirling, floating, fairy wings flying, “1-2-3, 1-2-3, 1-2-3.”
Eat your heart out Ginger Rogers, I’m not just a princess, I’m a queen!
Now it’s your turn: What are your unserious life moments? Share it below. Let’s be in this beautifully “unserious” boat of life together!
(I admit – it’s not me in the pic, but it’s what I imagine when I’m floating around the floor!)
Categories: Health & Happiness