Keep the earth below my feet
For all my sweat, my blood runs weak
Let me learn from where I have been
-Mumford & Sons
There’s something special about dance.
Something that no other ‘thing’ really has. Dance encompasses just about everything in life. Dance teaches us far more than how to step in a certain way, or hold our arms in a particular position. Dance unites. Dance connects. Dance makes us feel and sweat and move. Dance provokes us to externally expose what we feel internally. Dance, in it’s most authentic form both pushes and allows us to curl up in shame, explode in joy and beat our chests in anger.
Dance is amazing. Truly.
So why all this talk about dance?
For the last several weeks I wake up, put on water for tea, make breakfast, eat breakfast, change out of pajamas into stretchy pants, walk to the bus stop and go DANCE.
And one day after practicing a combination over and over and over, the teacher said something to the effect of:
‘just let go, don’t think about where the floor is. It’s right there, so just dance’
Stop worrying about the steps and just dance.
This my friends is fucking GOLD.
Sometimes it feels like the rug is going to be pulled out from under you.
That the ground you are walking on is quaking and cracking under pressure.
Your eyes and feet trying so hard to find the floor, ensuring it’s location with every footfall.
But when one looks downwards, one goes downwards. It’s just a truth.
Where you look, you go.
And if you’re looking at the floor, making sure with every step that it’s still there, still beneath you’r feet, you’re likely to miss many more things than just the point.
We look down for various reasons, but the life and travel patterns of ants is not that interesting and not worth it.
I often find myself so concerned about where I’m going, what I’m doing, getting lost in the technicalities, the assurances, the counting and the steps.
I forget that I am indeed GOING SOMEWHERE, DOING SOMETHING.
Yes, one must be careful where they walk, but unless you’re standing on a sink hole (highly unlikely), the floor, the ground, the earth isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
(In the context of climate change however, yes, the earth is definitely shaking.)
It’s not going to vanish beneath YOU. It’s not going to evaporate or suddenly decide it doesn’t like you and run away.
Hopefully, we’ve taken the time to build a strong foundation and now it’s time to put it to the test.
To take those steps and trust that it can bear our weight, our will and our wishes.
Trust that you’re feet know where to go and the ground will hold you.
This is all fine and dandy when you have a clear mind, energy and a positive outlook.
But what happens when you’re nerves are frayed? When you’re bones are worn and your blood is weak.
Your world is keeling over and it feels as though you are in a rough ocean, tumbling blindly and reaching for the smallest of breaths.
It’s now time to wiggle your toes and say:
“The earth is here, below my feet. Right here. I’m standing, or sitting or maybe curled into a fetal position, but
I’m not going to fall through.
Or stumble off an unseen and sudden cliff.”
See, the ultra magical thing I’ve discovered is that by trusting your floor, your earth, your foundation YOU can LOOK UP.
Yeah, you look up and suddenly you move with freedom and levity because you logically KNOW and faithfully TRUST
that the EARTH IS BENEATH YOU.
And this is, Really. Fucking. Amazing.
One more thing and then I’ll leave you to your day.
Dancers often use a Sprung floor ( a special and preferred floor with more bounce and absorption) to their advantage. They sink deep into the ground before jumping and intentionally brush their feet against the floor before leaping.
Let’s use our own foundations to our advantage.