EMBRACE THE DANCE

2015_TBT_Morganne_BallerinaI have had some crazy ideas at times, but restarting ballet at this stage of my life isn’t one of them. I started martial arts the day I started practicing law, so I wouldn’t go berserk from the stress and punch some idiot. Now, twenty-five years and five black belts later, I still kick and punch and I haven’t hit a judge or a fellow counselor yet, although there have been moments when I’ve dreamed about it. More than once.

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What has this got to do with ballet? A lot actually. Martial arts is hard, especially for a woman who’d spent her entire life training to be polite, kind, compassionate and well….a lady. A fundamentally uncoordinated lady. Walking into my dojo (karate school) for the first time was intimidating. If I’m honest, it still is intimidating every time I learn a new form or try to wield a new weapon. I’m used to looking and feeling like an idiot on the dojo floor. How different could being on the dance floor actually be?

Well, as it turns out, very. Flowing movement armed isn’t quite the same as flowing movement in ballet slippers, but it’s fun!

I’m not the oldest person in class, which was encouraging all on its own. I also have a wonderful benefit in that my seventeen year old son who has been in the dojo his entire life and hence is very secure in who he is as a man, has joined me on the dance floor. He’s wonderful—far more talented than I am. When we—more often it’s me—screw up, we laugh together which is really quite cool.

tap dance

What I really want to learn is how to tap dance. I’m still searching for anyone who teaches tap to adult beginners. For now though, ballet and modern dance will do. The teachers at the dance school are avidly trying to recruit my son and his mom into signing up for Latin dance. We’ll see. There’s a lot of tossing around of the ladies that I’ve seen when I spy on the private lessons before ballet class. It looks like a hoot! I think I’ll have to lose ten or more pounds first :).

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So what’s the point of this blog? I guess it’s my hope that if you have a desire to dance, or to learn self-defense, or heck—learn to ride a motorcycle (did that in my thirties after a short stint of riding at 19 silently praying the entire class and calling myself all sorts of crazy), that you do it. Life is short. Being here is a gift. Be kind to yourself and do what you want to do when you can.

hot party

Blessings to you all, and when you get the chance, “…I hope you dance…”! Please share some of your experiences that seemed like dipping your toes in the “crazy pool” at the time. I’d love to hear them!

Happy Spring.

Leigh

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16 Responses to EMBRACE THE DANCE

  1. susanrhughes says:

    I would love to learn ballroom dancing! In my 30s, I took horseback riding lessons. I had previously learned to ride when I was a kid. It was much harder to get the hang of it when I was older. I quit after a year mainly because of my allergies, but also because the teacher was mean.

    Liked by 4 people

    • leighmorgan1 says:

      Mean teachers stink! I’d like to learn ballroom dance too! I like my ballet teacher though, quite a bit, so I’ll probably opt for some form of Latin dance before I get to ballroom dance. I’d like to learn how to ride a horse as well—sounds like a lot of fun. The only “riding” I’ve done involved a pack horse on a trail ride in the Tetons. That darned horse thought it was funny to keep leading into low hanging branches–and he was right. The pack leader had to come and grab my horse and me and put us directly behind him. I guess I’m not horse friendly. 🙂 The ballet I’m doing isn’t what I remember as a nine year old, it’s more like modern dance. There are no tutus, which I’m profoundly thankful for, just yoga or workout pants and t-shirts. It’s also nice, because we pay as we go–per class we attend. Love that option. Hope all is well with you and your family. Loved the gardening photos!

      Liked by 3 people

  2. E. Ayers says:

    A friend’s grown son got conned into taking a few ballroom dance classes when his friend had won some free lessons. This is a 30-year-old male who plays basketball for fun, not dances, had never danced, and never wanted to learn! And he also does things like kickboxing, so very much a macho male. Well, he does the freebie classes and was good at it. He was so good that they have offered for him to stay on for free. Seems they need guys as male partners for ballroom dancers. Who would have thought. 😉 And he’s cute to boot.

    My niece started taking ballet for the first time when she realized how stressed she was over her job. She discovered ballet in college and loves going to watch the ballet performances so adult ballet just made sense to her. She turned her little basement into a studio with mirrors, barre, and even had raised wooden floor installed. So while co-workers run every morning no matter what the weather, she goes to her studio and enjoys herself.

    If I could go back and take ballet again I would. No one around here has “old lady” classes. They only teach children. That’s a shame. It’s wonderful for strength and flexibility, and it’s what most of us need as we stack up the years. My two left feet mean I’ll never be graceful and fluid, but I still can laugh while I’m grabbing for my toes.

    Leigh, I can just imagine you with taps on your shoes doing some serious Scottish jigging while wearing your kilt. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • leighmorgan1 says:

      What a wonderful story about your friend’s son and about your daughter! It wasn’t easy finding adult beginner ballet here either–even in Milwaukee which is pretty big. Almost all classes are for children, which is a shame because I think there are a lot of adults who would enjoy it, especially if the class is relaxed and filled with cheer. It’s pretty great being able to do as much as I’m able to do with my son. Makes me happy. I’m loving it so far. Still, I’d really like to find tap classes before I’m too old to enjoy it! 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • leighmorgan1 says:

      I mis-read your last sentence the first time I read this, E. I read, “jiggling” instead of “jigging” and laughed out loud. There sure would be a bit’ojigglin’ going on! Love to do the jig in tap shoes in spite of it! 😀

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Kristy Tate says:

    Good for you, Leigh! You don’t have to be a young thing nor do you need curly hair to dance like Shirley Temple

    Liked by 3 people

  4. ginaarditoauthor says:

    So true. You have to seize all the experiences in life you can. Sing, dance, learn something new…live!

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Carol says:

    I think it’s exciting that you have followed your dreams. I wish you music, butterflies and love.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Joan Reeves says:

    You’re an inspiration! Loved your post

    Liked by 1 person

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