An open letter to the women in my tribal class

Ladies - I just want to say this:

You are beautiful.

Do not hide yourself or count yourself as without value.
Do not tell yourself that you do not deserve good things, that having fun is a waste of time, or that laughing out loud and dancing for joy are things that only children should do.

You are not selfish to do things for yourself.
Find what brings you joy and do it.
Do it whenever you can with all your heart.



Last night at my first American Tribal Style class I was quite shocked at the attitude of a lot of the women there (mostly older than me). A lot of them, from what I heard, had signed up for a bit of fun, and to get out of the house a bit-time for themselves. The instructor is very good, and a lot of fun - her joy in the dance is infectious. I'm hooked. The idea of a style of dance meant to do with other people is a great idea.
New moves. More costumes.
I like.

What got to me though, and made me a bit sad was a lot of the women's initial reaction to a demo DVD of tribal style dancing and some of the pictures the instructor had of past performances and costumes common to the style of dance-one where you are mostly covered up, more of a gypsy sort of dress. Some of the ladies reacted with nervousness and shame...actually physically covering themselves up with their arms about their bodies - physical manifestations of their fear of people watching them. Saying comments like "oh I could never wear that" or "I don't want to dance in front of people - what will they think?"

All I could think of was "Honey? Just try it-just once. If you don't like it, at least you gave it a shot...and as for what people will think? Well, they'll think you are beautiful and amazing and wish they could do what you do. They'll smile because you're having fun."

It's what I thought.
And now I'm learning to do what they do.
And it is an absolute blast!

If you don't want to dance in front of people then don't. Have fun dancing by yourself...or with friends. Enjoy yourself. If you don't enjoy it, try something else.
Life is too short to worry about that sort of thing.


Anonymous said…
I don't even like talking to the doc (about allergies) in front of a student! Sigh.

I don't know how one breaks down defences once they're built, but it would be good to do.

I think... when you're younger... and you sing in class or something, and everybody laughs at you... that's when the defences start to go up!

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