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The Double Meaning behind the blog title 'Dream Follower:'
First, for 14 years I was a ballroom & social dance instructor, and have studied both leading and following. I feel that learning to follow is full of nuance and is often misunderstood. I made it one of my personal goals to become a really excellent follow on the dance floor, and will probably talk a lot about the art of following - both in and out of the context of dance.

Second, I am a huge fan of author Michael Ende, probably best known for The Neverending Story. The book is incredible, and the first film captured some of the essence. (Please don't watch the other two films...I urge you to read the book though!) Anyway, at least twice in my life I have been caught in a storm of my own indecision, and my inner Moon Princess yelled to my inner Bastian...'Why don't you do what you dream?' I tear up even now as I write this little blurb. The tension between being practical, keeping my feet on the ground and my head out of the clouds (at the risk of compromising my inner vibrancy, true self, and who knows what else)...and reaching for my true dreams (at the risk of losing everything) is still a very real struggle. In fact, one of those struggles lead to my 14 years of teaching dance, so we can see which voice won the battle that fateful day when I was staring at the want-ad...

And so I strive to be two kinds of Dream Followers in my life. One has to do with connecting with others, and the other has to do with connecting with my inner Moon Princess and the world of possibility that opens when I do...

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Shedding Layers

I suppose on some levels, the pseudo-anonymity of the internet (i.e. blogging) lends itself to more confident displays of inner thoughts, creative outlets, baring of deeply buried secrets, true vulnerability becomes a little less daunting.

On other levels, I find myself even more shy.

So here I go, virtual psychic strip show has begun, soundtrack could be anything from Tina Turner's Private Dancer to a pumped up volume Pour Some Sugar On Me or some throaty Jessica Rabbit singing Why Don't You Do Right.

Maybe there doesn't have to be a true virtual burlesque imagining...

But you know they really get into the act, and they seem so bold and daring, comfortable and confident in their bustiers and fishnet thigh highs.

So what is the blog equivalent? I feel like the new kid at open mic night, fumbling over her poem, oh wait, I switched imagery hang on...right, it's amateur night and some of the audience will get a kick out of seeing those nerves, and some will get a kick out of boo-ing her off stage.

So here I am.

Nearly naked, nervous as hell, sweating palms, and the hot lights making it worse and also better because I can't really see you, audience. I can't tell if you're with me, against me, bored, waiting for your drink or your friend or just killing time until the next act.

In the meantime, I might as well make it worth your while.

*ahem*

Right. Vulnerable.

So in third grade, here in the US, I was new and this one girl (we'll call her Judy) reached out to me. She was the only friendly face at all my first day. At first I was so relieved anyone wanted to make the effort, and we became friends. Sort of. By my second week, I began to get the drift that she was an outsider, and so had of course recognised a fellow outcast and made me her friend. So then I began to resent her. Perhaps if she had been less kind I would not have been lumped with another outcast. Maybe a more popular kid would have decided I was cool or something, and it would have meant a completely different social experience. I know. I'm evil. I hated myself for even thinking it, but I did. And I hated Judy for making that choice impossible for me, for eliminating the option for me or for them (the 'in' crowd). I also hated her for being too nice to hate, and for making me hate myself for thinking these things.

There. I'm a closet mean girl. How's that for vulnerable?

2 comments:

  1. I was probably a lot like Judy growing up. I collected friends who were outsiders... I didn't do it intentionally. I didn't realize that I had that habit until my mom pointed it out at some point in junior high... Perhaps Judy didn't do it intentionally either. Perhaps she reached out to you not because she saw a fellow loner but because she saw something else in you worth befriending. Perhaps she was surprised that you didn't rebuff her initial contact. Perhaps you saved her by befriending her that day...

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