Another post about solo dancing.

I’ve signed up for a riffing contest, which brings my focus back around to solo dancing. For a long time I was extremely uncomfortable with solo dancing. I was actually extremely uncomfortable with a lot of the space I was given to improvise and express. Dancing is such a physical thing that I am blatantly moving my body in a way that demands attention. Especially expression in following, I feel that the lead must be put upon to accommodate to my body. A part of it probably relates to me mentally understanding that there are some people who might find me attractive, but my body is not anywhere near the standard attractive mold. I do not look around in the media and find reflections of what I have. I do not look at the national level blues dancers and see reflections of what I have. Then it loops back around; because I know that someone to find me attractive must reject the rest of the world, I fail to find myself attractive. It’s an uneasy truce in accepting my general awesomeness and not liking how I look.

Yesterday I danced by myself (in a room with practice partner), and I stared at myself in the mirror. And for the most part it was incredibly difficult. I didn’t want to look at myself. I have to, in order to learn how to feel my lines and what not, but I didn’t want to.
I didn’t want to see my face all flushed. I got sick of my hair flopping about and collecting sweat. I hated most of all the way my clothes clung to different parts of me. I danced and I figured out movements and I learned, but it was a difficult process.
I am particularly concerned that with my distaste toward myself that others will look at me in the same way. The thought of getting up in front of people who will be looking at me, and judging me, and while it will be on my dancing it may also be a bit on my body. There’s always the argument that the lines just don’t work as well for me as for a standardly pretty person. I feel like there’s plenty of things that I’m not technically proficient at, but I’m afraid I could fudge them more if I were not me.
At the end of all this I consider all the people that I look at dance. I never think,” if his ass were just a little firmer this would work”. I think things like” wow!” or “I want to be that ballsy”. I know that the people I’m drawn to, that I find beautiful are not the standard mold of beauty, and that it’s ok. That it’s better than ok, it’s one of the wonderful things that makes them interesting and enriching to my life.
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Filed under blues dance, competition, performance, socialization

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