I’m a dancer. Have I ever told you that? It started in me young, this impulse to bounce in perfect rhythm with a melody. It took place in childhood living rooms, and friend’s bedrooms, and old, dusty desert town dance studios. And then it moved, that youthful bounce. I dragged it along with me across the country and back. I hauled it in front of television cameras and competitive dancefloors and crowds of observant eyes.
And then I let it go. For a brief time, the bounce in me stopped. The music kept playing, sure, but my body refused to budge as I fell away beneath the weight of fears and pressures and responsibilities. I couldn’t find it at all — that bounce. I searched for it, longed for it, even, but I couldn’t get it back.
You see, I’ve never been good at listening to my heart. My fears have always drowned it out. The moment my feet touch the weight of uncertainty, my brain sputters. Even when things are going well, when the music is strong and my bounce is steady, fear seeks to sink me. Because, deep down, I have never trusted that I could do it right. And just as soon as my heart would whisper, “you’ve got this,” my mind would scream, “you’re going to mess everything up.”
But this isn’t really a post about dancing, no. It’s a post about fear, about the incomprehensible things it does to a person. Because so much of my life has been plagued by this dichotomy, so much of it has been a war between the heart and the mind. So many of my choices, my desires, my characteristics have been afflicted with an undertone of fear. And I have always listened to it, that fear.
But we’re not born this way, are we? This inclination to let the fear paralyze us, it’s something we’ve learned somewhere along the way, something that has latched onto us at our weakest moments and continually devours every ounce of confidence we have. We all have a bounce in our hearts — something that makes us come alive — but the demons in our minds, well, they make that bounce grow heavy until it seems almost insurmountable to sustain.
But you know what? Something profound happened to me a few weeks ago. My bounce came back. There was no real reason for it. It was suddenly just. . . there. I feel it with as much certainty as the breath in my lungs. And this time, me and my heart, we’ve got this.
So, dear friends, may you fight for the bounce in your own heart. And when fear seeks to sink you, keep swinging. Because the fight is worth it. It always is.
Now, let’s go face the music and dance.
(Photo by Photos with Class)