Dance through dating — and life

“Life may not be the party we hoped for but while we are here we should DANCE.” —Jerome Flowers

This quote is from my Jazzercise instructor’s most recent newsletter. I thought it not only apropos as a life philosophy, but as a dating philosophy. I’m sure he meant this to be both literal and metaphorical as Jerome is part spiritual leader, part philosopher, part exercise psychologist, part Solid Gold soloist, part would-be professional singer and part playful imp. I described his joie de vivre in “Fanticizing while Jazzercising.”

Jerome is encouraging us to literally dance — even when we don’t have a partner — because of the joy it brings us. Our body loves the movement, even if we don’t consider ourselves good dancers. Dance anyway. In class, I sometimes feel awkward and klutzy watching Jerome’s effortless smooth, sensual, natural movements. Ah, to dance like that — what a dream! But we each move our bodies in our own way, and it feels good with someone who is a patient, forgiving, natural to guide us, either as a dance partner or instructor.

Risky BusinessI’ve taken to blasting the stereo and dancing to Barry White and others who help me get my groove on. Usually this is when I’m alone, often in my socks dancing around the kitchen while cooking dinner. Don’t worry — I’m not imitating Tom Cruise in “Risky Business” in that I’m wearing more than a shirt, socks and undies. But the dancing can be as exhilarating as Tom’s character expresses.

I Hope You’ll DanceJerome’s line also reminds me of Lee Ann Womack wonderful song, “I Hope You Dance.” In the refrain, she says:

“And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance,
I hope you dance.”

Of course she and Jerome are reminding us to “dance” in life — to get out and do what you like and what feels good even if you don’t have a partner, and even if you aren’t particularly good at it. You’ll get a smile on your face because you’re enjoying yourself. And who knows who might find you attractive because of it? But it really doesn’t matter if anyone does, as you’ll feel better about your life because you’re doing something that makes you feel good.

In dating, if we haven’t had a partner in a while, it feels like we can’t “dance” — both literally and figuratively. We long to have someone to dance with to music and in life. But the truth is we can dance and still enjoy ourselves even without a partner right now. And advice I’ve read about attending singles dances says to dance by yourself — or at least sway to the music — near the dance floor and pretty quickly guys will notice that you are enjoying yourself and you’ll soon have someone inviting you onto the dance floor. This works in life, too — when you are having a great time you attract others to you who want to share your fun. And of course, there’s nothing to stop you from inviting someone to dance with you.

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