I think the older the get, the less you dance. I think the last time I properly danced was probably when I was in early middle school at a birthday disco. This was considered the best type of party, where you would get all dressed up; roller glitter on your arms, temporary diamante tattoos, glitter hairspray in your hair, the sparkliest top you could find and some peel-able nail varnish. We had clearly never heard of the saying less is more!
We would then squeal with delight if a 2000 classic of Steps or S Club 7 was played by the DJ, and would run, dragging our friends to the dancefloor to dance with us. It’s a funny age where you just don’t feel any embarrassment and actually think it is quite cool to have a great time dancing, being loud and having fun. (Although it also probably had something to do with all the sugar from birthday cake, haribos and fizzy pop! )
As a child, you can’t do enough activities; swimming, art club, football, horse riding. You want to be constantly doing something exciting and interesting, even if you are not very good. But then it changes. You really don’t want to be last in the swimming race, you’ll feel embarrassed if you trip playing football or if you artwork is not as good as all the others. If you’re not doing well, you don’t want to take part and make a fool of yourself, so you then stop. You might also be really talented at a sport or activity, but you don’t know it, because you’re too scared to have a go and have a try.
I danced from a toddler (well maybe just wobbling round for a bit rather than actual dancing!) up until I was about 12. I really enjoyed it, mainly doing tap, jazz and street. Never ballet, though I was desperate to try, as I thought it looked so graceful! But then I stopped, because I thought I looked silly compared to all the others (I have a terrible lack of co-ordination!) But I still enjoyed dancing and wondered whether I would be able to dance later on.
I had just started high school, I had changed schools so of the 200 people in my year, I didn’t recognise anyone. I saw a poster for an after school dance club, and thought that would be a great way of meeting people. Apprehensively I turned up, only to realise that everyone had formed little groups between their friends, and I felt scared to intrude and ask to join their group.
The dancing didn’t really happen, it way more of a social meet up than any actually proper dancing. I also didn’t go to any more of the dance classes (which you had probably guessed!) But I do remember that the people from the dance club all did an end of year performance, and I had this pang of regret and thought ‘If only I had stuck with it…’
Now dancing has a very limited role in my life, although I do love watching Strictly Come Dancing later on in the year, but I wouldn’t really class that as the same thing! I do wonder if I would ever take up dancing as a hobby again, as there are lots of societies in the university for all types of genres and experience levels, so that would be a good a time as any.
But maybe adults could learn something from children outlook on life; that lack of worry what others think and not being scared to fail because instead you are just focused on having a good time…
Linking up with Mum turned Mom for #ThePrompt