Last night I consciously felt something in my dancing for the first time. A while ago I read something posted to a dance forum about ways that a dance can be a “conversation.” Now I know how a dance can be a literal conversation (“So, how was your day?”), and ways that you communicate with one another nonverbally: mirroring styling, improving off of one another, having give and take within the dance. However, this talked about something else, about a way that a follow can ask a lead for something a little different or a little more, or even just for room to play, purely through their connection. I had a vague idea that perhaps I’ve done this, but never consciously. I’m hitting the point in my dancing where I can style and I want to style, but I’m still learning how to do it without disrupting the lead. A lot of it has been learning to listen properly for the openings my lead gives (or doesn’t give). What I read seemed interesting, and kinda stuck in the back of my mind.

I was dancing with Eric, one of the Really Good Guys in our dancing scene. I don’t dance with him very often, but when I do it’s always educational in the best sense of the word. Eric specializes in the very best, smoothest, Rich French Vanilla style of Lindy, and that’s what we were doing. It was great. But the song was kinda funky. It had groove. I wanted to groove with it. Eric also knows the ways of the groove. So I asked him for it. It wasn’t with words, just with the way I danced. I got a little more ooomph in my pulse, dug a little deeper – it’s hard to describe. No words, no extra styling, just connection. And he got it. He laughed, and gave me what I wanted. Again, no words, just connection and suddenly there was groove. And it was good. Very good. So good that today I’m sitting here at my work desk still thinking, “Whoa.”

This is why I love dancing.

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