The Dance of Grief

Hello, Screamingly Delicious Dancers.

How does this hot summer night find you?

Me? I’ve melted into a little puddle of serenity. Yes, it feels strange to say that right now, but I just returned from a wonderful walk by the bay and the movement of my body through space, along the water, brings me peace. . . . .despite all the craziness in our world right now. I have a moment of respite. I wish for you serenity as well, Loves.

Usually, when I write these little missives, I try to stay present. I like to consider the question, “what’s true now?” and work with that. However, this week, I want to write about what happened for me at dance last Sunday. Sigh. A tsunami of grief washed over me. It happened as we came to the conclusion of the spotlight segment. I love this part! It warms my heart so much to see beloved friends of this community dancing on my screen. Last week, what I noticed was this incredible tenderness in our collective dance. Maybe it was the music. Maybe a mood, but what I felt in by body was an acute ache at the center of my being. I miss you. I miss you all so very much. It hurts. I want to dance with you. I want to wrap my arms around you and give you a big hug. I want to let it all go and get messy and sweaty together on the dance floor. And then, I want to slow down and land in a place of still quiet, having spent all that physical and emotional energy together. And yes, I’m incredibly grateful that we have Zoom, that we get to see one another and dance with one another while in the safety of our homes. That is a blessing. There’s gratitude and grief, side by side. It’s been 5 months now since we’ve been together on the dance floor in the physical realm and something in my heart shattered for the exquisite longing to dance again together. My crying was such a sweet release (ultimately), to feel those potent emotions wash over and through me. I felt like I’d been holding my grief inside for so long and then it came with such a force: convulsive sobs. Bless this practice, for it saves me. We know how to let emotions move through us as we dance. We understand the importance of letting our sadness, or anger, or sense of loss. . . .be given expression on the dance floor. We know how to gently hold one another as we grieve.

I know we’re all dealing with so much right now, on so many different levels. I hope that together, our dance softens what needs to be softened and also gives us strength for what lies ahead. It comforts me enormously to know we’re on this journey together. I look forward to seeing you tomorrow on the Zoom Dance Floor.

My toes curl in delight to report that our beloved Kathy Altman will be doing the needful tomorrow; holding space, providing the soundscape, comforting and inspiring us with her words of wisdom.

Here’s that handy link:

The Thing Is

By Ellen Bass

to love life, to love it even

when you have no stomach for it

and everything you’ve held dear

crumbles like burnt paper in your hands,

your throat filled with the silt of it.

When grief sits with you, its tropical heat

thickening the air, heavy as water

more fit for gills than lungs;

when grief weights you down like your own flesh

only more of it, an obesity of grief,

you think, How can a body withstand this?

Then you hold life like a face

between your palms, a plain face,

no charming smile, no violet eyes,

and you say, yes, I will take you

I will love you, again.

Sending you love & comfort,


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