Dance Like No One is Watching

 In Weekly Forum Discussion, Writer in Residence

I spent over 20 years feeling like a failure. Every day I woke up, I was failing before I even got out of bed. Then, with deep sadness and despair, I lost the one person who I used to define myself. I felt successful just being with him. When he left I was in a fog, couldn’t get off the floor. How would I live? How would I take care of myself?

Well, my children gave me a reason to get out of bed and slowly more forward.

I was knocked into the deep ocean with no way to see the surface. Now I have made it out of the water and into the boat. I am alive, and you know what I discovered? I was successful all along. I wasn’t a failure. I let him make me believe I was a failure. I will no longer use a person to define who I am.

I am funny, smart, compassionate, and confident. I am at peace. I know I am successful. We are all successful in different areas. It is what makes us unique.

I wake up each day to sunshine and beautiful green grass. The color green is a comfort color for me. It makes me happy. I know, a color makes me happy, but it truly does!

In rediscovering myself, I fell back into dance. I feel beautiful and carefree while I dance. I don’t care how I look. I am not dancing for other people. I am dancing for myself, my soul, and my mental health.

My friend and I choreograph together; the process of creating is so freeing and fun. Sometimes we will do a silly move, and end up putting that move in the dance. During the dance when we get to that move we make eye contact and smile. The success created by movement holds a precious memory that no one can replace.

I am an artist creating, it is how I am living my life. We are all artists creating. The drive to create is deep inside us. Each of us has carved our own path – a path full of learning that opportunity, love, heartache, adventures, happiness, and mistakes all create our success.

I am successful by being my best self.

Written by: Collette Cottingham; Guardian Angels

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