Client Journal: “Dance it for Real”

Client: On Friday I had an intense rehearsal that I am still receiving and processing. L, T and I were working on the piece for the opening number. One of the themes that L is exploring with that particular number is childhood, and who we were during that time. This is a hard piece for me; one of the movements I do is a nervous tick I used to do when I was getting molested. At the time it helped to distract me from what was happening to me. It helped me check out of my body. But this time, when I was doing it in the piece, it was a trigger. I felt all that fear, loneliness, pain and sadness come back to me.

I spent the first half of rehearsal trying not to cry and freak out. I didn’t want to slow down the agenda because I knew L had a lot of choreography to get through. During the second half of rehearsal when she was giving me my notes she said something along the lines of, “I want you to let go and dance it for real this time.” The music came on, I started to move, I started to breathe and I started to cry. I remember feeling so sad and lonely when I was little because I felt like I couldn’t talk to anyone about what was happening to me. I was also crying because I was remembering how hard I had to pretend for my mom that everything was ok. When we were done dancing, the first thing L and T did was run up and hug me.

That felt amazing! I felt safe! I felt truly accepted and I felt happiness along with all the pain and sadness I was feeling. I’m starting to tear now just thinking about it. It means a lot to me right now to have people in my life who support and encourage me to be vulnerable, especially since I don’t have that with my family.