Dum tak tak Dum tak everybody!

It has been a while since blog writing time. So much is changing and happening in my life. It seems that in 2015 we are all settling into living into our new home. At the moment we are having a new floor being laid. As someone who could normally only afford and indeed be motivated to splash on a bit of paint this feels terribly grown up. I am also quite excited about swooshing around on a new floor. The lounge currently looks like an amazing dance space.

So in order to make this event happen we have had to rip the heart out of the living room. Not only has this meant more binning out it has also enabled the lovely man to let go of his lounge which really only had more of our stuff stuffed in it and we are all embracing the opportunity of change.
As these things never have a way of running smoothly as a family we embraced the challenge and spent last Saturday on our hands and knees hammering tiles out of the floor! As a Mum I was really chuffed that large and smallish boy joined in such a physical hammering activity with such gusto. I must admit the addition of headphones seemed to help but indeed there was more laughter despite the injuries to ourselves!
I am not sure why such a vile activity became such a great bonding activity – every cloud has a silver lining? Hammering ugly 1970s tiles out of the floor somehow managed to get boys out of bedrooms and engage in physical activity, if I had suggested swimming they would have said No! It also meant that we have had to leave the house every day. So one day we went out in the sunshine and off to Ludlow. Again a whole day with my lovely man, and my boys ( step girly with her Mum). With no choice teen boys will leave bedrooms and walk away from computers and play stations. The day started with a bit of grunting and moaning but soon they were resigned to having a day out.
My boys are growing up and it feels we are constantly changing. Not sure if I have blogged about the challenges of a little boy who only ate squirly rolls and a big boy not much better but here is our fussy eating moment of fame link:

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2007/aug/04/familyandrelationships.family

So several years’ later smallish boy and big brother are tucking in with gusto to full English all day breakfasts. But it is worth noting tomato is left and there  is still a definite lack of vegetables and fruit in their lives! So a day spent looking at second hand shops and making each other laugh. We are a family of dressing up and searching for the different. The lovely man finds a new hat. Smallish boy excitedly finds a tails coat, and large boy a cool leather trench coat which makes him look like an East German spy. Oh and I little bit of lace for a belly bra project!

The opportunity for change is something I have always enjoyed. I like the energy that change brings, and enjoy being in control of my own destiny by making changes. Moving house and home was so over whelming for me. I had to let go of so much in order to move on , but here in spring 2015 it feels we are reaping the benefits of change. Large boy in car ( after many a moody battle with lovely man) says he cannot imagine his Mum, me without lovely man in my life , he says we suit each other. It indeed feels we are moving to a space not only with new floor but with love, a safe and happy home.

So in the last month my lovely Mum has been and retuned home, I have worked, danced, parented and ripped the lounge up!

The energy that this change brings has kick started some creativity. I know I am too busy and too far to teach my old class but I am missing teaching. As well as missing wonderful women that I knew for years I am missing the discipline of teaching. I loved sharing different techniques with my class and the knowledge I had to share. With everything going on I am missing on developing my technique. I have this week been attempting to put a little bit of dance in where I can. So outside myas whilst the kettle boils, a shimmy whilst folding laundry etc. I wonder how many other dancers with busy lives do indeed practice their dance in this way? I also dance out and about. Out with the kids this week and was having a sneaky shimmy in the corner of a charity shop until the kids said “Mum stop dancing it’s embarrassing”! I also go to sleep every night running through tribal combinations.

Dancing has changed for me this past year too. Reflecting the energy, effort, practice and commitment I once had to Egyptian dance did not in this past year bring many joyful rewards. Dancing for me was a huge source of creative expression. I would spend hours and hours dancing, researching, attending workshops etc. . Dances for me were like paintings to be presented to the world. For me as a middle aged lady with so little performance opportunities it all became “ what’s the point?” and I have had to take a step back and find a new approach.

As I have had to live in our bedroom my new drum has been sat next to me waiting to be played so I have done this every day. I am really enjoying drumming; learning to drum has improved my musicality no end. Rhythms that I could never remember I can now physically beat out and I really connect when I dance to them too. All those years when I listened and listened to try to learn my rhythms never worked. For me the physicality of playing just pulled together what my body danced to naturally. Now I need to get my hands and fingers to do the right things. I think it is a shame that more dancers perhaps don’t see the joy and benefits of being able to drum a rhythm or two, it is a simple physical process that for me just makes me happy. In the midst of the bedroom bedsit chaos lovely man and I have also mapped out a drum solo for a spring hafla. I love drumming and dancing with my lovely man. I love the connection we have and sharing our skills and ideas with each other.

My other dancing oomph this spring is being part of a tribal group and class. I am embracing the sisterhood of group dancing. In the past I perceived tribal dancing as a lacking in authenticity and a bit “ not real”. Now I find its lack of “authenticity” rather liberating and very real in the 21st century Western world. No longer having to seek the impossible Tribal dance for me brings me back to the joy of dance. It is also connecting me into a group of women that I did not know that well with warmth and friendship. After a time of unpleasant falsehoods and spite in my dance world it is a pleasure to dance with such good women again.

I mentioned the excitement of a new drum? It was sat in a window in Totnes waiting for me to buy. For once it was my new drum and not the lovely man’s new drum as I saw it first! Anyway he has a great big new djembe. So in planning our new living space we shall be needing a drum corner!

Dum tak tak Dum tak everybody! x

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