My name is Shannon, and I am a danceaholic.
After nearly 35 years as a dancer (how did THAT happen?!), I dance because I have no other choice. While also learning to embrace stillness, my body naturally craves to be in motion.
I have been a Lindy Hopper (vintage swing dance) for nearly 20 years, and spent a great deal of this past year rediscovering the dance that early on captured my heart. Needing more opportunities to incorporate social dancing into my daily life, I have gotten more involved in the local West Coast Swing (modern swing dance) community the past few months. A new obsession is brewing!
When I step on the dance floor, my anxiety melts away. With my partner, I am given the opportunity to create a shared world to express joy, sorrow, sensuality, or just playful silliness. This partner connection pushes me out of my comfort zone while simultaneously enveloping me in a cocoon of safety. The music is ours to explore and it lays the framework for our story. I hold dear the beautiful moments in between the movements. Sharing space, sharing breath.
My passion for dancing fuels my soul. However I do also use it as a method of escapism. Regardless of the challenges life throws at me, I am slowly learning that dance is the secret weapon for preserving my mental health.
Check out this video taken last month in Vancouver at my first weekend of competing (and my first WCS event). While I may hide it well, I was so nervous here that my hands were shaking and I could hardly breathe. I’m so grateful to have been randomly given such a fun and talented partner. Not bad for a newbie, hey? For added fun, keep an eye out for the moment when I attempt to take out the competition. Oops!
Find what brings you great joy and make it priority in your life. Because don’t we all deserve to be blissfully happy?