holding onto an idea tangles it

I’m right in the middle of my mid-twenties and part of me looks at my contemporaries with their jobs right out of college, a stable life, a large group of friends in one city. Part of me looks at them and wishes with every fiber that I had that.

But then again, I’m in my midst of my mid-twenties and I look at my contemporaries and am glad that I haven’t settled into a routine; my life is full of unpredictability and my friends are on nearly every content.

Not much better than this on a saturday afternoon. <3 #dance

Then it comes that being glad that I don’t know where this life is going or what exactly I’m doing next, I have a very complicated set of decisions to make. Where do I want to be? What do I want to be doing? How soon can I make this happen? What will this set me up for next?

The answers to those questions determine the arc of my next adventure. Where it starts and what paths I might come across. Each decision is a step on the path that takes us past some paths and closer to other paths. No matter which paths we take they keep going. Some days it’s good to simply look at what is directly in front of you, and not worry about what’s obscured around the next bend.

So on days I dance I see this –>
an empty studio, filled with music and people paying more attention to how they move and what their body is doing than most people do in an entire week. When you dance you have yourself and the shoes on your feet. Negotiating any move is a constant series of minute adjustments that require a concentration that never leaves the room. It’s a concentration so self-aware that everything around you narrows in to focus. It stretches and condenses to form a tunnel with clear steps. For an hour, or two, or three life makes sense.

To dance well you have to clear your mind of everything else outside of the moment you are in. Whatever struggles you face are immediate and often within yourself. When you dance you are the master of your body. The intense focus needed is a wild river that washes all other thought downstream, waiting to be picked up later. After your mind has been cleared, you can see everything from before approaching, but you have a moment, or maybe an hour before it gets to you. You can make an attempt at sorting through and organising your thoughts. Sometimes ideas become untangled and instead of problems lying on the banks you find solutions.

That isn’t to say that because I dance I have it all figured out, or that dance will give this gift of (temporary) clarity to everyone. Most likely there is something in each of our lives that allows us to let the world slip away and pick it back up again when we’re through. I believe it’s extremely important that people find a way to express themselves, release all the complicated emotion that builds up and completely immerse themselves in something. I dance; it allows me to gather around me a sense of self-awareness that I can use to negotiate the unconventional path I’ve chosen. Unconventional in that I’m not looking for a career and I’m less concerned about accruing economic capital than someone with student loans of this side should be. After a sense of necessity and responsibility, whimsy takes over. I move from place to place, using seemingly magical means, like the internet, to keep in contact and keep organised. I’m never in one place too long, not really, not compared to those around me. I do what makes me happy, as often as I can. Knowing what those things are and acting upon that knowledge may be the most unconventional thing that I do.

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Author: Monica

punk rock ballerina. writer. adventurer.

2 thoughts on “holding onto an idea tangles it”

  1. D and I both think about the “where we are vs. our contemporaries” all the time.
    I’m SO thankful I left college when I did. I’m so thankful I took these 4 years off (holy smokes, 4 years, really?!). I’ve learned more about myself in the past four years than I have in any other chunk of years. But it’s hard when kids I went to high school with and kids I went to college with did the whole thing in the “correct” order.

    It’s hard sometimes, being an individual.

    1. Has it really been 4 years? I remember you leaving college. I feel the same way about my last few years, I’ve learned so much and really grown into “me”. Like I actually like the person I am and the person I’m working on being. It’s hard, but because I’ve done things differently I realize how much it’s worth it.

      On another note. Any idea when you might be down in Eugene? Or in/near PDX (I might be coming up a few times if a job comes through)? We need to meetup!

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