Dance To Your Own Rhythm: Children Are Our Best Teachers

I am alone in my world of country farms, big trucks, ball caps, and a mix of country and modern music. I am lost.

My world is nestled in my library with books over a 100 years old, Baroque music, my mind and my imagination. I have found no one who can share my world with me.

Others are constantly trying to conform me. They don’t take the time to ask questions and learn, they presume that their way is the only way, and that everyone wants to be like them. They are busy running around and have no idea where they are going. It all looks good because everyone else is doing it.

I am alone.

Yet, I am most satisfied when I am alone. But isn’t it wrong to not be like the crowd?  It’s so hard to stay the course.  I keep thinking I need them.
I can find no others to enter my world with me except on that rare occasion I am able to attend a class where others like me strive to find others who dance at their own rhythm.

When we were children we saw a pretty ball and picked it up and played with it. We played with it because we felt like it.

We followed our interests. Once we entered school we were introduced to a new array of interests and peer pressure to follow those interests.  We may have started replacing our interests with the interests of others in the name of fitting in.

We saw new things and tried it. We picked it up, tried it out, tasted it, felt it, smelt it, and tried using it. Adults label it. Children try it.

We danced to our own rhythm. We understood when we were tired, hungry, and full of energy. We were in tune with who were were, and acted according to our own rhythm.

When I was a young girl my desire was to play with cars. I always wanted a car track, but was told that was for boys. Girls play with dolls. I didn’t want to play with dolls. I wanted to drive fast.

When I was in high school I ran cross country with my best friend. I could run faster than she could, but she would get angry when I did. You are my friend. You should run with me. I did.

When I told people who I thought were my friends I was starting a career transition they responded reflecting their fears on me.  My preparation to dance to my own rhythm made them feel guilty for not dancing to theirs.  They lashed out. This time I did it. I ran faster.

No one I know shares my love for anything that I hold dear to me. I feel pressure to conform. I tried conforming. I packed my bags one weekend, and acted like I was excited to go with a group of ladies out for the weekend. I wasn’t. I longed for my computer, my books, my music, my silence, and my contemplation.

Who are you really? Who do you want to be? Have you sacrificed dancing to your own rhythm because there is no one else to dance with you?

What to do? Find those people. I find those people online, at classes I take, and in books.

When you were a child you heard a song. It moved you. With a glimmer in your eye you began to sway. It felt good. No one was swaying with you. Adults looked on with joy and jealousy. They could no longer sway like you. They lost their rhythm. Have you now lost yours?

We weren’t meant to live other peoples lives. We were meant to live ours. To do that we must follow our interests, seek out and risk experimenting new things, and pay attention to our own rhythms.

I am going to pick up my phone now. Swipe.
Push play on Pandora. Ahh.
Surround myself with my books, and let my mind dance, dance, dance.

Marcy Pedersen


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