Those of you who know me in real life know that I haven’t been dancing much lately. Why? I’ve got this pesky hip injury that is taking forever to heal. It all started in November, after a few months of intensive running. I was working on getting back into running shape. I was so proud of the progress I’d made, increasing my endurance and progressing from a plodding 11-minute mile up to a respectable 8-minute mile. I was running almost every day, outside on pavement when the weather was even halfway decent, and inside on a track when it rained and, later when the late autumn sleet began to fall. Around Thanksgiving I began to notice some aching pains in my hips, but I ignored it. I’d powered through other sports injuries before.
That was stupid.
Here I am, three months later, telling all you kids out there – STRETCH. Just do it. Do it every day. Do it every time you exercise, without fail, or you’ll end up like me, hobbled and dreaming of the activities you love but must, for now, avoid.
It’s been two weeks since I’ve stepped onto an elliptical trainer (last time didn’t go so well). It’s been 90 days since I’ve stepped onto a track or treadmill. And it’s been more like 100 days since I went to a dance.
Good grief, I miss dancing. I don’t really fantasize about running. I fantasize about cha cha. And tango. A lot.
I listen to music and hear the dancing too. I imagine elaborate routines. I revel in memories of transcendent dance experiences…you know, the ones where it seems like you and your partner must be hooked up through static electricity. I read the emails announcing upcoming dances and make elaborate pretend plans. I even plan my outfits. I’m a dance addict in withdrawal.
I’ve been filling the void with yoga as it’s just about the only exercise approved by my PT. Don’t get me wrong, I really love the yoga, and I’m learning a lot about my body and my self. I hope I keep up with it when I (eventually) get back to real life.
I think that’s pretty telling: without dance, it just doesn’t feel like real life to me.