That's what my head is full of these days.
At the end of September and the first week of October I did two major things for me. First I danced solo for the first time every at a Belly Dance Festival at Desert Dance Festival. Then a week later the ,first week of October, I did it again at Redwood Coast Belly Dance Festival in Arcata. I have danced at both of these festivals as part of a troupe and DDF more than one troupe over the years. I can honestly say I had so much fun doing these two things. Not only the dancing itself, the great workshops, and wonderful people, but the process of moving through fear becomes so exciting for me that it really is "fun". It is also a heady feeling to end a day knowing that you've broken through a personal barrier.
I can't tell you how many years I have sat in the audience at festivals and thought to myself "sometime soon I will get it together and do my first festival" Well, with life being what it is, it has taken me longer than I once anticipated to get to this point. I am honest to a fault about my difficulties with anxiety, fear and lack of confidence in myself at times so I don't see a point in not going there now. I was not afraid of the dancing. I didn't look at the stage and think oooo scary. No, I looked at the process, the paper work ,getting in on time, the checking in on time, the being ready such and such a head of time before your performance time, and the logistics of figuring out who you are supposed to be checking in with where you are supposed to be going and things along those lines...yup I looked at that stuff and my stomach would fall through the floor and panic would set in. These are of course all of the things that set me off in any part of my life because they are variables and unknowns, not really the friend of someone with anxiety/panic problems mixed with excruciating shyness. Though again as soon as I recognize a fear I know that there will be a day that I will move towards facing and conquering it. It is who I have learned to be. Does it make me a daredevil? Of course not, my fears are far too mundane for most people to see my small triumphs as anything beyond the normal scope of life, but to me, oh my to ME they are huge.
I owe so much of this to teachers I have had over time, but a lot must go to Kitiera for the last year I spent being a part of the Modrom Dance Collective and being right there with her most of the time to see how these things worked and to start to demystify them for myself.
Suddenly I am no longer afraid. I have plans now to send in an application for Tribal Fest, and to call in for Rakkasah. I have new choreography and costuming ideas swirling around in my brain. I have plans! Plans that excite me, not terrify me. I never thought a few weeks ago that all of a sudden I would feel so free!