When I was three years old, I would dance around the foyer of our house in Maine. Somehow I knew that the greatest expression of joy, for me, was finding my wings to fly. So I danced; according to my mother and my sisters, I danced in the morning and I danced in the evening. Sometimes I even set up chairs for them to watch me dance. The foyer had etched glass window panes in the door. I remember dancing with the light and the shadows. I knew what complete freedom felt like. But a year later, we left that house in Maine, and I mark that trip as the beginning of recognizing contrast from total expansion and freedom to constriction and fear.
I entered into a period of deep grief, and when we finally arrived in Long Island, NY, far from the ocean and the seagulls, and the foyer with the etched glass windows, I began a journey to reclaim what I knew was true as a little girl.
Fast forward to 1965, when I was a student at the Martha Graham school of dance. Having spent twelve years trying to learn proper technique so that my body would master the elements of dance, so I could learn to fly with control, I recognized that to become a Martha Graham dancer was more about deprivation and restriction than it was about freedom and joy. That summer, I entered the American College Dance Festival and met Sally Stackhouse who was a principal dancer for Jose Limon. In her classes, I felt like I could fly across the floor in leaps and jumps and turns. In the next few months, I entered a huge battle within myself. Could I dance with that freedom or would I go back to classes that taught me about control and perfection?
This story is the seed of my work, Body Dialogue. I have been in a conversation all these years, asking how do I find joy, freedom, and expansion in movement, and at the same time fly like a bird and coast with the angels? I am exploring the concept of My Body as my Best Friend. She has been my guide and teacher as I have navigated this journey of contrast, felt in my cells and experienced in my bones, muscle and in the energy that I call “my body”.
Everything is energy. The breath is energy, our thoughts are energy, our bodies are the accumulation of our history and our presence in the moment. The physical body is of a different vibration than the emotional and spiritual bodies. But ideally when we line up the physical, emotional, and spiritual, we are allowing healing to occur in all three realms.