It’s been just over a year since I walked back into a dance studio for the first time in over 10 years. Last year at this time, I share an article called “I Hope You Dance”, and it generated some of the most powerful responses I have ever received.

Many people were touched and inspired and wrote me things like “You’re story moved me to tears as I resonated with it.”

Well, I want to report back that the past year of being back in touch with my true creative passion has been incredible. I have continued to dance while growing my business and creating memories with my family.

In fact, I really believe that dancing has made me a more successful entrepreneur and a better mom and wife. It has certainly made me a healthier and stronger person.

In the past year, I learned countless steps in 12 different ballroom dancing styles, I learned choreographed routines in 8 of those styles, I performed at my studio 6 times, I participated in 3 regional events and one public showcase.

How do I fit it all in? I wonder that myself sometimes!

It seems, when you are doing something you love, it’s as though time expands. It gives me energy that translates into greater productivity and connectedness in other areas of my life. The truth is that I don’t know how I would do the rest of my life if dancing wasn’t part of my schedule!

Not always easy

It hasn’t all been a smooth ride. There were times when I felt uncertain, frustrated, and scared.

I screwed up performances. (I’m starting to think that it’s not actually possible to have a performance that isn’t flawed in some way. And I think that’s partially what is so appealing about live creative expression. But that’s another topic!)

I pushed the edges of my comfort zone.

My instructors pushed the edges of my physical capabilities.

I stretched my assumptions and experience of what dance is, or should be.

I shed tears at the studio more than once.

These things are all part of it too. Following your creative passion isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a catalyst for growth. Along with that comes some growing pains.

But it’s worth it! I am a growth-minded person with the familiar belief that “if you aren’t growing, you’re dying.” So I appreciate the parts of my life that not only provide joy and pleasure, but challenge me and push me to evolve as a person.

So much can change in a year

I wrote a letter to my dance instructors for my 1-year dance-aversary that started out with… “One year ago today, I walked through the doors of this studio for the very first time. I was excited and nervous and didn’t know what to expect. After a year, I still get excited every time I walk through that door.”

Just over a year ago, I couldn’t have imagined any of this. It wasn’t even on my radar. A whole new world has opened up to me that I didn’t even know existed!

It’s like the song I chose for my first studio performance last summer. It was a Natalie/Nat Cole song called “Paper Moon.” It’s about how the world sometimes seems unreal, like it’s just made of paper and fabric. That’s how I felt about the world I had discovered through dancing, and still feel that way as more of this world unfolds… like this can’t really be real.

But it IS real.

And as the song says, “It wouldn’t be make-believe if you believe in me.”

I can’t wait to see what another year will bring!

Now you… What is your creative passion? How might your life be different a year from now if you found a way to bring it into your life?