What is one thing you are so passionate about that you absolutely cannot suppress a huge grin spreading across your face, letting a piece of your soul shine through, just at the simple thought of it? For me, it’s dancing. To expand on that, it’s dancing to music that moves my soul. I’ve always believed dancing is the most beautiful form of self expression. I love how it exists across all cultures, in all times of history to present day. I cannot always say what specific music will move me, but more often that not it is some genre of electronic music.
This type of music is generally one that people either Hate or L-O-V-E. It either moves your soul from a depth you didn’t know existed until you hear it, or to you it sounds like a bunch of weird noise and repetitive beats. In recent years, the umbrella of electronic music has grown to encompass an incredible amount of genres/subcategories. The differences between them range from subtle to gross. What they share is nearly indescribable, as it resides more on an emotional level. I often cannot predict what sounds will resonate with me at what moment, but that is part of the fun and spontaneity of it all.
Electronic music became wildly popular in Europe, and many other countries, long before the United States started to “get it”. You could say I was one of the originals to jump on this train. I first heard this type of music in the early 90’s, which, for me, was middle school and early high school. I’ve always loved to dance, and it was one of the few things I was not too shy to do in front of others from a young age.
Despite being from a small, rural town (graduating class of 35!), I took advantage of every opportunity to dance that I possibly could. I attended school and community dances in middle school. As a high school freshman, I made friends with some seniors and began attending dances at the county’s community college, about 20 min. away from home. When I turned 18 I ventured to Seattle (a 2-hour drive) to dance at 18 and over venues. I was never one who needed alcohol to “loosen up” and feel comfortable dancing!
In March of 1997, I spent a weekend in Seattle with some friends. On Saturday night, we decided to go dancing at one of the 18 and over clubs. (The former DV8, for any of you who remember!) When I first walked into the club that night I happened to lock eyes with a particularly cute guy on the dance floor. We both immediately had these huge, goofy grins spread across our faces. Although it took nearly 2 hours for us to actually talk and start dancing together, you could say the rest is history. His name is Mike Puhrmann, and we’ve been together ever since that fateful night.
As it turned out, Mike and I shared an equal passion for dancing and electronic music. As unlikely as it may be to meet one’s future spouse in the oh so classy confines of a night club, it couldn’t have been a more fitting beginning for us. 14 years later, Mike and I are avidly sharing our love for this pastime. Not only is dancing my favorite form of exercise, and a wonderful way to share and connect with my husband, but it truly is a way to honor that which makes my soul smile.
2011 has been the year of dancing for Mike and I. Since we first met, we’ve had plenty of good times dancing. However, this year, we’ve really made a come back! Electronic music has recently blown up in this country and shows are more accessible than ever. DJ’s are becoming the new Rock Stars and the shows are becoming larger than life with building size LED screens adding a significant entertainment factor to the energy of the music we already love.
It’s been a bit amusing attending shows and looking around at all the kids who were barely born when we were first falling in love with the music. You can easily spot those who are there because it moves their soul and those who are just hanging out with their friends and being part of the latest fad. We chuckle at being the ones with graying hair, but it keeps us young at heart and we have no intention of stopping anytime soon. All the more reason to keep taking great care of our health!
Dancing to electronic music has also catered to another one of my favorite pastimes. You could call it honoring my alter ego(s), playing dress up, or simply being comfortable enough with myself to embrace who I am, what makes me smile and living life without regrets. If you attend an electronic music show these days, you’ll see all sorts of unusual outfits. I began wearing wigs and creative outfits years ago and love having an outlet that is all about self expression.
There’s much to be said for engaging in activities we are passionate about. Incorporating that which brings joy and peace into our being goes a long way toward keeping our bodies and minds youthful and healthy. It’s so easy to get caught up in the huge list of daily, weekly, and monthly “to-do’s” that we don’t schedule in time for the things that allow us to be who we are (I’m as guilty of this as anyone). Does your family regularly see you grin out of pure pleasure and enjoyment?
Honor what makes your soul smile and see how contagious it can be to those around you!
To Your Best Health!
PS. For a glimpse into what moves my soul, check out this 4 min. video clip put together by Seattle-based DJ Hyperfunk of his experience at the recent Identity Festival at The Gorge Amphitheater in George, WA. This actually moves me to (happy) tears. This festival was truly one of the most amazing experiences I’ve ever had.