(Original post ‘Today I Danced’ published on 5 December 2017 on

I danced and I cried. Music blared out of our small apartment in the chaos of Kathmandu. The soothing voice and heavy rock tunes of Evanescence, ‘My Immortal’ and ‘Bring me back to life’ electrocuted my body; a reminiscence of my teenage years came down on me like a tonne of bricks as I tried to offload one brick at a time.

Anger and stress were shaking off every corner and surface of my stiff body as it shook and danced with intense emotion! The release was indescribable. Amazing, yet the pain and heavy load were still weighing down on my shoulders and in my soul.

Why did I stop dancing?

It was perhaps the only thing that got me through my turbulent teens. I stopped dancing due to injuries and to cope with studying for my ‘A levels’ over 10 years ago. I never mourned this loss. I quickly gave in to doctors recommendations, that this is no longer good for my body and that I am causing more damage due to ‘wear and tear’ to my joints. I succumbed to their opinion. I just let it happen and it quickly became something of the past, like it was the life of a different person. I packed my Pointe shoes and with it my soul; stored them away in my mother’s home in Malta.

In the last few months, I noticed that my body and mind experience small burnouts more frequently. Bouts of depression and lack of motivation kick in more often than their counterparts. Physical energy dwindles to nothing and body enters sloth mode. The mind is fuzzy and congested with negative and useless thoughts. I stare at my laptop unable to concentrate on a single sentence written in an email. I crawl inward and hide from any reality.

A friend picked up on what’s going on with me, and then remembered hearing from one of her kids (friends of mine), that I used to dance. “Give it a go, create your space, put on the music and let go!” My mind quickly began to fool myself “of course I do this all the time”… but when was the last time? I had no bloody clue!

So the next morning, speaker ready, space ready, my body riddled with baggage of tension and anger, I danced. After a few songs, my body felt alive again. A series of emotions emerged from my childhood. Situations I hadn’t thought of in a long time. From the stress of family disputes, the disappointments in failed care for people and mostly disappointments in myself for allowing all of my memories and experiences to linger on with me all of these years. I carry over a decade of baggage!

I experienced three days of crippling muscle aches but damn it felt good! This dance session increased my motivation to consider various methods of ‘active meditation’. Through dance, I am really able to access and release emotions I have bottled up, suppressed inside me and disallowing my softer emotions to come forth.

Experimentation begins on my journey to re-defining myself, searching for the truth behind my emotions.

Do we ever stop? I guess we don’t. What I know right now, I cannot stop dancing!