I was just going to write briefly about our latest performance as "DreamSpin Hoop Collective". But I feel I can't just write about that alone as it has little depth in terms of making my blog personal, real and having any integrity.
The last few months have been pretty challenging for me on a very personal level, as I had a family member with a terminal illness, who died on 25th January. I tried my very best to be remain focused in regards to teaching my classes, and regular rehearsals with my students, although I was aware I was "running on empty". The affect grief has had on my physical health has really taken me by surprise and I have had very little energy compared to my usual firing on all cylinders personality! It's a piece of knowledge I will store because next time I will take better care of myself and learn when to slow down.
I've learned that teaching has helped keep me focused and I've been able to stay in the moment when teaching classes (my students are so much fun that I've found myself much cheered up after a class), running my small hoop business and re-training as a massage therapist. Once again, hooping has seen me through a difficult time - I believe this to be the gift of creativity - it is an outlet, an anchor and an escape into another way of being - thinking, moving and processing time.
Even though this week I could only manage about twenty minutes of an hour 's practice space, I still found great value in the 5 minutes that I spent lost in flow and without any other thought. It was as if I had given my body and my mind "time off" from grief.
My students have been very understanding and I have appreciated their thoughtfulness - once again hooping has brought some very lovely people in to my life and also has connected people not just in rehearsals - good friendshpis have been formed.
The event itself was at a lovely Brighton hotel and a great venue for us, especially as previously we have been flashmobbing our routines in less than ideal cold British climate! It was great to see the girls buzzing and excited before the show - even though for myself, it felt like a challenge to be out in public and even more so, to be performing. But we did it
- the girls looked great, the routine was fun and most importantly the audience and my students enjoyed the experience.
We partied late into the night to celebrate all the hard work that had gone into those 3 minutes of performance and as I danced out some of my grief, a new awareness was forming as I released old fears, thoughts and over analysisng. Death is a gift, in many ways . It reminds us of the fragility of life, the joy of laughter, friendships, living in the moment and cherishing memories, it enriches us, bringing more depth to our character and recognising that life is meant to be enjoyed, experienced fully and that we owe the world our creative expression because it is uniquely ours and that is the mark we will leave on this world.
In memory of Elizabeth Boyd.