There is such a free feeling that dancing brings about. It’s the closest thing to magic, really. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a skilled ballerina or an “Elaine” from Seinfeld, there is something about dancing that makes the suppressed insecurities come out and fly away; it makes you gain a liberty and brings about a confidence you didn’t know you had. It happens in an even stronger way when you look around the dance floor and see so many others riding that very same crazy dance train you’re on.
Maybe that’s why some people refuse to do it no matter what. They are afraid people will see them unbutton their spirit and let go of their inhibitions, and that’s a very vulnerable place to be.
Aunt Frannie was a dancer. I don’t mean she was some professional reality dance show contestant, or that she went around the house with her tap shoes on. I mean she rode a crazy dance train in life that when she felt vulnerable or insecure about things, she would look around the floor and see the other dancers in her circle and make some pretty unique moves in order to feel stronger.
When we spin, we tend to get dizzy. But there’s something about dancing so that when you twirl around and around, you’re living your truth. Aunt Frannie could twirl like nobody’s business. There was much twirl in that girl.
When we are furious about hard times, it can make us feel unglued or out of control. Fury is an emotion that can make us shut down and give up. Not Aunt Frannie. Those things made her dance even harder until sweat was upon her brow. You know why? Because she knew that hard times require furious dancing.
“Wave your hands in the air, like you just don’t care.” I love those lines of the song that seem to make everyone’s arms go up and their hands shimmy-and-shake. You can almost see it in their eyes and smiles as their delight seems to increase while they do. I’ve seen Aunt Frannie do it. And it was extraordinary.
Trust me – that lady could do the Hokey Pokey and turn herself around, because to her, that’s what it was all about.
All of us know that life is unchoreographed. It brings the unexpected. That’s how Aunt Frannie danced, though each step she took gave the impression that they were carefully composed. That’s because she was her own choreographer, and not one single wiggle was created without intention.
When we leap, we feel joy. Aunt Frannie knew exactly where her heart leapt. No bones about it, her family was her joy. Her utterly devoted husband of 53 years; the children she raised with a truly organic love; the grandkids that had limitless affection from her; and the great grandchildren that made her dance leaps go as high as the stars. Cousins, nieces, nephews and friends made her love leap outside the regular boundaries of the dance floor. She was very well aware of the joy siblings can bring about, though that never made her dance just like them. Oh, no. Aunt Frannie danced to her own tune.
When she met The Hubster, Adrian, he asked what he should call her. (The ‘Get Jiggy With It’ dance begins.) She replied, “You can call me Aunt Frannie.” (a bit of a ‘Two-Step’ thrown in for fun) After replying with a nodding understanding, (an old ‘Head Banger’ move from the way-back), Aunt Frannie looked up at Adrian and into his eyes (a deep expression of ‘The Tango’) and jokingly said, “Or call me whatever you want, as long as you know I wear the pants in this relationship.” (Dance Off Challenge!!), to which he answered, “Okay! Aunt Frannie Pants it is!!” (Challenge. ACCEPTED!)
And then there was me. I have always been honored to partner up with her in the dance of love and life, and ever-grateful that she made room on the dance floor for me when our song came on. I learned quite a few moves from her, in fact. Have you heard of Inspirational Dance? She invented it just for me.
A real dancer has to fill their space with their own personality. And that is just what Aunt Frannie did. Much like music, she had the joy of movement and the heart of life. So, make sure to dance and sing to the music in your own heart, and don’t let one note go without a little sway or one beat-of-the-drum go without dancing. Let the rhythm help you find your joy, and leap! Accept the challenge and DANCE. Just like Aunt Frannie Pants.
Dance with the angels, Aunt Frannie Pants. And one day, I hope to share the same dance floor again.