I sat there. Alone. Everyone was mingling, visiting, laughing and catching up with old friends. I didn't know anyone well enough to know who they used to be. I was back in Grade 10 again.
I have few memories from my high school years so I knew that no one at my high school reunion would remember me. My wish was that I would run into one old friend from my junior high years. That wish was not to be granted.
I was the painfully shy, ugly girl all over again. The only thing that was different is that I didn't run home with my tail between my legs and vow to never, ever, ever put myself out there like that again.
It took over three hours to work up the courage to get up from the table and get myself a glass of wine. I would prefer to drink nothing at all, than to get up and get a drink by myself. I've lived a life where people around me do those little things for me. I am a little bit sheltered that way. So I did my second brave thing. I got myself a drink.
I had taken only a few sips of wine on a full stomach and the majority of those sitting at our table got up to dance to the sound track of our high school years. I moved. The music seeped inside of my bones and took over. I danced like no one was watching. I simply felt the music and danced. I danced like I have never danced before (well there was one prior alcohol-induced dance incident in 1988...).
This dancing was 'me'. It was not the alcohol. Minutes prior to this, I was the painfully shy, ugly girl. Now I was the less shy, less ugly me that danced.
I love what music does to me. It recreates me from the inside, out. I feel more of the music and less of the ugly. Music gives me courage. The courageous me started to emerge. The part of me that has always been there broke out of the paralysis that had overtaken the fifteen year old me. And I danced.
I overcame a great hurdle at our school reunion. I still didn't know anyone but I revealed a piece of myself that was always inside of me but terrified to come out.
The evening was (finally) off to a good start...