Yeah, it has been a while. For a writer, I really do suck at updating my own blog space.
So, I started belly dancing in March as a way to build fitness into my life. I started the class with one of my very best friends from high school who is married to my ex-boyfriend and her sister-in-law is my instructor. (Long story there, but it is not nearly as exciting as it must sound….)
Anyway, I knew Aliyah way before she was Aliyah…we all take stage names. Mine is Cereza. Since I am Hispanic, and a language geek, I wanted something that represented me fully, but still honored middle-eastern traditions. In other words, I am performing. After just 2 months of instruction. Call me crazy ( yes, I really am pretty crazy) but I thought joining a student dance troupe would kinda force me into practicing more. I am awkward at best, but I am having a ton of fun! I have always been a Bohemian at heart, so this style of dance suits my personality too.
As for the autoimmune crap, this has been a really rough patch. I developed vasculitis, which kinda stings and is horribly ugly. I picked a really bad time to perform with bare legs…or bare anything. Which IS a nice segue into the next bit.
I am the only one in my troupe not confident enough to bare my belly. I am 40 pounds heavier than I was 6 years ago, but it goes way beyond that. Being a victim of childhood sexual abuse and basing your self worth (and protection) around the size of your body can really play with your brain. I am ashamed of my body now, but I was equally ashamed of it 40 pounds ago, too. This might shock you, because it is for the same reason. It is because it gets NOTICED. Men outrightly proposition me at 40 pounds lighter and they outrightly body shame me where I am now. My sweet spot, where I can be a wallflower is 20-25 pounds lighter than I am now.
I know in my brain that I am who I am no matter what the scale says. However, logic gets thrown out the window when self esteem is at stake, I am hoping upon hope that dancing with my new sisters will convince me to shed my inhibitions, but for now…ugh.