Taking dancing lessons was one of the best things my husband and I have ever done. We signed up for a course through adult education at the local middle school. It was just us and about 100 other folks of about every age, all longing to make it on Dancing with The Stars. Or to be able to actually dance at a wedding. Some, like us, just were doing it for fun.
The first dance we learned was swing. One, two, three, four. Twirl. One, two, duck, turn. Or something like that. By now, it has become second nature and I am not sure how we even do it; we both just move into step by rote. We learned to an old favorite of mine, “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown,” by Jim Croce, and whenever we hear that song, we must dance. If I’m at my desk writing and Joe is in the kitchen cooking and we hear our song, we get up, do a little four-step, giggle, kiss, and then go back to whatever we were doing. Or not.
Me and Joe. See how happy dancing makes us?
We search out dances—often held by charitable groups, community organizations, and clubs, at old school houses, gambling casinos, bars, churches, whatever. It’s fun and a great way to meet new people and forget your troubles. When we’re gliding around the floor to Satin Doll, or spinning to Take Five, life just seems a little simpler and calmer.
We watch dancers in their 80s and 90s kick up their heels—and how can you not be inspired by that?
Joe and I danced all through my treatment, sometimes slowly and carefully, but we danced nevertheless. And most people did not know I was bald beneath my fashionable wig, but I often worried that Joe’s arm would graze my head as I twirled and the wig would go flying into somebody’s Corona. Fortunately for me and the drinkers near the dance floor, that never happened.
If you’re a 150-pound person, you’ll burn roughly 375 calories per hours with the swing and 204 with the waltz. If you weight more, you’ll work off more. And I guarantee you’ll work off immeasurable stress and worry.