This was the case a few nights ago. I had settled in for the night (and by that I mean, pajama pants, henley, and some decaf coffee!), when my daughter said to me, “Daddy, will you dance with us?” They had been flipping through our song lists on Apple TV.
Now you have to understand some context here: It had been a long day. Beyond that, a long week! I was tired and so were all of my kids. One of my girls has been involved in a local production of High School Musical and we had spent a lot of time running back and forth to rehearsals. Between doctor’s appointments, school field trips, class parties, and the busyness of work in general, the words “long week” were an understatement. I was in no mood to dance!
But something spoke to me when she asked. For some reason, in-spite of my weariness, I decided that was exactly what we needed to do. I’m not sure what I was thinking, because after I decided we needed to dance, I then did something that I wish I hadn’t (well, sort of). I set up my iPhone and recorded the whole thing!
Honestly, I’m glad I did. Because later on I forgot that we had all danced together. It completely slipped out of my mind. The busyness of life invaded once again and I moved on. I probably would have forgotten altogether until I flipped back through my pictures a few nights afterward. I came across the video and it made me smile. Since I’m a parenting blogger my mind flooded with a crazy idea to write a post about dancing together and then post the video. Not sure what I was thinking! Not sure what I’m thinking now.
So, at the risk of mockery and public humiliation, here’s the video of me and some of my kids dancing together last week…
[youtube id= “5g1MCSTMcnI”]
I have learned that when I don’t feel like dancing, that’s the very moment that I should get up and start dancing. Truth is, we have so many reasons to dance. We have so many reasons to celebrate. In spite of the harsh days that life tends to lay at our feet, we need to dance! We need to do something that reminds us that we are still alive and there is still so much to live for.
We need to dance when life is good.
It’s easy to dance in times like this. It’s easy to lay siege to a day that was good and filled with laughter and joy. And, it’s important to do this too. As harsh as the winds of life blow at times, we need to dance in the good times so we will remember what it’s like when the hard times arrive. And arrive they will…
We need to dance when life is hard.
It is hard too! As a family, we have experienced trauma, deep loss, and painful wounds over the past few years. In fact, there are many times where I marvel at the fact that we are still alive, and still plugging away as a family. It’s evidence that there is a Heavenly Father holding tightly to us. Honestly, choosing to dance when life is hard is not easy at all. It’s really hard, and frankly, there are days where I’d rather crawl into bed and quit.
But that doesn’t solve anything. We grow in these times. As hard as that is to accept, adversity and pain forge character in us. The old adage says, “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger. Our family is living proof of how true that statement is.
We need to dance in the in-between.
There is a margin in between the good times and the bad. I think where I’m arriving is this: the in-between can still be claimed by the good. Much of life is lived in between good times and hard times. Most days of the week are like this too. It’s easy to allow the in-between moments drift toward becoming hard times. Our emotions can hold us hostage with this and force us to throw our hands up and give up. Choosing to dance in the in-between moments moves us to claim them as good, even if they aren’t, or a hard time is just around the bend.
The point is- dance! Just dance! You’ve got to in this life. Choose to live for something greater than this cold world offers. Choose to hold tightly to one another. Choose, in-spite of life circumstances, to live for the positive. We are learning this everyday. We are learning to smile through the imperfections and the failures. We are learning to embrace good times, hard times, and everything in-between!
What are some of your thoughts? Do you agree? Disagree? Is it hard for you to choose the positive when life is hard?