Those of you who know me know that I don't really like to dance. I never have, except for a brief and mostly forgotten period in my childhood where I belonged to the Sunshine Generation; it seems wholly inexplicable now, given my current personality, but I was the star of the show with that shit. I was a freaking soloist, and I danced my ass off in front of hundreds of onlookers, usually wearing hideous clothing. (People I date, who are usually the only people I get around to resurrecting that memory for, always seem horribly amused by this story.)
But since then, there have a been a few memorable nights (mostly involving large quantities of alcohol and elaborate outfits, which for some reason helps) where I found the interior confidence and lack of moment-to-moment self-criticism that is necessary to dance joyfully with other people, but mostly I don't enjoy it. It makes me feel awkward, self-conscious, uncomfortable, and ultimately bad about myself, left out of whatever group of happy dancing people I happen to be surrounded by. It can be a profoundly isolating experience, and so I generally avoid it. The problem is that I sincerely wish that I enjoyed dancing. I have many times stated aloud a wish to learn how to enjoy dancing, and every so often I actually go out and try it again but the results are almost always the same: me, backed into a corner, staring in fascination at the abandon of those around me and feeling like I'm from a completely different planet where stiff joints are the order of the day.
One of the nice things about living alone is that here, at least, I can dance. I can put on Amanda Palmer's Guitar Hero and shake my ass, fists pumping. I cock my hip. I sing along. Sometimes, I even clap my hands. I imagine I look like a complete idiot, but I don't care because nobody really is watching. It's not something I do terribly often, but when I do I enjoy the shit out of it.
The point of this is once again something about maybe getting older and wiser, or at least more in touch with what I actually want. Last night FKA, a monthly queer dance party, took place at the gay bar down the block from my apartment. (Which I have also only been to twice since I moved in what, ten months ago? I need more queer goings-out.) Most of my genderqueer friends were going (and probably sundry other people I've met over the years, which could actually be a bad thing), it was close by, I didn't have anything going on... But I stayed home. I'm trying not to do things just because I think I should enjoy them when I know that I probably won't. Instead, I read Dorothy Allison, wrote in my journal, listened to music, and went to bed early. And this morning, I feel better than I have all week. Maybe next month I'll be feeling up to giving FKA another shot, but for this month I made the right choice.