As I stand in a foreign, sweaty, hot, crowd—at a house show in Simi Valley—I can’t help but feel like an angsty teenager.
I don’t really like this loud, head-banging music, but I’m going to pretend like I do anyway, since people can see me.
I let my hands hang by my hips. No this looks awkward. I bob my head up and down. No this looks forced. I don’t dare to cross my arms for that would look way too standoff-ish.
I’d noticed a few attractive guys when I walked in earlier, so I decide to pause my hyper-active self-deprecation for a moment and just look around…
To my right, there’s a girl crossing her arms and bobbing her head. To my left there’s a guy with his arms resting by his hips. My two girlfriends are doing the same. Everyone looks natural. No one looks awkward.
Why the hell do I feel so uncomfortable doing the same exact thing?
I bet I look it too. That’s probably why no one has talked to me…
The set finally ended—thank the lord.
Now I have a few moments to let my ear drums re-gain consciousness before the next band begins.
I can already hear the strung of a guitar—few moments over.
I innately scan the new band for any cute guys. None of them seem attractive to me, but then they start playing…
The singer, the guitarist and the bass player all unapologetically move their bodies, crazily and ecstatically, to the beat of their music.
Their movements are full of life—full of joy—overflowing joy. They all close their eyes—nothing can stop a limb from swinging or swaying where it wants to go. Their bodies have no limitations. They are free and light.
I change my mind. They are all incredibly attractive.
I fight the urge to sit down on the beer-stained couch next to two girls glued to their iPhones. I don’t want to be that girl.
I’d better suck it up and learn from these guys…
And so, I did—I let myself get lost in the music.
I close my eyes. I move my feet. I sway my hips. I breathe the beat. I am joy. I am light. I am rhythm. I am open. I am free.
Once I made the conscious decision to let go, I suddenly felt beautiful.
I was authentically myself.
I was no longer a 5’2″ angsty 19-year-old girl, contemplating whether she should cross her arms or let them graze the sides of her Levi cutoffs, in the middle of a sweaty crowd in Simi Valley. I just was.
I allowed myself to just be.
I trusted whatever my soul craved in that unique moment—and if it happens to be a booty-shake or a ludicrous attempt at a shimmy, hell yeah!
You’d better believe I will commit to that craving, because I know it’s my soul—wanting to come out and play!
I can choose to listen to my cravings to let go and have an incredible night, or I can let the pointless, fabricated fears of my mind turn my night into a mediocre one.
As I was making my way out the door, two different guys stopped me to ask for my phone number. It felt really good.
Not because I thought that they found me physically attractive, but because I knew that when I allowed myself to let go of worrying what anyone thought of me, I suddenly exuded confidence and attracted admiration.
Letting my soul dance through the stiffness of my ego allowed me to soften and finally enjoy myself.