Tuesday, June 18, 2013

We All Die

Betty, on the right, dancing to Jack White, her favorite

I teach my healing dance methods to a group of women whose average age is 80, and on Saturday I got the news that I have known all along would come but was hoping would stay away for a bit longer: Flo, on the left of Betty in that photo, called to tell me that Betty had passed away in her sleep.

It was expected because Betty was having problems and there is her age but it was also simultaneously completely unexpected.

I guess all death feels like that.

We all die.

But we don't live like it could happen any moment. Not the majority of us, anyway.

We live like it's far in the future, no matter our age.


Betty was my biggest fan. (Marcy would argue with that so we'll say Betty was my biggest fan not counting Marcy.)

Every single class without fail, even when she was coming twice a week, she would say something along these lines (and I will point out that Betty was pretty much the only person I would tolerate calling me Chris rather than Christine), "Thank you for doing this, Chris. You don't know how special this work is. Thank you. You are my priestess, Chris. You should have thousands of students! What is wrong with people? You gave me my life. I lived only in my head; I had no idea I had a body."

And week after week, she would gasp and add, "I had no idea that I could PRAY through this body..." and she would shake her head in disbelief.

Betty was a Catholic nun for the first 25 years of her adult life, so she knew a few things about prayer but she had no idea that prayer could be so spontaneous and physical. I am honored that I got to teach her this.

The Lesson of Betty...

I could write for many paragraphs about how the main lesson you can learn from Betty is that it's never ever too late.

It's never ever too late to heal the mind/body/heart and it's never ever too late to learn new things and explore unknown territory.

But that's obvious.

I think, too, that Betty teaches us something that we often don't think about:

It's never too late, but it's also never too soon.

We put things off that we "want" to do until tomorrow. (Intentional air quotes on want and you can think about why.)

Until the kids are grown.

Until retirement.

Until we are thinner/have more money/find the right pair of tights...((the excuses degrade to ridiculous rather quickly)).

But you have NO IDEA if you have that tomorrow to put things off until.

Betty danced in my studio a couple of times and wanted to get there again this summer. She hadn't.

We never know.

We never know.

We never know.

And we all die.

What dream is awaiting your courage and your commitment?  It is never ever too soon...