On Valentine’s Day last year I underwent my third rotator cuff surgery and eighth surgery overall. It took weeks to recover and months to be able to lift my arm above my shoulder. I was on pain meds most of that spring and dropped to 143 pounds.
This Valentine’s weekend I was in a ballroom dancing showcase doing an East Coast Swing. It was my version of Dancing with the Scars. Making me look good was my partner, teacher and friend, Carmel Mortenson. She put her professional reputation on the line by dancing with me in public, for which I’m beyond grateful.
Dancing is verboten for many because of its sensuality. Most men won’t even try it because of how silly and clumsy it can make you look. Their egos won’t risk it. I know guys who have spoken to thousands, played in sports stadiums, jumped out of planes and been in combat who wouldn’t be caught dead on a dance floor.
For me, dancing is therapeutic and life-affirming. It is physically and mentally challenging. It requires discipline and rewards commitment. Best of all, it connects you to some wonderful people.