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Isn’t It Interesting That You Are Never Bored When Your Head Is In The Refrigerator?
At the age of 70 I retired. Happy days were ahead. I could do what I want, when I want and if I want to do nothing that’s okay too. I watched daytime TV, did the crossword puzzles, read the newspapers, and kept in touch with friends and family through email. I played some games on the computer and checked out the internet. Of course, I ate a lot because the food was there. When I did wander out, it was the mall or the supermarket where I could buy lots of goodies to keep me happy. When you’re retired, wandering aimlessly through the stores, spending money foolishly is not what you want to do. So what do you do? I didn’t want to be one of those old people sitting around waiting to die. I could see myself falling into a depression. Would you say I needed a new challenge in life!
The day of awakening came with a phone call from a friend. “The Parks Department has a Community Center nearby; they have all kinds of classes; let’s go check it out.” Now, I thought, what could I possibly do there? What I did find there was a low impact aerobics class that would help me take off the weight I had managed to put on. I joined the class, had a good time and met some really nice people. They were all discussing the line dance class they had joined and what fun it was. When I was about 10 years old, my brother who was five years older than I, used to practice his jitterbug on me and I grew up dancing during the wonderful era of the big bands. I didn’t get to dance much later in life and forgot how much I enjoyed it,
With a bit of trepidation I joined the line dance class. It wasn’t just country music anymore. They taught Mambo, Cha-Cha, Waltz, and I was in heaven. The only problem, since I was sure I knew how to dance, was thinking this was going to be soooooo easy! It turned out that I was the only newbie in the class and I also realized there’s no partner to lead me around the floor. At first I thought I must have turned stupid in my old age, but then realized that line dancing is mostly memory and my memory was not too sharp anymore. I was going to stick with it! The dances are a number of sets that are repeated during the dance and you have to be aware of the sequence, what steps come next. Fortunately, I did not take myself too seriously. Someone once said “dance as if no one is looking” so that’s exactly what I did. I laughed a lot, persevered and promised myself I would not give up. I finally did it! It all fell into place.
The moral of the story….. dance class is much less expensive than doctors and psychiatrists; it gives you a natural high! I lost weight; I lost inches; I started to eat healthier when I saw the weight loss and my memory has improved tremendously. I’m exercising my brain by learning something new with each dance. I learned so well, that at the age of 75, the Parks & Recreation Department offered me a job teaching line dancing. My students always compliment me on my youthful looks and demeanor; something I don’t mind hearing.
I just read that Socrates learned to dance when he was seventy because he felt that an essential part of himself had been neglected. Isn’t it funny that with all the aches and pains that come with age, I don’t feel a bit of pain when I dance? It must be that ‘natural high’.
About the Author: Helen Robinson is a Line Dance Instructor for the Parks & Recreation Dept. and has become a healthy eating and exercise devotee since she lost 40 lbs. Visit her website http://www.healthy-cooking.ideatreasury.com for tips and recipes free copy of “What to Eat When You Are Sick”. Learn more about increasing your energy levels, how to alleviate your pain and speed your recovery.