Real Talk: Why I Dance

Monday, January 19, 2015

This is kind of a personal post - I've been doing a few of those lately - but I wanted to share with you all something that's very important to me. Because if I can't tell my lovely readers, who can I tell?

Those of you who have been in my life for a while know that I absolutely love volunteering. There is something so beautiful about giving your time for someone else, no strings attached. It's rewarding, yes, but I don't do it for that feeling; I do it because it really ought to be done by all of us! And because of this, I'm a huge fan of finding 'your cause'. Like, 'the one'.

Ladies & Gents, I have found mine: Children's Miracle Network!

Two years ago, I stood (& danced) for 24 hours at my university's dance marathon, DemonTHON, for the kids and had an incredible experience. It was emotionally, physically and mentally exhausting. I cried, laughed, sang, prayed and almost fell asleep while standing up (a girl needs her beauty rest). It was an indescribable day and night and day - from 5PM to 5PM the next day - and I wouldn't have traded the moments of pain and deliriousness for anything, because we made a difference. That year, gathered in the giant school gym we had come to know as home for the previous 23 hours, we watched as the total-amount-raised number climbed to $150,313.37. Holy cannoli, I know. 

Rewind to my high school years (and before) where I spent 50% of my time - no joke - at my dance studio or practicing at home. My parents dropped me off at a ballet class when I was four years old because I wouldn't stop dancing around our house. For fourteen years, it became an integral part of me, until I graduated high school and ended my dance career. It was a normal ending, and I was by no means good enough to continue nor did I want to, but I hadn't realized how much of an impact it made until I quit. It felt like I lost a part of me, and I searched for a long while for something that would fill it.

Then, at DemonTHON, I found a way to combine my two loves: dance and philanthropy. I had the chance to make an ACTUAL impact doing something I ENJOYED. How often does that come around?? I'll let you in on a secret, it hardly ever does. This year, on April 24th, I am doing it all again (24 hours of joy & pain) as a Morale Captain - which basically means I get to help plan part of the big event, encourage fundraising and keep up dancers' enthusiasm during the Big Event. I am so excited to be participating again!

So. Why do I dance now? I dance for the kids. I dance for a greater cause. I dance because I get to dance with my friends. I dance for the fourteen years I left behind. I dance for a future where children don't have to suffer. But mostly, I dance because I can.

To find out more & help make this the best event thus far, visit my fundraising page!

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