Three Burlesque Lessons for a Better Life.

Generally, I am coward who likes to sit behind a book seeing the world from the safe vantage point of someone else’s eyes.

Pixaby - CCO

Image courtesy of Pixaby

I find it bone meltingly terrifying to initiate a conversation in a room full of strangers, or to break a routine that, in my mind, will throw me out of  control. If I lose control of my life then the zombie apocalypse may as well happen.

Fortunately, I know I need help. Occasionally I will confront my fears and find the power to do something I have always wanted to do.

Last year I did not one burlesque course, but two.

 Yes, the woman who hates initiating a conversation in a room full of strangers decided that taking her clothes off in front of them would be easy peasy.

Of course the clothing removal didn’t start until about week four, and by then we weren’t so much strangers as casual acquaintances who happened to know what each other looked like in suspenders.

Suspenders are evil, slippery suckers. I do, however, love my corset. Of course I could never quite get it off in time to the music, and there is absolutely no way you could bend down and tie your shoe laces while wearing one of them, but it is the most beautiful, impractical thing I have in my wardrobe.

My inner fairy tale princess loves it. It’s soooo pretty. Look at the frills. I’m going to run up a mountain and sing a song about it.

My inner feminist, however, is thinking – How dare I? Corset equals wicked, rib-crushing weapon of the patriarchy.

My inner rationalist, is like, girl, you’re over thinking this. Just enjoy it already before you forget the choreography and land on your arse.

This is just one of the reasons I’m so messed up. I over think everything. Corset quandary aside, burlesque helped me with that.

  • Life should be fun,

Seriously? What is the point if it isn’t?

Whether you’re trying to concentrate on the choreography while managing a feather boa, or starting a new job, or going out or staying in. Don’t be so afraid of just enjoying what this moment has to offer.

  •  Life is a mirror.

Just relax. If you are having a good time, so will everybody else. The teacher of the course always looked to be having the best time, and we did too.

  • Sexy is a state of mind.

Heels and red lipstick can help, but it’s all in your head. You don’t need to wait until the new exercise regime has kicked in, or until you’ve found a pair of trousers that actually fit. There is no excuse not to start being the best version of yourself, right now.

What have you done to confront your fears lately? And when was the last time you just let yourself have fun?

 

Grownups need not apply.

Being a grown up ruins books.  When I was in my twenties my favourite Lord of the Rings character was Eowyn.  This was partly because Tolkein didn’t give me that many female role models to choose from, and partly because she kicked arse.

She was the first heroine I met who put on trousers and rode out to fight with the guys. It was awesome and yes, why shouldn’t she have been allowed to do it? Girl power rocks!

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Now I’m in my thirties I look at the choice Eowyn made, and my responsible adult purses her lip and frowns.

‘Uncle Theo told her to look after his people. Who’s running Edoras while she’s off gallivanting? And she’s doing it all for Aragorn who doesn’t even love her! Grow up young lady and put some gender appropriate clothing back on, this instant.’

Seriously, how did I become that?

Oh yeah, I grew up.

I’m still struggling to completely silence my responsible adult, but as my forties crawls inevitably closer I’m craving that rule defying, courageous freedom buzz.  Something needs to burst the apathy bubble before I wake up in my seventies and realise I’ve spent an entire lifetime being the good girl who always asks nicely.

After all, didn’t Eowyn help to change the course of the battle of Pellinore Fields? (No living man am I, douche bag!), and didn’t she also find a man that she loved who would actually love her in return? (Ok, it is kind of disappointing to think of her locked up in Minas Tirith having Faramir’s babies, but there’s no sequel to confirm that, right?)

Breaking the rules and taking risks can pay off and be good for your soul.  It is time for me to remember that.  It’s time to go a bit wild again.

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My answer was to go and do a burlesque course. I’ve meaning to do it for ages, but I was waiting for arse to stop being so big.

Still, there is nothing like wearing suspenders in a room full of other people (also wearing suspenders) to realise you are all out of your comfort zone together.

Upshot is, I didn’t trip over my heels and land on my face.  Or if I did, I would have looked damn sexy doing it.

‘Smile, ladies, and the audience will forgive you anything.’

So look for ways to channel your inner shield maiden.  Break the routine, try something different, be alive. Have a look at these inspiring websites;

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Rebelle – currently down for maintenance, but worth persevering.

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