So I normally do lessons from my father. Forgive some latitude as I take it back a generation to my grandfather, Pete senior.
Around a decade ago I had a college social to attend with an out of town significant other. That out of town was Bloomsburg which is where my grandparents lived. Being a starving college kid there were few things better than a home cooked meal from your grandmother so I took the time to go see them for lunch.
While we sat there and I tried to awkwardly explain a college track team social as if it was a high school dance and not a bunch of college kids getting dressed up to drink(which I realize now they likely saw right through) my grandfather seemed relatively uninterested in the story.
But then he leaned over the table and with a stern finger pointed at me said, “whatever you do…”
At this point there’s a number of ways this can go not one of my predictions was right though.
…”just dance. Make sure you dance because if you don’t dance you’re no one.”
Now my grandfather ran his own junkyard his entire life. Like many of his generation a tougher man than I can ever hope to be.
After I brought my jaw up from the floor and listened to him and my gram debate dancing today vs dancing now his attention came back to me.
“Your girl wants you to dance. She wants you to be part of something. If you don’t dance you’re nothing.”
This talk has always stuck with me. And I wish I could say at that moment the light bulb went off and I never sat out another dance the rest of my life. But I’ve sat out a number of dances in my life, a number of experiences, all because I was afraid to be a fool. Worried about how I’d look to others.
The older I’ve got, the more mistakes I’ve made, the wiser I’ve become.
But I understand those words now in my life more than ever. Be in the moment. Be part of life. Be something.
And don’t forget to dance.