I've mentioned it before, but haven't extolled on this.
I used to be a Bellydancer. I loved it. I was good at it. I dropped pounds, I was looking pretty good, and felt wonderful. If you've ever wanted to Bellydance but thought you didn't have the body for it, let me dispel that myth. I felt the same way and was scared to start lessons. I was told by the teacher, as well as many of the higher up students that the type of men (usually middle-eastern) that typically watch belly dancers like a little flesh on the dancer. I was still skeptical.
The more I got into it, the more I loved it. Chris must have thought I was looking good too because it wasn't too long after I lost weight that I got pregnant with Nicole! Normally you can continue to bellydance even while pregnant but I only danced through like my fourth month due to problems I was beginning to experience.
Sidenote here... the troupe I was taking lessons from and wanted so desperately to be a part of were, and still are regular performers at our Renaissance Festival in Waxahachie, ( Scarborough Faire). On Mothers Day Weekend, of May 1998 I got my wish and got to be one of the dancers at Scarborough Faire. Due to my blossoming figure I had to borrow one of my friends costumes who was a bit bustier than I , and a smidgen bigger in the waist. I loved it. That was one of the highlights of my life. That wasn't the only performance I had done though, and the last time I performed was 3 mos after Nicole was born.
As with many hobbies that one may start I had to quit for financial reasons. If I hadn't been diagnosed with the neuropathy I would have gotten back into it, but since bellydancers generally dance barefoot I can't do it anymore with the foot drop.
Lastnight on YouTube I came across a video just recently posted of the professional group of the troupe I was with performing here in Dallas. The troupe I was so proud to be a part of was
Isis and the Stardancers. The professional dancers of this troupe are called the Wings of Isis , and I found this video of them. Isis doesn't perform as much as she used to but while watching the video I was very happy to see her. She comes out aobut mid-video alone in a black costume with a red veil. She is the one with the flaming red hair. Every year when we go to the Renaissance festival I go see the show to see if there are any dancers there that I still know. Every year I find one or two and am so happy to see old friends.
Please shut my music off and enjoy this video:
I do have a few pictures from when I danced and I will try to find them and post them soon.
So if you have ever had the urge to bellydance, thinking it might be cool, go for it, I highly reccomend it. I will also say that if I can find a studio near us that I like, as we live too far from Isis anymore, I will gladly enroll Nicole. Bellydancing IS NOT stripping and it is a very beautiful thing. I will say that a few people in my family thought it was stupid and mocked me. Others saw me dance and were awed, not by me but by the whole idea of it and the show they watched.
So I say go ahead and shimmy a bit, you might be surprised;)