Lawson writes . . . sharing thoughts and memories

September 13, 2010

Tap Dancing

Filed under: Uncategorized — lawsonjolly @ 5:00 am

I grew up with a sister who was involved with singing, ballet, and tap dancing.  I would go to all the recitals, and most of her lessons.  I enjoyed watching it all.  I especially was aware of the many cute girls!

During those years, I played the accordion for shows when my sister would sing and dance.  If you have read my blogs regularly, you know the story. (“Ain’t She Sweet, But for some reason, I thought that was not enough!  I wanted to tap dance!

Taking lessons to tap dance is ok for a boy . . . but I was 16 years old!  Why would I want to start at that age?  Frankly, I don’t know.  Perhaps it was those pretty girls!  Besides, I was the only boy taking lessons! Great odds!

Imagine a 16-year-old beginning something like tap dance lessons.  I recall the early lessons.  It was not a total beginners’ class — that was for those younger — like “under ten.”  I was in the class with the “big girls!”  I am sure that many of them looked forward to the lessons for the comedy side show.  I certainly provided one!

You should have heard me with those tap shoes!  I could slap them so hard that the right foot scared the left!  When it came to the soft shoe, I  sounded like I had iron skillets attached to my feet!  And the brush step, it sounded like a putty scraper on concrete!  I really made my own music!

Why, oh, why would someone do this?  But, on the other hand, why not?  All of us  should be open to try something new!  We never know some possibilities until we try.

Remember Grandma Moses?  Anna May Robertson became known world-wide as “Grandma Moses” who painted folk art that is exclaimed around the world.  Did you know that she did not start that successful career until she was in her seventies?  She had made her living in embroidery, but had to quit because of arthritis.

Until she died in 1961 at the age of 101 years, she painted!  Her first exhibition was not until she was 78 years old, and the exhibit was held in a local drug store in her home town.

It behooves me to consider the possibility of doing something new always!  Look at Noah; he was almost 600 years old when he built the ark.  It was something new for him!  He had never built a boat before!

When we attempt something new, risk is involved.  We may fail.  But trying is important.  I believe it is a healthy quality of life to attempt something new!  Don’t worry about whether you will be successful.  Just attempt that which you believe you would like to do.  It is much like the prospector looking for gold.  He does not know if he will be successful, but he will never know unless he tries.

And, don’t worry about what others may say.  They laughed at Noah.  Those girls laughed at me.  And my male peers?  Imagine how some of my fellow ball players reacted when they knew I was taking lessons to learn to tap dance!  I would have never told them, of course, about taking ballet lessons and wearing a leotard! (I did not — absolutely not — I drew the line there!)

Have you ever considered attempting to do something you believe you would like to do, but are scared to try?  Concerned what others might say of someone your age doing such?  Come on, life is short.  Try it!  You might succeed . . . and think of the joy.  And if you discover, as I did about tap dancing, that it is not your “thing,” you will be forever happy you tried.  Don’t look back with regrets, and say, “I wish I had tried to  . . . .”

Will I take my own advice at my age?  Why not?  It is never too late to attempt so many things!

On the spiritual side, missionary William Carey had as his motto: “Expect great things from God.  Attempt great things for God.”  He believed that God could do so many unexpected things in his life if he was willing to attempt new things.

Don’t live your life never knowing some of the wonderful things you can accomplish.

“The sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.”  (Proverbs 13:4)  “For I know the plans I have for you . . . plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  (Jeremiah 29:11)



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