As I’ve been losing weight, a lot of people have asked me what the turning point was. When did I know that this whole ballroom thing was going to be the key to weight loss? Those that know me well know I’ve been entrenched in the battle of the bulge since I was 9 years old. So, what is it about now that has made it happen? Why now after trying nearly every diet and gym was this "it"? Well I remember the moment well, and this story has never really been told... It's THE big "light bulb moment" as Oprah would say...
What most people don’t know is that way back while I was still trying to figure out what ballroom was all about, I auditioned for “The Biggest Loser.” I stood and waited for five or six hours with other hopefuls outside the Rock Bottom Grill (I just love that they had people, not in the best place in their lives, show up to “Rock Bottom”). As you may know, anytime you audition for anything you have to psych yourself up, well after hours of talking myself into really wanting to make it on the show, and change my life forever, I also started to think “If I don’t get this, I can continue dancing.” My audition was sunk the moment that thought crossed my mind.
As I was interviewed "I can continue dancing" kept running little laps around my mind, and I appeared to be less than enthusiastic about being on this TV show. When it was done the TV show producer handling interviews told me “You’re not what we’re looking for, you’re too thin.” I was instantly shocked and dismayed... How could I not be what they were looking for?? What was it, was I too big a loser, or not big enough? Thin… was she kidding? I was tipping the scale at a number that might make a small horse blush! Suddenly, on the way home from what could have been really devastating, my light bulb moment struck.
I was listening to the radio and I don't remember the song, but I do remember thinking that it could make a really fun Cha-Cha... That was it, that tiny moment when I turned an event that would have ordinarily sent me running for the nearest pint of Ben & Jerry’s into a mental debate over my fledgling dance steps that made (and makes) this all work. It hasn’t been perfect, but now, nine times out of ten I’m thinking of dance during times of stress instead of ice-cream. At work, if I’m having a bad day I no longer run for the vending machine, instead I entertain my co-workers with a lively Bachata. At home I step outside with my music player and work out a Swing or Salsa. Nothing has ever been able to take my mind of the rotten things that can happen like ballroom.