I can't help it... Winter is an emotional time for me... I often get off track and start putting weight back on like I'm a bear preparing for hibernation... However, while dancing itself, RT and even my new instructor Largo are my main sources for my drive to improve... another source has been a constant... My readers. You guys are truly AWESOME and completely INSPIRING to me! I have reached a point where I can't not share... I can't not share the highlights from some of my favorite e-mails. Per the rules... all identifying information has been removed or changed.
Please join me in celebrating and thanking these ladies for being strong beautiful role models in their own rights!!
"Wow - you are so inspirational to me! I've been taking dance lessons for about three years now, and I wish I could say that I've lost weight - but I'm going in the opposite direction and dancing is becoming harder and harder for me. Part of the problem is that I tend to hold my breath - still when you're dragging around [all this weight], it's no surprise that I can't breathe!Right now I'm struggling with the spiral turn - as you mentioned, at the end of some cuban walks. I can't seem to make it all the way around - but I'm trying to practice here at home.Have you succeeded?Well, you probably wrote about the spiral turn a while back and are no doubt an expert at it now. I just wanted to say that I was excited to find your blog, and I'm saving it as a favorite so I can live vicariously through your weight loss and dancing success.""I have to say that I've been thinking a lot lately about what you've accomplished. Last night I went to an informational meeting at the local hospital on gastric bypass surgery. It's not for me - that's for sure - but I've never gotten this desperate before - never to the point where I've even considered it. Pretty scary to be in a room with all of those people who've reached the ends of their ropes - I haven't yet - and I think the reason for that is knowing what you did and how far you've come. I need to continue to read your blog and take that as inspiration. It was really a stroke of good fortune that I happened upon it - because even though I haven't made the right changes in my life yet - you did it, and I hope that means I can do it, too.What about you? Did you get a lot of positive feedback on the magazine article? I took it to my dance studio, and they have it posted on the bulletin board. Everyone is so impressed - and it's just very cool!"
"I just wanted to let you know how much I like your blog.
When I was fourteen, I did one dancing class, and absolutely hated it. I was too clumsy, too tall, too slow, too……. Whatever.
From that time, I have always avoided to do any ballroom dancing, until very recently. Now I am 41, an absolute beginner, but I love love love ballroom dancing, and fully understand why you said that it has changed your life. I can feel the changes creeping into my life already – after only six lessons.
Here in Germany they teach some different dances, for instance now East Coast/West Coast dances, but there are also many similarities. Last night we learned the basic rumba steps, and that went surprisingly well, so today is a good day ;-))
Your blog is in my favourites folder, and I regularly come back to see how you are doing, and learning a lot from your experiences/words.
"I have started to incorporate eating healthy. My
kids are mostly fine with it, my husband is the one who is having most
problem with it but he is adjusting. I'm trying to think of lots of
activities that involve my whole family. I live in Las Vegas NV so we
have been doing alot of hiking on trails in Mt. Charleston and Red Rock
Canyon. My five year old loves it. My two year old loves it also but
she is kind of prone to falling down so she does have a few scrapes.
She does have fun though. You are truly an inspiration to me!
"I found your blog a couple of weeks ago while looking desperately online to find someone I could relate to as I started my journey to become a ballroom dancer! I just started dancing a few months ago here in Nashville.
I too, am starting this journey with a LOT of weight to lose. I'm down 40 pounds from a high last year. I've been heavy my whole life and am just starting to realize that I've always dreamed of being a dancer - but had NEVER allowed myself to even remotely entertain the thought that it was possible. I started out lessons with my husband, thinking it would be nice for us to do together - he cooperated, but it wasn't his thing...but I fell in LOVE. I've been taking individual lessons with my teacher now since mid-September.
Thank you SO much for putting yourself out there online - it has helped me tremendously to see that this can absolutely be a road to a healthier and happier me - because you are doing it so well!"
"I am inspired by your courage to take lessons where the focus is on the body--dancing. I love ice dancing and ballroom dancing, but don't have a sense of musicality, so two or three left feet, plus the body image is in the way.
I always imagine that someday I will take lessons and dance, but am too intimidated to do that with my size.
Thanks for writing your blog."
"Girl, you are an inspiration!
I found your blog yesterday by accident, after having a particularly rough day at my ballroom lesson (he's teaching me new steps & I feel like a bumbling dinosaur), and prior to the lesson having passed on to me the unasked for opinion of a former ballroom dancer who is totally sour on the entire industry.
I was actually thinking of stopping, but your blog made me remember why I started doing this (in May) & how far I've come, on the outside and the inside. Made me more determined to keep negative people out of my life - isn't there always someone ready to rain on a good parade?
Keep dancing, Miss Kitty, and keep on blogging.
P.S.: Your pictures - are gorgeous. You absolutely glow."
I read these, and others like them a lot (all 1,477 of them so far)... and they make me laugh, sometimes shed the occasional tear... and absolutely know that I have to continue... this journey not only means the world to me... but it seems I'm bringing a few folks with me! Hey the more the merrier!
From the bottom of my heart, with the greatest of sincerity... if I could reach through the internet and hug you all I would... THANK YOU!!! You have no idea how inspirational you each have become to me... Always let me know how you're doing... I respond to all e-mails...keep reading... together we can improve ourselves... and above all... HAPPY DANCING and HAPPY LIFE!!!
With Much Appreciation and Love,