As I’ve said before, I’m a little obsessed with personality things. I guess it is because I’ve always felt like I never quite fit in. In the immortal words of James Stockdale, “Who Am I? Why Am I Here?” So I’ve been a seeker. For some part of time, I had locked into something but that has never stopped me from continuing to look and I’ve eventually had to rethink what I thought was once true.
There are things I read about INFP and Enneagram Type 4 that just resonate so clearly with me. There are many, many pages on the internet about both types (trust me, I’ve read most of them) and there are subtle differences between some of them. But there are some general themes and both types do seem to be on a quest to discover themselves. Both types would be people who feel deeply but crave the type of experiences that create these strong emotions. We need to feel! It is what makes us alive. And we continue to seek out things that provide that. I may have stumbled into ballroom or I may have been driven by some unknown force but from the first lesson I was hooked. It was as if this was something I had been missing my whole life. The intensity of the emotions (both positive and negative) that it has awakened in me are things I can never adequately explain.
The darker side of both (more so type 4) is the feeling of something missing. These types tend to see themselves as outsiders who are different from the rest. In part, that is perceived as a good thing. But, there is that nagging little part that wonders why we can’t have what others seem to have. The INFP is slightly different but that type does have a vivid imagination and tends to be overly idealistic in setting up visions of themselves or others. And then, when that idealistic vision conflicts with a harsher reality, it creates sadness and melancholy. Of course, it is also true that INFP’s and Type 4’s are perfectly happy to explore a little melancholy from time to time. It is like emotions of any kind are some kind of drug and we need a hit of each type every now and then.
But, what I struggle with here is whether any of this is truly real. If I feel something is missing, but nothing really is, then it becomes a downward vicious spiral of searching for the missing puzzle piece when the puzzle is already complete. Nothing but frustration on that road.
So, what in the world does this have to do with Ballroom dancing??
I don’t know. Maybe nothing. Maybe a lot.
For me, dancing can truly take me to other worlds. Could be a function of that imagination and/or the depth of feeling. I’ve talked in other posts about the “Tango trance” where the world just melted away and it was just me and my partner. Had a similar experience doing Bachata once and have had other experiences like this. Doesn’t happen a lot. It has to be the right combination of music and the right partner. Mostly, when the steps are just flowing effortlessly from one to the next and we are truly moving as one and when I can really feel what the dance is supposed to feel like.
Its a minor thing, but I’ve realized that Kid T counts ALL THE TIME. I know timing is a weakness of mine, but, when I hear the beat and you count me down, I’ve got a decent shot of staying on time. She never gives me that opportunity. I should probably say something but this just hit me recently. And I think, that while this may seem like a minor thing, it does prevent me from reaching that higher plane. When all you here is slow/quick/quick, you can’t focus as much on the music and the beat and I can’t feel anything except that it is obvious that I’m in a dance studio on a lesson. Yeah, maybe that should be good enough but then it takes something that should be triggering strong emotions and feelings and turns it into a mundane task. Yes, I know this type of repetition is necessary but I need dancing to be more than just work. I’ve got a job and I don’t need a second one. I’m not saying it all has to be puffy clouds but, every now and then, I need to just get beyond the steps and let go and experience the dance and what it makes me feel.
Did that make any sense? That’s kind of vaguely what I think I’m missing although I’m aware that this could just be all in my head. But it might explain why the Friday nights with Hilde have been so much fun (for the most part). Things don’t always flow and we do struggle with who is going to lead but she does bring a lot of passion to her dance and I think that brings it out of me as well. We do Viennese Waltz and, other than having to watch for people around me, I’m basically only really aware of her and how we are moving.
Maybe it is that elusive chemistry thing. I thought we had something after the other Showcases but that might have been just the fact that I was returning to real dancing after a summer full of change and some darkness. Who knows, maybe the unresolved issues with Z are still having an impact. Or, I could be pining for something that isn’t real. I just have this vague feeling that something isn’t clicking between us and that is holding me back just a bit. I think that is why I was so quick to agree to dancing with Sunny. Really, I have no logical reason to do that and this is likely going to be the waste of money Hilde thinks it will. But it is that seeker in me. Looking for that idealized world that probably doesn’t exist.
Long term, I do have to figure out whether this is real or just a fantasy. As others have said better than me, the pro-am relationship in ballroom dancing is extremely complicated. Get the right one and there are no limits to how far you can go. But getting the right one is difficult and even knowing if you have something good isn’t always easy.
OK, just had to get that out of the way. Got to clear this stuff out of my head from time to time. No matter what the situation is, I’ve got four weeks to get ready for Showcase and it won’t work if I’m inside my head wondering if there is a better instructor out there somewhere for me.