Hello From the Floor: Dancing with a Brain Injury

Dancing feels about as necessary as breathing to me. My first love was lyrical jazz, then Gaga movement language, and finally - Brazilian zouk partner dance. Each style has enough structure to give my brain a scaffolding of stability, while inviting creative flow and play in a way that nourishes both my spirit and this crazy human body.

On my best days, you can find me gliding and flowing and spinning like water across the dance floor . I feel a profound sense of safety and celebration and ease in this body that has gone through unimaginable trauma. But just as likely, I’m somewhere on the floor in a collapsed mess.

I was 16 when I first fell down for no apparent reason. It felt like every muscle in my body suddenly turned to mush, including those for breathing and speaking. That first episode lasted maybe 30 seconds. Doctors told me I was simply “doing too much” and prescribed rest and adrenal support. But the falling continued, increasing in frequency and...

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