Want to Soothe Your Soul? Dance in the Kitchen

My kitchen is one of crumbs and clutter somedays and somedays it’s pristinely kept. Somedays delicious aromas waft about when you come in the door and somedays all you can smell is the grease from french fries because it’s carry-out night. Every day though, every day you will hear music. And every day there is dancing in our kitchen. 

Dancing in the kitchen brings my family and friends together, makes us laugh and brings lightness when the dark comes knocking.  Dancing in the kitchen soothes my soul. Whether it’s rap, alternative, classic rock, R&B, broadway or Frank – the box step, electric slide, backin’ dat ass up, twerking or headbopping – All dancing is always welcome.

It’s early evening on a cold, snowy, monotonous day in February.  Taking a chance on a new chicken recipe, I chop and mince while listening to an old song from Justin and Jay Z about suits and ties and make up sex. And I’m dancing in ‘the square.’ An 8×8 area bordered by counters, cabinets and the peninsula that houses my cooktop on one side and on the other, a counter where my kiddos eat, my girlfriends drink wine and my family noshes on buffet style holiday dinners.

Dancing in the kitchen brings joy.

On another day, Marvin Gaye sings Let’s Get It On, I’m two glasses of red wine in and Hubs comes down the stairs, swats my tush and we sway a few times around the square. I’d like a little more ass grab as we sing and sway and laugh but Dog jumps her paws on us and she needs to go out.

Dancing in the kitchen brings laughter.

Green Day screams out next, making me hop and jump. Hubs leaves to feed Dog – it’s not his jam.  I dance alone, wiping dishes, then counters and get the kitchen/dance hall ready for the the next morning.

Dancing in the kitchen brings freedom.

Our kitchen venue hosted hundreds of impromptu solo, family and couple’s dance parties throughout the 22 years we’ve lived in it.

I danced with my firstborn to quiet her infant squeals. My Dad and I would dance the modified tango (which was pathetically curtailed due to the size of the floor) on his birthday. I taught my then seven year old son how to box step here, although ten years later, he denies it ever happened. My mom would dance and shake to her Louis Prima or Bruno Mars when she would come visit and make linguine and clam sauce. 

The first time I danced after my mom died, Bruce Springsteen was graveling through the speakers. A month into grieving, “Out in the Street,” a feel good, idealistic classic from Springsteen’s The River filled the square and I couldn’t help but bop my head. 

Put on your best dress baby, and darlin fix your hair up right….

The song exudes a good time and a sense of freedom.

When I’m out on the street, I walk the way I wanna walk….

Girl strolls through the kitchen languidly, a huge Springsteen fan like Hubs, and starts bopping and shoulder shimmying and we both let loose, turn up the volume, let go and dance. And we dance and we quietly, gracefully share grief and joy, and bask in some lightness.

When I’m out in the street girl…Well I never feel alone…..in the crowd, I feel at home

When I’m out on the street, I just feel alright

Dancing in the kitchen heals. It soothes the soul.

It moves my body, gets the blood flowing, sends happy signals to my brain and feels so good. And who doesn’t want to feel good? Who doesn’t want to heal? Who doesn’t want some soul soothing?

Do you dance in your kitchen? When do you do it? When you are sad, happy, excited? Does dancing in the kitchen soothe your soul?  Let me know in the comments below.

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