This lovely group of ladies inspired me and reminded me that we are all "fearfully and wonderfully made." Psalm 139:14
Every week I saw them, swaying their hips, not quite in unison, in the humidity of the Georgia springtime. Every week, I watched them: a menagerie of shapes and sizes laughing as the music played. Every week, I longed to join them- those belly dancers.
They were gathered in an empty corner of a strip mall parking lot every Monday night. For those several weeks, I would hope to get "stuck" at the light as I drove past just so I could watch and wish. Wishing not only to join them, but to be so free and comfortable in my own body that I would sway, swish and sweat without reservation as these women did, these fearless warriors. For they were at war, so to speak- against the unrealistic myths that women, all of us, have about what the perfect body should look like. These women were not "perfect" by magazine standards, but they were comfortable in their own skin. They were comfortable enough to be out there, unashamed and that alone made them beautiful.
As the season wore on, they continued to gather and dance; some of them began to wear the glittering gold chains around their belly and some of them had begun to wear the sheer scarves of a professional belly dancer. I guessed they had gained confidence in their dance and in themselves.
One day as I passed they were gone. I wondered if the class had come to an end? I hoped instead (and still do) that these lovely women had moved indoors and were swaying and sweating somewhere new- hopefully in front of a glass window, unashamed.