I danced naked on the sidewalk. Ran circles around my naked daughter, Franki.
Let’s back up a little….
We’d just finished swimming and had come inside to dry off. I stripped my bathing suit, wrapping a towel around me. Franki, bottoms off, top on, said she was cold, so I suggested she take her wet top off and wrap a towel around her as I had.
As we walked toward our front porch to hang our suits up to dry, she threw her towel and exclaimed, “Let’s have a naked dance party”!!
I laughed and answered, “Sure, go ahead”! (As in, "You can if you want to, but I'm not doing that.")
Spontaneous dance parties aren't unheard of around here but me dancing naked is.
This gal was determined to get that towel off of me and get me dancing.
“Come on, mama...let’s do it!!!!”, she excitedly exclaimed.
No neighbors within sight. No sound of vehicles coming up our long gravel driveway; six-foot-high ornamental grasses surrounding me - offering cover, and yet, I hesitated as my eyes darted left, then right and off into the distance.
“Come over here, mama. It's ok", said my 7 year-old in a very soothing tone as she stood several feet away from me.
I paused, feeling timid about her request. She was asking me to take my towel off, walk down the stairs of our front porch to the middle of our sidewalk (which seemed like it was miles away), bare my nakedness…and dance.
With flip-flops on.
I was being asked to leave the security of my towel on the chair to expose myself.
"Leave the towel?", I asked.
"C'mon, mama. It'll be fun!"
Self-consciousness washed over me.
The desire to do it and the hesitation - at odds with each other.
“Can I do this?”, I wondered, as I vacillated from giddy at the idea of it to feeling uncomfortable and uneasy.
It’s not unusual for Franki to walk around the house naked. For me? Not so much. Although I have sat topless at our kitchen table, eating lunch with her. But that’s a whole other story….;)
She's hasn’t yet become so conscious of self, or her body.
She hasn’t formed a set of beliefs that limit her experience in the way I have.
She hasn’t heard criticism from others and no harsh voice of her own has taken residence inside her head.
In that moment, I recognized the metaphor.
The towel I was being beckoned to shed - a symbol of my limiting beliefs, old thoughts I’ve held and carried about myself, the concerns about judgment, the self-consciousness of being seen – really seen in the expression of who I am.
Franki – representing freedom, unapologetic expression and the life and desires I’m reaching for – calling me out from the towel I’ve wrapped around me.
I let go.
I took that towel off and threw it...following Franki’s lead to dance naked on the sidewalk wearing only the flip-flops on my feet.
Your desires will cause you to expand.
Your desires will have you stretching beyond your current beliefs about yourself, your abilities and the possibilities that lay before you.
When you’re asked to take that towel off - what will you do?
Hold the towel and wrap it more tightly around you?
Perhaps loosen it - if only a little?
Or, will you take that towel off completely and go dance naked on the sidewalk?
Life is filled with moments where you can make new decisions about who you are.
You’re going to find yourself throwing that towel off only to find another towel wrapped tightly around you.
Don’t let it stop you.
Choose to dance naked and let the towel go.
My promise to you: No gimmicks. No bullshit. No upsells.