Dancing Through The Pain

Now you might think the title is metaphorical but no. I mean literally…but also get ready for some real stuff and life lessons! Wooh!

 

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le me Swing Dancing 🙂 ( photo cred: Swing Bridge Dance Club )

 

Something you all know about me at this point: I’m a huge lover of Swing Dance.  (Being deprived of it since I’ve moved is so hard)

BUT

Something you may or may not know about me is this: I have chronic pain in my legs (due to uneven arches in my feet.) This chronic pain affects me daily. Some days are worse than others but usually after a full day of running around doing errands and working I am out for the count and it hurts to walk or move.

 

 

Put chronic pain and Swing together and you get an interesting way of making said chronic pain worse. Yet I do it and keep doing it anyways.

 

Why?

 

Because I love it too much to stop. Now that might sound like a silly excuse but its the truth.

 

Why Swing Dance?

Swing Dance is something I did weekly before moving (I still dance around my apartment lots too. Not the same but hey I’m still groovin’ )  Not only was it fun but it really improved my mood but, for the first time in a long time, I REALLY looked forward to a new week ahead of me cause I always kicked off the week with dance.

Fun fact: Dance or Movement Therapy has been used for many centuries to improve the mental and physical well- being of a person. Since dancing is an art, it increases self-expression and helps people connect with themselves and others. Dancing is a form of art that offers a way to explore psychological roots to overcome certain illnesses such as depression. Research have shown that dancing provide benefits that can help minimize depression’s effects.

As well as it being fun there are actually a lot of health benefits of it. Swing Dancing is a fun way to work out without it really feeling like a workout in the moment. Dancing also makes you happier. Not just in the moment but also in the long run.

I’ve taken many kinds of dance over the last 4-5 years and it really does make you happier! and if I’m having a bad day I put on one of my favorite songs at top volume and just sing and dance away like no one is watching. (usually no one is haha)

Something else that Swing Dance has done for me personally is make me a little more social and confident. – I’m an introverted little human who much prefers sitting in a corner and waiting till someone approaches me and starts talking to me as opposed to my approaching them… but doing Swing Dance totally turned that around for me?

How?

Simple- Swing Dance is a very fun, outgoing, and social type of dance where, whether you are a lead or a follow, guy or girl, if you wanna dance you get your butt off that chair and go up to someone and ask them to dance.

For the first while when I first started Swing Dancing I was like ‘nuh- uh no way. Nope. I’m gonna sit here and wait for someone to ask me to dance.‘ but eventually I started going up to people and asking them to dance!

Now this might sound like a funny thing to discuss but here is the thing. If you are a introverted little human (as mentioned before) you would know that this is a scary thing! But in terms of Swing Dancing I now have NO problem (or almost no problem) walking up to someone and asking them to dance.

Where did the chronic pain come from? What can you do to relieve your pain?

As I stated above, my chronic pain affects my every day life as it is a reoccurring pain in my legs. It caused by uneven arches in my feet and when I went to go get it figured out I found out my one leg is carrying about 70% (cant remember exactly) of my body weight when I stand as opposed to having it distributed evenly. (So you can see there the pain comes from)

Essentially my pain relief comes with doing some stretches for my legs and feet as well as just not walking around and putting my feet up when I can. Other than that there isn’t much to be done.

Why do you dance if it hurts?

I keep doing dance because its honestly something I love and am passionate about. Swing Dance has helped me become more confident in myself and has also made me happier – as well as that I’ve gotten to know some amazing people who I now can call my friends.

 “Whats your point in telling me this, Adriana?” – well. Let me tie this all together here.

Basically my point is no matter what, do what you want to do or have dreamed of doing.

Don’t let anything hold you back whether it be mental or physical.

If there is something you truly love and are passionate about you will find a way to do it. For me that love and passion is swing dance.

For you it might be dance as well.

Or music.

Or painting.

No matter what it is, you can do it. If you just have faith in yourself and find the determination to reach for your dreams.

Achieve your goals.

If you set your mind to it you can do anything no matter what ‘limitations’ people tell you you have.

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What Jessica Jones Can Teach Us About Abusive Relationships

Abusive relationships are a very real and very horrible problem in our society….Here is what Marvel’s Jessica Jones does to shine a light on this fact.

 

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So I’ve recently watched the TV show Jessica Jones and as I made my way through the show, I started to notice something about the antagonist of the show (played by actor David Tennant) I’ve seen signs on how the antagonist of the show, Kilgrave, though he has super powers, is actually an abuser.

 

Here is what I’ve noticed: In terms of abuse it seems her abusers approach was that of emotional abuse.

What is emotional abuse? It involves a regular pattern of verbal offense, threatening, bullying, and constant criticism, as well as more subtle tactics like intimidation, shaming and manipulation. Emotional abuse is used to control and subjugate the other person, and quite often it occurs because the abuser has childhood wounds and insecurities they haven’t dealt with — perhaps as a result of being abused themselves.

Yes, he has mind controlling powers but the way we have seen them being used, especially on this one character (and the side effects it all had on Jessica Jones) we have seen how he uses it to abuse and control people.

 

  • He is controlling in the sense of always needing to know where she is going, what she is going to be doing, taking her phone and making sure (by making threats he goes through with) she is back within certain time frames.

 

  • Her abuser also plays the victim. (common trait in most abusers) That the actual victim of the abuser is making them do things or something else made them do it. Like things are his victims fault. an example was a conversation in Episode 7 that Jones has with her abuser. (its a little later in the post) There was a time where he would make Jessica Jones hurt herself then make himself save her, pretending to protect her and be the hero or he would make statements such as: “You never appreciate anything I do for you.” making himself the victim and turning it around on Jones herself. Making her think he wasn’t doing anything wrong.

 

  • After her leaving him and getting out of his control, Kilgrave is dead set on finding her and has developed stalker like behaviors (which he probably had before to some extent). Taking photos of her, having others take photos of her and follow her (etc.) Which leads into my last point. Abusers isolate the victim of the abuse. In the scene I’m gonna share in a moment you see this play out in terms of the fact that her abuser is trying to isolate her from everyone she knows. (In this case, killing people close to her doesn’t stop this guy but this is a TV show and a super villain we are talking about in this sense.) In return he is telling her things, professing feelings for her and in result trying to make sure she is isolated and only hearing his words and his opinions.

*spoilers following as I am going to discuss the conversation in this specific scene*

Kilgrave: “I will admit to keeping eyes on you. Spies are easy to come by for me.”

Jones: “Do whatever you are going to do to me, but let them go.” (There is a hostage scene taking place here as Kilgrave is using his powers to hold a whole room of people hostage)

Kilgrave: “Well I have to protect myself so…”

Jones: “Then control me, not them.”

Kilgrave: “I have absolutely no intention of controlling you. I want you to act on your own accord.”

She (Jones) asks: “Act how? Suicide? Is that why you’ve been torturing me?”

Kilgrave, her abuser, then states: “*chuckles* Oh my God, Jessica, I knew you were insecure. That’s just sad. I’m not torturing you. Why would I? I love you.

 

The scene continues and Jones calls her abuser out on his actions calling them a ‘demented declaration of love.’ and how he ruined her life in this act. She couldn’t be any closer to the truth.

Her abuser then says he was trying to make her see “That I’m the only one who matches you… Who challenges you… Who’ll do anything for you.” – In any other case this might almost sound romantic because who doesn’t want to be with someone who will do anything for you or challenges you for the better? But as you can see its not romantic. Not in this sense. Not when he is stalking her, killing her friends and family (he killed a young man who claimed to love Jessica), and becoming obsessive….Trying to get her back.

He then becomes angry (he’s very short fused.) when someones cell phone rings and it interrupts his professing ‘eternal love’

 

 

 

Now sure, no one has superpowers either so this whole abusive situation might be over-dramatized for the show but I feel Marvel was clever in this sense. They took a mind controlling super villain and used him and his abilities to shine a light on abuse. What that looks like and how it might appear to the victim as well. You don’t have to have powers to control or harm someone. If you did this wouldn’t be a real problem, would it? But despite the fact that this character has powers it doesn’t change the fact that he is an abuser and I think Marvel did a really good job in conveying that and not portraying an antagonists actions as okay or somewhat acceptable as most media might convey things.