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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A New Way to Learn

It's been a whirlwind month of writing, traveling, dancing, auditioning, nursing sore muscles and reading like crazy.
This is a strange time in my life--a time I never thought I'd experience. In many ways, my life is restricted by my remote, isolated, constantly snowy location on old Native American burial grounds (The Shining, anyone?) but in other ways, I'm freer than I've ever been. For the first time, I am not a formal student. For the first time, I have moderately consistent work that is mobile. For the first time I have no concrete plans and virtually endless potential pathways stretched out before me.
All talk of dance jobs and my frustration in that arena aside, I think I've grown more in these first months of 2011 than I did in my entire four years of college. Stepping outside of the world of academics, the cut-throat NYC dance scene, the by-the-skin-of-your-teeth city lifestyle helped me learn how to learn again, if that makes any sense.
 Instead of focusing on perfection in each dance class, I aim to discover something new about movement, about the way my own body cuts through space.
Instead of struggling through assigned essays and novels, I spend voluntary hours poring over books in the exhaustive religious studies section of the Houghton library. Also I read silly historical fiction and crime novels, because I can.
Graham's sheer enthusiasm for the subjects he's studying (philosophy and theology) make me excited about them too. However, unlike Graham who can't fall asleep until he's read passages from his "Metaphysics, Morality and Mind" textbook, I have my limits. :-) Last weekend my father-in-law and I actually had to place a moratorium on any further discussions of the Euthyphro dilemma. At the end of that car ride I turned to Graham and quoted one of my favorite John Green books, An Abundance of Katherines: "You are such a geek. And that's coming from an overweight 'Star Trek' fan who scored a five on the AP Calculus test. So you know your condition is grave."

So basically, I'm happy. As much as I miss New York City, I'm glad we moved. There are a hundred things I would change about my life, but none of them are important and none of them would bring me any greater joy.