I have always been sensitive to people. What started as a natural ability became a heightened coping mechanism and eventually developed into a profession.
“I treated people who had been abused, physically, mentally and spiritually.
People who were in cults, raped, beaten, tortured as children.
People who weren’t wanted as babies.
People who had done terrible things, or who had terrible things done to them.
People driven crazy with pain.
Sick people, dying people.
People with brain injuries, survivors of car accidents, grieving, self harming, suicidal, anorexic, autistic, schizophrenic, bipolar, manically depressed, people.
A bludgeoning torrent of human suffering, and I was up to my elbows in it. Wading through it with them. Helping it release and find peace.
Heavy shit to say the least.
The stakes were always high. There is nothing detached about my work. It’s full immersion from the word go. When I connect with someone, their system downloads whatever trauma they have into me. I am back in time with them, witnessing the trauma as it happened. Feeling their pain in my body.”
From my book, “Maya Noise”
Now a walk down the street is like stumbling through a river of tears,
and hopes and fears,
and bodies laid bare,
and longings unveiled.
So I obviously wasn’t thinking when I walked into the Tango class.
I think I was caught up in the romance of it all.
I loved the music.
I had played a lot of it badly on my accordion.
I loved the hypnotic laser locked connection between the partners.
I loved the explosive poise and the sudden moments of complete stillness.
I loved the idea of the tango.
The lesson went well while we practiced the steps alone.
“Now pair up,” the teacher said
and that is when the wheels fell off.
I am not big on unexpected hugging.
Even handshakes are a considered thing for me.
People think I am standoffish but that’s not it.
I am like a person with highly sensitive hearing talking to someone who is bellowing their most intimate feelings in my face.
I need to be ready, to turn down the volume, so to speak.
When I do my one to one work with people I hold a very still space where I can fully receive all their system wants to reveal to me. I work in the mystery and become as nothing for the duration of our time together. I am led by them.
There is also an explicit agreement between us, an invitation by them to be seen, all of them. They reveal themselves to me.
None of this was present in the tango class. It was one blast of emotional buckshot after the next.
Normally I have good rhythm. I can tap my foot and stay in time.
Not this time.
I couldn’t work my body, my legs didn’t move with my arms, I forgot how to breathe, the waves were too loud —- sadness, yearning, pelvic traumas, rage, loneliness, uterine infections, miscarriages, lost innocence.
I couldn’t hold a still space and be as nothing because I had things to do too!
Like stepping, then stepping again, then stepping to the side, then stepping backward and then, “Change partners.”
Ten lovely women later the class ended and I walked away staggering on the inside. I never went back.
I still have a great appreciation for Tango —- at a distance.
Rather than feeling excluded, the experience made me realise I was involved in a different kind of dance, one I was more suited to.
A dance I have shared with thousands of people over the years as we sashayed our way along the path to consciousness and love and health.
The great Tango of life.