Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Flashes of Confidence

This past Saturday was my local group's fourth anniversary party. The theme was one I'd been pushing for months. A harem party. More eloquently named Arabian Nights. I'm sure my reason for this choice is obvious. I'm a belly dancer. I love any excuse to wear a costume and dance.

I have been dancing for about 4 years now. I am not as good as I could be. I don't practice like I should, but I don't think I'm terrible and I enjoy it. I can't say that I would ever perform for a vanilla audience. I've grown comfortable performing for my kink community because of how kink embraces all body types. Something in me feels I'd be mocked anywhere else. I mean, how dare big women show their bellies, right?

But then, I suppose I don't even do that completely. I maintain that high-waisted look reminiscent of 1940's two-piece swimsuits. I hate the way my belly creases at my navel, so I try my hardest to hide that fact with my costuming. I layer and pin, in hopes that everything will stay at a nice straight line, but sometimes the belt pulls it down and my pudge sticks out over the waistline. This makes me sad.

The Arabian Nights party was my latest performance. I had been stressing all week, going through a number of music choices, trying to find one I could improv to without fucking up, finally settling on Tahtil Shibbak by Fatme Serhan. Peach also performed, doing a lovely tribal piece she'd learned in her classes to her own zil music. I envy her ability to play the finger cymbals and dance at the same time. I have my own set of zils, but I can't even manage to play them while sitting down, let alone moving at the same time. I suppose that will come in time. Maybe.

I will say that I feel the best about how this performance went than any other performance I've done. My skirt didn't drop an inch. It stayed in place a few inches above my navel. I didn't falter overmuch in my dancing. I don't feel that my arms were flailing all over the place as they are wont to do. Perhaps it was that the party was designed to showcase my art. Perhaps it was that I finally had a large space to travel around, unlike the cramped spaces I'd danced before. Perhaps it was the fact that I had a large(ish) audience, but I didn't have to literally dance on top of them from lack of space. But for once, after it was over, I wasn't dwelling on all of the flaws I'd perceived in it. It was a wonderful feeling.

Afterward, one of the other party goers came up to me and told me that they loved that I danced with such confidence.

My response?

"That's funny, because I don't have any."

Which is true. My self-esteem is pretty horrible when I think about it. I have fleeting instances of confidence, but only in things in which I possess a reasonable amount of skill. I would say the only thing I'm truly confident about is my fiction writing.  Everything else is delusions of grandeur quickly
replaced by self-doubt.

This shit right here. I hate it. 
The weekend was fraught with self-doubt. I hesitated to wear a bedlah because of all the blemishes on my back. I hesitate to play in public for the same reason. I was afraid my belt would pull my skirt down and show off the hated part of my stomach. I felt bad about my list of nos when it comes to play because when said back to me, it sounds like a lot. Every single meal I ordered that weekend seemed seemed to be designed to trigger all of my food neuroses. I kept beating myself up over things I had said, in fear that I had upset/annoyed my play partners.
And this too. Stay up, dammit!

At face value, it would seem that the image I present to the world is seemingly unimportant. I'm short and chubby. I have a bad complexion but I never wear makeup. I have 4 hairstyles. Down, ponytail, braid, and braided knot. But I would say that how I am perceived paradoxically one of the things I focus on the most. It is the root of my disorder. I just simply place higher priority on aspects other than physical appearance. Intelligence, in particular.

Most of the goodies from the
raffle prize. A few went to Peach
and Kitty
But for that one brief moment, I wasn't plagued by all the demons constantly gnawing at the back of my brain. I actually felt good about myself and my dancing.

Winning the goodie bag raffle didn't hurt either.

Overall, it was a good night. Even if I did have dirty dungeon feet.

Wicked Wednesday... a place to be wickedly sexy or sexily wicked


  1. I think you are so brave to dance in front of people... I would never be able to do it!

    Rebel xox

    1. I'm half amazed I manage to do it at all. I have always hated talking in front of a crowd. Dancing is easier, somehow. Less intimidating.