Adapting to Change…Dance

Dance…an interesting topic. When I was a child and all the way through the years, dancing was forbidden by my parents and by my church. It would lead to sexual promiscuity, don’t you know?! When we had dancing at school, my mother wrote a note excusing me. Even barn dancing was forbidden. I didn’t object, I was an obedient child. I accepted what I was taught.

When we purchased a television set, in the 50’s, I loved to watch dancing! Any kind of dancing. I think I would have been a good dancer!

Here’s an interesting note. I attended a large high school during my sophomore year. One of the most popular senior boys was the brother of a very good friend of mine. Their family attended the Nazarene Church. They didn’t dance either. In the spring Jim was voted in as King of the senior class. This was a big deal because the coronation of the king and queen was a big deal and they led the class in the dance that evening. Everyone knew Jim didn’t dance but he was so popular and  well liked that he was voted in as King! An exception was made just for him. The first runner-up of the attendants danced with the new queen. No one made fun of him or resented him. Everyone respected him for living up to his convictions. After college and seminary Jim became a pastor and later a General Superintendent of the Nazarene Church!

Back to me…I wrote in another post about my one experience of dancing that same year. Always after a home football game  there was a school party, meaning there was a dance. I never went to them…except once. I coaxed my parents into letting me go to a school party after a very important football game. My parents finally agreed I could go to the party after the game but my dad would pick me up at 10:00 PM. No later and I was to be outside when he drove up. I can’t remember if we won or lost the game.  During the dance I stood off to one side, in the shadows, and watched. Then all of a sudden they were dancing the Bunny Hop! Oh, I loved the Bunny Hop! What could be wrong with dancing a line dance, the Bunny Hop? My friends all joined in and encouraged me to join in too. I couldn’t resist. It was so fun! Afterwards I  returned to stand in the shadows. Suddenly my name was announced over the loud speaker! I was told to go to the announcer platform.  What? Who…me? Why? Oh no, what had I done? Now everyone knew I was at a dance! My reputation was ruined! I slowly walked up to the platform. I still didn’t know why. But when I got there, my wallet was held out to me. It had been in my pocket. While dancing the Bunny Hop it must have fallen out. Someone found it and being an honest person, turned it in.

After my sophomore year I attended a Christian high school in South Dakota. Instead of dances they had banquets. Everyone dressed up in their very best formal wear. It was a big deal with dinner and a great program. I used to have a picture of me, from one year in a formal dress, with my date, but I can’t find it now. By the way, I still have that formal dress tucked away in my cedar chest!

When my daughters were small many of their friends were in ballet classes. It looked so fun. I wondered what would be wrong with letting my daughters be free to dance and twirl around to music. But I couldn’t bring myself to allow them to.

253877_2124314794341_595689_nWhen my granddaughters were small their mothers, my daughter and daughters-in-law, enrolled them in ballet classes. I’m so glad they did. Little girls love to twirl and skip and dance. This is Maddie.

Haleigh danceAs they’ve grown, some have kept it up. They love expressing themselves in dance. This is Haleigh.

I have always loved watching dancing on television and in some movies. I love watching a waltz! It’s so beautiful! I love watching ballet dancing. I think I would have been a good dancer.

Now…today…dancing is no longer frowned upon by some folks, even some pastors, in my denomination.  Oh my goodness…! Really?

The first time I realized this was when I was viewing pictures of a wedding of the son of a friend. The mother of this young man was the daughter of one of my former pastor’s. There was dancing at the reception. I saw my friend dance with her son, the groom! I was quite surprised! Then, oh my goodness! My former pastor’s wife, grandmother of the groom, danced with her grandson, the groom! I couldn’t believe it!!!

Last summer my pastor’s daughter was married. The reception was held in a big hall, not our church fellowship hall. I suspected something was changing… Yes! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANot only was there dancing…my pastor was dancing! Oh my goodness! It was actually beautiful and sweet.

Father of the bride dancing with his daughter.


Then he danced with his wife! It was so sweet!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMy son dancing with his wife! I was enjoying watching it all.

Then it was announced for sons to dance with their mothers…! Oh oh…Rob was looking at me! Oh, I don’t know how to dance. I’ve never danced in my life. I can’t. Rob asked why Receptionnot. He said it’s easy. Just sway with the music…  He stood up and waited… So there you have it…my first time to dance and it was with my son!

I may never dance again…I don’t know. But I fulfilled a secret, life-long desire! And I wasn’t condemned for doing it!

Adapting to change is hard…it’s also fulfilling!


About allinadayofme

I can't believe I'm in old age! I'm now in my eighties! I'm a child of God, wife to one, mother to five, grandmother to 15 plus two granddaughters-in-law! I'm a great-grandma now! I'm a sister, aunt, cousin, friend and neighbor. I'm a housewife and former ESL tutor. I love reading and writing. I've just retired from writing and editing a newsletter, Prime Time News, for seniors. I love genealogy, traveling, birds and animals, blogging and taking pictures.
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7 Responses to Adapting to Change…Dance

  1. Twila Zastrow says:

    Anita I have enjoyed these last 2 post of yours; I think the dancing and movies was great. Sounds like we were raised exactly alike. Funny how we wanted to please our folks. Don’t think the kids now would care. Keep up the good work; I’m enjoying.


    • I guess it was our generation. I’m glad you’re enjoying reading them. 🙂


      • Dolores Coston says:

        Anita, I enjoyed your post about dancing. I, too, was raised not to dance. Believing it would lead to sexual sin. When I became a parent I began reading the passages of scripture regarding dancing. I believe we will “dance” in heaven. But, it may be different than what we know as dancing here on earth. Who knows? Yes, our girls have had dance classes through a local church who offered “worship ballet” also known as interpretive dance. Our daughters have performed at the Singing Christmas Tree and The Passion Play. They were beautiful acts of worship.
        I would give just about anything to be able to dance with my husband! I look forward to dancing with him in heaven!

        Thanks for your good comment, Dee. I’ve seen your girls dance with the interpretive dancers and it is beautiful! I’m sure you would love to dance with your husband, Tim. Most of my readers don’t know he’s confined to a wheel chair. I’m sure you two will some day be dancing, in heaven, in praise to our Heavenly Father.


  2. SelahBeth says:

    My dad is a FM pastor, but I think I came along after the restrictions on dancing were lifted in most places. I remember as a child at one of the churches my dad pastored, there was a lady member who would often start dancing around the church during worship. She was just so full of the Spirit she had to dance. Like David before the Ark.
    I grew up going to Christian schools assosiated with the Christian Reformed denomination, and they didn’t have dances, because it could lead to sex. I never understood that sort of thinking, because I figured if they were going to have sex they would, dancing or not.
    I love to dance, always have, and I think I would not have been able to follow the no dancing restrictions had they been in place in my church growing up.
    I’m glad you got to dance, even if you never do it again 🙂


  3. Bob Hart says:

    I bet you went to Wesington Springs High School in South Dakota. My sister Grace went there also. She was a little older than me and kind of independent, and my folks sent her off to Christian school to straighten her out. It didn’t work. What I have read so far is interesting. Rules change, but people don’t. And remember, your “secret wish” is not secret! We learned as kids that “God knows our very thought.” So go have a glass of wine with Jerry at dinner in a nice Italian place. The saying every alcoholic begins with one drink is true. The problem with it though is that most alcoholics would be addicted to something. I drank a lot for many years, and never considered myself as an alcoholic. I was a “functional drunk.” for quite a few years I drank two fifths of whiskey a day, plus beer and cocaine. Along with that I smoked 4 to 5 packs of cigarets a day. I stopped smoking when our youngest daughter, (one which we had custody of.) went to Sunday School at the Pilgrim Holiness Church down the street. She came home one Sunday and said, “Daddy Jesus doesn’t want you to smoke.” I asked if I could finish the carton I had just opened and she said yes. I took a week to finish that carton and the next Saturday night I threw all the ash trays away and stopped “cold turkey.” (I was delivered from the habit that I had, had for most of 35 yrs) I began smoking really in Columbus City Iowa and continued in Knoxville, Iowa. In Woodstock Illinois I had my first beer, Yes the first drink tastes awful.
    Just because “they” change some rules doesn’t mean that people have to do anything different. It is “On us” to control what “we” do not what others do. As for gambling. After I was saved I bought a lottery ticket one Saturday. Surprisingly I won $300.00. I took the family out to eat, went and visited my mom and upon return from Spring Arbor, went to the pastor of the little church we attended and I was saved in, and asked him if I could give him what was left of the money. He refused, saying it was the devil’s money and he would not take it. I put it in a children’s church fund without his knowing. But this was a pastor who had no idea what to do when I went to the alter to accept Christ. He was lost as to what to say or do.


    • Very interesting, Bob! And very revealing! Thanks for your truthfulness. Yes, I went to Wessington Springs College and High School in South Dakota for three years. I was there for two years of high school and my freshman year of college. Then I transferred to Spring Arbor College in Michigan. It’s interesting how no matter what our past was like, rebellious or accepting, known or unknown, we all have to come to Christ the same way: in repentance and faith. God’s Grace is sufficient for all! I’m proud to have you as a friend, Bob. Thanks for writing.


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