Another year celebrated with these fine people calls for reposting last year's blog:

When we bought our house a few years back, off the internet from 3,000 miles away without seeing it first, I couldn’t have possibly understood that one of it’s top features was being 7 mins away from an absolute gold mine.

Fly Dance isn’t like any other gym or fitness regime I've ever tried. It’s more then working out; it's working out with a community made up of a strong variety of people, brought together so tightly by having just one thing in common.

I wake up with a heart… heartburn, I’m 3rd trimester pregnant writing this, but also a heart that’s so full after an evening spent celebrating the holiday season with this tribe. Last night, I looked around the packed dance floor and saw a massive span of ages, reaching decades ahead and behind me, and a mega-variety pack of stories, suffering, and accomplishments.

Women who seem to have it all next to those who have been through unthinkable tragedies in their lives, all letting their hair down and their bodies loose. We’re not here to judge one another; that’s never the style. There’s no shame or catty down voices. There’s laughter, connection, and level of true acceptance for everyone else in the room.

I saw a mom of 7 shaking it by a woman in her 70’s who’d once shared with me her regret for having never prioritized having a child. I see self-described conservative moms of teens dance with young moms who would sooner roll in their graves then envision themselves identifying with anything but far-leftist policy. Because even politics has no real ground here.

None of it matters because we’re brought together under something so much stronger, the disco ball. We certainly don’t all come from a dance background or careers as cheerleaders. Some of us pick up moves quickly and then others have been showing up for years and still might only know what’s going on half the time. But we don’t let it stop us because we all understand that moving our bodies around makes us stronger, healthier, better versions of ourselves. That doing hard things builds character. And so we all have a Fly logo (on an obnoxious amount of tank tops shoved into the leggings drawer, but also) etched into our hearts somewhere. Because this place helps us define who we are.

Furthermore, we’ve all walked into the Fly studio on really bad days. We’ve all had mornings where we’d been crying just before class, but what sets us apart is we pull on our sneakers anyway and push ourselves out the door because we know, if anything is going to help, it’s getting under those lights and shaking it out with these people.

After class, we will leave sweating and smiling. We will wave goodbye and share wishes for a great day ahead in the parking lot as some of us get into the glam of sport’s cars and others get into decade-old beaters that make a funny clicking noise when you turn the steering wheel (yea, I know I need to get that fixed some time).

Maybe when you peal back the layers, it is just a sort of raunchy line dancing to some questionably-lyric-ed music, but it’s ours. My husband jokes it’s my “all-in-one” hour. Mostly fitness, part social time, and part therapy. And when you look at it that way, it’s probably the best money I’ve spent all year.

All this just to say: thank you. Thank you to every one of you wild women (& our Tony, but he knows he’s always included) for loving one another so well. For not letting all the bullshit that’s out there, that we’re told to define ourselves on, separate us. I am a better wife and mother because of all of you. Simply because you dance your face off with me and some part of me just needs that shit.

I love you ALL.