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When We Stop Moving, We Die, Dancing Salsa in Pain


  • When We Stop Moving, We Die

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    I’ve come to recognize this as absolute FACT. I had a knot in my right quadriceps muscle last night, the size of an EGG! I had someone massage it for me, to get most of it out, but MAN I was in PAIN!!!

    The next night, I “had”’ to go to a Salsa event because I promised some friends of mine I would go see their show. I told them I could not dance that well because of the knot in my leg. So when we got to the venue, I just stood there, watched the shows, then sat there in agony, wishing I could just let it all out and start dancing again. The pain actually started getting WORSE!!! I realized I was focusing on pain, anxiety, lack, inability, and sadness.

    I immediately caught myself with these negative thoughts. I have always believed very strongly in the power of the mind, and that we can heal ourselves and change our lives by altering our attitudes. If we just “decide” right then and there to change, we will. It’s like magic, and it truly does work! Last night the music was so good, that I desperately wanted to just get up and dance, but it hurt so bad just sitting down.

    Realizing that this “pain” would eventually go away over time, I decided that the TIME WAS NOW, and there is no such thing as time, and time is simply a measure of movement, so I’d better get off my duff and spend my precious “time” moving… NOW. So you know what I did? I said “Screw this pain, it no longer exists. I am GOING TO DANCE NOW !!!”

    At that moment of decision, I got up, walked over to my friend, extended my hand to him without saying a single word and started dancing. I asked him to take it easy on me at first, but then I realized if I kept saying that, then the pain would still be there. And indeed, it came back as we were walking to the dance floor. I felt a jolt of pain as the words were coming out of my mouth.

    So, again, I intellectually caught myself speaking things into existence, said “Screw it. Just do it. Get back your life Edie. DANCE up a STORM!!!” With all the intestinal fortitude I had, I started dancing my very best. I forced myself to simply have fun, feel good, and started focusing on following my partner with excellence. Within about ten seconds, I caught the Salsa High, and was having a BLAST!! Before I realized it, the pain COMPLETELY VANISHED!! The knot in my leg was completely gone. It was the size of an egg and very real the night before, but my mind healed it by my not focusing on it anymore. I stopped paying attention to the pain, and started paying attention to my dance partner. Making sure to follow his every signal and turn pattern beautifully and to perfection.

    Energy flows where attention goes.

    When I haven’t had Salsa for an entire week or so, and my nights are spent “sitting there” in oblivion, absolutely still, answering emails, completely focused, not even blinking (barely) scheduling, updating, computer programming, eating, still rarely blinking… (no wonder my eyesight sucks) and not moving, rather than DANCING, after a few days of this, people start telling me I look “tired”. My body is actually getting stiff.

    I start feeling tired. Lethargic. All I want to do is … “eat”… put in some eye drops, then “sleep”.

    I realize as the weekend draws near, that all I need is a good piece of …ass - kicking Salsa dancing!

    I FEEL the NEED for SALSA SPEED, and to dance and get it ALL OUT… you know, let my hair down, put on something more “comfortable”…. get all freshened up, let it all out, go crazy… lose all my inhibitions… COMPLETELY LET GO and just tear the floor IN HALF. Leave SMOKE at my heels, and rip up the dance floor like never before, and NOT CARE what anybody else thinks of me. This really works. I stopped worrying so much about what other people think of me.

    WHO CARES? Right?

    Before it used to stress me out. Once I let it go, and realized I cannot change the world, nor people’s thoughts or actions, I stopped paying so much attention trying to please people.


    I could really care less about other people’s thoughts about me anymore – especially when I’m dancing or teaching. As long as I’m speaking the truth and doing what I love, whatever people are thinking whether positive or negative, is all in THEIR mind, not mine! Hence, their thoughts have become wonderfully THEIR problem! HA!

    Aaaaaahhhh… the freedom – FINALLY of being at ease with my “self”. After the dancing is over, I can relax, go home, and fall dead asleep. The next morning, I feel refreshed, exhilarated, and can pop out of bed like a toaster!

    Edie, The Salsa FREAK!! is one of the most recognized and respected Salsa Instructor/Performers in the world. In the past twenty years, she has traveled to 63 countries teaching the world to dance, and has been the first American to teach in 18 of those countries. She now lives in the high mountains of beautiful Colorado with her wonderful husband, Nick. You may contact her at
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