Recently, a colleague of mine signed off an email with “Peace and blessings”, and the sentiment gave me pause. A dancer friend commented that she rarely heard me utter those words either independently or connected, and it’s true they haven’t been part of my spoken voice. But the phrase has a personal meaning for me.

I am a dancer, I train my body, the tool of my art. I stand on the dance floor — feet firmly planted, posture in place — and then I begin to move. In those moments, embracing that familiar position, I find an inner strength and peace. Because I’ve trained to connect my body, emotions and soul, the very act of centering my physical person brings a centering and peace to my heart and soul. Whatever matters are troubling me, I can find my perspective when I truly work at my craft. The process can be excruciatingly personal and painful, but it is honest. And beneath the hurt and vulnerability, there is still a peace.

I can’t imagine not pursuing my life’s work, and I firmly believe I would still have chosen to grow and evolve in dance no matter what other circumstances might have presented themselves in my life. And I feel blessed that my art has an enthusiastic and appreciative audience and that students want to learn and continue the legacy.

Big on our list for this year is my first solo show in several years. The show features Ziad Islambouli and his band; this is the same group I worked with at Byblos’ nightclub in Los Angeles for several years before I left to perform in the Middle East. We also have fantastic workshops (listed below) coming up very soon at my studio, and we hope that you can join us.

As we head for the halfway point of 2012, I wish you all Peace and Blessings.

Peace and Blessings is part of our Today’s Word: Sometimes We Have Something to Say series.