The first few moves were awkward. I tried to follow his lead. I tried really hard to surrender to his steps giving in to wherever his strides led us across that floor. Just when it seemed we were getting somewhere, finding our rhythm, something always happened to throw us out of rhythm and temporarily disrupt our flow. It seemed at these times we weren't gliding, we were stumbling. I tried to slow down, wait for him to gain his composure and start our dance again. I kept whispering to him, softly, gently, "I am sorry, go ahead, you take the lead." And we would try again.
And for awhile we moved beautifully. When our dance felt as though it could not get any better, I would usually try something new, thinking, believing I could make it even better. Without fail, I would end up walking on his feet and inevitably we stumbled.
I told him I was just trying to be helpful. Just trying to sweeten the melody of our sway. He kept silent never saying a word. And we danced. The longer we moved, the more I tried to lead, the slower we became. Where once we had glided synchronized in our oneness, now there was a widening gap between us. It was much harder to hold on to one another. But we danced and slowly we both became silent.
It was harder now to feel. Our dance had become one of mechanical execution. Small gestures imitating the act of dance. He had become totally withdrawn and though I could still see his hand in mine I could not feel it. I was still dressed like a dancer on the outside, but I felt alone without my partner on the inside. We both danced in small robotic movements to music we could no longer hear.
So one day, I took off my shoes and placed them neatly in a corner of our dance floor. I walked over to him and gently took him by the hand. Neither of us spoke. As he rose, I looked up at him, placed one hand in his and tenderly placed his other hand on the small of my back. I drew my body close to his careful to close the gap between us.
Slowly, I laid my head upon his shoulder and I wept. And then I waited..........and I waited........and after a time we began to dance in silence. As he took control, our bodies spoke and our hands began to sweat. And by-God we danced.