For five centuries, ‘a fly in the ointment’ has meant a small defect that spoils something valuable or is a source of annoyance. The modern version thus suggests that something unpleasant may come or has come to light in a proposition or condition that is almost too pleasing; that there is something wrong hidden, unexpected somewhere.
At the end of this blog post I will have let them go, I will fulfill my promise, and everything will be ok.
Happiness in my life since 2002 has been sponsored and paid for in the currency of dance. The fly in my ointment is, and will always be, my back injury. I’ve been borrowing at a terribly high interest rate (one I knew I couldn’t afford) on it and on Wednesday night it repossessed Latin hip motion. No more Cha Cha. No more Rumba. No more Merengue. It is over.
After coming home from a social dance party I went to pick up my kitty, that is now sleeping happily on my on my lap, and I couldn’t do it. I was stuck. I dropped the kitty. (Thank you for forgiving me kitty.)
I grabbed on to the bathroom counter to sit. The shooting pains in my leg returned. My fourth toe petrified and lost feeling. No back spasms. I knew what I did and hated myself for it. I took a deep breath, slowly got up and dragged myself up the stairs and laid down in bed. I plugged in the heating pad and made a promise to God, to Dance, to my Body, to whom ever could hear me and help me, “Please let this be just fluke, a warning, a last warning. If I can get up tomorrow, that’s it I’m done. I’ll never do it again. I promise. I swear.”
I closed my eyes and tried to relax. I laid as still as I could and that night I dreamt of mourning doves and bunnies.
In the morning, I woke up my favorite way. Not by alarm, by kitty.
Tango was eating my hair and, more importantly, there was no pain in the leg.
I was awake and it was as if the nights happenings were just a nightmare. I lied there checking my body, slowly stretching it out. I kinda felt great. Did the Gods answer my prayer? Did the mirror ball fairy take my crystal AB offering? I knew I didn’t need to get the doctor. I didn’t need some sort of Oxycontin. Was it a fluke? Did it happen at all? Was it just a bad dream? I stepped out of bed and there it was, the fly in the ointment, my toe. It was still petrified. It had happened.
I’d been suspecting for a while that the latin hip action triggered some aggression in my injury. It’s why I started focusing on Smooth and Standard, I felt stronger after, not defeated and worse. I was incident free for a year not dancing the Cha Cha or Rumba. (I stayed away from the socials, after all it was like putting heroin in front of a drug addict.) Then, at an unavoidable social dance at the end of April Follies, the second I got on dance floor for a Rumba, the back spasms started. I was down for three days after that happened. But still I wasn’t sure. It was right after a competition, it could have been exhaustion. Right?
Then on Wednesday, I found myself again in a crack den. I had to go to the dance party because someone had a line on an affordable dress… I couldn’t resist. I just had to Cha Cha and Rumba and Merenge and it happened again and this was number two and the start of a pattern of something long suspected. I am not going to go for a third to make it a charm.
This is my resignation. It has been amazing. Thank you for the memories. I know that like a lost limb you will still itch at night, I will miss you. Yet considering the alternative, it is a fair thee well that is not sad. It is just for the best.
And there it is, the official list of ‘don’ts’ just got three longer.