All right “clubbing” might not be the right word—but I got your attention!

I’ll start by saying that this was almost a month to the day after my salsa night, which was by no means a disaster, but also a night far outside my expectations (and comfort zone). But this time I knew would be different. For starters, I was going with a large group of friends. Whatever happened, I would not be alone. Second, we were going to a dance club very popular with all my dancing friends. Some nights there were even dance lessons. I was pretty confident this would be a great, fun night with my friends.

If you’ve know anything about my track record with expectations, you probably see where this is going.

No, no, I did have fun. When I was dancing. When I wasn’t dancing, it was hard for me to forget I was in, no other words to call it, a night club. The crowd and the volume were at best draining and at times overwhelming. I spent some time leaning against a door, breathing in cold night air. At all times I had at least one or two friends around me to keep me company, and I could always find some distraction in them in trying to make them laugh. Mostly, I just wanted someone to ask me to dance. It was why I was there.

Which they did. In addition to the friends I went with, we met a handful of people we knew from the studio there. These were the people that asked me, and I was faced with a brand new challenge: dancing in close quarters. At the studio socials, we do our best to give each other our “dance bubbles.” Here, with couples bumper to bumper, that wasn’t really the case. If I didn’t watch it, I was going to poke out the eye of the dancer next to me. I had to get creative with my hips and arms in a way I wasn’t really used to, cozying up to my partner more than I meant because there was nowhere else to go. The first dance was a challenge. A few in, I was beginning to get the hang of it. Enough that my friends were calling me out on and teasing me for it.

Like my salsa night, I haven’t been back to this dance club. I’ve been invited several times, and I’ve been tempted to accept on many of them, but there’s always something in the way. Sometimes that thing being my own second thoughts. I think I would like to go on a night they have their Latin lessons. I find comfort and camaraderie in a dance class. And when all was said and done, at least I would get a lesson from it.

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