As I stepped into the building where I had spent countless hours dancing and also teaching beginners the art of it, I felt myself begin to shake. The first person I saw was Courtney. She came out of one of the classrooms, and I decided to pull away.
“Goodness, I am so nervous,” I said to myself.
It did not take long. Courtney immediately gazed at me right away. “Oh, my goodness, Mia, is that you?” I attempted a weak smile.
“Yes, Courtney, it’s me.”
She looked at me, and then tears began to fill her eyes. I immediately walked towards her and gave her a big hug. What am I supposed to say to her now?
Come on, Mia. Say something!
Before I could speak, Keyla interrupted us. “Mia, is that really you?”
I looked back at her. “Yes, it’s me.” Right now I am worried about Courtney. She seemed to be breaking down in front of us. She began shaking once I held her as she cried. Aside from crying she is also finding it hard to talk among her tears.
“Mia, I am sorry.”
“No, Court. I am sorry. I came to apologize to both of you.” Once the words are out of my mouth, Keyla and Courtney embrace me. Then I started crying.
“I can’t even imagine how you are feeling,” said Keyla. “Yes, it has been hard but still I should have let you guys in.”
Courtney looked down at her feet. “Well, since his passing, I knew you needed time.”
I smiled at her. “Thanks.”
“I am just glad you are here now,” she said. “Yes, me, too,” Keyla chimed in.
I turned to her. “Courtney, I was going to ask you—how is Matt?” She smiled sadly. “He is taking it day by day.”
I felt like such a horrible friend. Not once did I ever talk with her about how Matt is doing. It wasn’t intentional. It’s just hard to talk to Matt now that Leo’s gone. But I never stopped to think about what it’s done to him and Courtney. She’s Matt’s girlfriend and one of my best friends.
“Courtney, I am sorry for not being there.” She shook her head. “Mia, I understand.”
“Thank you, but I really wish I had been there for both you and Matt.”
Now we are both emotional messes. Keyla came up behind us and placed a hand on each of our shoulders.
“Okay now, Mia and Courtney, why don’t we channel all of this into a dance?”
“Yes, Mia, I think that is what we need,” pleaded Courtney.
As we cry Keyla hands Courtney and me some tissues. It had been a long time since I danced. I knew it had only been six months, but it felt like a lifetime. Still, I needed to feel like a part of me was still here on earth. Dance always made sense before. It was just what I need to bring me back to life.
Besides, here I was, my whole life stretched out in front of me, and I needed to get some normalcy back into it. I just did not want to remain in this depressive phase that was not only harming all those I loved but also myself. After a few minutes of thinking it over, I nodded. “Let’s do this.”
I will embrace this day. I know that is what Leo would want me to do.