Polly's Tango Talk

The Bumpy Road to Bliss

The word “tango” often inspires visions of romantic, sensuous dancing in the embrace of a passionate partner. And, indeed, it can be. However, Route 66 to Bliss can also be laden with speed bumps, misleading signs, ruts, steep inclines, deep ravines, road hogs, back seat drivers, wrong turns and dead ends. Once we begin the journey, our life is destined to take more twists and turns than an Over the Country and Through the Woods Grand Prix. This is no usual jaunt we’ve embarked on.

Some days we travel forward while others are spent in gridlock. Some connections leave us breathless while others feel like we’re on a gravelly, remote back road with the prospect of momentarily plummeting into an abyss. Tango can be mesmerizing one minute and blood pressure spikingly stressful the next.

We can be rarin’ to get to the evening’s milonga and an hour later rarin’ to rush home to soothe an ego that’s been batted around in the rumble seat. We can practice for hours on what we think we have been taught only to be corrected when our tour guide points out how far we’ve strayed off course.

Someone please invent a reliable, user-friendly Tango GPS. We crankup our courage and invite a certain someone to dance, are refused, and minutes later, our former intended is blithely cavorting with an interloper. Road Block. A partner we’ve been longing to dance with invites us, we quiver with angst, fearful we might mess up…and do. Pot hole.

Tango can be brutally frustrating, exquisitely delightful, and any combination, sometimes within the same three minutes. This journey is not for the meek; it involves much more than a typical traveler’s desire to arrive at the next destination. Paradoxically, we’re never quite sure what the next destination might be…and we discover that some of the best destinations are not even on the map.

The Road to Bliss is littered with deflated self-esteem and over-inflated egos. “Ignorance is bliss” does not compute with tango. Bliss is bliss and although the road to said bliss is less than perfect, it is worth every step in our attempt to arrive there. It takes enduring the rain to treasure the rainbows; experiencing mis-connections to recognize true connections. And staying the course in order to fully understand, enjoy, and appreciate the journey.                           

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