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The Secret behind Surrender

“What happens to a dream deferred?” Langston Hughes

Jitterbug_dancers_NYWTSI’m an incredible dancer.  I know.  I’m bragging.  And, it’s true.  When it comes to partner dances, I have a way of picking up on how a man wants to lead me, especially when he is confident in his skill-set.  I can stay relaxed, alert and anticipating.  This means, if he has clarity of purpose, I can completely surrender to him.

It’s easy to let go when your dance partner is self-assured.

Not so easy if he is not.

What I have done when dancing with partners who did not possess this quality, was to compensate for their so-called “deficiencies.”  In other words, I’d care-take by performing as brilliantly as I could.

I believed I was letting them “feel” like they were leading, like they had talent, like they knew what they were doing. (Let’s face it, who would not look fabulous when your partner danced amazing circles around you?)  Unconsciously I would click into this act so all everyone would ever notice was me and not the lack of skill in my partner.  This way, he could walk off the dance floor feeling like he had done a splendid job.

I didn’t realize there was something else underneath all of this performance playing itself out.  I had kidded myself into believing I was doing the right thing.  I was making him feel good.  The truth was altogether different.  When, finally I figured it out, I realized that my actions were actually fueled by this thought: “Goddess forbid that anyone think I was a shitty dancer because of my partner’s lack of ability.”

Inadvertently, I had made it all about ME.

It is this realization which hit me this past week-end when my man agreed to take me out to Salsa/Merengue night.  He knew how much it made me happy.  And I love him for his willingness to do things that push his growing edges.  (Although he loves to dance, partner dances are not something he feels skilled at.)

As we entered the space, the music took over.  My body craving all kinds of being lead by him.  Instead, feeling like a horse corralled, I let him dance with me as he knew how.  Sometimes confidently.  Sometimes not so much.

Inside me I felt dissonance: the music was saying one thing to my body while he was sending an altogether different message. I found myself moving sometimes to him, but mostly to the music and to the kind of performance I had so grown accustomed to: dancing to make him look good.

I don’t know when the shift happened for me,  but at some point I came to realize that, for as much as I was dancing and inasmuch as I wanted to be present with him, my beliefs around his ability, and my lack of trust in him kept me captive, and him, stuck.  I became aware that I was locked into When…Then thinking.  You know the pattern.  It might look like this for you:

When I save enough money, then I’ll take that trip to Bali.

When I have enough credentials, then I’ll apply for that dream job

When I find the man of my dreams, then I’ll be happy.

My version, unbeknownst to me, was this: when he is confident, then I’ll surrender.

I have always dreamed the man I would end up with would be an incredibly skilled dancer. That our intimate and our dancing lives would be reflections of one another: present, passionate, spontaneous, vulnerable and delicious. As we danced I noticed myself questioning: “I wonder what would happen if I decided to surrender first?  I wonder how our dance would change, if I decided that he really knew what he was doing?”

So I closed my eyes. I closed my ears.  I attuned myself him, to the way he was feeling the rhythm.  I noticed that his interpretation was a fraction of a beat off from mine, yet still, his signature made sense.  When I let go, I could make sense of it.  When my brain and body caught up…

There was Flow.

All the sudden the man I was dancing with became poised, skilled, confident.  In seconds he had transformed into the most adept of dancers.  He knew how to lead me and I, without any hesitation, could fully surrender to his expertise and care.

How could this be?

I had thrown habit to the wind, and decided I would trust he knew exactly what he was doing.  I didn’t have to wait for a perfect “when.”  The moment of flow was “now.”  It was only at that moment that the dance clicked for us.  He felt it, too – as if he possessed in him every skill he ever thought himself lacking.  He did.

It was only when I was willing to give up my Ego and tune into the perfection of the moment, his rhythm that time warped and we connected in our dance, just as we do intimately.


I had been standing in the way.

My dream, no longer deferred.  My man becoming the leader he desired to be for me.  That is the secret: full surrender of everything you’ve held on to be true.

It’s not.

Only when you can trust that path, does it open up wide for you to dance in, together.

What?  Struggling with trust?  Hang onto your hats, Sisters.  Next week, we’ll pull up our sleeves and dive head first into the topic.

Listen, my Love, as I have sounded this out for your pleasure.  Click below:

3 Responses to “The Secret behind Surrender”

  1. SG Lovely Rita says:

    So perfect, so timely, so grateful. I am starting to surrender, to receive, to be open to the care and love my guy has for me. My recent hospital stay sure brought me to my knees lol. Needing to use a bedpan sure makes you surrender! But trusting and changing habits-wow-I am gently getting there. Thank you Sister!

    • Joëlle says:

      My Delicious Sister, There is a brilliance to surrender, one that is Divinely Inspired. It is there where the breakthrough happens, should you desire it. And, knowing you, you are most certainly getting there. Loving you, Joëlle

  2. Amy says:

    Joelle, this was beautiful. Thank you for reminding me that when you assume that a man (or anyone) knows what he is doing, and you surrender to the very best in him, you will be surprised in delicious ways.

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