Kat and The Haflah

Me and Kat

Kat pulled one colorful scarf after another out of the plastic bin on my bedroom floor.  Then came the billowy silk pants and the velvet cholies.

She brought what she thought would match my purple Bellydancing skirt and the blue, purple and green sash belt Julz passed on to me. When Kat emailed me and asked if I wanted her help getting together a costume for the Haflah, I didn’t hesitate to say yes.

A month ago, when we had Dancing in the Flow in my Bellydancing class,  Kat showed me how to tie my hair up in a turban.  But I didn’t feel comfortable going to class wearing it.

Now I’m ready.  Ready for the turban, the silk pants under my skirt, the jewelry, the bindi and even the make up.

Somehow Kat knew that.  And she took the time to gather clothes and jewelry and come to my house to help me do it.

Actually I can’t stop crying as I write this.

I’m trying to understand what I’m feeling, but it’s seems to be a step ahead of me.  Like my brain hasn’t caught up with what I’m feeling yet.

It’s not just Kat’s generosity.  She’s become a mentor to me.

Kat is one of the founders of Bennington Beledi Tribal Bellydancing.  She retired from dancing the year I started.  She introduced me to Bellydancing and came with me to my first class.  And ever since then, she’s been guiding me.  Sending me photos of her and the other women dancing over the years,  emailing me timely articles and videos of bellydancers she thinks I’d like.

And today she shows up at my house and explains to me how to put make-up on.   The  only make-up I’ve ever worn was flavored lip gloss when I was a kid.

There was something timeless about what Kat and I did today.

The experienced woman teaching the newcomer.  Girls dressing up for the dance. An initiation of sorts.

After I was all dressed up, we sat on the bedroom floor talking about our mothers.  The regrets and coming to acceptance.  We talked about how our second marriages were filled with emotion, compared to the first, and how we both wanted a ceremony and witnesses.

Kat is both friend and mentor and she gave me something today that I never experienced before, but always wanted.

On Thursday we’ll have the final rehearsal for the Haflah in my bellydancing class.  It will be a dress rehearsal for me.  I’ll tie on my turban and see what it feels like to dance in the silk pants that I’m borrowing from Kat.  In between now and the Haflah, I’ll buy some eyeliner and lipliner and experiment putting on make-up.

I’m thinking of  the Haflah as part of my holiday.  A celebration of dance and food in the dark days of winter.  And I’m looking forward to every part of it.  Getting dressed up, spending time with the women in my class and of course, dancing.



4 thoughts on “Kat and The Haflah

  1. I might hazard a guess that part of the tears are the release of the past and the moving forward. It creates a bit of a push-pull till you are all the way through.

    You are there, you are ready, you are more you than ever. It is a beautiful picture of joy and excitement and uncertainty and a deeper knowing to me. Of moving to the next level.

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