January 6, 2009

No room for a dance room

It's such a balancing act being a belly dancer (no jokes about swords now...). Although it is a major part of my life, it is not my entire life. Although it influences many things around me, where I go, who I see, how I dress, and how I live, it does not influence all of me. And so, at home, I always have that quandary where I try to make room for my dance things without them taking over the space.

I swear that when I buy a house it will have a room I can dedicate solely to my dancing. So many of my friends do that now and it's an enviable arrangement. In this space, in this house, I simply cannot afford a room that doesn't serve a dual purpose. My living room doubles as a practice space (yes, you can use the windows at night as mock mirrors), as well as a dining room...let alone it's regular purpose for living and lounging. My bedroom doubles as linen storage (under the bed, in the tiny closet recess) and a laundry room with it's entry way to the utility room and garage. My study serves as a work space, and costume storage and staging.

There are many aspects of this house that I love, with it's quirky floor plan and original hard wood floors. It's close to work and to downtown, I have a wonderful landlady, the rent is cheap (for this area), and it is quiet and quaint. The down side is the lack of room, closet and otherwise. The house was built in the 20's and the closets reflect that. On a scale of 1 to 10 on usable storage space, this house rates a 2-3, and for someone like myself who has such an active life it just sucks!

Each year I fight a constant battle of trying to clean out and reorganize my space to make everything fit. I go back and forth between the need for less things and the need for more space. This year, I've come to the conclusion that I need more things for storage and actually decided it may be time to buy another dresser for the bedroom. It may be a tight fit, but well worth the drawer space.

I'll have to find something small, yet roomy enough for all my fitness clothing. Clothing for workouts, yoga, martial arts and of course, belly dance (and I'm not talking costumes!). They all have different purposes and last night I felt like I had an epiphany when I realized that my biggest problem was not enough dedicated space for each grouping of clothing. If I do find a dresser that works, it will be the first time I have allowed the belly dance stuff to creep into another room of the house...and in this case a room with a decidedly Asian theme. We may be looking at breaking international boundaries (or at least design ones) when East meets East meets West.

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