Top 10 Things I will take away from Dancing Stars Experience

1. The people at the Ballroom Dance Center are amazing!! What a tremendous group of people. Always happy, helpful and supportive. Either Emilie is gifted at selecting the best people for her team, or dancing truly does give people endorphins. I suspect it is a bit of both. Special shout out to Emilie for her leadership and Jillian for her bright and encouraging ways.

2. Stephen and Brandi Rozier must be one of the most adorable couples ever! They are both incredible dancers, teachers and human beings. I was honored to dance with Stephen, and fortunate that his ability to guide me throughout the process resulted in a successful performance and memorable experience.

3. It is important to push oneself outside of the comfort zones. I was more afraid of this performance than anything I have ever done, including jumping out of a plane. I will be even more likely to push myself into new endeavors in the future.

3. Everything has a rhythm. Find it and go with it. As I suspected I would, I leaned on the iPod in times of jittery nerves, and Rihanna came to my rescue to get me back in the zone. Music has a powerful energy.

4. If you think you have pushed yourself to the limit, work just a little bit harder. One more step after you think you cannot do anymore is probably the right place to stop. Exercize is not so bad after all.

5. Be in the moment. Until you realize how often you are thinking of other things, you don’t realize what you miss. Be aware of all the senses, so that you can truly appreciate right now.

6. The fight against Alzheimers disease is an important one and deserves our attention. Sincere thanks to the team at the Augusta office of the Alzheimers Association for all they do every day to help affected families. To Dee Dee- you are an inspiration. I will sign up for any project that you lead.

7. The amount of support I received from my friends and the team from Jim Hudson Lexus was humbling and touching. I especially want to thank everyone who contributed to my page and attended the event. It was great to turn around throughout the night and see familiar faces approaching me-Jeff and Jen, Melody, Maria, Kyle and Misty, Brandi and Devan, Brittany, Laura and Gene, Connie, Saundra, Brenda, George and Crystal (thanks George-I think we scored an 11 too!), Terri, Chris, Laurie, Todd. When Lester handed me the flowers and card from the dealership team while I was walking onstage, that was an incredible moment.

8. I have an amazingly supportive group family in my corner. Special thanks to my Mom (Mary), Dad (Dennis), Stepmom (Jackie), Sister (Lora), Niece (Mary Catherine), Brother in Law (Phil), future stepson (Forrest), future inlaws (John and Judy) and Sister (Lisa). Everyone believed in me, and it meant so much to have their encouragement.

9. I am fortunate that I was able to be a part of such an awesome group of competitors. They all gave it their heart and soul, and made the experience more fun. I really enjoyed meeting Deanna, who told me about how her Dad liked to be quiet and alone before a performance (which is what Deanna did, and -taking her cue-I did as well. They were right; it helps). I also enjoyed Amy’s enthusiasm, Austin’s humor, and meeting Mary Lynn. I am so proud of Terra for pulling off the big win.

10. Finally, most of all, just when I think Kevin cannot impress me more, he comes through again by being the most supportive, loving and understanding person I have ever known. I am not sure what karma brought him to me, but I will try to always be the best person I can be, to be worthy of having him in my life.

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