As a dancer myself I participated in a contemporary dance class, and on one simple Wednesday evening I met my first character:
Our dance teacher turned on some cool, rhythmic jazz music as we were split into two groups and were set out to improvise with and for one another. Bodies were twirling, gyrating staccato-like, weaving and painting colors of movement in the air. I was in the second group observing before my turn, and I sat transfixed. My eyes were gazed upon a woman who had a determined focus, with equal parts seriousness and playfulness all in one. She was aware of the dancers around her but had a solid core and world into herself. She responded like a flower to others, opening the petals of her arms and movements when the raindrops of other dancers would move near and in her vicinity. But otherwise, she propelled herself forward and around, undulating to her own imagination and passion with the music. She also happened to be dancing in a wheelchair. I can’t speak as to all of what drew me in to all her magnetic energy, but certainly her dancing in her wheelchair was both compelling and inspiring. Her name is Karin Delén.
Karin amazed me with her passion and courage that she was expressing through her dancing. She is the sole reason that I awoke from my own dark slumber. I understood right then and there that she was, as Elizabeth Gilbert speaks about embracing creativity is, “living a life that is driven more strongly by curiosity than by fear.”  I knew then and there that I wanted to embrace creativity and life in that same dynamic, yet cultivate it in own way. Karin’s dancing mesmerized me and led me to meet her with the hopes of getting to know her more. My selfishness kept me focused inward, whereas what I truly needed was to look beyond. Her energy was infectious and I credit her to my breakthrough – my bubble of self-torment was burst, and I was able to look past myself and see life beyond me. Karin became my turning point, demonstrating her ultimate embodiment of strength through her own creative means.