Our Little Secret to Raising Our Vibe
By Deborah Blackwell
Every June on or near his birthday, my middle son attends a music festival called
Electric Forest. It’s a four-day electronic dance music event that takes place in a magical forest in Michigan. Yes, magical. It’s set up to look like a larger-than-life enchanted fairy tale in Sherwood Forest and is beautifully done. When he first told us about it years ago, I was sad that he would be missing his birthday with his family for this hippie-esque celebration. We thought it was a passing phase.
Then something happened. Sir Husband and I listened to the music and well…it was all over.
Turn off the jazz, folks. We’re coming out. Sir Husband and I are closet
electronic dance music…or for the old-school crowd—dubstep—hippies. We just love the vibe. And we can often be found in our living room, or even in our kitchen, with the Bose turned up, dancing to dubstep. But what we didn’t know? The right vibe can cure what ails.
Life has been hard lately. Not just the state of the world, although that’s more than enough. Sir Husband had a medical scare, that thankfully resolved. I had three complicated back-to-back root canals on top of the postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome I still endure. And the most debilitating stressor? My mother’s dance with death. She clings to every life-saving intervention possible to keep her physical body going when it’s been trying so hard to go. Along with her doctors, we have turned ourselves inside out, offering infinite compassion, dignity and grace, to help her end-of-life experience be meaningful, safe, and comfortable—a situation many must navigate and endure.
Sometimes there are no solutions. Whatever we face—from simple to catastrophic—no matter how hard we try, there are times life just doesn’t budge. And that sucks. So, I wondered, do we live with the discomfort, consumed by the strain? That’s not healthy for the body or mind. Fake it ’til we make it? Pretending our way to peace doesn’t work long term. Let go and move on? Let’s be realistic, that’s not so easy. And surrendering feels like defeat. I struggled feeling it—what does surrender even mean?
I needed something more concrete.
Then I had a revelation. In my desperate quest for relief, I realized it’s not seeking the solution that works, or even surrendering. It’s the actions we put behind our choices that matter. The actions we take every day that hold up our morals, our principles, our values, and beliefs. The actions that inspire us, fulfill us, and feel good. The actions we choose that put us back in the equation. Dancing. Creating. Doing something fun. My middle son knows this well.
So, last night I turned on some electronic dance music while I was doing the dishes. I fell right in—eyes half-closed, moving and grooving at the sink. Sir Husband came over and joined. We weren’t lost in the enchanted forest in Michigan, but in the experience feeling the vibe. No stress. No bullshit. Just music. Nothing else mattered in that moment. Even when my youngest son came into the kitchen and said, “Ugh, what’s happening in here?” Duh, dude. Dancing with your true inner vibe releases dopamine, increases serotonin, endorphins, and oxytocin. It’s scientifically proven. It’s also free. Freeing. And, well, it’s magical.