I was in an abusive relationship

Since the age of three, dancing was Cody’s life and where she truly felt at home. According to Cody, “there is no better place for me than to be on stage, inspiring others to empower themselves through movement. I felt confident and beautiful on stage, especially as a woman. I was invincible.”

While in college, Cody met someone she thought was special, and fell in love. She thought he would never disrespect or hurt her in any way. The relationship started off as normal, but as time went on, he took away everything she had ever loved.

Cody was no longer allowed contact with her family or friends, and dancing was no longer an option. She was left with nothing, feeling broken and alone. She developed Bulimia to escape the feeling of being trapped in a physically and mentally abusive relationship.

One day, while extremely upset, Cody turned on her TV to the shopping channel, and saw a Zumba infomercial starring the woman whom she now looks up to as her biggest inspiration: Zumba presenter Kass Martin. “She said to herself, “I want to be like her. This is exactly what I am supposed to be doing.” So the next day she went online and found a Zumba training in her area.

For the first time in a long time, Cody was excited about something, but she knew she would likely not be allowed to take the training; so, she lied to get there. Soon after, she was allowed to teach Zumba classes for a few months because it was bringing in extra income to the household and it was more “fitness” than “dance”. 

In 2013, she registered for the Zumba Instructor Conference in Los Angeles, though a dark cloud hovered; she knew her boyfriend would not make it easy. Cody fought tooth and nail in order to make it to the conference, enduring much abuse including being pushed down the stairs, her large and heavy suitcase thrown on top of her.

A month after the conference, things got worse. Cody was left with a completely bruised face and black eye; but the Zumba conference made her realize her true passion, love and purpose, encouraging her to make a change.

She took a huge leap of faith, leaving behind the man she once thought was the love of her life, and moved to Calgary where she started over.

Celebrating her new independence, Cody wore whatever clothing she wanted, put make-up on, and was free to dance!

She now dances and teaches Zumba classes for a living, and says her life could not be better.

“I would have never thought I’d start my own company and get to share the stage with Kass Martin, the very woman who made me realize that I still had a dream. I have so much yet to accomplish, but I am well on my way. I am so proud to be a Zumba instructor because this program saved my life! Today I am doing everything I was told I couldn’t. “

                  

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