One of the things I've been most concerned about these past few days is my demeanor. I find it very difficult to contain my enthusiasm for making music and teaching music. I'm aware that this doesn't appeal to every single parent or child the same way. In a class where parents are paying for their children to attend, I tend to not worry about this quite so much. I'm large and in charge - I'm ok with that. I have no problem being silly around children - I'm ok with that, too.
Being an exuberant male in a women's shelter? The different context deserves some consideration.
Further, the nature of Rainbow Songs classes is participatory - we want parents and children to be as active as possible throughout the whole class. Who wouldn't be timid the first time they were asked to sing and dance in front of their peers? It takes a lot of guts to let your inner-silly hang out! Some people never find that kind of courage.
These young women were so very, very brave.
Even while they looked at me with wide eyes, clearly not sure where the class was going or if they were going to like it, they got right down on the floor with me and sang out. Young mothers who had begun the lesson sitting in a chair - clearly separating themselves in a small way from the group - quickly joined us on the floor.
I asked them to be loud and proud throughout the lesson - boy, were they ever!
The circular nature of just having fun couldn't have been clearer: the more fun they had, the more fun I had; the more fun I had, the more fun they had. More than that, fun can also connect us, crossing over our fears of ourselves and of others.
Fun is a bridge - No assembly required.
This morning I was really nervous about this class.
This afternoon, I can't wait to go back.