After the show the boys mother came up to me and said "Thank you for tolerating my son" and I was very serious that I loved that her son was break dancing throughout the show. He should never stop dancing. The Mom was also saying she wanted to enroll her son in violin lessons. The boy went on to tell me that his Dad had died in the bathtub. I did a double take. I wasn't sure if he had just said what he said. He said it like it was a matter of fact. Like it was a passing thought. There wasn't any sadness in his voice. He was still upbeat like he was before. His mom confirmed that his father had died of sickle cell anemia in the past and the mom glazed over that detail to the next topic. The boy went on to tell me that he is six-years old. I didn't know what to say. "I'm so sorry for your loss?" "You are so brave and courageous?" What do you say in that circumstance? But I definitely had a new sense of reverence for the boy. I was in awe in that moment and just wanted to be as present as possible.
I am humbled that music, dance and art can be a safe space for kids to express how they are feeling. I am so humbled and in awe of that six-year old boy's courageousness and his mother's dedicated care to bring him to a program at the library. I am grateful that his mom wants to enroll him in violin lessons and wants to embrace his musicality. I am grateful that I get to meet people like this when I do my shows on a regular basis. They are the people who I am seeking out. I always tell my kids that I hope to one day be in the audience for their performances or lectures. And I hope to learn something new and amazing from them just like they have from me. Dance, music, art and ideas are gifts and they should be shared all the time.