SPREADING JOY THROUGH DANCE
One of the highlights of my recent Kenya trip was a Zumba class I gave to twelve girls living in AMURTEL’s children’s home in Mombasa. The class generated an abundance of joy and happiness which, if bottled, could have kept us in high spirits for at least a month!
The girls knew many of the songs so they shrieked with delight when they heard the first notes, eager to put movement to lyrics they knew so well. When we rehearsed the dance steps their faces lit up like a hundred suns; they relished the freedom to express themselves in new choreographies, way beyond the limits of everyday socialized movements. They were possessed by melody and rhythm. Those who danced the best moved effortlessly, as if their bodies heard the music before their minds.
I mirrored their joy, oblivious to the sweat pouring out of my body, or the calories being expended. Actually, my body became energized and light, as if extinguished lamps suddenly burst into flames. There is nothing more enjoyable than giving happiness to others.
When we ended the session the girls did not want to leave the room, incredulous that such an enjoyable experience could ever end. When reality hit, their bodies reluctantly took them out of the room and back to the routine of regular life. Hopefully, though, they will find more opportunities to celebrate the beauty of movement.