Everything of the last weeks has been focused on today.
Joining a choir has been one of the most gentle, healing and important choices I have made for myself in the last six months. Every week’s practice has been the place to relax, cry, laugh and connect. I sometimes feel like I live my life as an observer, more looking at what is happening than actually living it, and observing this situation as I make new connections from week to week has been so fulfilling. Life as an expat, especially since Tapio died has been very different from the life I used to live, a life full of people and laughter and a permanent smile has been traded for isolation and distance. I think I needed to be ready, ready to actively dive into a crowd, in my case a big group of women and a man that share my love for music and singing. It was so scary at first and I won’t say that I don’t feel like the odd one out still sometimes as the language barrier is still very present and I mostly just do what everyone else does not really understanding why, but more and more people volunteer to explain what they feel is useful for me to know. I didn’t know how much I needed this group, how much my heart needed to sing or how my son’s presence would dance on the notes every time the music started.
Monday’s rehearsal has been far from perfection that we might want to aim for, but we all still left smiling, though tired, and looking forward to today – the concert. The way I see it, even though the concert is open to the public and mostly families come to see it, the whole show is for us, our reward, for attending the rehearsals, for learning new songs, for making space for diversity, for opening our hearts to different cultures and languages, music, each other, to heal all the little and big aches we might be facing and to just occupy a beautiful space together.
And as I add on one more discovery about myself after my son died – taking pictures, writing and now singing – I hope he is proud, and I hope he knows he is the one giving me all the courage to be vulnerable like that.
Tonight, when the hall in our town’s Culture center fills up, we will live up to our name as we Sing and Shine.
With Love, Tina
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