In my continuing attempt to get a life ( I used to have one by the way but it never came out of the Maternity Ward with me), I started going to a singing class for little ones. Held in a local church not far from where I live, it provided a useful point in the week where my son and I could go and still be back in time for the school run.
Usually, around 10 mums would attend with children varying in age from newborn babies to 4 year old thugs on small legs (The latter being my lovely son).
At first Cassie who was a real-life music teacher led the class complete with proper song books with words and pictures in. Later, on her return to work after Maternity Leave, Ivy the Netmums Organiser was left holding the babies and riotous older kids.
The class took the same format every week which I always found reassuring. Firstly, we would sing the usual nursery rhymes from "My Little Teapot" to the "Grand Old Duke of York" marching the older children into a frenzy and back again. My fave bit was when the instruments came out partly as I could hide my terrible singing voice behind the racket and partly because I enjoyed how my son would always choose the drum. This says heaps about his full-on personality.
Juice and biscuits would be served with my son complaining vociferously if he got anything but the blue cup.
My son is very excitable so would often either pull my T-shirt down as if he was offering my boobs up to the assembled babies or jump on my back with his 5 stones of 4 year old weight.
The babies would lie down, sit or crawl kicking their legs in time to the music and looking amazingly content considering the quality of the concert they were subjected to.
Another highlight was when the river arrived, this being a large blue piece of cloth accompanied by a green cuddly frog. Now, this frog had a life of its own I am sure. The children and parents would bounce it in one direction and it would fly off in another. Personally, I always thought this frog was running the class.
The next game involved hiding the children's body parts one by one under the blue cloth. Toes, knees, tummies, chins and then the whole thing. Huge hilarity when they were "found" by the mummies.
After Ring a Ring a Roses and the Okey Cokey and after those of us with older children trying to negotiate a swap, we would say goodbye and get on with the rest of our lives. For me, this would mean a wander round the charity shops and a visit to Munchies. Always felt better for having the courage to attend and to do something positive. Over time, I noticed two things. Firstly, having not sung and certainly not taken part in the dancing, I got more comfortable thanks to the support of the other mums. Support can be given in very quiet ways and as I can be so standoffish through shyness, this was brilliant for me. Secondly, the songs came together better as time went on becoming sweeter. I asked my brother who is a professional (Covent Garden etc don't you know?!) singer and he said this always happens in choirs too. Fascinating.
Music Class has now come to and end. I will miss it and thank all those involved in it for adding a little something that was simple but actually also quite fundamental in getting me and my son out and about again.