At choir practice last night, for our check in, we had to share something along the lines of — Why do you come here? What’s the big draw?
I said something along the lines of — gospel singing, for me, is like this fully embodied worship experience that floods my heart with light until it overflows all over the freaking place. It’s the kind of worship that makes me feel like this is what I came to this planet to do.
I have been really struck ever since I joined this choir by just how embodied my singing is when I’m there. Sometimes I just get focused on my inner experience and feel my body moving to cradle my heart like a baby. Other times I’m upward focused, and my hands rise up like they’re made of helium without my consciously lifting them. And other times I’m calling out to the people there with me, stretching out to connect, leaning forward, feeling the ground beneath me and the air around me that are touching everyone simultaneously.
I feel really free to move with my singing and with my praise at Mosaic rehearsals and performances. I feel fully present and like I am growing into my truest self.
I notice these things because they’re not the norm. It stands out to me when I can take up all the space I take up and not be embarrassed. It’s not usual for me to feel like being the largest-bodied person there and fully being in my body is a place of great empowerment. It’s strange to me that I can stretch my limbs and not be concerned about who sees my naked belly.
Strange but good.
These are healing experiences for me. Musical opportunities often go hand in hand with mainstream ideas of prettiness (or sexiness), and having the body I have probably made me give up on a lot of things that I felt shut out of. Of course there
are some people who are visible exceptions to this trend, and I love them: Toshi Reagon, Israel Kamakawiwo’ole … Sometimes I imagine myself a little like them, only me. Sometimes I think of them when I’m at Mosaic.
So thanks, Mosaic, for existing! Thank you Spirit for guiding me there! I sure do feel lucky and grateful and blessed!