And so my life continues…and other perils of being a mom, teacher and performer

“It was because of his interest that we decided to include a drone in the music video project”

Until I got pregnant most of my fans didn’t know I had kids let alone was married. My life as dancer/dance judge/mom/principal/author/singer were separated neatly into their own life segments-never the six should meet. Each life segment had its own character that took on a life of its own.

For instance, once my family and I were out at a restaurant where there was live entertainment. The main singer asked me if I wanted to perform. I hesitated and started making excuses as to why I couldn’t. Hubby quickly quirked; “She gets shy sometimes but just push her.” There was a moment of silence where the singer looked at me oddly, a bit confused and then walked away. “She doesn’t know what you’re talking about, ” I said. “She knows Judge Joanne. Judge Joanne is never shy.” And so life continued.

“She knows Judge Joanne. Judge Joanne is never shy.”

Until more recently I discovered that all the unique parts of me could combine into something special if I let it happen naturally. It was around that time that I had started going back to the studio to record. Of course with the baby it was a whole event-baby food, diapers, changes of clothes, toys, blankets etc. all the way to Embakasi. Every so often we’d pause the session so that I could nurse. And so life continued.

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My second son, Zahari is 9. He’s kind of a Science genius. At the moment he’s into studying drones. It was because of his interest that we decided to include a drone in the music video project for “Don’t Disturb My Dance”. On the day of the shoot, he was elated when he saw the guy with the drone show up. “It’s a Phantom 2 DJI! He shouted. He’s not a dancer but his input spanned way before the day of the shoot. The hours of looking for the correct drone, researching drone shots online and how long they could remain in the air during the shoot were his input and research. This intrigued him for hours.

Yeshai, the 10-year-old, has lately taken an interest in dance. One day I saw him dancing during his weekly hip hop class and said, “Your dancing looks boring. If you want to dance, dance but if you’re going to do it halfway then do something else, like accounting (Judge Jo-1 style)”. Some parents may say that I was mean, but it seemed like from that day the lights came on and he started dancing with passion.

“Your dancing looks boring. If you want to dance, dance but if you’re going to do it halfway then do something else…”

So it was no surprise when he wanted to come along for our dance practices in preparation for the music video. He practiced with us and learned may of the choreography parts. You can see him dancing freely on the music video in his school shirt. We had been up since 4:00am. It was now 10:30am and the family had arrived to join me on the set of “Don’t Disturb My Dance.” Once they arrived the baby wanted to nurse. I’ve dubbed myself “the milk lady” since that’s how Rainn looks at me whenever he sees me. So on set, I was moving between performer to to dancer to mom. And once several of our school students arrived I also became Ms. BB (what the students call me). I felt a wave of exhaustion coming over me and I knew that we still had a long day ahead.

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One of my parents told me that when they were trying to locate us in the taxi they told the taxi driver that they were looking for their principal. One of the kids spotted us a few meters down the street dancing to, “I don’t care what they say about me. If you don’t care what they say about you…” I’m told that the taxi driver kept driving saying, “No that can’t be the principal.” And so my life continues.

Before the music video, my kids asked me questions like, “Why can’t you just record the song on your phone and post it onto YouTube? Why does it have to take so long?” Well, they got to see the editing process firsthand and even spoke with the editors about what they were doing in real time.

Is my life nuts sometimes? You have no idea. And pretty awesome too. And I’m happy to make moments like these learning moments for my children. Because learning in real time is always the best time.

 

Check the video out here >

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3 thoughts on “And so my life continues…and other perils of being a mom, teacher and performer

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