This is the story of three young men called David, Michael and Shaun these are not their real names, but this is what I will call each of them. They are three young men that have been to my various drumming circles for special needs groups. They all have their own stories, but they all have a common thread. David did not want to drum when I arrived. He was just going to sit it out at the edge of the hall and read. I asked David if he was sure, he was. So we began and as we all got into the swing of it, I noticed out of the corner of my eye, David moving his seat a little closer to the circle. Then a little closer, then a little closer. After a short while David was sitting right next to me, still reading, but right next to me. I then passed him a mallet and he started to drum.
Michael was a beautful young man who could not focus, rarely joined in anything, but was a bundle of energy and did not sit still. So having set up the drums in a circle and have the group join me, Michael heard the sound. He then came over and proceeded to sit in the circle with the group for the next 45 minutes and focus, played a drum, laughed and sang. All this from a young man who does not focus and rarely joins in. There was amazement all round from the staff.
The final young man is Shaun, but you have already met Shaun in part one of this story, posted a few days ago.
The common thread for all of these is the power of the drum and group drumming to draw people in, to build community, to challenge peoples preconceptions of what can and can not be achieved, to challenge labels placed at peoples feet. This is why I love my job because together with lovely young men like Michael, David and Shaun we CHALLENGE DISABILITY.