Our kids are learning a new definition of “Let it go” (and it’s the best thing ever)

There’s an unspoken deal between me and my Sunday school students: If they’re doing any sort of craft or activity, the Frozen soundtrack needs to be playing in the background. It’s important to them. They adore the songs, and so do I (or maybe I just like seeing how much they adore the songs). And, of course, they belt out “Let It Go” with the passion that can only be found in a Disney-infused 8 year old.

let it go
(It’s basically this, all the time.)

For those of you who haven’t heard the single (and suffered the inevitable weeks of song-in-head syndrome) or seen the movie, it goes something like this:

“Don’t let them in, don’t let them see
Be the good girl you always have to be
Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know”
Well now they know

Let it go, let it go
Can’t hold it back anymore

Let it go, let it go
Turn away and slam the door
I don’t care what they’re going to say
Let the storm rage on.
The cold never bothered me anyway

Context: Queen-to-be Elsa is cursed to turn everything she touches into ice.  She lives in hiding for years and years to spare the world from her so-called destructive quality. When the curse which she has suppressed for so many years is unleashed, she “can’t hold it back anymore” and begins a process of  embracing who she is and the curse she has (first by running away, then eventually by using the power of love to use her so-called curse to save the day).

November 1st, 2013 @ 20:49:52

My girls sing this song, and I can’t help but smile. Not because I think running away and locking yourself away with your problems is a good move, but I am so grateful that they’re learning this definition of  the words “let it go.”

Because you know what definition I learned?

I learned that “let it go” was synonymous with “behave.” These were words I heard when I happened to be sad about something longer than I was supposed to be (God forbid!).” Or when I cared about something more than I should. When I was suffering. When I needed to pretend something wasn’t bothering me.

“Let it go” was  always about hiding. For those three words to become a call to emotional honesty and an empowerment of true identity…that’s huge. It’s huge for my students, and it’s huge for me.

Essentially, the “IT” in let it go has changed.

When I was growing up, let it go = let go of your feelings, let go of your history, let go of your dreams, let go of your true self.

For the Frozen generation, let it go = let go of expectations, let go of trying to please everyone, let go of hiding. Oh, and love everyone else through their truth, too.

Guess which one is a way, way better message for our kids?

Watching those same words which used to assault me into “moving on” encourage my students to move inward and to express themselves? Beautiful. Just beautiful.

Frozen soundtrack, you are welcome in my classroom any day.

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Words & Music.

I wrote a song.

This is a first, really. I have written songs before, but never on my own.  This one just kinda…happened.  It was initially a poem, but left alone with my keyboard and a head full of things I’m thankful for, I decided expand it and put it to music. Be forgiving, of course, as I really just picked up this instrument a good few weeks ago and recorded the video after I finished songwriting/tour guiding all day. My voice was unbelievably tired.

But what it comes down to are the words. Yes, someday I hope to work up enough talent to bring the music part up to par (or just get  of my jam buddies to fill in the blanks!).  I like that there’s music, but it isn’t meant to be anything more than simple. I’m hoping that if people follow the words they will know how it is meant to be taken, and smile in spite of my tired vocal chords. Because, hey, imperfection is okay. Music is okay. Words can be very, very okay.

(Also, God can be so poetically compared to a washing machine that even my Minister digs the lyrics…at least, that’s what his “like” on Facebook says. Take that, conventionality!)

You called me on the phone
And I cried across the line
Cuz the wounds that you were nursing
They sound a lot like mine

And there’s a map in my head
It’s got a marker in your place
I’ve walked that same long road
And I’ve seen those same long days

Let’s run away
Or just talk for 5 hours
Exchange the words “It’s gonna be alright.”

Cuz these bruises give us colour, baby
Our scars keep us in line
We get our strength from fist fighting
With the hands of time
All the bittersweetness
All the shots we miss
They tie us to each other
And our bruises give us colour

So your heart spilled on your sleeve
Well there’s nothing wrong with that
I’ve heard that with a little change
God can be a laundromat

And if winter turns to summer
And your heart still feels the burn
Let that fire keep you moving
Cuz there’s still a lot to learn

Life takes turns
So we better learn to dance
If we fall along the way, it’s a story

Cuz these bruises give us colour, baby
Our scars keep us in line
We get our strength from fist fighting
With the hands of time
All the bittersweetness
All the shots we miss
They tie us to each other
And our bruises give us colour

I’ve got a million cliches
They could tide you over for days
But I know 2 am is still a bitch

So maybe can just cry together
Or shoot the shit till it feels better
And stop treating our pain like it’s a glitch

I know you know I know just how it is.

How these bruises give us colour
And our scars keep us in line
And we get our strength from fist fighting
With the hands of time
All the bittersweetness
All the shots we miss
All the prayers we say
All the gifts of today
They tie us to each other
Our bruises give us colour