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  • Writer's pictureClaudia Paige

Written by Claudia Paige - Octopus RhythmWorks at Chateau Gardens Memory Care

Updated: Mar 26, 2023

We had a wonderful RhythmHealing program today at Chateau Gardens Memory Care! Our first time at this community. I love "firsts"! People don't know what to think as we bring in equipment. Percussion, yoga balls, sound system. At first I can tell they feel unsure. We set up and I hear voices say, "I'm tired", "I'm hungry"! "Why do we have to do this"? " I should be in my room"! I may be a little bouncy bringing out the laughter and silly and connection by going up to each person connecting and SEEING each person, talking, and stories flow. One man does not want to be in the circle, he sits way in the far back but Lisa brings a ball and bucket and sticks to him anyway. They are there just incase. Which he ended up drumming the whole time in the widest smile. Lisa flows around drumming and getting people moving, Another woman is emotional as memory flows through her as she is remembering sitting at the feet of her mama who was a professional jazz and big band drummer in the 40s. I assure her that emotion is good and what a release and now she is drumming. She smiles, tears flow, my tears flow as I remember my grandmother supporting me to drum at 7 and bought me a my first drum set. The women’s name is Mary and my grandmother's name is Mary. She drums with me on Frank Sinatra's song "Winchester Cathedral"! Tears than laughter. Laughter because I am bouncy again? Maybe, I am up on my feet dancing and drumming. I watch as they track their left and right so well. And if not, they are loving the music. In between songs we drum rhythms and we lock into a Shamanic healing drum rhythm. Another woman drums some of the time but she wants to DANCE and I encourage that as well. Another woman hardly speaks but drums with us all and then at the end of one song she looks at me and speaks, “is that a Dion song”? Why yes it is. We smile and back to the groove we go. Drum! Rumble together at the end of a song. Dance! Gentle body movements happen between songs. Energy and a moment remembering. Familiar!I am truly in awe of our elders once again! It is people like you that helps us keep going. To support our RhythmHealing Programs and to know more about Octopus RhythmWorks, go to

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