25 Jan On Meeting Challenges, #4: Hamilton

If you follow me on Facebook, you’ll know that over the last few weeks my family (all of us, moms and toddler alike) have become somewhat—all right, totally—obsessed with Hamilton, the hip-hop musical based on the life of America’s first secretary of the Treasury.

It’s true that Hamilton is it’s not really suitable for small children. It’s full of innuendo and what my son calls “rude words,” which run the gamut from stupid to others I can’t repeat here. Still, we keep it playing—not just because the adults in the house are trying gamely to memorize both its dense, perfect lyrics and the subtleties of their exuberant delivery, and not just because watching our kid bob his head and pump his fist in time to the gorgeous music is the most adorable thing we’ve ever seen.

We play it because despite the many vocabulary lessons for which we have found ourselves unprepared  (“Mommy, what anarchy means?”) the show holds lessons for us all. Hamilton is the story of strivers: the story of writers and thinkers and immigrants who committed to their cause, who tried and failed and tried again, who argued and compromised and relied on their friends and then—eventually—forged something amazing.

We play Hamilton because this year, we need to be reminded to strive. To model for our son the the ability to go forward with patience and courage no matter what comes our way.

Yes, we’re tired. (So. Tired.) But we’re excited, too. And we may not be founding a nation—sometimes, it’s true, we’ve just trying to get through the day—but it’s helpful these days to remember that the things we are doing are worth something and deserve our full attention and commitment.  We’ll get where we’re going…eventually. And we’ll dance the whole way.

 

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