I've been entertaining children for my entire adult life. I work a corporate full-time job and then when Saturday morning comes I cover myself in glitter, drive all over town and perform as whatever all-singing-all-dancing Disney obsession is in vogue at the time. I come home smeared with jelly and face paint, collapse on the couch, exhausted, ears ringing from the latest rendition of 30 kids screaming "Let it Go". So many people have asked me how I do it. Or more importantly WHY I do it.
I do it to because every child deserves to feel special. A clown came to my birthday when I was five and I remember sitting on the grass with my friends giggling at his tricks and thinking how lucky I was that he picked MY birthday party to come to. Kids might not always be able to express gratitude, but that feeling that they are very special will stay with them forever.
I do it for the little girl who has an entire Elsa themed birthday party but when she sits down to get her face-painted, and I say "Would you like a beautiful Elsa crown?" she looks at me with no hint of doubt and says "No, thanks, can I have Spiderman?" or the little boy who was the 'cool guy' of the party (there is always one - even at 5yo!) who decided he wanted Elsa face-paint and inspired 6 other little boy Elsa's at the party. When his Dad said to him "Don't you want to get something tougher?" he looked him dead in the eye and said "Yeah, she is tough. She’s a queen, Dad'. I do it to remind myself that these kids are going to change the world.
I do it for the children who still believe in magic: The ones who force me to make up detailed explanations of how I'm getting back to my castle because they believe without a shadow of a doubt that I am most definitely Cinderella/Rapunzel/Poppy the Troll and if I don’t get back soon, the story might not end they way it’s supposed to.
I do it because kids NEVER fail to surprise you and make you laugh. In one of my party games we all take turns saying our favourite animals and then everyone pretends to be them. Easy right? Horse – fine. Dog – Easy. Tiger – Not a problem. One time, I said “Ok, your turn! What’s your favourite animal?” and a little girl yelled “Um… a spotted gecko!” we tried, but she promptly let me know we weren’t being ‘spotty enough’ (If anyone has any idea how to imitate a spotted gecko I’m all ears!)
I do it because there is nothing like watching kids experience things for the first time. A baby who has never seen bubbles. Or kids watching you magically twist a balloon into a dog. Or watching them learn a new game and being totally chuffed with themselves. These brand-new experiences only happen once, and experiencing that every week is pretty darn special.
And yes, I do it to see the glorious passion in their faces while they belt their little hearts out to Frozen.
I truly believe if you can find something that makes you believe that the future is actually in really good hands, you should do that. Everyday. Which is what I'm planning to do, and what has lead me here. Welcome to Glitterbomb.