children waiting

Gracias for reading, this is for you

This space is for you and me. I will do my best to keep you with me through these few words because part of my journey is learning to communicate more efficiently. The part that I think becomes a struggle is how to keep my own voice, without losing myself in trying to please and engage you so you don’t leave me alone after this paragraph. I find it very entertaining, I want to please you so deeply that it doesn’t matter. I want to beg you, to promise you the world, and to forget myself. I am my main traitor, there is no hope for me. Yet, I think the main reason is that I don’t know how to be myself or how to speak with my own voice. I don’t have enough practice being Pedro. 

Since I was little, I found myself distant from the rest, wanting to play and spend time with other children but I was always struggling. I think that I grew up surrounded by a lot of people but very lonely, playing a sport that I did not learn to love as a kid. Don’t get me wrong, my family and relatives love me very much. But It was never right, there were elements of bullying that I could not deflect or let go of. That did not stop me from having great moments of happiness and entertainment at the Placita de los Puerto Caribe, a centre park in the middle of four buildings in the apartment complex  I grew up. Every week, we played some of the most entertaining games that a kid would love to grow up playing, hide and seek (El escondite), Police and thieves (Policia y ladron), a variety of marbel’s games, and many others apart from the actual sport where the area could be reimagined as baseball, futsal and kicking ball stadiums. So many goals, home runs, and celebrations of victories, and some windows were broken while everyone disappeared so there were no witnesses and nobody was responsible. I can’t stop smiling while I write this. Later as a teenager, I started playing music, started playing drums, and communicating more. Somehow I started finding that what I wanted was to express, to create, and to show myself.

I always remember when I interviewed Mariano Neris in my podcast. He loves music so beautifully and worked really hard, graduated from Berklee College of Music, becoming an acclaimed trumpeter. But they, trumpet players, play at the back behind the singers. They play what they are told. That was not for him, he enjoyed it, he loved it, but that was not the way he wanted to tell his story, he did not want to be the singer, but the band, in front of the audience, where there was no place to hide. So he became a dancer, a very good one, a maestro that teaches and performs all over the world, and every year he goes to the Puerto Rico Salsa Festival and performs with some of the most important Salsa Orchestras, in front of dozens of thousands of people, he does it in the front beside the singers. He pivoted his career to find the way he wanted to express his art and he bravely did it. It was a great interview. Go here if you would like to listen to the whole interview: Esencial & Essential Podcast. I love this story so much because it is an example of bravery in finding the way that you really want to express yourself, and it took me so much time to start doing it with passion, love, and respect for you, my dear reader. 

Honestly, the key is practice, it is looking for ways and places to speak my truth in a respectful and entertaining way like I do everyday in my Salsa classes. It is about creating a meticulous show that requires hundreds of hours of work to perform on a world-level stage, it is about telling your stories to your friends and family. Telling the same stories again and again and every time you will do so a little bit better. I am very excited about this gig at Crown Casino where I get to perform every weekend, where I get to present entertaining routines and social dancing beside other amazing dancers. I can basically practise performing and get paid for it. Lovely! I am doing the same with my Instagram, this blog, and my podcast. I am practising and learning how to do this thing I love so much. Communicating, organising my ideas, analysing them, and presenting them to you in the best way I know today, hoping that you can make some use of them. But if you don’t, it is okay, I will keep writing, dancing, and talking so I can keep connecting with other human beings because I care, because I am not so lonely anymore and because I love doing it. 

Gracias for reading.

Pedro

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