First Aid Drum Kit

 First Aid Drum Kit by Jen Martin

I walk into the bathroom to start looking for my “drum” and the first thing I see is a bright red, plastic case that says “All-Purpose First Aid Kit” on it. It is an empty first aid kit that has never made it to the recycling bin.

I try out my new drum and like the sound it makes. It is a dull, heavy thump, not too loud, not too soft. This is it!

Settling down with it on the floor of the pink-walled room, I place it gently in front of me. Then I look at it and immediately start laughing. How perfect that my drum is a FIRST AID kit!

Could drumming be a “first aid kit”? People talk about art as medicine. The plastic case says it’s good for a whole host of things, including “pain relief”. It can also treat “minor burns”, which could come in handy if someone makes fun of me and hurts my feelings.

I had been feeling anxious that morning, a whole host of worries circling around in my head. But now, placing my hand on my heart, I take a few deep breaths, setting an intention to stay PRESENT with this moment, with the here and now. I start to drum softly. The dull thump feels good. It sounds like a heartbeat.

My worried thoughts trail away. I move from a very slow, simple rhythm to one that is faster, beating on the drum harder – and then back again to slowness. The whole experience settles my thoughts. It makes me giggle. It makes me quiet, and it helps me be present.

I feel the thumping of the drum in my chest. It really DOES feel like first aid for my mind and my heart.

The above piece was submitted by alum Jen Martin in response to an assignment for the Certificate Program in Social Emotional Arts.

Click here to learn about our Certificate Program in Social Emotional Arts, and our 2024 sessions.  

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