>> Friday, May 05, 2006
To say that I cannot sing is an understatement. When my oldest, Jonah, was just 6 months old, I'd sing to him, and he'd put his hands over his ears. No, I'm not exaggerating, ask Jon. And, by the time he was 16 months old, he'd cry "no mommy. no singing." Guess I'm pretty bad. Now, that wouldn't be such a problem if I didn't LOVE to sing, and if I didn't do it often -- frequently in public. I can't help myself. I'm 36 [(real age 32.5) http://www.realage.com :-).]
I hear music, and I sing. Okay, to be honest, sometimes I'll even dance. If you've ever seen the show MotorMouth that catches people belting out tunes and boogying in their cars -- well, that could be me.
Well, not surprisingly, my love of singing and be-bopping has been genetically transmitted to each of my children. To be honest, poor Jonah got my tone-deafness, and when rhythm was handed out, Jonah was in the presale line for the next installment of Harry Potter ;-). So, like me, Jonah loves music, but I'll encourage a career in academe, though he quite a proficient second year piano player.
Archie, my adventure, is quite musically inclined. As noted in my earlier blog, he is a songwriter, and can carry a tune, and he even has rythym.And, oh my fairy Maren. She is the most music loving child of them all. She loves music and complains if we go anywhere without the I-Pots (I-Pod). She adores Jack Johnson, Laurie Berkner, Drake Bell (from Drake and Josh), Green Day, Counting Crows and Jimmy Buffett.
But above all, she loves Sugarland and specifically their song "Baby Girl." Maren is convinced Baby Girl was written for her. She asks for it at least 5 times a day, and has since Christmas. I'm getting sick of it, but Maren's love only grows. If Jennifer Nettles saw Maren sing "They say this town, the stars stay up all night" I know we'd have a video booking! She's a heartbreaker.
When people wonder "what life will be like with a child with Down syndrome?" I wish I could bring them to my house and let them peek. For us, it means 3 kids and one wacky mom (and dad watching on) with the stereo on high, dancing and singing, pretending we are on American Idol. It means listening to Baby Girl 500 times because when clasps her hands, falls to her knees, gives me the mischevious smile, and says "please please please Baby Girl" I cannot say "no."
All but one of us, I'm sure, is out of key and Simon Cowell would certainly look on in horror! Paula might compliment our wardrobes, and for our personality Randy would put us in the dog pound. But for us, it's our slice of family love. And when the verse:
"Whaddya know, we made our dreams come true.
"An' there are fancy cars an' diamond rings,
"But you know that they don't mean a thing.
"Well, they all add up to nothin' compared to you.
"Well, remember me in ribbons an' curls.
"I still love you more than anything in the world:
"Your baby girl"
starts to play, I stop dancing for a moment while Maren takes center stage and tries to belt out each word, and runs them altogether so the only thing that sounds clear is "Love your baby girl," and I think "Yes, nothing compares to you and I will always love you more than anything in the world. You have made my dreams come true." What more could a mom ask for than a moment of unabashed dancing and joy with her children.
Of course, thirty seconds later, we are on to "Wake Me up When September Ends" (Green Day) and Archie is going full tilt on air guitar and Jonah anxiously anticipates his air drum solo. And, then, I'm reminded that "the innocent never last." Well, I think I'll hold on to it as long as possible and enjoy our band -- and love that makes singing out of tune and dancing without rhythm, and listening to the same song for the umpteenth time part of what we call happiness.
And, in Maren's words (immitating Full House's Michelle) "Rock on Dudes!"