All of our little blessings have loved music from birth, and before birth, probably because there is always music in our house. From Scarlatti violin sonatas and Megadeth, to the Indigo Girls and Ella Fitzgerald, to Steven Curtis Chapman and Led Zeppelin, to silly kids’ songs to Sunday school songs, instruments and voices can be heard at nearly any hour of any day. It doesn’t hurt that my husband plays at least a dozen instruments proficiently, and I sing everywhere I go (instruments and I have a love/hate relationship; I love to listen to them, but hate the horrid off-tune sounds I drag from them).
This afternoon, while I was making dinner, Mr. Man wandered in from the great outdoors, where he had been enjoying a 70 degree March afternoon with his sisters and our dogs, to see what tasty samples might be procured by haunting the kitchen and looking pitiful. As nothing was cooked to a sampling point yet, he decided to entertain himself with Beanie’s markers, which she had neglected to replace in her school supplies box before barrelling out the back door. In an effort to distract him without raising my voice, I paused for a moment to listen to the song on the radio.
As luck would have it, I had the classic rock station on in the kitchen, and to my delight, BTO’s “Takin’ Care of Business” was playing. This is an awesome kid song because it has a terrifically clappable rhythm and nothing truly objectionable in the lyrics. I say this as a mother who inadvertently taught her oldest daughter to sing “Lola.” Who knew a 13-month old would be able to remember and repeat, “Goddamn I’m a man and so is Lola, L O L A Lola,” especially at Mass during the consecration? I certainly didn’t.
One of these days, I will devote an entire blog entry to Mass horror stories. I digress.
At any rate,I cranked the volume up a couple of notches and started clapping the beat and singing along. Mr. Man immediately lost interest in the markers and stared at me. He stood, staring at this insane woman he calls Mommy, perfectly still in his sister’s chair for about ten seconds before starting to clap his own wee hands, giggling madly. Since he doesn’t know the words to the song, he babble-shouted to the beat, a few syllables at a time, before the hilarity of Mommy clapping and dancing around the kitchen with an assortment of stirring utensils in her hands overcame him and he had to pause to laugh.
After the song was over and I had returned to my culinary duties, Mr. Man treated me to a serenade. He only sings part of one song intelligibly, but there he was swaying in his sister’s chair, singing, “Too ra loo ra loo ra, too ra loo ra loo ra,” over and over, in his soft, sweet, shy little boy singing voice, and smiling at me. He received a rousing round of applause, a big hug, and “I love you”in his little ear for his effort.
We have some tough days ahead, and moments like these are the ones the Lord sends me to store in my heart to remember that there is laughter even in the shadow of a volcano.
Today’s prayer: Lord, it has been said that he who makes music, prays twice, and that we are to make a joyful noise unto You. Thank you for days filled with music and the laughter of Your blessings, for the sunny days You give us to remember when the rain seems as if it will never stop.