Monday, January 30, 2012

Playlist of Promises

So my computer crashed a couple weeks ago and part of the collateral damage was my iTunes being wiped out. I managed to get almost all of it back on using my iPod but my playlists couldn't be recovered. I'm still mourning the loss. I had some good playlists. I love making playlists. Taking songs from different albums, artists, and genres and mixing them together for just the right feeling. Playlists for singing, for dancing, for dreaming, for writing, for cleaning (yup, I had a cleaning playlist), for quiet time, for celebrating. I had playlists I created for other people--my mom and my niece, specifically. And I had started one for my son. And they were all gone, wiped away as if they never existed. I'd like to take a moment of silence in remembrance of my beloved playlists.

*cricket, cricket*

Okay, now that the melodramatics are out of the way...

I created a new playlist last night. Not one for singing or dancing or cleaning. I went through all of my songs, which is several days worth of music, and selected about 2 hours worth of music for my son. There's plenty more I want to add. In fact, I realized I'll have to make several playlists just for him. A playlist for dreaming, a playlist for playing/singing, and a playlist for dancing. And a playlist of promises.

My music is varied, I have a wide range of taste and interests. I suppose not as wide as others. There is a definite void in the rap and R&B department, and very little country, and none of heavy metal/hard rock. My music is a little heavy in the musical theater and oldies departments, featuring a lot of American songbook, the Beatles, and the Rat Pack. I've got a strong selection of indy/acoustic/whatever genre you put Dave Matthews and Coldplay in (stoner music?? although, I have never in my life been stoned or even close to it). What this means for my son is that he'll be exposed to all kinds of music from a very young age. In fact, he's already heard quite a range. He even heard me hit my old friend the high C the other day whilst singing along with Michael Ball. Shiloh used to howl...but the baby didn't kick me so maybe he didn't mind.

Anyway...I've gotten off track. This happens when I talk about my music. It's one of my passions. Like my books. I just can't help but get all rambly and distracted. I'll try to stay focused.

Promises. Within all my days worth of music are a handful of songs that I've always imagined singing to my little one. Not lullabies (although there are plenty of those) but promises. Things I want them to know, things I intend them to feel, things I hope they believe in and trust. Kids need to have a foundation of promises from their parents, a place of stability and security to grow on. And these songs, I guess, give me a jumping off point, a place to start.

"Not While I'm Around", I assume, is from a musical. I don't know. I have it on an album by Michael Ball (the original Marius in LesMis and one of the most emotive, incredible tenors to ever exist). The song assures that 'no one's gonna harm you, not while I'm around' and that 'others may desert you, give a whistle, I'll be there'. No matter how scary the world may get, how many let-downs a child may face, they can know that I will always be there, they will never be alone, 'not while I'm around'.

"I Couldn't Love You More" is from Matt Hammit's (of Sanctus Real) solo album. The song explains that while I as a parent couldn't possibly love my son any more than I already do that Jesus does. Jesus loves him even more than me. It's one of those songs that gets me all weepy and emotional, and something I very much want my son to have confidence in throughout his entire life.

"Come What May", yes the same "Come What May" from Moulin Rouge. Except that I have a version by Alfie Boe (Jean ValJean in the 25th Anniversary LesMis, and another one of the most incredible tenors to ever exist...but a much more controlled style than Michael Ball). Admittedly, I never thought of this as a song for a baby until I was pregnant and heard it. I hadn't heard this song in years, at least five or six years, but it's on the first Alfie Boe cd that I bought. I was already about 4 months pregnant when I listened to this version and all I could think of is that it seemed to describe so well how I felt about my baby. 'Seasons may change, winter to spring'...'storm clouds may gather and storms may collide'...'but I love you, until my dying day, come what may'. My favorite line from the song is in the first verse: 'listen to my heart, can you hear it sing? Telling me to give you everything.' It reminds me of a quote I saw on Pinterest (addiction!) which reads 'Only you know how deep my love for you is because you're the only one who has heard my heartbeat from the inside.' I'm amazed when I consider all that my son is hearing as he's continue to develop inside of me, and knowing that he hears my heart beating is just incredible. So cool. 

There's a few other songs..."I'll Stand By You" (The Glee version, I have to admit...even though I don't watch it anymore)..."This Little Light Of Mine" by Addison Road..."All of Me" by Matt Hammit (which if you've read any of my other baby posts, you know that I love that song)..."Believe" by Josh Groban (our first wedding dance song, incidentally)..."When You Wish Upon A Star"..."In My Life" by the Beatles...These songs are all promises of how I feel and what I want for my son. I can't promise him a life without trouble, pain, fear or sadness. Those are all part of the human condition and things he will have to experience in order to really know happiness, security, love, friendship, and joy. But I can promise him my love, no matter what. I can promise him that God loves him, no matter what. These are hugely significant promises. 

So as I'm trying to piece back together the shattered fragments of my crashed iTunes these new playlists are emerging. It's easy to see how my priorities have changed. I'm sure I will eventually re-create a playlist just for car dancing...but only after I've taken the time to create these playlists for my son. Songs for us to sing and dance to together and songs for us to dream together, he with his eyes closed and me with my eyes opened. 

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