Feeling the Music

The other day, after Liliana finishes breakfast, I ask her if she wants to sit next to the kitchen island and watch the first part of The Little Mermaid, knowing that she’s spellbound by the music.  I leave the room briefly, calling out, “I’m going to check my e-mail,” but soon hear gasping sobs coming from the other room.  I make a mental note.  The mermaid Ariel is just finishing her song where she longs to go into the world above.

I dash into the kitchen, and big tears are rolling down L.’s cheeks and onto the countertop.  “What’s wrong, sweetie?” I say, wondering if I’ve missed something.  I take her in my arms and ask again.  “S-a-d song,” she wails.  She can’t stop crying.

Yes, true, Ariel’s song is sad.  The unbelievable thing about this is that this crying-after-Ariel’s-song happened on one other occasion, and I wasn’t quite sure that’s what it was, because at the time, L. couldn’t indicate why she was crying.

I ask her, “Let’s stop the movie.  Do you want Mama to stop the movie?”

“M-o-r-e song,” she wails again.

On the way to Montessori each morning, I’ve been playing Elizabeth Mitchell’s delightful kids’ CDs, and Liliana’s favorites so far are “You Are My Sunshine” (this is the song I sing to Worthy, my sister–yes, she’s 28!–and Liliana), “Little Sack of Sugar” (Jiggle, Jiggle, Jiggle, Tickle, Tickle, Tickle, Little sack of sugar, I’m gonna eat you up!), and Ooby Dooby (a 50s-sounding dance number).  So, we’re walking into the school yesterday, and the greeters at the door are saying, “Good morning,” and L. shouts out, “Ooby Dooby,” and she says this to everyone she passes, nodding her head to the beat as she says it.

I’m happy that she’s happy.  I’m happy that she’s found her own rhythm.  I just pray that she’ll never lose it, never have it beaten out of her.  I mean, come on, let’s all just greet each other from now on, “Ooby Dooby!”

“Ooby Dooby!”

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The quote I live by

Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.
--Rainer Maria Rilke in Letters to a Young Poet

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