Monday, June 7, 2010

The Soundtrack to your life...

Frequently I hear people talk about songs stuck in their heads. This happens to me a lot, but most of the time, it's the same songs. Over and over. Sometimes I feel like there is a soundtrack to my life. There are certain songs that come on the radio, or shuffle in on my ipod, and I am brought back to a very specific instance in my life. And frequently, the moments are mundane. Not largely significant. Just a moment. A moment when I was listening to the song, and the song explained my life in a nutshell. Or, sometimes, it was just the song that was on the radio every other minute during that time.

For example, One Headlight, by The Wallflowers. This song was incredibly popular in my junior/senior years of high school. And I have these distinct memories of driving down a particular road, with the windows down, and the song cranked up on the radio. It's not a particularly uplifting song. But what do you know when you're 17 and cruising around thinking that #1 you know all there is to know about life, and #2 that everything that happens to you is unbelievably life altering. Little do you know, that there is so much to the world out there.

That promptly moved into my college years. I spent several summers taking the train in and out of NY where I worked with my father. And over those several summers I remember listening a couple of songs endlessly. Although what they meant to me changed, and who I blamed as the villain in them changed. Like, Jumper, by Third Eye Blind, or Motorcycle Driveby, also by Third Eye Blind, I listened to them (Third Eye Blind) a lot during those years!

This for the time being ends my college years and moved me into my early working years. Where I have a distinct memory of walking down the stairs to the PATH in the Hoboken train station while listening to Something More, by Sugarland. Another song that felt like the soundtrack to my life during this time included songs like Manic Monday, by The Bangles.

And what this has to do with "Who Dropped the Pacifier" is now on the horizon, as I was planning my wedding and beginning to set out on my own, the song Baby Girl, by Sugarland would play on repeat on my ipod for hours.

And as I awaited the arrival of E, the soundtrack to my life changed yet again. And it was filled with songs such as: You're Gonna Miss This by Trace Adkins, I Loved Her First by Heartland, Let Them Be Little by Billy Dean, I Loved Her First by Heartland, Somebody's Hero by Jamie O'Neal, It Won't Be Like This For Long by Darius Rucker, My Little Girl by Tim McGraw, Then They Do by Trace Adkins, You'll Always Be My Baby, by Sara Evans, and the absolute most important, My Wish by Rascal Flatts. I will never forget driving home from work the first time I heard My Wish while pregnant. I know exactly where I was, and as I listened to the lyrics, tears started pouring down my face. And I knew... this, was my baby's theme song. I spent weeks collecting songs about becoming a parent. As I didn't know if E was yet to be a girl or a boy, at the time I collected songs for both. And they all touched my soul. They articulated in ways I still could not, what it meant to me to become a parent. The unconditional love that I was already feeling, could only be explained by these songs that played in my head, for 9 months. Before we left for the hospital, I made a special cd, one that was intended for a baby girl, and another, intended for a baby boy. And in the quiet of the evening on E's first night in this world. I popped the cd into my cd player, and I quietly whispered the songs to her. Daddy was at home, changing, feeding the cats, and then coming back to our side. The rain was pouring down outside. And I just walked around the room with little E in my arms, and sang to her. Weeks later, those same songs would be quietly sung to her as she nursed in the middle of the night. And now, almost at 8 months, the songs still play in the background in the evening, and I still sing them softly to her as she takes her bed time bottle. And hope... that someday... they will create the foundation for the soundtrack of her life.

To parents everywhere, may the songs that are in the soundtrack to your life... articulate what you can not. And heal your soul when they need to. And most of all... perhaps, in some small way... they will tell us Who Dropped the Pacifier.

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