Thursday, December 4, 2008

The Rainbow Song

I grew up in a home with a mother who liked to sing. She had a beautiful voice, an alto, and I remember her singing all the time: vacuuming, cooking, sewing, gardening, driving. Sometimes she would put on an LP, crank it up, dance in our living room, and sing her little heart out. Maybe that's where the divine dances of the ya ya brotherhood originated in my head! I loved to hear my mother sing when I was little. I really loved it when she sang "que sera, sera." (What is that song actually called? Did Doris Day sing it?) That song had an impact on my older sister as well; a couple of years ago, while she was in Paris, she texted me to tell me that it was playing in the little cafe where she was enjoying a brioche and coffee! As I got older, I thought my mom was weird - nobody else's mom sang all the time and nobody danced around!

For me, music and memory tie together in my brain. Certain songs evoke very specific memories for me, both good and bad. Thankfully, all of the songs I remember my mother singing bring up warm fuzzies and smiles. Maybe it's because of the strong impact my mother's singing had on me, but I really wanted to sing to my children. I don't have a very good singing voice, but everyone always told me it doesn't matter to little kids, so I decided I would try it. When my sons were infants, I sang made-up silly songs to them during playtime, and they smiled. I would pace with them during the witching hours - those long nights when baby just won't sleep - and sing. I couldn't remember the words to very many songs, so I sang weird songs like "Silent Night" and "The Ants Go Marching One by One." The one song I remembered - a full three verses - was "que sera, sera." I sang that song to them a lot.

We did a lot of singing in the car on the ride home from Disneyland earlier this week, but it was more of the silly made-up type. For example, I made up a song about their stinky feet, which they LOVED. We sang it over and over again while they stuck their stinky feet on my center console and I tickled their toes. Sweetie asked me to sing it again today. He loves it when I sing. Stinker doesn't. Most of the time when I sing, Stinker tells me to stop.

Imagine my surprise when, at bedtime tonight, Stinker asked me to sing him the Rainbow song. The Rainbow song? What's that? I kept thinking about the made-up songs ... did one have a rainbow in it? No. Nursery rhyme songs? No. What the heck was he talking about? And then it hit me. He wanted me to sing him "que sera, sera." I sing three verses, and the second verse (as I sing it - who knows what it actually is) is:

Then I grew up and fell in love,
I asked my sweetheart, "what lies ahead?
Will there be rainbows, day after day?"
Here's what my sweetheart said:
Que sera, sera. Whatever will be, will be.
The future's not ours to see. Que sera, sera.

When I said "are you talking about the que sera, sera song?" he said. "yeah, yeah, sing dat one." I can't remember the last time I sang that song to either one of my boys. I have no idea what prompted him to ask me to sing. But I loved it. And I sang it. And he made a yummy noise! I was not surprised when Sweetie came into Stinker's room and said, "sing it to me, sing it to me." So I did. And then he made a yummy noise. I am a lucky mom; other than giggling, there's nothing better than a yummy noise from my sons.

1 comment:

a corgi said...

what a sweet story; so neat your sons enjoy the same song you did when your mom sang it to you :)

betty