Music has always been able to ignite something deep in my soul. It is what I turn to no matter how I am feeling. Whether I am happy or sad, tired or energized, whimsical or grounded in reality. There is a beat and a melody out there that (almost) always matches my mood.
I am discovering through parenthood that this connection to music, melody, rhythm is innate. It is something with which we are born. When X was no more than two months old, he would sit in his bouncer and with a bass beat in the background, he would tap his foot. In time. It was pretty incredible. And now that he is bigger, anytime a song comes on, any song, he will stop what he is doing and just start dancing. It is as though moving to the beat is so far out of his control, he must dance. The smile on his face is infectious and you can’t help but bounce along with him.
I am told by other moms that their children are the same, feeling the rhythm early on. Recently I discovered that the Duggar family of TLC’s “18 Kids and Counting” don’t allow their children to dance. In fact, there is an episode where one child is reprimanded for dancing along to a musical toy at a store. I still haven’t found a clear explanation as to why they forbid it; many people have different theories, the ‘sexual suggestion’ of dancing seems to be in the forefront. But I thought to myself, how sad. It is so natural to want to move to a beat, tap your foot, nod your head. I see that in my baby boy. And to stifle that form of expression in a child? I can’t quite imagine it.
But what I can do is try and pass my love for music onto my son. Challenge him to explore all genres and find music that speaks to him. And if he can’t seem to find it, then maybe he will be inspired to create it on his own. To find the rhythm within his soul.