Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Matt's New Hobby

Matt used some of his Christmas money to pursue his newest passion: The Banjo. How exciting!

He ordered this one from Amazon and now spends his spare time watching instructional videos on YouTube. I love that he'll be modeling a musical instrument and constant learning for our little boy. He hasn't decided on his first real song yet. He wanted to go with Modest Mouse, but I begged him to pick something a) a little easier and b) that could be our baby's song. I read this excerpt from Living Passages for the Whole Family: Celebrating Rites of Passage from Birth to Adulthood and have been thinking about our "baby's song" ever since:

The story is told of a group of people
somewhere on the vast continent of Africa
who celebrate their birth not on the day they were born,
not even on the day they were conceived,
but on the day they became a thought in their mother's mind.
On that day, the mother goes out and listens for her child's song.
Upon hearing the song, she sings it.
She goes back home and teaches it to her mate.
Each time they mate, they sing the song.
On the day the child is born, the people
gather in the birthing room and sing the song.
This becomes the newborn's song for their whole life.
When they cry for mama as a baby, she sings the song;
when they fall and skin a knee as a child,
the song is there to comfort.
All through life the person can always find solace in their song.
And when the person comes to the time of death,
again the people gather in the room and sing that song.

--As told by Anita Jones

It's making me want to pick up an instrument, too. I used to say I wanted to play a cow bell in a band (mainly because I'm not musically-inclined and it seemed like the easiest thing to pick up). Now I'm thinking about the glockenspiel...

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Anonymous said...

I went to a birth where the family had picked a song for their baby. It was AMAZING. We had dinner at their house before the birth and they taught us the song and then their doula reminded everyone to sing it occasionally throughout the birth when she was having a tough time. We sang it after the baby was born as well. Such a sweet idea.

Anonymous said...

Yay banjo!

redfrizzz said...

I used to nanny for a family of highly musically inclined parents. The kids picked up the 'glockenspiel,' a cookie cooling rack and a wooden spoon- played by passionately hitting the rack with the spoon and smiling wildly...:)
good luck with the banjo- it's a beautiful instrument!

Latrice said...

All 3 of my children (12,8 & 4)have songs. I picked them off the radio, but it is a song that each of them own and have heard since they were in my womb. My 2 oldest children now has a mp3 player with their song downloaded on them. They have always found comfort in listening to their song. It definitely soothed them as babies, whenever they would cry, I would sing their song to them. I don't even think that they knew it was a radio version of the song until they were about 4 years old! I always sang their song. It was always our thing and I love that each individual child has a bond with me through their song!

Meg said...

There's nothing more encouraging than taking music lessons along with your child! Maybe the family could take piano lessons together.

I love your idea of a baby song. I know someday I'd like to sing The Beatles' "Golden Slumber" to my child before bed every night.

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