Heard this song before? It’s one of my all time favorites: hard, passionate, rockin’, beautiful; it hits me to the core every time I hear it bringing me back to a time when guitar solos ruled the radio. It had no less of an effect on me the other day when it came on in the car.
As I reached to turn up the volume, I turned my head back to my two kids in the back seat and quickly explained, “Mommy loves this song, I need to turn this up!” They both had nothing to say (nor could I hear them anyway), and they both looked on in wonder as their mother sang, screeched, drummed and head-banged all the way to our destination.
Near the end of the song, I tilted my rear view mirror to see their faces. I wondered what they were doing… My 3-year-old daughter was watching me – awestruck. My 4-year-old son had a smirk on his face and as he watched my mouth open wide with every lyric, his did too. We locked eyes and I smiled at him with my eyes (since my mouth and hands were busy) and he nodded back. We were all sharing a moment, united by music…. (so corny and I love it!)
When the song ended, after a long melisma of hairy screaming, a final riff of electric guitar and mellowed out acoustic arpeggios, I turned around in my seat (our car was parked by this time as we had reached our destination), put out my hands for high fives and exclaimed, “That was rockin’!”
And then the most beautiful thing happened, making this hair band loving mother so very proud. My son looked at me with all sincerity and said, “Thank you.”
I looked at his sweet face and asked, “What for?”
“Mommy, that was fun. I was singing with you.”
“I saw that. You really were, weren’t you!”
And as he and his sister climbed out of the car, I gave them each a hug and realized that was the first time they had ever really seen me rock out with such passion. Wow! They were really (positively) affected by it. It made my heart dance!
Those moments of passion, true enjoyment – why don’t I share those with my kids more often? Sure, we dance and play but that’s mostly me having fun with them. It’s important for them to have fun with me too, doing things I enjoy!
A couple of months back I wrote a post about teacher talents and how we need to share our talents with our students. This is along the same lines. My students really get something out of witnessing me enjoy the things I love: music, dance, science, poetry. It’s almost like, (here’s the tie in…) I need to Remember ME and not be afraid to share ME with my students.
I guess my bottom line is this:
We teachers need to remember to share ourselves more with our students – passionately: like a crazed, guitar lovin’, head bangin’, hard rockin’ fan.
Eliza, this is so uplifting; your kids will never forget this moment; nor will you. It made me recall sharing with my young kids the songs of Buddy Holly, American Pie, and the Ramones. And how they discovered The Clash on their own! Lowest moment of parenthood: came home from work, utterly exhausted; kids were dancing to “I Wanna Be Sedated;” I shooed them away and sat down for a quiet dinner with my wife and turned on James Taylor. Suddenly my face dropped into my hands as I asked “what’s happened to me?” High moment of parenthood: at a family resort a month ago, dancing with my 13yo and 16yo daughter to Kesha’s “Your Love is My Drug.” They couldn’t believe I knew all the words. You can maintain your dignity as a parent or teacher while still showing your kids/students you’re a passionate human being. They’ll love you all the more for it.
Mark – I love your stories! As corny as it is, music really does bring us closer together, huh? I’ve been there with a similar low moment. It’s hard. But those high ones are so wonderful! Now my only problem is, I can’t believe I’m saying this, keeping up with today’s music. (I am getting OLD??? Yuck!) So good for you for knowing the lyrics and impressing the heck out of your kids!
One more thing – I think it’s really cool how we inadvertently train our kids to love certain genres of music. It’s just one more powerful thing we are able to bestow on them!
Thanks for the blast from the past it was awesome! Watched it twice!
Elizabeth, I’m wondering if you have experienced the Music Together program, as a mother of young children. It had an amazing effect on me as a mother wanting to share my love for music with my toddler. Attending the program shows parents how easy and fun it can be to engage in honest to goodness music-making with their young children, and helps us incorporate music in our everyday lives, not just as passive consumers but as makers of music.
This is their website: http://www.musictogether.com .
Parents of the very young can have those head-banging rockin’ family moments, without even tapping into the adult-natured S and D and R&R lyrics/culture.
Jackie – It is so funny that you mention Music Together today because we (my two kids and I) went to our first session ever just yesterday! I was wonderful! Playing, singing, moving – it was everything I could ask for in a music program for young kids. And the best part was, by far, that we were there… sharing music together (haha) uninterrupted and in the raw! Can’t beat it!!
Mike – So glad you liked the video flashback. Sometimes hearing these songs out of the blue is just the best thing ever. Keep rockin’!