Life: The Musical

My mother used to haul around one of those gigantic RCA camcorders when we were kids. You know, the kind that had its own (suit)case, shoulder cushion, and area code. She captured some solid stuff with that monster – Levi chasing his first (and only) show cow down our gravel road, Cody sneaking handfuls of melting M & M’s into his overall pockets.

Me singing.

I was a dainty child with wispy blonde hair and large brown eyes, a delicate peanut until I opened my mouth. Even as a kid, my voice was deep and serious, as if I had a grown woman trapped somewhere inside my tiny body. Yes, Mom’s VHS tapes show a 30-year-old toddler belting out various homemade songs – never softly, sometimes gracefully, always passionately.

Music makes colors brighter and emotions richer; it heightens reality in a way nothing else can. Kids get it and adults forget it – until they bust out “Grease” and “Pitch Perfect” with a roomful of friends … and their veins, infused with burnt popcorn and cheap beer, begin to pulse with adrenaline. Because – well, because I’m cool enough to break out in random song throughout the day. I look just like Sandy when I sing about my first love, after all, and I can totally rock that a cappella swag with my homeys (spellcheck insists this is the correct plural of “homey,” by the way).

Wait, no? Just me? Well. That’s embarrassing.

But life is so much cooler when it’s a musical, don’t you think? Drinking coffee in choreographed bliss, grading papers in harmonized heaven, balancing checkbooks in rhythmic perfection.

You rock it, childhood Kara. You go, girl.

Savannah and I have a new summer jam. It’s called “Put Your Records On” by Corinne Bailey Rae and it’s what every summer jam should be – pure awesomeness. Every time we listen to it, we dance like tomorrow isn’t coming and we sing like that’s okay because today is enough.

And I record my daughter while she belts out the lyrics.

Because someday she and her sister may need reminded that life can be is a musical.

Rock On, Little Ladies.


  1. says

    I love this! I can totally relate. My brothers and I were part of band and took lessons for piano, trumpet, drums, bass, and guitar between the three of us. My husband and I were friends in high school largely due to a shared love of the same music. We do dance party in our house OFTEN. Because life is so much better set to music :)

  2. says

    Hi Kara, My friend Katie ^^ sent me over and I'm glad she did. Your blog is lovely, as is your writing voice. I also struggled with PPD and have been on medication for about 20 years for depression and anxiety, so I can relate to that.

    I can't believe you met your husband in kindergarten. I'm not sure if I've ever met anyone who did that. :-)

    • says

      Thank you for stopping by! The more I immerse myself in blogging, the more I realize I'm not alone; kind words like yours mean the world to me. Please come back … making new friends is the reason I do this. :)

  3. says

    I have a soundtrack that runs continuously in my head. I never sing aloud with it though. That would scare away all people and animals within a 10 mile radius.

    • says

      Ha, I know exactly what you mean! My husband runs for the basement every time I sing in the shower. I'd hate to see how the rest of the world would respond…

  4. says

    Recording all of our precious children's moments, is practically a mother's job requirement :) You'll love watching them when she's older!

  5. says

    My oldest son is a dancer. He bopped to the beat even when he was still in my uterus. My youngest son never did that. But, even before he really started to talk, I noticed him singing. Eventually, I had to ask his brother what songs they were, because I couldn't place it, but they were definitely songs from daycare. At two years old, you definitely know when he has a song in his head, because he doesn't stop singing it. I love it.

    • says

      I envy that lack of inhibition! Kids do and say what they feel. Wouldn't it be nice if people carried that confidence into adulthood?

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