I anticipated a lot.
The zombie-like state from sleep deprivation. The bodily fluids that would surely get on me from time to time. Pushing the stroller around the block 89 times to keep her happy. Wearing my heart outside my chest from now on. The highest highs and the lowest lows. What I did not anticipate, however, was the one-woman Broadway show I’d be putting on multiple times a day. I must have missed that chapter in the baby book?
No one told me that on top of being a mother, nurse, chef, chauffeur, danger analyst, maid, and teacher all day, I would also be cast as the lead in our own Broadway act that performs 7 days a week. Multiple times a day. Despite all circumstances. For one tiny audience member. And without pay.
I wasn’t prepared. My musical background starts and ends with one year of choir in middle school because it was that or two years of band. When I had soccer and basketball to focus on, ain’t nobody got time for that. My extensive dance background includes failed talent show dances with my friends in middle school, the typical bump and grind that is now the norm at high school dances (which as a mom now, I despise), and late night dance-offs in college that usually ended in injuries. I wasn’t prepared, and I wasn’t qualified. But let me tell you – in this house, we sing and dance with gusto.
It started when Tayler was just a few weeks old. She’d be sitting in her car seat on the bathroom floor as I attempted to put on a layer of mascara and run a brush through my hair. With Disney Pandora turned up, I’d change character at the drop of a hat and give Sebastian or Belle a run for their money. Little Tayler would smile, and she eventually began her first happy coo’s in that bathroom as she watched mom flex her pipes into the head of her hairbrush.
Whatever makes her happy, right?
Since then, we spend much of our day listening to Disney music, humming in unison, and pop ‘n locking to our favorite jams on the radio. Sometimes I’ve got a tiny side kick that acts as my hype girl, and sometimes its just me pretending to know the lyrics to songs while doing sporadic kicks, claps, and shuffles across the kitchen to keep her entertained as I make lunch on the stove. She laughs with me, and I often laugh at her. The girl has moves that can’t be taught.
We share enthusiasm and have a commitment to the moment that is unparalleled. I previously thought I demonstrated commitment to the moment when I would sing in the shower. That was nothing, however, compared to what takes over me when the Mulan soundtrack comes on. If I were secretly videotaped and someone muted the audio to my performance, the video could be shown as inspiration for almost any occasion. I’m certain of it.
For a girl without a musical bone in her body, I’ve come to embrace the shows I put on each day. Music, silliness, and dancing like no one is watching (and thank goodness they aren’t) is good for our mind, body, and soul. I am severely overworked and underpaid for this job, and I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to work on my rendition of “The Bare Necessities”. Baloo needs work.