SOULTales - Character Strengths, Stories & Vocabulary

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Humming Bee in the house....

I must thank Anu for putting me on to this blog....
http://bookslinksandmore.blogspot.com/

It is fascinating as a mother to read another mother's journey. While my children were very small, I felt disconnected and so lost from the outside world. It is only in the past 5 years that blogging and internet has opened up such wonderful sharing. At the click of a mouse I am in someone's head, actually experiencing and listening to their thoughts....

This particular blog is by a mother who is parenting 2 gifted children. Surely she must be gifted. Her latest post triggered my thoughts today. She talks about her son's journey into the musical world, his forays into composing and the happiness he gets from it...

In a different way but somewhat similar way I too have a story to share...

I was a special educator while expecting my first child....(that was my avatar before this new one of a storyteller!). So you can imagine, I had severe pre-conceived notions and ideas of what was best for the growing baby in my tummy!

I had it in me that the baby should be exposed to Music! So morning was MS with Suprabhatham and Meera Bhajans, and evenings were country music/ rock, courtesy husband!
I would ( and I am not kidding) visualise the neurons in my growing foetus actually branching out as it responded to all that music!

Baby was born...
Reality hit me...
Struggled...

Yet my unwavering faith in music held on. She and I would listen to Ambika Kameshwar songs on cassettes. For those who don't know, these cassettes were de-rigeur where I worked as a special educator and are nursery rhymes in Tamil sung with a classical touch! Does it get any better??!!
Of course all this music was always interspersed with Country/ Western/ Rock music over the years, all thanks to a partner who loves his music with a passion( we are into Jazz now).

Now the foetus-infant-toddler-child is all grown up. Her journey with music continues. The first formal musical experience she had was at 4 and half, when I packed her off to Paattu Class , much to some people's disapproval. I was told not to push her, that she was too young, etc, etc...I know sometimes we mother's may appear to be this bossy, domineering, pushy types, but then there is something else that drives a mother, and that is Instinct.
Something told me she was ready...

We moved to Bangalore, and again I itched to start classes. I could teach her, but I am not a very disciplined or consistent person, so I refrained from any antics like this.
Proximity, sent us to a teacher. Though she sang amazingly, I realise not everyone is a good teacher...we hung on for a year...and then we quit by popular demand...because the teacher had raced her through the lessons and we reached Varnams in less than a year...phew...that was a supersonic jet!!

Internet had arrived in our home...and most importantly, I was connected. Google helped and we soon found an amazing Teacher, who "voice tested her" and she was "In"!!

The teacher was fantastic and the grown up child blossomed. Soon every one commented on how her voice had matured, her singing had matured...

We moved to Kanpur...

Hindustan music flooded our house, as I found a master to come home to teach both the children, Casio(a substitute for Harmonium) and Tabla...

It was not an easy experience, quality and excellence is the price to pay when you compromise. The master made house-callls, and that was the only good thing about the entire experience...
The younger brat quit before I could bat an eyelid. The older one protested but enjoyed the tabla sessions and substituted the pain with a bit of pleasure there...

I learnt...not to compromise...to quit if it does not feel right...

We came back to Bangalore...

We went back to our amazing music teacher. Lot of unlearning and relearning...hard work...almost daily classes...

The fruits of this labour?...

Within 3 months, she sings on stage with her group...and her efforts are appreciated by her teacher who does not compliment unnecessarily...

That's one golden star!!

(As always the best is for the last, isn't it?)

The crowning moment at this point for her is this:

The Star Super Singer tells me, she was asked to teach 3rd grade students a song for their group song competition. She did. Balancing her Lunch break time for that( they don't get time off from class for teaching!!)

And she has not stopped feeling absolutely delighted that they won first prize!!

I really don't know whether I am pushy as a mother on this. I really have had to keep her going, especially when in between she had to take all those extra classes to catch up. She gets discouraged when the Teacher scolds her for not practicing. Then I have to tell her, if she did not have potential her teacher would not be investing so much effort and time on her, blah, blah and blah...

But one thing I know...music is in her blood (thanks maybe to all those neuronal firing in the foetus??!!)
She is a "Hummer"...There is always a tune in her voice, a hum on her lips, and a song in her mind...I know, because non stop BGM (back ground music) is how the house exists when she is around...