Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Bed Time Story for Claire and Jane, Part Two

Now, let's see . . . where were we?  Ah, yes . . .
The little girl did not want to sing for anyone, at any time, ever again!
She stopped writing songs, she didn't care to sing much anymore, and the sounds of music in the world around her grew fainter and fainter until she could barely hear them at all.  Somehow, she had allowed the voices of her young friends to drown out the music that made her heart glow deep within her chest until only a tiny spark remained.

The day soon came when the young woman's parents said, "It's time to go home now.  But we are not going back to the place where you once ran barefoot through the mud and tall grass.  We are going to our new home on 1271 Aspen Ave. in a place called Provo, Utah.  You will like it there."  Together, they boarded a big airplane that would take them across the world to this strange new place.  The airplane zoomed into the sky.  Up, Up, Up they soared!  But as the airplane ascended, tears fell from the young woman's eyes.  She felt small and lost as she surveyed the patchwork expanse far below.  Who am I?  Where is the happy little girl with the muddy feet?  Why has the music all around me grown so quiet?

She closed her eyes and relaxed, feeling the tingling vibration of the airplane.  It had been a long time since the young woman had sat still, feeling and listening to the world around.  She liked this feeling.  It reminded her of when she was a little girl, laying under the piano as her sisters played Rachmoninov and Debussy.  Suddenly, the young woman realized that it wasn't completely quiet on the airplane.  The vibrations of the airplane created a soothing humming sound.  She began to hum along and the spark deep within her chest flickered.

Without the voices of the past to drown things out, little by little, the young woman began to hear the music again. In her new neighborhood, all you had to do was walk out your front door and the sound of a trombone, or a piano concerto would waft out of nearby windows.   At her new school there were musical plays, marching bands, and choral voices flooding into the hallways from the music room.  The fire in her heart began to glow brighter than it had in years.  Of course, she wanted to be a part of it ALL.  

She tried out for the school musical.
She did not get a part.
She tried out for the chamber choir.
She did not make it in.
She asked Momma if she could take voice lessons.
"We don't have the money," said Momma.

The young woman did not want to lose the music again.  She did not want negative voices, even her own at times, to decide how her life would be.  
"Since no one will give me a chance," said the young woman, "I will create my own way to make music."

At once, she found a job and made smoothies so she could pay for voice lessons.  She started a band, she got an internship at a recording studio and the young woman began to learn.  She graduated from high school and started college.  Again, she tried out for plays, musical ensembles, and choirs.  Again, she did not make it into a single one.  

"Maybe you should study something that you're really good at, like Spanish!" said Dad, only trying to be helpful.

No, thought the young woman.  I will not give up!  It is a very good thing the young woman did not give up because you know what happened?  She tried out for the School of Music the next year at her college and for the first time, she passed an audition.  She was in!  Not long after that, she got into the best choir, then she got a record deal and made a CD that won some awards.  Yet, while these things were cool, awards and record deals did not make the fire glow deep within her chest.  She felt that fire the most when she sang for people, just as she had as a child.

On a warm October night in Arizona, the young woman sang under blue and green lights on a concert stage.  This was a special concert because it was dedicated to her dear friend who was in the hospital.  The 
most amazing part of the concert was when her friend's two little girls came on stage with twinkling eyes.  The three of them sang a lullaby together for their friend and mother.  The song was not perfectly sung, but the spirit of it was perfectly exquisite.  The audience cried and then cheered!  But the little girls were bummed out that things didn't go as smoothly as planned.  So the young woman wrote them a bed time story.  She told them all about the time when her friends laughed at her after she sang a song.  She wrote about how she tried out for a hundred things and never got in.  But the moral of the story is that we should keep on trying even when we make a mistake!

I happened to be at the concert when the young woman and the two little girls sang, and when they did, I felt a little fire glow deep inside my chest . . .

Sweet dreams my lovelies.


  1. I don't need to be emotional on a Monday morning, Mindy. But thanks. It was beautiful.

  2. That's beautiful, Mindy, and I can completely relate to that young woman's experiences of never making the cut. I'm so glad she persevered!

  3. Dear Mindy,
    Our little girls love 'golden slumbers' and sing it to their baby sister (7 months).

    I would love to see that story illustrated and published! Thankyou for sharing it not just with Jane and Claire but with all your readers.


  4. what a sweet pleasure to read, mindy.

  5. I agree...I would love to see this illustrated and published. You bless this sweet family over and over.

  6. I happened to be there that evening and what a blessed opportunity it was. I was brought to tears by precious voices out of the two little girls. Children do carry such a sweet little spirit in them that we should all look at as an example. This little story is so beautiful. :) Thank you!