I’ve heard it too many times to ignore it, it’s something that I’m supposed to be.
When the boys were babies I had a vast repertoire of songs I would sing them ranging from Amazing Grace to I Walk the Line. But my no-fail, go-to songs were the rainbow songs. Today, in the car, the magnificent rainbow in the sky prompted me to belt out Dorothy’s and my theme. C finally told me he didn’t even like that song which only made me sing with more gusto. I told him he loved it as a baby to which he harrumphed with all the disdain an eight year-old can muster for his hopelessly uncool mom.
Later while we were cooking dinner, I asked him why he didn’t like it and he said because it was old. And he didn’t like my singing. Nice. Well, what about this one? I asked and launched into the Rainbow Connection. He listened with a little smile on his face and I remember how I’d sing to them while I was making dinner or doing dishes and they’d sit and watch the one-woman show from their bouncy seats. I’d change the lyrics and sing, “Someday we’ll find it, the rainbow connection, the C’s, the G’s, and me…” They would giggle and smile as I sang their names and we passed many an evening in this way.
Those songs had always been favorites but after having the boys they struck a different chord of longing in me. Now they were mixed up not only with my own dreams but my dreams and hopes and fears for them. As they get older and their personalities solidify and I see how close the apples have fallen to the tree, I know that they will hear the siren songs of their own dreams. I hope that they will listen and follow their hearts’ desires no matter how far away it seems to be.
I put some of my dreams on hold when these boys came along and I realized that it was going to be solely up to me to take care of them. Some new dreams began to form: dreams of being a good mommy, of providing a happy childhood, of finding a good man to share it all with and make our family complete. At times, these dreams seem as unattainable as becoming an astronaut. Like when they were babies and the songs didn’t work and I couldn’t do anything but sit and cry with them. Or when I had to pull over to the side of the road on my way to work and scrounge on the floor mats of my car for change to afford the bridge toll and then hand the coins to the attendant in shame. Or when they were sick or I was sick or when we had the fire or when they’d ask about their dad and I had no answers. It seemed like I could never be enough or do enough to make it right.
But slowly, almost without my noticing, they have begun to take shape. We are on our path, a good path, and are making connections. The boys are beginning to dream their own dreams and I have returned to mine with passion. We will continue in our daring, we will follow the rainbows and I know that what is waiting for us all is pure gold.