The Ageless Lullaby
Why do we as humans believe at some point we no longer need to be sung to as a way to be comforted and soothed? Of course, as healthy adults we capably and responsibly take care of ourselves and others who depend on us, but, life isn’t always easy. Why do we stop considering that we too may deeply be relieved by the feeling of safety, comfort and peace we receive when someone lovingly sings to us? Why do we put an age on lullabies? Why do we assign a discriminatory age on the lullaby, and limit our opportunity to vulnerably and openly connect our soul with another human spirit, in a way that only the human voice can do? Why do we deny ourselves from receiving the ageless comfort of this loving gift?
And I have a few more questions because I think many people don’t sing because they say they aren’t good at singing.
Why do we judge our “skill” level? We don’t judge ourselves against Olympic athletes and say, “I shouldn’t exercise, I’m not good enough”. We don’t judge ourselves against world-renowned chefs and say, “I’m not going to cook, my meal won’t be nearly as good”. Why do we see singing only as a talent and not also as a way to make our lives healthier? Why do we objectify and judge ourselves when singing to and being sung to can actually improve the quality of our lives? We are crazy for doing so.
I just returned home from a conference called Singing for the Dying and it was profoundly moving (on more levels than I think I’m conscious of at this moment). I of course will continue to work on a cappella lullabies for children to support their wellness in my own little butterfly ripple way. But, as I venture into using lullabies in autism research and in my palliative care choir, and by uncovering studies documenting the benefits of lullabies on women with postpartum depression, those who are chronically ill and those with dementia – I realize more and more how much we all need this. We really do.
So please sing lovingly to someone and please let someone lovingly sing to you. And do it kind of often. It is imperative to our health, wellbeing and healing <3