Veronica Bale

AND HER LITTLE WRITING LIFE

I have never read the “How To Be A Good Mother” handbook. If I had, I am sure I would not have committed so many #MomFails in my son’s eleven years. For instance, I might have read in the DOs and DON’Ts section of the Terrible Twos chapter that no matter how frazzled you are after a long workday, a long commute, subsubsub-zero January temperatures and an overcrowded daycare hallway at the crush of Pickup Time (like rush hour, only with goop-nosed toddlers in snowsuits), you should probably make sure your own goop-nosed spawn is wearing boots before you wrestle him out the door. 

But even though I have never read it, I am fairly confident the handbook does not have a section on how to diplomatically handle the situation when your child is passionate about something, but has absolutely squat in the corresponding talent department. There is nothing, I am sure, on what to do when no matter how much they do “It,” how hard they work at “It,” they just don’t have it, and never will. 

This episode of The Introspective Mama is brought to you by my tone-deaf Wee Man. Pitch is as natural to him as makeup is on a barn animal. He’s the kid who, when told he’s too high and needs to go lower… bends his knees. Pitch isn’t his only problem. When he “sings” (quotes intentional) he sounds like he’s trying to yawn and talk at the same time. 

Put simply, my son, my everything, the light of my very existence… croons like Young Frankenstein doing Puttin’ On the Ritz. 

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But when I mentioned he was never going to be a professional singer, something I thought he innately understood, tears welled up in his eyes and he said “No? That was kind of my dream.”

I discovered that night what my own foot tastes like. 

Pause here for a minute, and let’s talk about dreams. The thing with dreams is that if you want it bad enough, you’re going to find a way to make it happen. And let’s talk about music, while we’re on the subject. The thing with music is that you don’t have to have the golden pipes of Whitney Houston or Josh Groban to be a star. Because quite frankly (and I make no apology for the following statement to anyone who might take offense) if the likes of Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Michael Bolton can make it in the music industry with “pipes” which sound as though they a) have been chafed against a lemon zester, b) are on the verge of weeping hormonally, and c) are competing with holding in the after-dinner farts… then this whole music thing might be about more than just pitch and, you know, pleasurable sound. 

Now let’s come back to my wee man and his crushed dream. I had this Scrooge-inspired realization of The True Meaning of Music while playing “What Can Wee Man Find Next on Mommy’s Crazy-Ass Nonsense Playlist.” From Roxette to Weezer, from Bel Biv Devo to Placebo, from AC/DC to the entire Moana soundtrack, Wee Man chose… drumroll please…

No Games by Serani. 

I don’t blame you if you don’t know it (but if you do, then YOU ROCK!). It’s one of those songs that was popular when I was out joy riding in my early twenties on Mom and Dad’s gas money. The style is Reggae Fusion, and the artist performs it with vocals that are close to a plaintive moan… slightly on the flat side, and not at all unpleasant. 

JUST LIKE WEE MAN!! No joke. He loves the song, knows all the lyrics, and that off-pitch yawn-singing he does is dead on!

Maybe I haven’t crushed his dreams after all. Maybe he will find his niche and own it like William Hung owns She Bangs. 

Capture

Yet another #MomFail averted? My fingers are crossed.

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