Tuesday, December 21, 2021

I Hope You Dance

Music. Music not only touches our heart, music tells the story of our lives.


Music has been a huge part of shaping me into the person I am today. I grew up with everything from hymns to show tunes. I gained knowledge and appreciation for all music. I learned to appreciate the richness of bluegrass as well as the nuances of classical music.


I cannot remember a single car trip from my childhood that wasn’t filled with singing. As a matter of fact, I’m sure my own three daughters will likely say the same thing about their growing up years. The autumn my husband died, we had planned to record a collection of the car songs for our children and grandchildren for Christmas. 


Music provides a way to connect with people across generations. And cultures.


My parents loved musicals. They enjoyed Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma so much they bought the album. I played it over and over. When I came into the Waters family, my mother-in-law delighted in my one-person rendition of the musical Oklahoma. She had me perform it more than once in her living room. 


My late husband sang in the choir. My oldest daughter took up the flute for marching band, my middle daughter plays the French horn, and my youngest still “fiddles around” with her violin.


The old hymns were at the core of my maternal grandmother’s being. They remained untouched by the dementia that stole so much of her memory. All we needed to do was to begin to sing one of those hymns and grandma would join in. 


Music is powerful.


This last week, friends and family gathered at my house for a Christmas caroling party. It is the way I have recognized my wedding anniversary these past seven years. This year would have marked my fiftieth anniversary of marriage to Tom Waters. 


The music filled my house. (Now I know why they are called cathedral ceilings. The sound was amazingly beautiful as we sang our way through the Christmas story.) The songs and story warmed my heart.


Only eight days earlier, we had buried my Uncle Noah. That day, as the story of his life unfolded both through words and song, I thought about the theme song of my own life. 


Many people who know me might think I would choose a beloved hymn or something I enjoy from the contemporary Christian music genre.


I like that music. I sing it all the time. I listen to it on my Alexa and in the car. It fills me up.


But the song I would choose to pass on to my loved ones may surprise you. It is Ronan Keating’s version of I Hope You Dance. I’m including the YouTube link below.


Here is a sample. I find myself in these verses.


I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean

Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens

Promise me that you’ll give faith a fighting chance

And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance…

I hope you dance.


I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance,

Never settle for the path of least resistance,

Living life might mean taking chances, but they’re worth taking,

Loving might be a mistake, but it’s worth making.


Yeah…I hope you dance. And for the whole song, CLICK HERE.


What is the music of your life?

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