There is a tribe in Africa where the birth date of a child is counted not from when they were born, nor from when they are conceived but from the day that the child was a thought in its mother’s mind. And when a woman decides that she will have a child, she goes off and sits under a tree, by herself, and she listens until she can hear the song of the child that wants to come. And after she’s heard the song of this child, she comes back to the man who will be the child’s father, and teaches it to him. And then, when they make love to physically conceive the child, some of that time they sing the song of the child, as a way to invite it.
And then, when the mother is pregnant, the mother teaches that child’s song to the midwives and the old women of the village, so that when the child is born, the old women and the people around her sing the child’s song to welcome it. And then, as the child grows up, the other villagers are taught the child’s song. If the child falls, or hurts its knee, someone picks it up and sings its song to it. Or perhaps the child does something wonderful, or goes through the rites of puberty, then as a way of honoring this person, the people of the village sing his or her song.
In the African tribe there is one other occasion upon which the villagers sing to the child. If at any time during his or her life, the person commits a crime or aberrant social act, the individual is called to the center of the village and the people in the community form a circle around them. Then they sing their song to them.
The tribe recognizes that the correction for antisocial behavior is not punishment; it is love and the remembrance of identity. When you recognize your own song, you have no desire or need to do anything that would hurt another.
And it goes this way through their life. In marriage, the songs are sung, together. And finally, when this child is lying in bed, ready to die, all the villagers know his or her song, and they sing—for the last time—the song to that person.
You may not have grown up in an African tribe that sings your song to you at crucial life transitions, but life is always reminding you when you are in tune with yourself and when you are not. When you feel good, what you are doing matches your song, and when you feel awful, it doesn’t. In the end, we shall all recognize our song and sing it well. You may feel a little warbly at the moment, but so have all the great singers. Just keep singing and you’ll find your way home.
The beauty in this post… :’)
My daughters first birthday is next week. Her father and I split. On very bad terms. And now he pretty much wants nothing to do with me. He hasn’t seen his daughter since we broke up. I highly doubt he’s even bought her a single thing for her birthday. And yet, there’s a part of me that just can’t let go. And its driving me crazy. I work all day and have school all night and take care of Gabriella when I get up when she wakes up. I’m so stressed out. And I’ve been missing so much with Gabriella. I feel like keeping it all together at this point with so much going on all at once. Seems so impossible and such a struggle…
And I’m pretty positive Im dealing with some horrible separation issues.. I started school a month ago, so I litterally work all day and go to school all night. I haven’t actually seen/spent time with my daughter in two weeks. Its killing me. And the past three nights in a row I’ve litterally broke down. I can’t stop thinking about her. I can’t stop missing her. I can’t stop just wanting the feeling of her wrapped in my arms. And on top of that. I left my boyfriend. Her father. It was a terrible breakup. I’m just so hurt and lost. And ugh. I have so many mixed emotions. I’m a train wreck. But far worse. No one understands. They try to and say they do. But they honestly just don’t. I’m super stressed out and feeling so down. I don’t know what to do. I just my life back to the way it was before. I miss my family.
Ugh. This really just irritates and boggles my mind. I just don’t even understand. And I can’t stop thinking about it. How can you let your child’s teeth get so bad to the point they are litterally black with holes, and instead of using your money to get them fixed, you use it for hairdressing school. Like really?..
I start the next step to my career on Monday! Marinello Schools of Beauty, here I come!
Not to know who he is or why he rejected me three times throughout my life. No. But because I just want him to see me. A beautiful young lady. Holding his beautiful granddaughter in arms. And telling him, “I never needed you. But boy did you miss out. Look how far I’ve come.” Then smile politely and walk away. I want to see his reaction to seeing me. Whether its good or bad. I don’t care. It won’t hurt me either way. I mean. How can you have feelings for someone who never loved you? Or wanted you?
I know my reasons are wrong. But he deserves to see what he gave up. He deserves to feel that emptiness I’ve felt my entire life. Until I finally realized. I was never empty. Just too full.
My mother is a damn good mother.