A few notes of a melody can transport us back to a feeling so strong, if you close your eyes you can go back to where a song first changed your life. Songs can be the scrapbook of our lives, and if we can hear just the right notes, in the right order, nirvana truly can come over us—just like Kurt Cobain wholeheartedly believed. I wanted the lullaby I sang to my child to be that powerful.
Songs can inspire.
Lyrics can teach.
Melodies can console.
As I was pregnant, I thought a lot about what lullabies I would sing to my baby nightly. The requirements of selecting this song had a lot of requirements in my mind:
- I had to know the words. Upon my initial considerations, I thought, maybe I could learn the lyrics to a song I especially loved if I thought it was the perfect song. But, when pregnant, I had more pressing tasks on my preparations for baby that I never did get around to learning the perfect song.
- It had to have a powerful message. I didn’t want to pick a song that didn’t have some sort of “lesson” as a takeaway. If I was going to be singing this song nightly for the next five years, my kid was most likely going to have some takeaway from it. The pressure of what type of message I wanted it to have was daunting: love of country, love of God, love of self. All of the above?
- It had to be a bit unique. I was a music major in college and I didn’t want to be stuck with something like ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,’ because it might had killed my musician’s brain just a little bit. Nothing against those songs if they work for you, but for me, the legacy I wanted my lullabies to have was more heavy lifting than good old ‘Hush Little Baby’ had in it.
It took a while to settle into a lullaby routine, but it organically happened, and the songs that rose to the top are perfect. They’re inspiriting lyrics with a message I hope my son will treasure no matter his age.
By letting the lullabies come to my heart instead of over-analyzing them with my head, the perfect mix of patriotism, courage and love are the lasting impressions my son’s lullabies leave him with every night.
Want to know what they are?
We round out the night with The Lord’s Prayer, then it’s time for sleep. I’ve been singing these songs for 150+ nights so far, and I’m happy to report I’m still satisfied with my selections.
I’d love to hear what songs you sing to your kiddos, and if there’s any intention behind them like there was for me. Please share in the comments!
Looking for more ways to teach through music with your kids? Check out our post with 4 fun ideas!