A few weeks ago, I made a mix tape for a friend. Not really a mix tape, actually, since it was just one artist (The Beautiful South), and also not really a mix tape since it was a CD. As I gave it to her, I realized that my effort to share some of my favorite music with her was probably totally futile since she's a mom, and we moms don't have a lot of opportunities to sit around, chill, and listen to music just to see if we like it.
Never has this been more clear to me than recently. Just like I said I would, I've been gradually transferring our home video mini DV tapes to our computer and making DVDs out of the footage. The program I use (iMovie/iDVD, if you must know) (Death to Apple! And blast them for producing superior photo/video editing software so I am left with no choice but to use its products!) has the option to add music to the menus and I've had a lot of fun choosing songs from our music library that evoke the time period of the DVD footage. So the videos of our time living in American Fork are heavy on Guster and The Corrs, and the DVDs of Syria have a lot of Amr Diab, Grace Deeb, and Kazem as-Saher.
Then I got to the DVDs after Miriam was born, and I hit a brick wall of silence. For the first year and a half after her birth, I apparently didn't listen to very much music. I remember being vaguely aware of it at the time, but there wasn't much I could do about it. All of a sudden I had to have my mom ears on all the time to listen for her waking up from a nap, or getting into trouble, or she wanted to listen to "Open Shut Them" on repeat, or whatever. So when it came time to add music to those DVDs, I had to pay attention to the footage itself to see if there was any music on in the background to give me some clues as to any songs I may have listened to, at all. In the end, all I came up with was one Depeche Mode song that she and Jeremy were dancing to one night. Nice.
Then, suddenly, the music came back again, somewhere around January 2007. What happened then, you might ask? Simple: I got an iPod Shuffle (curse Apple for making a superior mp3 player with its seamlessly integrated iTunes software!).
Actually, Jeremy got an iPod Shuffle. But I commandeered it and started to listen to music while I went running. It took me a while to convince myself that this was OK - there seemed to be something inherently unsafe about running around with one of my senses disabled. And maybe there is, if it's Smashing Pumpkins turned up full blast. But the soundtrack from Pride & Prejudice played at a volume so low that I could still hear my kid chattering away in the jogging stroller? Not so much, surely.
Another thing that helped is that I decided to carry pepper spray when I went running.
I was, and am, so glad to have the music back in my life, and back on our home video DVDs. I'm still hopelessly behind the current music scene, and I think too many years have gone by for me to ever catch up, but I have an iTunes library full of favorites to keep me going.
Like The Beautiful South, for example, which I hope my friend gets to listen to sometime in the next couple of years.