Life has its ups and downs, and throughout history lullabies have reflected that. Many lullabies are filled with love and wonder at this precious new life, but many lullabies are about the less than joyous facts of life that just need to be expressed.
From small worries to big problems, parents sing about them in lullabies. There are songs from every culture expressing loneliness, fears, dreams, and hopes.
James Taylor sang to his children about the pain of being separated from them after his divorce. He wrote down those thoughts in “You Can Close Your Eyes,” as a bedtime message to his kids. Because he’s James Taylor, the whole world knew exactly what he was talking about, and that song has probably helped many other people by giving expression to their feelings about that same situation in their own lives.
“Well, it won’t be long before another day and we’re gonna have a good time
No one’s gonna take that time away, you can stay as long as you like
So close your eyes, you can close your eyes, it’s all right . . .”
The song “Summertime” is so well known that we forget that it’s actually a lullaby. The message is one of hope, of wishful thinking, of the dream of what a perfect world would look like:
“Summertime and the livin’ is easy, fish are jumpin’ and the cotton is high
Your daddy’s rich, and your ma is good-looking, so hush little baby, don’t you cry.”
Whatever your story is, whatever the day has been like, whatever your dreams for the future, tell it to your baby. Sing whatever you’re thinking and you’ll both feel better from it.
– “Road To Dreamland”: Winner of a Parents’ Choice Gold Award!