Let me be your star!

There is a new show on TV that I have fallen in love with the soundtrack for. SMASH tells the tale of a group of people who decide to put together a musical about Marilyn Monroe’s life. The song writer, lyricist, singers, producer, dancers and director take you on a journey of how a stage musical comes together. Naturally I loved the first season of the show by sheer virtue of the fact that it was about the theatre and how all the people involved bring it together. The songs they wrote for the actual fictional musical they had created “Bombshell” were just amazing though.

I have downloaded the album of course, and have learnt to sing all the songs from it. Below I am going to post the lyrics to one of the songs which has particularly touched my heart. The song is called “Secondhand White Baby Grand” and as I learnt the lyrics and listened to the music this afternoon, I started to cry. Naturally, when something makes me cry I try to figure out what it has brought up in me that caused this. Read the lyrics first and then I’ll go into what I dug out of my emotional psyche.

“My mother bought it secondhand from a silent movie star

It was out of tune but still I learned to play

And with each note we both would smile forgetting who we are

And all the pain would simply fly away

Something secondhand and broken still can make a pretty sound

Even if it doesn’t have a place to live

Oh, the words were left unspoken when my Mama came around

But that secondhand white baby grand still had something beautiful to give

Through missing keys and broken strings the music was our own

Until the day we said our last goodbyes

The baby grand was sent away

A child all alone, to pray somebody else would realise

That something secondhand and broken still can make a pretty sound

Even if it doesn’t have a place to live

Oh, the words are still unspoken now that Mama’s not around

But that secondhand white baby grand still has something beautiful to give

For many years the music had to roam

Until we found a way to find a home

So now I wake up every day and see her standing there

Just waiting for a partner to compose

And I wish my mother still could hear that sound beyond compare

I’ll play her song till everybody knows

That something secondhand and broken still can make a pretty sound

Don’t we all deserve a family room to live

Oh, the words can’t stay unspoken until everyone has found

That seconhand white baby grand that still has something beautiful to give

I still have something beautiful to give”

Now, my life bears absolutely no parallels to Marilyn Monroe. My mother loves me a lot and always has. I have always had a home, never had or could play a piano, white or otherwise, and I don’t see myself as secondhand and broken. Or do I? Hmmmm… this is where I started to think a little deeper about what was going on with me as I originally watched this show and heard these songs.

Obviously, homeschooling and helping my little boy is currently the most important task in my life right now. What can be more important or rewarding that helping a struggling child to find his place in the world without stress or trouble? Where does all this time spent doing that leave me though? Something I have always wanted to do in my life, (apart from being a writer) is be a stage performer. More specifically in musical theatre. As I watched SMASH and saw how talented and committed these people were to their craft I realised a few things.

1. I am way too old to ever make that dream happen for me now.

2. I never had enough drive or push within myself to force myself to keep learning the skills needed to get my singing to a level of professionalism needed for that kind of work.

3. The life of a stage performer, even if they become very successful is often unstable, unfullfilling and often takes you away from your family for extended periods of time. This would therefore mean that there is no way I would have been able to manage that life and the life I currently have at the same time. Rehearsals, performances, coaching, dance classes etc. are all very time consuming activities which require to you focus on yourself for a large percentage of time, and I quite simply cannot do that.

Ahhh… There it is. I have neither money nor time to truly focus my attention or energy on anything that I really love doing. Yes, I get to read and I love that. I occasionally get to write, and I love that too. I sing all the time at home, and I love that. But if I wanted to pursue any of those things to the level I would wish to, I would need a hell of a lot more time for lessons, study and practice. That’s just the way it is.

So I think that is what made me cry. The realisation that I will never have time to be or do the things I dreamed. Now that doesn’t mean I won’t feel fulfilled and extremely proud when I get this whole little human being to a place where he can learn independently and manage socially so that he can follow his own dreams. Of course I will. That is a given. I guess I just miss the idea that I can still follow any dreams of my own. I guess that is what dreaming is though. I can’t be stopped from dreaming it, I just won’t be able to ever achieve those dreams. Time, money and age simply won’t allow it.

You will be pleased to know however, that I have now sung myself hoarse this afternoon, and am feeling quite up beat and happy as I write this 🙂

My little boy is watching some documentary about stealth fighter planes and has requested that I bring out all his Lego so that he can build a stealth fighter right now, and so off I go to lug Lego crates……..

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