It’s Day 328 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and my daughter’s junior high Select Vocal Ensemble solo confirmed she’s my mini-me – at least as far as music is concerned. In typical teen fashion, Liv waited until the last minute to inform me of her solo and when I gently chided her, she defended herself with, Mommy, I didn’t even try out for it! Hearing that explanation made me suspect her choir teacher had discovered the magical quality of Liv’s voice and wanted to give her a chance to shine – one that she wouldn’t have taken if she’d had to audition for it. And sure enough, though the students all sang beautifully, when petite Liv stepped up to the mic the lyrics, What would you do if I sang out of tune?, rang out pure and true, somehow special – and perfectly in tune. It reminded me so much of when I was her age and would sing. People didn’t expect that voice to come out of my body…And I earned my teaching degree on a singing scholarship. In that way, I learned tonight that Liv is my musical mini-me.
In so many other ways, Liv is like her father. When she was born, the doctor laid her on my belly and her skin colored appeared to be the same color as mine, her nose was smooshed and looked broad like mine, and her hair was wet and curly like mine – from the birth process. She looked exactly like my baby picture – like I’d spit her out! Then they whisked my mini me away and brought back her father! It seemed bathing her washed the color off her skin, the curl out of her hair and somehow it perked her nose up! Though she was a biracial baby girl – she looked like a White man! Once while we were at the pool with his mother, Liv threw a fit. I shook my head and said, That face looks like his. My mother-in-law’s response: They all look like his! As Liv’s gotten older she’s reverted to looking more biracial, but her expressions, mannerisms – so much is like him. All I can do is love her and laugh about it.
Even so, as a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose mom, there have been times when I wished I could see more of myself in her. Music has provided those glimpses. One Sunday morning when I sang CeCe Winan’s Alabaster Box at church, my husband told me Liv sat enraptured the whole time I was on stage. And we’ve always sung together – me, her and Levi – The Three Musketeers, which reminds me of how my brother and cousins used to put on talent shows in our back yard. But mostly, our love of American Idol has shown how alike we are. She was born the year the show started and we watched faithfully until it supposedly went off the air forever. We were as elated to learn it was coming back on as we were heartbroken when it went off the air because that meant her dream of auditioning would never come true. I’d put her in guitar and voice lessons to support her goal but somewhere amongst all the mess that divorce is, she quit lessons. The fact that she’s picked both up on her own, partly due to Idol, makes my heart sing. And now we watch together – even if we’re not in the same physical space – and text throughout. Our favorites, opinions, reactions, etc. are usually identical.
Cami (Yes, like Tammi) Liv may not look like her mama, but she sure sounds like her. So at least as far as music goes – she’ll always be my mini me.
Be savvy & chic,
~Pink Collar Coach