‘Ah, music, he said, wiping his eyes. A magic beyond all we do here!’
– JK Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Last night …
We had been in space.
The rocket bed was headed to Mars.
The stuffed animal astronauts were all in their pajama space suits.
The room was completely dark, except for the Dora flashlight moon and the Barbie the Turtle stars.
Astronaut Katie tumbled out of the rocket bed, rolling through space and landing face down on a comet.
Commander Brooke and I tried to rescue her with chewing gum, but she wouldn’t hear of it – too sticky.
“You’re floating in space, “I said, “Take whatever you can get!”
Commander Brooke said, “We’ll throw a lasso rope!”
Astronaut Katie giggled from the carpet comet, “No, I’ll get rope burns!”
“Astronaut Katie, I’m throwing you a ladder,” said Commander Brooke.
“It’s wood and I could get a splinter!” Katie said from her comet.
I suggested we leave her in orbit, but Commander Brooke wouldn’t hear of leaving a fellow astronaut behind. She hurled herself into the atmosphere and ran to her sister, then dragged her by one arm across the rug galaxy and back to the safety of the bed ship.
We hadn’t played like this together in as long as I could remember. It had to be a year, maybe more. Brooke has been so afraid of Katie’s cough. It’s been … hard.
I tried to soak it all in – the creativity, the laughter, the love. I greedily devoured every last drop.
Eventually, we laid together in the quiet. Katie shined the flashlight moon onto the ceiling and we watched Dora and Boots ride a unicorn across the sky.
“Ooh,” Katie said, “let’s sing karaoke.”
She grabbed her phone and we sang. All of us. Together. Katie choosing song after song.
“Brooke is going to love this one, ” Katie said. “It has a bad word in it.”
Brooke giggled and giggled. I couldn’t help but laugh with her.
I drowned in gratitude.
And then Katie said, “Hey, can I sing one for you? I just started working on it, so I don’t really know it yet. Want to hear it?”
I told her that of course we did.
She said, “I’m going to stand up. I feel more comfortable that way.”
I told her she could stand on her head if it made her happy.
Brooke laughed at the idea of her sister upside down.
And then she sang.
And my God did she sing.
And the moment and the song and the darkness and the gratitude and the love and the pride and the awe and the Oh my God that’s my kid – it was magic.
And I asked her if she would do it again and let me video it, in part just because I wanted to hear it again. And again and again and again. And she said yes.
And well, this.
That’s my girl. Making magic.