My kids were off on Spring Break last week and we spent our time, as we always do, at my childhood home in Encinitas. This time, though, we had an extra -- my cousin, Emma, who was in town and stayed with my parents... with all of us, for the better half of the week.

Emma brought her guitar and every night before bed, came into the twins' room as I was lying down with them and played this song for them. For us. 

...And I cried because, I couldn't help it. Because her voice was so beautiful and the lyrics walloped me as I lay huddled between my girls in the darkness...

Oh my Mama
She gave me these feathered breaths
Oh my Mama
She told me use your voice, 
My little bird

She said sing sing sing sing sing sing melodies
And she sang sang sang sang sang sang melodies

Oh my Mama
She did give me fancy feet
I'll be dancing on
And I'll tap tap tap my toes
Into those creaking floorboards

Oh my Mama
She took my little hand and held on tight
Oh the Mamas
Give the waters of their wells
Oh the Mamas
Give the babies this very dirt we're walking on
Oh my Mama
She gave me these feathered breaths
And your Mama
She gave you those feathered breaths too

And when the sky drops all those feathers
And when the birds sing in the morning
I'll be a mama
I'll have a daughter
I'll be a mama
I'll have a daughter

And I'll give her melodies
I'll give her melodies

And she'll be
My little bird
And then she'll fly
She'll fly

...Because curled up between my little girls I felt like one, too. A mama, too, but also... like someone's little bird. 

I told Emma, before she left, that I wished we could bring her with us... to sing for us before bed and hike with us through flower fields and teach us how to climb rocks in our favorite dresses...
IMG_2536 IMG_2159
Alas, she had to back to college and her life and continue on her path to world-domination. But this song reminds me of her. And the feeling that I get sometimes when I realize that just because I'm a mother doesn't mean I'm not also a child...

Because all mothers are...

Because sometimes we need lullabies, too.

Thanks for all the beautiful songs, Emma. We love you. 


269. Oh my mama by: Alela Diane