When the kids were younger, and for whatever reason, when some kind of disagreement pursued between them, or I was trying to explain the beauty of accepting others for who they are, I’d sing, a small portion of the Youngblood’s song Get Together, “Come on people now, smile on your brother, everybody get together, try to love one another right now”. At some point one of the kids, probably Liz, asked if I had made the song up. “Of course!” I responded, as I continued to sing the same words over and over. And because they were young, they thought it was so cool, not really thinking about the fact I never sang any other words aside from the eighteen I repeated over and over until I had had enough.
I love those words, the combination of them. They tell a lot, say so much in such a small bundle of feelings. Truly, everybody, let’s do it, let’s get together, and love one another. Why not? It couldn’t hurt and I bet good things will come of it. Am I right? I’m right.
As the kids got a bit older, and I was, once again, singing, loud, proud, and feel-good happy both Liz and Roberto looked at me. And smiled. One of them, probably Roberto, agreed by Liz, said, “Mom. You are talented. That song is so good!” I laughed, said “Thanks,” and wanted to fall into the tune, to feel the peacefulness of it, but I couldn’t, not yet, not until I told them the truth.
“Okay. I have to be straight-up with you. Because, after-all, I am building trusting, honest relationships with you…..” I rambled on.
They stared at me. Confused. And Brad? Well, he was sitting in the back, tucked into his wee carseat, oblivious to our conversation.
“I didn’t make the song up. It’s not mine. I just love it so.” I smirked. They laughed.
“Oh, wow! I wondered how you could make up something so cool,” Liz admonished. She did a belly-roll, laughing until her sides hurt.
“Come on people now, smile on your brother, everybody get together, try to love one another right now” Roberto sang, in-between spurts of laughter.
That was a simple moment in our life, a building of community and genuine good will. A moment that set the standard for the beliefs that we have always held dear. Smile on your brother. Get together. Love one another. Right now.