Sing. Sing a song. Sing out loud. Sing out strong. Sing of good things, not bad. Sing of happy, not sad. Don't worry if it's not good enough, for anyone else to hear, just sing. Sing a song."
These are lyrics from a Sesame Street LP that I had as a child. I can still sing pretty much the whole album by memory. (Other classic hits included Ernie's "Rubber Ducky, You're the One" and the Count's "Bats in the Belfry".) As a child, I spent numerous hours, lying on the floor with my head next to the speaker of my grandparents' huge record player cabinet. It had sliding doors on the top. In the left side was the record player itself, in the right side was storage for the records. The unit was huge and took up the entire wall that was just inside their front door. During the holidays my grandmother would decorate the top with something seasonal. My grandpa sometimes hid our Easter eggs inside it.
In college I sang in two bands, with E. We wrote our own music most of the time and covered a Black Sabbath song or two. For my 40th bday last summer, having a Karaoke DJ was a must. I broke out the Coldplay, which I'd been practicing for a month. As the night wore on, and the keg grew empty, more and more friends and family let their inner crooners and rockers fly free.
For a few years now, I have been craving to sing on a regular basis. Not just in the shower or in the car (or full blast in my closet with a pillow over my face to not alarm the neighbors), but with a group of people. In public.
I thought about joining the Fallbrook Choir and it may still be an option in the future. They sing at public, patriotic events and dress in vintage costume for "Scrooge" every year at the local theatre. But I recently found something that fits my style even more.
I have started singing as an extra with the Hilltop Center for Spiritual Living. This sweet church is right across the street from our house and about 9 months ago, I decided to go to a service and see what it was all about. For the first time in my life, I think I may have found a spiritual home. AND . . . a few months into it, one of their singers moved. I spoke to the lead musician and one thing led to another . . . and I'm singing. Out loud. In front of people. And I'm smiling.