I’d sing you a morning golden and new.
I would make this day last for all time,
and fill the night deep in moonshine.
My apologies to those of you who know this story…
When Charlie was three or four years old, he loved the movie Babe which he watched on DVD multiple times per day. Before he’d start the movie, he’d ask me to sing him the song that Farmer Hogget sings to Babe/”Pig.”
“Willa sing da song?” he’d ask.
And I’d sing it. And every time Charlie would stare at me expressionless, but tears would run down his face. One day Laurel asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up. He said, “A sheep pig.”
“Don’t you think that’s sweet?” Wayne asked me. “He wants to be useful.”
Wayne always sang a nighttime lullaby to Charlie. Since Wayne’s death, Laurel or I has been singing to Charlie. Then last week I decided he was getting a bit old for the singing; plus the songs he requests now usually aren’t lullabies. He’s very reluctant to stop the routine though. He’s been coming to me before bed and asking that I sing him “If I had words.” I sing it, and the tears still run down his face. Then he goes to bed.
I try to remember this when he spills ranch dressing all over himself at a restaurant just a day after he spilled his apple cider in the hotel lobby, and we had to keep people away from it until someone could clean it up and when he walks around laughing for hours at something that was never intended to be funny and when he watches a show or goes to a museum and can’t describe anything about it afterward. I wonder if he’ll ever be able to live independently and get a job. But then he ends the day with tears over a sheep pig, and I know he’s special in more ways than one.