Music has changed for me now that I am an adoptive mom. I have always been a super music nerd, but now I will find myself singing along with Stevie Wonder and I suddenly think, Hold up! Is this song about adoption? And I’ll stop, start the song over, and suddenly be crying and realizing how much more I like the song now that it is associated in my heart with adoption. So here is my short list of songs I now hear with adoption themes. If you want a mix tape, I’ll make you one.
Stevie Wonder’s “Isn’t She Lovely“ was one of my early adoption finds. “She’s so lovely made from love.” Every parent loves that line, but what adoptive parent doesn’t want this to be the message their daughter hears? Then, to seal the deal Stevie sings, “Boy, I’m so happy. We have been heaven blessed.” Amen to that.
Next we have Michael Buble’s “Just Haven’t Met You Yet.” I would swear to you that this song talks about infertility grief, the wait as an adoptive parent, keeping the hope alive, the joy of meeting each other, and remembering how blessed you will be when you finally join together as family. You might listen to it and hear a story about dating and maybe that was Buble’s intention, but you’re both wrong. This one is about adoption.
My first experience finding an adoption meaning in a song came while we waited. I had been listening to Harry Connick Jr’s album “Oh My NOLA“ for several years at that point. But this day as I drove home from work and sang along with Harry, “My, oh my, we make a lot of love for just two people. My, oh my, we make a lot of love for just you and me,” I broke out in chills. Then he sang, ”Plan to be the woman who looks over angels, plan to be the woman who breaks all the rules.” I melted in the car and cried the rest of the way home. Thanks, Harry, for saying this so beautifully and making being a mother in whatever form it comes to you an empowering thing. Honestly, I still get teary when I hear this one.
Next up is Christina Perri’s “A Thousand Years.” Lots of folks associate this song with the Bella/Edward vampire super wedding. However, there is a compelling argument to be made for it belonging better with adoption. All you have to do is imagine those lyrics coming from the mouth of an adoptive parent and you will get it. “I have died every day waiting for you. Darling, don’t be afraid, I have loved you for a thousand years. I will love you for a thousand more. And all along I believed I would find you, time has brought your heart to me. I have loved you for a thousand years, will love you for a thousand more.” Twilight’s love story has nothing on adoption love.
Honorable mentions go to “You’ll Be In My Heart” from Tarzan, “Baby Mine” from Dumbo, “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz, The Lumineers’ “Hey Ho,” Savage Garden’s “I Knew I Loved You,” and The Turtles’ “Happy Together.” And one that always makes me think of birth moms is “Brave” by Sara Bareilles. There are so many more. Seriously, let’s just make an epic mix tape.
I find unexpected moments of reflection and reminders of our incredible adoption journey all over the radio. Songs about our overwhelming love for our beautiful son delicately laced into lyrics. And I love the way my heart sings when those songs come on the radio.
What songs tell your adoption story?