It is Labor Day.
I always think of the week of Andrews Birth seventeen years ago as well as my beautiful Blessing Way that we celebrated on Labor Day in 2002 a few weeks before Ben was born, when the first monday in september rolls around.
Whenever I hear the word Labor, I always connect it to birth, babies, and family life.
When I was at BYU I trained for musical theatre at a semi professional level and really wanted to achieve some status as a professional performer.
Meeting my husband changed things and instead of “Laboring” to create Music I have engaged in the labor of Mothering our five children for these past 25 years.
For many years I ached to be back in rehearsal halls mastering difficult music and choreography while developing my onstage characters.
Despite significant amounts of loving parental encouragement, none of my children has any ambition for musical theatre. They have sung in choirs and have enjoyed working backstage when I directed a show, but except for the random Mormon Ward Roadshow, or a bit part in a play, none of them has the inclination or desire to step out and try for a lead in a show.
While I would love to share my passion for performing more intently with our children, a side of me is very grateful that they have chosen other pursuits and areas of focus to spend their time and energy on. It is a small side of me that trembles when considering my children becoming performers, because I believe we need musicians who are bulletproof when potentially being seduced into the dark side of the Performing Arts.
I know it is possible to be an entertainer while holding fast to morality. My friend Kara Lyn Roundy has done it. But I would not want one of my children sucked into that vortex of darkness before they were mature enough to handle it.
My heart aches for Miley. I saw her image splashed all over the web last week and I wanted to grab a large bathrobe, wrap her in it, and give her a big motherly hug.
That slime who was onstage with her should be arrested for Sexual Assault, Harassment, and Placed in a Stockade while child actors throw rotten vegetables at him for exploiting her.
If Billy Ray would man up and go punch Mr. Thicke in the nose, that would be the healthiest message society could receive at this point, especially the tweens who are currently taking it all in on the web.
If husbands, wives, fathers, and mothers just shrug and say, “Well that is what it takes to make it in the music business when you are in a new media environment”, we are doomed as a society.
I have often thought as we rounded the corner into main stream discussion around lewd sex acts in 1998 that if Monica Lewinskys father had gathered together a posse of friends and headed over to the White House for a lynching of Bill Clinton when it became public that he was molesting interns in the White House, we may have headed this wholesale societal jump into the babylonian pit off at the pass.
Even if the vigilantism of a Mr. Cyrus or Mr. Lewinsky resulted in an imprisonment or a violent clash with authorities, the symbolism of Father as Protector of innocent and vulnerable young women would still have been worth the effort…
And it would have been important to a young Miley or Monica to know that the person most responsible for keeping her safe from predators was on task and engaged.
As awful as the spectacle of a Dad giving in to his passions in order to pull his daughter or son out of a dangerous situation may seem, to me, the shrug of “Whatever” as he just ignores the situation is worse.