May 18, 2012

Televison and Memory

Yesterday, a friend posted on Facebook that three of the four original Wiggles wouldn’t be performing as part of the group any more. Admittedly, I was surprised that it had taken the group so long to be over playing the Wiggles. Between the extensive touring and the television shows, I’m surprised they staved off exhaustion for so long.

The Princess liked the Wiggles. Littlebit LOVED them. Her toddlerhood, in my memory, is punctuated by Wiggles songs. Because Littlebit was speech delayed, she couldn’t sing the lyrics along with them, but acting out the motions (rocking her bear, wiggling her fingers like cold spaghetti) was one way that Littlebit could do the same thing as the outside world. She loved the Wiggles.

Watching the Wiggles allows me to momentarily time travel back to Littlebit’s baby and toddler days. When she was little and looked a lot like this.

The Princess?  She watched Blue’s Clues and Bear in the Big Blue House and Calliou.  I remember singing the opening theme to Calliou when the Princess was two and wondering what she’d be like at four.  Now, she’s twelve and four was so long ago.  It won’t be too long (just two short years!) before we’ll never ever do four again, but every time I watch Calliou with my little two, I remember the Princess when she was like this.

Long after my kids have outgrown the shows, I’ll happen past a favorite of theirs from the past.  Perhaps browsing netflix or when I’m looking for something to keep me company when they’re off at school, because Mickey Mouse Clubhouse will always remind me of Baby Bee when she was like this

I really don't have a bad combover.

For just a second, for just a glimpse I’ll remember so clearly the feel of their little bodies in my arms and the sound of their little voices lisping along to songs we’ve sung a million times or their little hands moving along as if in a dance. I’ll remember the smiles and the pearly little brand new teeth. I remember the Princess’s first Christmas every time I hear the theme song from Little Bill. I remember Littlebit jumping on her trampoline in time to the songs from Hi-5. I’ll remember Baby Bee folded up next to me on the couch, asking quietly for “Max and Wooby Pease! Max and Wooby!”

I feel summer afternoons at home with my Mom during “I Love Lucy”. I think they played it at lunch time and my Mom watched every day she was home. I feel evenings with her, as well, as we watched The Honeymooners after the nightly news. When she was ill and I was in Illinois and she was in Michigan, we watched the Price is Right, playing the game together, guessing on the showcases. Movies I watched with my brother and sister or friends can take me racing instantly back to those moments in time when things were different and we were all younger.

Of course, television isn’t the only thing that triggers my memory, but there was a fleeting sadness when I read about the Wiggles and how they and Littlebit are linked in my mind and memory.

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Jamie

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