One of my favorite composers is Felix Mendelssohn. I can clearly remember studying piano as a youth and being excited when I would start learning one of his compositions. I can also remember the first time I played a solo piano piece from one of his volumes of work titled, Songs Without Words. I was very young at the time and the name completely captured my attention. I was intrigued by the concept of a song - which is by definition music with lyrics - still being such even without the written word. Mendelssohn said, "What the music I love expresses to me, is not thought too indefinite to put into words, but on the contrary, too definite."
Now, this may be hard to believe, but this post is actually about Elsa's first visit to Splash Down Cove, the local water park.
The moment that we decided to adopt Elsa, nearly two years ago, we were actually driving to Splash Down Cove. We were all in the car together when Donald said something to the effect of, "Do you think we should adopt?" The rest, as you know, is history. For the rest of that summer, as well as last summer, I would think about Elsa every time we went to the water park. I would sit on the edge of the pool with Elisabeth and watch children running and splashing and playing. And while I watched them, I would envision my daughter-to-be running and splashing and playing, too.
Last Saturday, the moment arrived. The weather was warm and the cool pool sounded very inviting. So we all put on our swim suits and piled into the car to go to Splash Down Cove. I was soooooo excited. I thought, 'this is it, the moment I have envisioned for two years'. For me it was a symbolic end to the adoption journey. We had come full circle, from the day we decided to adopt her, to having her there with us, running and splashing and playing.
Now, you know me, I love to document things. I live to document. So I had given Donald strict instructions to take a video of her coming down the slide for the first time...and then to follow the girls around for a while and snap pictures of her doing things like floating on the lazy river, playing with her sisters, etc. And he did a fine job! The video's and pictures completely captured the pure joy of those few hours.
But...the next day there was a mishap with the phone and all the photographs and video's were lost.
My first thought was to those images of Elsa at Splash Down Cove.
'No, no, no, they can't be gone! Of all the moments since she has been here, that was the one I waiting for, those pictures were the ones I wanted more than anything.'
But it wasn't meant to be.
And then I had something pop into my head....Songs Without Words. Sometimes, a song doesn't need words, the simple expression of the music is enough. And sometimes a post doesn't need pictures. Because I was there. I witnessed first hand a moment that was very personal to me. The sights and sounds of the day - of that first inaugural visit to the water park - are permanent in my memory. I will always see clearly in my mind the smile on her face, and the wonder in her eyes. Indeed, it will forever be my song without words.