Have you ever been caught loving / appreciating something you were supposed to hate? And by ‘supposed’, it includes the general opinion you have fueled by your own words. It is a conundrum when you love something you were vocal against, especially when you are loath to hide about the ‘newfound’ love!
Such a reflection came to me today when I heard a song I hated previously. In my defense, I was sitting idle in a doctor’s waiting room when this happened. There was a young mother of a toddler sitting beside me. It was obvious that the mother was in some level of discomfort, having a swollen hand she had obviously come to check. But for some reason, she had to bring only the toddler along, with no one else.
Without going into the specifics, the toddler was also very hyperactive and obviously bored in the waiting room. So the yells and the demands began with a mild whining. Before the others could be heavily disturbed by that or before it turned into a full fledged tantrum from the kid’s side, the mother (after trying all other non obtrusive methods of distraction) finally played a song in her mobile on as high a volume as would be considered acceptable, which was not much, seeing as it was a doctor’s waiting room.
Special credits to the mother for knowing just the right thing to do. It was clear that she was second guessing this because it was not an appropriate place to play a movie song out loud. But the moment she did, having the mobile firmly in her hand, the kid began to quiet down, his legs tapping to the tune. The discussions about the efficiency and psychological effects of such a parenting method apart, the main point here is, it worked. Forget how the child had been trained in home.
Over time, he demanded (again) that the volume be increased when another patient-in-waiting advised him not to do that because the mother was in pain so she shouldn’t be disturbed. Thankfully, he quieted down and in the whole half an hour I had waited there, I could see the kid visibly reacting to the music which calmed him. It was maybe something that gave him a familiarity and a sense of normalcy, or just something he learnt to enjoy.
The song was not even new, and I had hated it in the first mention. But as I saw the kid’s face slowly calming down and becoming beautifully serene, I noticed the song better. There was a quality in the music that could allure the little children, and a voice that could interest fans of a particular genre. It was also probably why I was humming it long after leaving the hospital. (Not mentioning the number of times the song had to play on a loop so the lyrics got stuck in my head).
That was how I like (okay love, in some parts at least) something I had hated previously. Maybe it was the whine turning into a smile. Maybe it was the situation and the moment. Maybe it was the way the mother found this innovative technique. Maybe it really was the merit of the song. So I got one more song I am now not averse to, and material for a day’s blog post!