In Merit School choir last year, both kids learned songs in many different languages, from different cultures around the world. One of their favorites is Sakura, the Japanese Cherry Blossom Song. Sakura means cherry blossoms in Japanese and the song details the flowers blooming in the spring and the sweet smell in the air. Children traditionally sing this classic in the spring, when the flowers first open. It has a hauntingly beautiful melody.
We have a number of family friends in Japan and while my parents were up for Du's 10th birthday last weekend, they were frantically trying to reach everyone. By Sunday we had heard back from all of the families, and they had all survived the earthquake and resulting tsunami without injury. Still, we feel so much empathy and sorrow for all those who weren't so lucky, and those who survived but are now facing a nuclear crisis and shortages of basic necessities. Three generations of our family got on line last Sunday and Skyped with our closest friends there, a Japanese surgeon and his wife.
Sagezilla started to sing Sakura for Chiyuki and Yoko and their faces lit up in happy recognition. Then they began to sing along with her--a trio of voices bridging an ocean. It still amazes me that we can see our friends on video, half way around the world, and join them in a children's folk song. It had me tearing up.
There is so much compassion and love for people whose countries are ravaged by natural disasters. We were thrilled that Little Miss Ann put out some great energy and acknowledged the Japanese people with an American cherry song last Sunday. Please send positive energy and take time to lead by example and teach your children empathy. Jump and dance and celebrate life and love with your children. If you can help monetarily as a family, we have added a button to the bottom blog bar here at ChiIL Mama where you can donate to Red Cross for Japanese humanitarian aid.
As spring comes, we are wishing Japan cherry blossoms, good smells, kind deeds, and new growth from the death and destruction.