His gentle suggestion was met with some severe protests from me that were probably insensitive to my dad's vulnerability. Even though my sister keeps insisting that I just "let him do what he wants," something still doesn't sit well with me with the idea of dancing with my father at my wedding to a song I can't stand. Maybe it won't matter, but wouldn't it be so much better for us to have found a song together? One that is significant to the both of us?
We still haven't settled on one. The one I thought of was the song "One of These Days" by Neil Young, which my dad sent to me via email last year when I first came to China and my dad mused to me about how the song reminded him of me. But today, I think I finally found it.
When I was a little girl, I watched The Sound of Music everyday for a year. And when I say "everyday," I really mean it. My aunt has told me about when she'd come to visit us and I'd be sitting there very faithfully in front of the television watching Julie Andrews rescue the Von Trapp family from eternal cold-heartedness, and then we'd re-enact the "I am sixteen going on seventeen" dance by jumping from sofa cushion to sofa cushion. I'd totally forgotten that the first time Captain von Trapp melts his icy exterior was when he sings Edelweiss for the first time with... his eldest daughter, Liesel.
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I love this scene. The children all look up at their father adoringly as he reconnects with a lost identity that was buried under years of grieving, politics, and one very glamorous woman. I love the unspoken gesture he makes towards Liesel to duet with him, a hidden secret that only the two of them know about. It's a lovely song, and a familiar one, too.
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Not to mention, the song isn't so stinking long. There's nothing worse than hearing the chorus for the fourth time while the father and daughter are still up there swaying awkwardly.