In March, I wrote about how the Chieftains touched my soul with their music. A few weeks ago, I was able to get a powerful reminder that they are not the only ones able to lift my soul.
Music is woven into the fabric of my journey. It has been escape, rescue, resting place, an expression of anger, and has provided strength and fortitude.
In college, I had the joy of meeting two amazing people who loved the music of James Taylor. Katie and Liz, mother and daughter, are two of the most amazing and strong women I know. I live far away from them now and I seriously miss them. They are strong and fun and kind. And as I said, they love James Taylor. Katie had the two CD set of his music and she would let me borrow it. I knew the music, but having the CDs to listen to over and over (and over) again, let me know the words.
The first song that helped me heal is “Shower the people.”
“You can play the game,
And you can act the part,
Though you know it wasn’t written for you.
Tell me how can you stand there,
With your broken heart,
Ashamed to playin’ the fool?”
I was doing a lot of acting at that time in my life. I was trying to play a part, the one everyone wants to see, but I felt inauthentic and broken. I was ashamed and I didn’t know how to fix it.
I needed to feel what I felt, not how I was supposed to feel. I felt sad, angry, broken, alone. No one really wanted to see that act. But it was the only one I could really play with any gusto, and I am grateful to the people who allowed me to be in that place and didn’t look away.
If we are able to shower the people we love with love, including ourselves, we can begin to heal and survive what we thought was unsurviveable. I truly believe that, and from that love, the world changes, if even just a little bit.
“You’ve got a Friend” is an amazing work that brings me to tears almost every time I hear it. It was hard for me to learn that people cared about me. It was hard to know that people thought of me as a friend and were a friend to me in return. The relationships in my life that should have helped me learn this lesson were skewed. Once I got that lesson, that I really did matter to people, it is one I cherish and try to uphold with great care. Friendship isn’t something I treat lightly.
The third song that I always liked, but now see in a new perspective is “How Sweet It is.”
I have finally found my love. He understands me and gets me in a way I never imagined possible. I was in other relationships before this, but it was never anything close to the love and acceptance I feel now. <3
Healing, like song writing, is a process. Some things come quickly and amaze me how completely and wholly they come together. Other things take a long time to come together. It feels as if I will never get there, but piece by piece, it all comes together and in the end, it is a beautiful thing.
I’ve focused more on the music here than the feelings and great expressions of love I have been shown. Those are harder to describe.
I rejoice for songs, for healing, for friends and for love. It is an amazing journey, but mostly, I’m enjoying the ride.
What songs and people have helped you heal?