Motherhood + Music
It started with Green Day. My mother used to place a headset on her bulging belly and play just about everything for me, but she says I kicked at symphonies and Billie Joe Armstrong the most. At age ten, I was introduced to Panic! At The Disco and Fall Out Boy by a friend. I liked a lot of genres; bands came and went. In high school, I gave my freshman speech final on Indie Rock music. I studied bands and albums notoriously trying to soak up all of the information that I could. The Smiths are still my favorite. I've fallen in love with musicians, famous and not-so-famous. I've dated four of them and befriended others. There are so many concerts I've been to, sometimes I forget if they really happened or not. I've toured with a band on a school bus. That life was almost like a fantasy to me, something I will keep in the back pockets of my mind until I am old and want to relive my own version of Almost Famous.
When I was fifteen, I dated this guy who was an incredible musician. He had a gift, an incredible ear, and a knack for learning a new instrument within hours. I was amazed by him, and he could have cared less what I was like, what I had to offer. I was his manic pixie dream girl. You know, I seemed super interesting, but he only wanted to heighten his own individuality by being with me. This relationship sparked my interest to try learning how to play music, especially after he told me that I held no musical talents. Was there any better way to motivate me? I picked up a guitar from the side of the road and played until the tips of my fingers were raw. I played and played and played until I was asked to join a band of my own, and then I composed some pieces for our school's play. It was a blast.
"When you're happy you enjoy the music. When you're sad you understand the lyrics." I have not liked music for the past two years. Something that was always there for me was no longer a part of my life, and it dropped off quite suddenly. I tried and tried to lose myself in something, anything, but no notes nor lyrics could move me. This was such a strange feeling! What happened? I felt like I had lost a dear friend. Perhaps it was my sudden life changes, my loss. Or maybe it was because I didn't want to think about anything. Music made me think too much about my worries.
Well, it hit me this past weekend. I was not expecting it, at all. As I drove to Illinois for a weekend away from my son for the first time, I decided to turn the music up as loud as I wanted. There was no baby in the backseat to deter me from blaring the speakers and singing carelessly. I was suddenly flooded with memories, good and bad, recent and old, and the tears ran down my face. All of my anger, frustration, and bottled emotions from the past couple of years came out in those tears. There was such a powerful sadness, a dominant energy, something I had not felt in a long while.
To put it into words is not easy! I believe that this is part of my healing. I am not always aware of my emotions; I like to hide them and act as if they don't exist. It is taking a lot for me to let them out, and I find that my returning fondness for music is helping the wounds to my spirit. I even picked my guitar up the other day and played it for my baby. It was such a magical moment! He loved pulling on the strings and yelling as each note was strung. I hope he finds some peace in music when he can realize what it is. I am so interested to see what he enjoys! So far it's just the Hot Dog Song and sometimes bagpipes, but I'm probably just shooting for the moon with that one. I cannot say what Tad will one day find magic in, but if anything, I hope he can find that solace in the beauty of a symphony, in the wonder of an instrument and how it works. I do not plan to push, but a little guidance can't hurt, right? (;
I've made a playlist through Spotify of all of the music that I am currently listening to. Maybe it can help you out, too, or introduce you to something you've never listened to before! It's called Music + Motherhood. There's also a playlist with songs from our videos. It's free to listen to, so why not! What music do you enjoy? I would love to hear your suggestions; I feel so behind!
In case you were wondering, yes, that will be our first album cover.