We all have memories that come to mind when we smell something familiar. Maybe it’s a sweet treat your grandma makes or your favorite comfort food prepared by your parent. Others memories are triggered by something we see, hear or even a feeling of deja vu – yes I’m a strong believer!
For me, it’s always been music.
I grew up with young parents, surrounded by members of my mom’s rather large, also young, siblings. I spent a great deal of time with my parents and my mom’s two sisters. All whom dearly loved music.
The greatest memories of my childhood are all surrounded by music. Dancing to various tracks by Technotronic, Cotton Eyed Joe and the even the Macarena are some of the dearest memories I hold of my Aunt Jackie. A woman taken from us far too soon. Almost 15 years later, these songs, along with many others bring a smile and so often tears – for the woman I miss more then the English language will ever allow me to express. On days when I wish more then anything that I could pick up the phone and hear her voice – I turn on one of her favorite songs and sing at the top of my lungs – to my neighbours dismay! She’s never further then a click of my favourites on Youtube.
Then there’s the drives taken with my Aunt Kim. Windows down, dancing as much as our seatbelt restrictions will allow to You’ve Got It (The Right Stuff) -because NKOTB fans understand – as well as Country Grammer . . . because Nelly was perfect for a little head bobbing!
As I grew older and life started throwing curve balls the size of Texas at my family, music spoke to me. I didn’t just hear the beat anymore, but the lyrics. Music was then used as a way to forget – if just for 4 minutes . . . or 60 thanks to the glorious ‘repeat’ option.
That hasn’t changed. I will still hear a song that will strike a cord. 2014 brought me Avicii. Wake Me Up was perfect. It summed up my life at that very moment. It honestly spoke to my soul I swear. It was like it just understood.
“Feeling my way through the darkness; guided by a beating heart; I can’t tell where the journey will end . . . wake me up when it’s all over; when I’m wiser and I’m older . . . I tried carrying the weight of the world; but I only have two hands . . . wish I could stay forever this young; not afraid to close my eyes . . .”
For a young woman who was faced with so much uncertainty, a song couldn’t have had more relatable lyrics. I sat for many hours, questioning so many things.
This past week has brought me back. The coming days bring with it my one year screening. To say I’m terrified is a gross understatement. But more then that, I’ve been thinking a lot about the last year. How busy I’ve made myself; the reasons behind it etc.
Today, driving home after dinner with my parents, Avicii came through my car speakers. Driving alone, I turned the volume up, started singing until the tears threatened to blur my vision of the car in front of me.
“All this time I’ve been finding myself; and I didn’t know I was lost.”
My year. 14 words. Right there.
I’ve spent the last year running in fear. Grasping at straws, desperately hoping that if I were to ever hear the ugly words uttered by my doctors again, I wouldn’t instantly regret all of the things I wanted to do, but have put off. I was so terrified that life would be snatched away that I forgot to enjoy the days I had right in front of me.
All evening I’ve been sitting here, soul searching. Being hit with realization after realization to the point my chest feels like its being gripped with a vice.
Realizing why I’ve been doing the things I have, has taken away the need to continue doing them. It takes away the pressure. Although the fear remains for the screening and its results, the overall fear is lifting. Is it due to a simple song? No. Just a moment of long awaited clarity. Like my own “AHA!” moment.