I recently purchased a book called “642 things to write about me” by the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto. It isn’t a book that you read…it is a book you answer questions. This has already proven to be giving me PLENTY of content for this blog. Here is to hoping it gets me through my writers block.
I won’t be going in any particular order but here is the first question I am going to answer from the book.
Picture a photo from your childhood, one you know well. Narrate the scene around the taking of that photo, to the best of your memory.
When I read this, the FIRST photo I remembered is one from my childhood. I am young, maybe 8 years old. (that is a guess)
The photo was taken in my childhood home we had off the highway, in the living room to be exact. My hair short and curly and I think I am in my pajamas. I am in the picture with my dad. In the picture his is swinging me around holding my stretched out hands. I can see our smiles. I can remember we were dancing to music. When I think of this picture, my heart soars. I love that this is the photo I remembered.
Ironically the next picture that came to mind was one from the night before my first wedding. The setting is in the front living room of the home my parents now live. The woodwork is white. My mom is still in her rehearsal black dress and I am already in blue jeans and a red colored shirt. We are trying to dance with the biggest smiles on our face. My parents small Yorkie/Lhasa Apso mix dog is in the picture as well. This was before digital photography was a big thing and I believe we used the flash because his eyes look like he is crazy. This little dog is long gone to the other side of heaven and as I think of this photo, I can remember how wonderful he was. He was so protective of us and when he wasn’t protecting someone, the most amazing lap dog.
This one question from this book makes a lightbulb go off in my brain. You see, my dad always had music in our lives. We were in band and choir as kids. When asked what kind of music is my favorite, I always have a long answer. You see, I think I like it all for what it is. If I need to yell and scream about something, give me heavy metal and rap. If I need to dance off energy or need a pick me up, give me a song with a good beat that makes my feet tap and my arms sway from side to side, as awkwardly as possible of course. If I am feeling loved or in need of love, give me a ballad or a good country song. And if I am sad and need to just get the tears out, give me a country song with lyrics that you hear clear as day and make the tears flow to clear my mind. And if all else fails…crank up the 80s music station. There is not much to hate about the 80s music…especially since it takes me right back to that first picture I wrote about with my amazing dad.
Jay loved music, mostly heavy metal which wasn’t always easy to listen too, but he in general loved music. Thinking of pictures, one of the last of us is from my cousins wedding and what does that photo look like you ask? I am pregnant with Aaron and we are dancing on the dance floor feeling incredibly blessed.
When Jay died, I didn’t want to listen to music. It made me sad. All of it. My love for music had died with him. It was when a few people entered my life that my love for music was reignited. Going to concerts and watching artists perform made my heart soar. Going to Zumba and Hip Hop dance classes gave me energy I hadn’t had in YEARS. Watching professional dancers create amazing routines gave me energy to move. And then a crazy thing started to happen. As I would drive to work or pick up/drop Aaron off at daycare I would hear the lyrics of the songs in ways unknown to me before. As I prayed to God and talked to Jay, I would hear an answer in the song playing. Sometimes an abrupt stop in the current song, flipping to a different style of music that gave me an answer. I would close my eyes and I could see Jay smirking at me. I could feel peace in my heart.
In 2012, my Christmas gift to myself was a ring. I had recently taken off Jay and my wedding bands. The ring looks like sheet music you would read to play an instrument or piano. There are little diamonds on it that look like musical notes. It is the ring I wear when I need to remember there is always music in our lives. Sometimes it isn’t the music we want to listen too, but it is always there and no matter what, it is beautiful.
Yep all, of that from one question about a photo.