Sunday, July 27, 2008


The year 2003 began for me a time of personal epiphanies as I rediscovered passions required for truly Living my life. Years of marriage and raising a child had sort of sucked the "me" out of me. I love my family, but it became clear that the person my husband married had disappeared under the daily slog of errands, school stuff, kid stuff, housework, yard work, work work and everything in between. I became someone else entirely. Frankly, I wasn't real crazy about myself and was inwardly sort of miserable. I couldn't put my finger on it, really. Good marriage, living on a lake, great daughters, good dog, trusty Subaru, great family and in-laws. All that was missing was the picket fence. But there was something missing in my life.
One day the summer of 2003 I read something on-line about a new CD coming out by an artist I had loved long ago. Oh, wow....I remember that guy. His music always spoke to me. The moment it hit the shelves my money hit the counter and I ran to my trusty Subaru to give it a listen. It's damned hard to get all that cellophane and stickers and whatnot off a new CD - have you noticed? Good grief. My hands were shaking from effort and excitement. Finally, the hermetically sealed CD was free from encumbrances and excitedly popped into the CD player, which I wasn't sure even worked since I'd never used it.
Slowly and exquisitely a complex, deep, luscious sound began to roll out of the speakers. I swear it swam down my ears and into my bloodstream and my heart began to pound with the beat. Sting's clear, distinctive voice bathed my soul like a soft, warm bath. "Inside the wounded hide their scars...." Oh, my God, I'm awake now. It's hard to describe, but it was as if every cell in my body began to vibrate with an intensity not felt in over a decade. Music, the beat, the complexity, the chords, the harmonies, the lyrics, the meaning, the sheer artistic nature of the beast drew me in like a lover's hug.
...all the days of my life I will walk with you,
...all the days of my life I will talk with you,
...all the days of my life I will share with you,
...all the days of my life I will bear with you...
I knew then without a doubt that music had been absent. Since marriage, husband and child the only piped in sounds came from Barney, Winnie the Pooh, Disney, CNN, History Channel and all manner of television channels. No music. Not my music. No symphonies, no rock & roll, no R&B, Sting.
I grew up with the Beatles music constantly surrounding me. Beatles, Hendrix, James Taylor (the ORIGINAL JT, thank you very much), Cream, Clapton, The Who, etc., etc., (I'm dating myself but oh well) They were the soundtrack of my life. Music was my Oz, my escape, my passion. The first time I heard The Beatles on the radio I was like Dorothy stepping outside her black and white world into a world of color and life and music and singing. This CD - Sacred Love - shook my shoulders and said "WAKE UP!" And I did! That was a defining moment - October 2003 - the parking lot of Best Buy with Sting's Sacred Love CD. From that point on I began buying music and more music and more music. I had a lot of catching up to do.

Today, my CD cabinet is filled and my iPod is my best friend. Music brought me back out into the light. I dance now - all by myself, but dance I do. And I sing - all by myself in the car with the music blaring - and I bob my head to the beat and enjoy every road trip. The reintroduction of music into my daily life reawakened other passions - photography, art, learning, writing, nature, God, everything. Everything. My family is blithely amused, but I think they enjoy me much more now. My artistic self has been released due to exposure to music generated by all manner of artists. Life is beautiful and I am "me" again.
Why did I allow my life to become mundane? True, I had obligations like everyone else but I'd forgotten to include ME in the day-to-day. Since the day of reawakening I learned that I have to exercise my passions daily just like I exercise my body. The discovery for me was that yes, I can live without music, photography, art, culture, writing, hiking, birdwatching and all my personal passions....but why? Without music I'm a shadow, a wraith, some invisible being that simply and quietly floats from place to place in grim fashion. With music, I'm a bopping, singing, dancing, artistic wild child. I much prefer the latter me.
Anyway, thanks Sting for helping me remember who I am, who I've always been.


Daniel Spurgeon said...

Great posting, Debi. This is one of your best in my opinion. I too treasure the Beatles music. I especially like their love songs- such as 'PS I Love You' and 'I Will' and 'Girl' and oh so many others. You can't help but love their creativity. I listen to music in doses- it mainly depends on my mood.

Have you checked out the movie 'Across the Universe'? It is an artistic rendition of many of the Beatles songs performed by many different artists. My favorite songs are Joe Cocker performing 'Come Together' and Bono performing 'I am the Walrus'. I think you would like the movie.

wcgillian said...

Debi, I have to agree with Daniel. This is my favorite post of yours so far. It is the one that reaches in and speaks to my soul. One of my favorite things to do is to put on good music and write. It is my insperation to do so. Thank you so much for your comments on my last post. I have had at least dreams that have played out in real life just as they had been displayed in my slumber, in every detail. I have written about two of them here. I am working on projects that I hope to have published one day. Great post!


Brett said...

Love the blog, thanks for you kind comment on mine, being blog of note came as quite a shock.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I love to have music playing when I paint. Different music for different moods. I am glad you found yourself again. It is sad to be lost.

Anonymous said...

Debi, yet another magnificent heartfelt post. Seems to me this might apply with your music reawakening:

“Everyone is like a butterfly, they start out ugly and awkward and then morph into beautiful graceful butterflies that everyone loves.”

~Drew Barrymore

I appreciate and admire the butterfly you've become. You have such talent and writing is certainly one of them. Thank you for sharing this with all of us.


The Giraffe Head Tree said...

Hello everyone - thank you so much for your nice comments!

Daniel - Those are some of my fav Beatles tunes, too. I've not seen "Across the Universe" but think now I need to!

Randy - I'm with you. Music is part of my creative process, plus it just brings untold joy into my life. Your dream post was a fantastic read, btw. Very gripping. Good luck with publishing your work!

Brett - After checking out your blog and website I can say without reservation that you deserved the honor. You are a fantastic writer and photographer!

Lisa - I'm glad I found me, too. I might not be here at all if I'd not gone through a reawakening. Music and painting would be a necessary combination for me - have you posted any of your paintings? Perhaps on an older post? I would love to see them.

Diane - Butterflies and music - two of my favorite things. That's a great quote from Drew, too. It really speaks to me this morning.

Have a lovely week everyone.

Nancy J. Bond said...

Debi -- what you just wrote is eerily similar to my own story. I found me again through music (and dance), and though there are days when I think I'm slipping away again, a favorite CD will snatch me back. I ADORE Sting.

They say, and They always know what They are talking about, supposedly: if you want to know what you are destined for in find that which you are passionate about, think back to when you were 12 years old. Think about that one. :-)

The Giraffe Head Tree said...

Ah, Nancy. We are indeed kindred spirits finding our way through life with music and arts that speak to our very soul. Seems everyone who commented are doing the same thing, finding themselves through their passions.

Wow...They ARE right. Guess what I was passionate about at 12 years old? The Beatles! I'd never thought of that - goodness!

And yes....Sting totally ROCKS!

Carolyn gail said...

Great post, Debi. When I'm not able to listen to my favorite songs I'm always humming them in my head.

I love Sting. BTW have you heard his country song "I'm so happy that I can't help crying ?" It's amazing.

The Giraffe Head Tree said...

Hi Carolyn. Me, too. My iPod has been my salvation as well. When I'm writing it's always strapped on with my favorite tunes playing.

I love that song, too, Carolyn. Everything Sting's ever recorded, or most of it, takes up one complete drawer in my CD cabinet. A random factoid about me - I'm a Legacy member of Sting's fan club, which embarasses my daughter to no end. Ha! One day it'll pay off with good concert seats, or such is my hope.


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