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Posts Tagged ‘growing up’

A few weeks ago I attended a concert of an artist I have tortured my mom with on a 5 1/2 hour car ride to Pittsburgh. I played ONE song over, and over, and over, and over. Occasionally I’d flip to the B side of the tape and play the first song on that side. Basically she tolerated her 8 year old’s obsession with a song she was pretty darn sick of. This repeated song made me sick of the album about 2 years later and I put the tape away. Refused to play it. Then, when I was about 16 I took it out of retirement and realized I still knew every darn word. . . of MOST of the album.

Cue to about 10 years ago when I introduced my husband (then boyfriend) to this album and he was pretty taken with how unique it was.

Cue to a few weeks ago, and I was done with the back and forth of, “should I, well, maybe not, but I could, but really??? well… okay… yes… no.. wait… REALLY!??!”  It was a moment of me saying, “You know what, screw it. People hate this artist and thing the songs are annoying, but I love them. I am going to burst into tears during my favorite song which HAD BETTER BE PERFORMED. . . *ahem*

Lo and behold, I went to the show, by myself, and sat in the back row on the arena floor. I made friends with the couple in the same row (there were 4 seats, and the one next to me was empty). They had been fans for over 20 years. I told them my story and they thought it was WONDERFUL I had decided to attend the show. I had paper towels from the ladies room, because I was going to cry. No doubt about it.

The announcer came on and said that there would be a solo artist this evening. No opener, no extra people, just… the ONE person, and the band. My husband was jealous because a favorite guitar player was in the band that night. I told him there was an empty seat next to me, he could come on down. . . but no.

So the lights went down, the music started, the backup singers did their thing, and then the door opened at the back of the stage and out came… Neil Diamond. It was possibly the best show I’ve seen in a VERY long time. His pants had sequins on the sides, like the band stripe for kids in band, only these were sequins and sparkled with every step and sway. He opened the show with Cherry, Cherry. The crowd went nuts. He did a few ballads, I lost it during He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother. Sorry people, it’s a powerful song and whatever vocal training and warm ups Neil had done, they worked. He sang it beautifully. I learned that Red, Red, Wine is a Neil Diamond song. He sang I’m A Believer, like The Monkees’ version (if you hear his original version it’s more with steel drums and sounds a bit strange to the Monkees-trained ear).

So, this song that I played over, and over and over again — Cracklin Rosie. It’s the first song on Taproot Manuscript. I had never listened to another album, even though my parents have two others. I only knew every single song on Taproot Manuscript. During the show, he did a few others from that album (He Ain’t Heavy is one). Cracklin’ Rosie was during the encore, AFTER the 12 minute version of Sweet Caroline. It felt like it went on forever, and it probably did. . . but I was anxious to hope that he’d actually perform the song I spent many of my childhood years (which culminated in that 5 1/2 hour Cracklin’ Rosie marathon) listening to and not totally getting what most of the lyrics meant. He did it. I burst out sobbing. I was so happy. He bloody did it and I finally heard a song I’ve loved since I was, as my dad would put it, a tiny tiddle-toddle.

Thank you Neil Diamond for making insanely catchy tunes.

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Two weeks ago I was sitting in a hotel room in Salt Lake City debating on a job offer and the counter offer my current company had given me. The job offer was a job back in Montana and the counter offer involved a transfer to Salt Lake City. Health concerns, job security and happiness and quality of life for me, the husband and the pup were all whirling through my head. And then I had a sudden lurch of panic — I found a lump in my left breast. Holy hell was I mad. I had a fibroadenoma when I was 19 in that same breast and now THIS. The damn thing felt like a square of gum, like the ones in those foil packets that became popular 10 or so years ago. Anyways, I had a monster panic at 11 pm and started google searching and calling my mom. I had my panic rant and then we got down to business — we currently live in Phoenix, which has a MONSTER Mayo Clinic campus. The Mayo Clinic is possibly one of the best places I could go for a diagnosis. Turns out that the Phoenix campus has one of three breast center’s in the country. The others are in Minneapolis and Florida. I filled out the online appointment request form and finally fell asleep. Three days later  when I was visiting with people my phone rang and I spent the next 24 hours trying to get through to the appointment people with the Mayo Clinic. It is apparently a 15-30 min wait to get to their schedulers. THANKFULLY I did get through to someone and made an appointment for that Friday. I wasn’t going to waste ANY time twiddling my thumbs.

One thing a friend told me that week was the goal of taking action. Everything is worse before you take action. The act of movement releases some of the tension and anxiety. You will never move forward and onward without taking action. I would not have slept that night at the hotel if I had not taken action. I would not have felt okay about myself and my health without taking action to call the appointment office back.

So, 8 days ago I went to the Mayo Clinic with my in-laws chauffeuring me and my husband with them too. Support system? Yeah, I have one. And it’s a pretty dang great one too. This isn’t to say my parents wouldn’t have been there, but the in-laws had already planned a vacation to come see us that weekend. Talk about timing. That Friday was a total wash for focusing on anything but this medical potential panic. I met with a great nurse practitioner who pretty much immediately said, “you’re going in for a mammogram and ultrasound.” Well, duh, I could have diagnosed that much, but glad to know we were on the same page. I went out to the schedulers and asked when the next available appointment was for a mammogram — in 1 hour. It was about 15 minutes to the other campus where I’d go for that and away we went. We got there 40 minutes before the appointment but I checked in anyways and was seen 10 minutes later.

I have never had a mammogram. It has been a horrendous fear that as I get older I will need to face the breast squishing agony that women have to go through. I am not well endowed and cleavage is something that is fairly minimal on me. To think that I have to put the little I have on a tray to be squished by a plastic plate is NOT a comforting thought. Well, now I’ve experienced it and I’ve got to say, there are several positions that are uncomfortable and the rest are a full out painful experience. Give me an ultrasound any day of the week, because YIKES.  Both technicians (for the mammogram and ultrasound) were amazing women and I am very grateful for their ease of conversation and attitude towards the procedure.

The end result of all of this is that I have a benign cyst. I’m NOT enthused about this, but I am no longer in full blown panic mode. I was able to have a great weekend at the Grand Canyon and relax. I am still worried that it will need to be drained, but that is a fairly minor procedure compared to what this could have been.

I think the left side of my body is just going to cause trouble . . . door slammed on ring finger when I was 5, left foot broken at 18, fibroadenoma at 19 and now a benign cyst. . . oh, and that endometrioma that had to be drained that I blogged about too.So, dear left side, I don’t know why you need cause so much trouble, but I’d appreciate it if you’d stop getting so dangerously creative. Thanks!

 

 

 

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Late on the Band Wagon

Like many movies, I just never saw My Girl. I knew about it, I remember the previews, I remember everyone going to see it and saying it was sad. I remember My Girl 2 coming out and still not seeing it. I just didn’t want to. Well, I’ve now seen My Girl and promptly burst into tears during the scene when she just wants him to wear his glasses. I am really pleased with how well they did the whole ‘confronting death’ for her. It wasn’t easy to watch, I burst into tears and sniffled my way through the rest of the movie. It covers a lot of what someone could really go through when facing death.

I haven’t lost a best friend that way, but if I had I’m sure I’d have felt like running to the doctor and asking for the pain to stop too. Thankfully I still have my best friends and the pain of losing them is something I have yet to deal with. We all face it at some point in some way. By the time I was 11 I probably felt overwhelmed by death — pets, Farfar, a classmate in 1st Grade, church members, possibly even a neighbor too.

I am really glad that there are movies out there that deal with real experiences and real emotions without making them a huge deal. It’s a refreshing take from how a lot of movies are done today — everything is over the top and angst-filled. We don’t need to have that kind of sensationalism. Real life is full of pains and joys, why make it something so over the top that you can’t imagine it’s real or that reality is somehow lessened because the musical score and EPIC moment didn’t happen. Imagination is a powerful thing and we shouldn’t discount it, but we also don’t need to feed it to the point of gluttony.

Does imagination have a glutton-setting? I don’t know, sometimes it feels like it. When your brain can’t handle any more of it and you can’t make it stop and it just keeps going and going and going and you want to scream but you can’t because it’s just your brain and no one else can see what’s going on in the movie screen behind your eyes.

To come back to the point, I am very glad to have my friends and to have seen this movie.

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… they’re really saying, “I love you.”

I honestly cannot hear that song without bursting into tears. It takes about 5 notes and the first syllable and I can’t even see.  Anyone that says music doesn’t affect them is missing a dose of whatever I seem to have in spades. It’s ridiculous. I could name that songs that are guaranteed to pick me up and the ones that drop me down where I need a box of tissues within arms reach.

Tonight we finished watching Good Morning Vietnam. I’ve seen it before, Louis Armstrong made me cry then, and he made me cry again. That movie is the reason that song causes such a strong reaction. The song is played while a totally different visual assaults your eyeballs. It hurts but in the way I’m sure the movie directors intended. It hits on a visceral level like a discordant chord. Jarring, but yet you can’t stop getting it out of your head.

Anyways, the one line from it really hits home right now because we’re getting down to the wire of leaving. We have two weeks and two-ish days and then it’s farewell.  I’m not sure how I’m going to handle it as we get closer. I feel like crying if I think about it for too long. Right now I’m so dried up from earlier that I feel I can write something.

Tonight we gave away our bookcases. In return we got an awesome red rubber ball for the pup and an offer of pup-sitting while we’re moving. Our dog has the best doggy and human friends ever. We’re really going to miss those four legged beasts. I am hoping to tell everyone at the Dog Park that we’ve gotten reasonably close to that we’re leaving. It’s going to be hard as some of them have just started to become friends. What will our pup do without his BFF (they have matching collars now) to zoom and wrestle with on a weekly basis?

But life goes on, adventures await and we just have to pick up and keep moving. As Dory says, “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming.” Right now, I’m focusing on swimming and keeping my head afloat.  The grief of leaving these friends here is pretty overwhelming but I remind myself that  several good friends have already left and we’re still in touch, so I won’t lose touch with the people who really mean a lot to me. One of my greatest friends is in the same town as me now (we’ve known each other since we were about 15) and it’s going to be really painful to leave her. I know I wasn’t the reason she moved up here, but I was definitely a perk. No one likes to lose a reason the place they live is bearable.

The Ladies Night crew is slowly but surely breaking up. “Cupcake” has already been gone for over a year and a half, another coworker left for Alaska this spring and another just moved to Texas. Before the Ladies Night crew two other friends left — one to graduate school not too far away and another to WA. People leave and it pained me something awful to see them go. Well, now it’s my turn to wrench roots from the grips of this lovely town with its postcard views and scenery.

I remember how sad I was to leave my home town to move out here. I lost touch with some people, but others stayed in touch and we found other ways to ‘hang out’ and stay updated on each other. It helps when you’ve had a good portion of your life shared online. Distance isn’t so painful, you find ways to get together when you’re in the same town and it make those hugs so much more worthwhile. . . except you don’t want them to end.

In some ways I am beyond ready to leave. The job, the house, the expensive flights in/out of town. But the reasons to stay are the people. The reasons I miss home are because of the people. BUT this isn’t high school and college where it’s just friends going to class together and hanging out. We’ve had to grow up and face the real world and schedules and marriages and personal lives that mean you can’t hang out every Friday night watching Stargate SG-1, or going to church lock ins and getting next to no sleep once a month.

Toys R Us had it right with their theme song.  I really don’t want to grow up. Life makes you, but that doesn’t mean I have to want it. Life hurts. Life heals, but you have to stand tall and keep moving forward. Family and friends will support you and help however they can because that’s what you do for each other. I am amazed how we all came together to help our Texas-bound friend move. She got so much help from everyone and we all wanted to be there for her.

Well, I’m attempting to grow up a bit over the next few weeks, pack up my life and move to new experiences. Adventure awaits!!

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Misheard lyrics

First off, hello to the new people that are following my blog. . . I feel special. And thank you for all the likes. It makes me all warm and fuzzy.

Back to topic

Growing up I didn’t know a lot of songs that EVERYONE ELSE grew up knowing. . . I didn’t know 80s rock songs until college. I know my Neil Diamond, Simon and Garfunkel and WAY more classical music than a child should. Want to ask me about The Magic Flute or Don Giovanni or The Flying Dutchman — I can give you a synopsis off the top of my head. But that’s for another entry ENTIRELY.

Needless to say, my husband was one of those kids whose parents love classic rock and other great music. He knows his stuff and I just nod and joke about who is singing what. Tom Petty-esque songs are all sung by Tom Petty. Bryan Adams songs are all by Bruce Springsteen (my dad was convinced he was the one that sang Summer of ’69 for decades), etc.

Below are several (and I shall add to this) songs that I never did hear right until I actually SAW the lyrics. Kid you not.

 

Guns N Roses – Paradise City Axl Rose totally starts this song with “Take me down to a very nice city where the grass is green and the girls are pretty.”  

Aerosmith – Sweet Emotion Definitely used to hear the song start with “Need any more shine” rather than “Sweeeeeeeeeet Emooooootion.”  I never thought Steven Tyler could pronounce ‘need’ right in the song, but I figured it was some artistic thing. 

Counting Crows – Big Yellow Taxi (had to look up the song title for this one and also learned it’s a Joni Mitchell song) I always heard “saved paradise, put a fucking light.” Not even joking. I NEVER knew the lyrics until a few years ago. 

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