The Love in Your Day

Last week I wrote this thought on my white board in my office:

What is it that you most love in life,
and how do you express it in your
day to day routine?

Thinking about the aunts and uncles who’ll be at this year’s Christmas gathering, and realizing that the list is getting shorter. My dear sister-in-law, Connie, passed last Spring. And a life-long friend whom I haven’t had the best communication with, has had incredible health difficulties since taking a fall a few months ago. For my part, I’ve been so busy, with an almost around-the-clock sense of urgency tending to my job. Because of the freedom I’ve been given I feel the need to work all the harder to deliver the best possible learning experience for my students. That’s a blessing, but I still need to pause a moment and consider bringing the bigger vision into the daily routine.

I shouldn’t let a day go by without picking up my guitar. I shouldn’t let a day go by when I don’t write in this blog. I shouldn’t let a day go by when I don’t call up a friend just to say, “hi.” I’ve done these important things too infrequently this past year and that needs to change. After my uncle Joe passed, whenever I found myself relaxing for a moment, especially if the moment included a good IPA, I raised my glass in his honor. I didn’t do this because I thought that he might be haunting me or aware of my gesture, but because I wanted to honor the memory of his work ethic, what he contributed to in the life of his six daughters and dozens of grandchildren and just the man’s man who he was.

So, there needs to be more room for the meditation that I find in my guitar. Thus, last night when I should have been trying to get some sleep because I had an early morning video shoot (I was doing the behind the scene stills), I found myself listening to some Sarah McLachlan and then strumming along, then looking up the lyrics and chords for the song on the Internet, then learning the song and playing until my finger, that have long lost their callouses, forced me to quit. I’ve long felt a strong emotional connection to McLachlan, but when I listened to the lyric last night, something in the careful twist of words really connected it to the journey I’ve been on. I decided that this would be a good place to start getting back to the things/people I love in my life.

Fallen
Heaven bend to take my hand
And lead me through the fire
Be the long awaited answer
To a long and painful fight
Truth be told I tried my best
But somewhere long the way
I got caught up in all there was to offer
But the cost was so much more than I could bear

Though I’ve tried I’ve fallen
I have sunk so low
I messed up
Better I should know
So don’t come round here and
Tell me I told you so

We all begin with good intent
Love was raw and young
We believed that we could change ourselves
The past can be undone
But we carry on our back, the burden
Time always reveals
In the lonely light of morning
In the wound that would not heal
It’s the bitter taste of losing everything
that I’ve held so dear…

I’ve fallen
I have sunk so low
I messed up
Better I should know
So don’t come round here and
Tell me I told you so

Heaven bend to take my hand
I’ve nowhere left to turn
I’m lost to those I thought were friends
To everyone I know
Oh they turn their heads embarrassed
Pretend that they don’t see
But it’s one missed step you’ll slip before you know it
And there doesn’t seem a way to be redeemed

Though I’ve tried I’ve fallen
I have sunk so low
I messed up
Better I should know
So don’t come round here and
Tell me I told you so
I messed up
Better I should know
So don’t come round here and
Tell me I told you so

Sources:
* “Fallen” by Sarah McLachlan from her Afterglow CD
* youtube video: Sarah McLachlan Fallen Live – Macworld 2003 Keynote posted by cryotekk. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eEKqFw9x_IM retrieved 12/11/2009

p.s., I used to catch hell for my affinity and attraction to artist’s like McLachlan. This person would tease me, saying that I needed to quit listening to the “lesbians” because the music was making me too moody. I’m glad that I didn’t stop listening. The music didn’t make me moody, it spoke to the shitty situation and my frustration with it. Making this song a part of my emotional vocabulary is a far better way to move past those trouble times than to pretend that they didn’t happen or wall off whole sections of ones life. There, I said it.