Music was always an integral part of my life. I grew up singing in school and church choirs. I annoyed my family for decades singing along to the radio at full volume. I had aspirations to be a musician and even attended college on a partial music scholarship. Karaoke was one of my favorite group activities and I’d rock out to Rock Band after a long day at work. When life got difficult I’d sneak away and sing at the top of my lungs until the world made sense again. Music brought me joy… helped me process feelings… it was just a part of who I was as a person.
Yesterday I was driving around and doing errands and a song I used to sing to came on the radio. A realization hit me all of a sudden …. I don’t sing anymore. When did that happen? When did my life get so serious that I let music slip away from me? It was such an integral part of my life and of who I was as a person for such a long time. It’s just one of the many pieces of myself that I somehow lost along the way without even noticing. My heart hurt to think that I wasn’t even tempted… even in the slightest bit … to sing a single note along with the radio.
I have moments of stubbornness and this was one of them. As I was sitting in the car listening to Rusted Root blare on the radio, I dug my mental heels in and thought, “Nope. Not losing this part of myself too”. Even though I was feeling overwhelmed by the stress of my life and heart sick that I was spending the weekend away from my kids, I decided I was going to sing. At first it felt kind of awkward and depressing. I’m a 37 year old woman, driving an old beat up minivan and I’m forcing myself to sing at the top of my lungs even though I felt like crawling into bed and pulling the covers over my head. But eventually, it started to feel natural. When the next song came on the radio I sang along to that one too… and then the next one as well. Then it started to feel good.
I’m not letting this girl go without a fight. Over the years I’ve let myself disappear. I’ve turned into someone that someone else wanted me to be and I’ve lost what makes me … me. I’m determined to find the little pieces of myself that I’ve lost along the way and put myself back together…. and when I hear a song I know come on the radio I’m going to sing with abandon.