I grew up in the late 1950’s and 1960’s. I listened to music on the radio all the time, and my parents played and sang with a band my whole life. Artists like Sam Cook, The Platters, Neil Sedaka, Bobby Vinton, all of the early Motown artists, and early rock and roll stars along with country singers were the mainstays in my home. As far back as I can remember, music was the way I expressed my feelings and learned to understand what others were feeling.
I fell in love listening to the pop and rock of the 1960 and 1970 hippie era. The first song I dance to with the love of my life was Never My Love by the Association. It still makes me want his arms around me when I hear it. Today, when I listen to songs from that era, memories overwhelm me. And it is always the man who became my best friend, lover, and husband who is forefront in those memories.
I remember rocking my babies to music from the mid 1970’s, and singing to them along with the radio in my car right up until they were nearly teenagers. I did the same to my grandchildren, and now, great grandchildren. Recently, I was listening to music on satellite radio. I ran across the Elvis station, and every song they played was one I could sing word for word. Funny how that works, I don’t remember a conversation from a week ago, but I know the words to a song I learned when I was nine years old. Maybe it is because the music makes us feel something, maybe our brains are wired to respond to rhymes and rhythm so it is easier to remember the lyrics. I don’t care, really, I simply want to always remember songs that lift me up, make me cry, long for my love, or feel joy.
Today I was listening to a song list of love songs I compiled. I put it together to help me concentrate as I worked on my newest novel. I didn’t realize how powerful the music was until I found myself trying to type with tears in my eyes. It was a song by Bette Midler. The Rose is the song I associate with the loss of our oldest son. The last lyrics are:
When the night has been too lonely/And the road has been too long
And you think that love is only/For the lucky and the strong
Just remember in the winter/Far beneath the bitter snows
Lies the seed that with the sun’s love/In the spring becomes the rose
Because I believed with all my heart, that beneath the bitterness of his loss, we would all grow and one day, with the love of the Son of God, spring would come to our hearts and lift us out of our sorrow and bitterness. Years have gone by, and we have begun to see the spring around us and the rose is his beloved daughter and her daughter that brought life back to our sorrowful hearts.
Tonight, for the first time in a long time, I am all alone at home. My beloved is visiting his brother. I didn’t think I would miss him so much. Now I am spending the evening listening to music that reminds me of him and the times of our lives. I want to wrap each memory up in a song and put it away in my heart like the gift it is meant to be.
This is the newest song we dance to. It’s by Chris Stapelton, More of You. Because even after all of these years, I still want more of you, my beloved.