There is a song, 'Living in the Country' by George Winston that always breathes life into my heart when I hear it. In a flash, I have memories flooding my consciousness that fill me with nostalgia, regret and fierce love. My little brothers sleeping in the floor of my bedroom growing up, finishing a major research paper at my friend's apartment in college and a gravel driveway to an upstairs apartment in my aunt and uncle's house during my sophomore year - these snapshots of meaning that sit in the background of my heart. Music is an incredible gift that possesses more power than we can know. It's so easy to forget that when you're so busy trying to manage life.
Being a highly-sensitive person, the noise of life - it often weighs too heavy. Listening to this and pretty much any of his music, that weight is temporarily suspended and I am allowed to dream of a peaceful road in the country where I am loved, hopeful and enjoying the nourishment of a simple and fulfilled life. Like a weekend getaway for the soul, songs like this convict me of the peace of heaven. The noise this year has been so very loud and the adrenaline rush of emergency has since dissipated into a heavy numbness. With truth and lies trotted out in front of everyone via the media as if there were no difference, we can no longer honestly find safety in a location, a political party, a specific leader or even our own. It has always been so, but it's louder now. The hate, the deceit, the fighting and corruption - it is all so loud and heavy.
As Spotify shuffled George Winston songs and I began writing this morning, the tears flowed. I miss my grandparents and summertime at their houses. I ache for those trembling in fear for nothing they have done, but just existing. I see the wildflowers on my counter and know how much I don't deserve the love my children shower me with. The necessity of human touch has been forgotten and I pray we all seek truth rather than turning any one person or opinion into an idol. So much is out of balance and I feel compelled to right the ship, as it were, but awkwardly self-aware of my whiteness.
Feeling the need to make sure my kids had at least a partial understanding of current events, I sat my 9 and 6 year old down to talk a little bit. We revisited a little history in regards to slavery and civil rights, but then I spoke about what was happening now. The idea that someone would be mistreated because of their skin color TODAY made his face squish in confusion. "But why would they do that? That doesn't make sense." he said. My talkative daughter innocently went with what she knows and recalled one of the darkest skinned people she had ever met. "Yeah, remember when we had swim lessons? Our teacher was great! She was so nice!" scoffing at the thought of thinking she deserved anything but good things. We talked about what the Bible says and that whether short, fat, purple, rich or alien, we are supposed to treat them with love and kindness. That wasn't new information to them really so they politely nodded in understanding.
3 months ago many of our lives were pushed around with obligations and deadlines that sent us into tizzies that we wished would let up. Now we're carted around by one media headline or another, depending on the day. It's so very hard to know what's real and who to trust because so much is biased and untrue. The irony is that by the time we find out information is false, it seems to be irrelevant because of the next headline. God promises many things to those who truly follow Him and His is the only voice we can truly trust. I believe that so much more than I used to. I'm so tired of being disappointed in people and entities, but at the same time, I disappoint someone daily I'm sure.
Whether you think I or anyone else has a reason to be upset about something, we all have voices that need to be expressed. There are some really beautiful avenues to express emotion and my favorite is writing. I don't mean a post on social media, but a cleansing flush of your heart onto a page. If you are hurting, I would love to listen. If you are lost, I would love to share what gives me direction. If I have offended you or made you feel uncomfortable, please tell me. If you have something to say, use it - even if it's ugly or painful - to make something beautiful!