I have 23 of them. Yup. They are called things like Happy, Sad, Angry, Laundry, Bike Ride, School Work, Songs That don’t make me want to scream my fucking head off (my favorite lately!), Driving, Driving in traffic, Sleep, Sleep without dreaming, Hemi-Sync, Walking the Dog….you know the usual.
I have had a “bumpy” 6 months (TBH It’s been a shit storm of shitty craptactualr poo with crap on it 6 months) and I am slowly crawling and clawing and fighting my way back out of it and then falling back down and having to start again almost daily BUT I still trying and THAT is what counts right? My playlists have been my saving grace throughout most of it. Music has been my escape from my thoughts lately…it seems before I can do anything I need music. I have been surrounded my whole life by music. Each memory I have has a song associated with it..Sweet Caroline reminds me of car rides to the cottage with my Dad, Beethoven’s Fur Elise reminds me of sitting in the den with my Grandpa Bob listening to records, Stairway to Heaven: obviously high school dance, Change of Seasons by Sweet Thing…2nd first date song, The Tea Party makes me Sad, Mumford and Sons makes me feel homesick, Metric makes me want to clean things, T-Swift makes me want to kick things, Charlie Pride makes me laugh, scratchy staticy needle drops make me so fucking unbelievable happy….you get it: I attach memories to songs and sounds and tastes ( I have cried while drinking tea because of the memories associated with it and felt ill once when someone suggested eating at a certain restaurant for the same reason).
Turns out I am the type of person that needs sound to feel at peace. (I am making a list of Things about me that I didn’t know before: and this is number one on the list): This is something I learned about myself recently after finding myself alone and in the quiet with only my own thoughts for too many days. I turned on the receiver and connected my phone to the Bluetooth (I was so proud of myself for knowing how) and I pressed play and instantly felt peace. For the next (very long) 4 weeks if I was awake there was sound of some sort. I started to listen to guided meditation to fall asleep. If I was walking anywhere alone: even from my parking spot to my office (which is a very short city block) my headphones were in. The radio in my car had died at this exact shitty time as well so, I learned to drive with headphones in. I downloaded music based on suggestions from other music I had in my playlist and fell in absolute love with a new album by a group I adored, and I listened to the 4 songs that were released on repeat for days. I started listening to the meanings behind the songs I was listening to and at times became emotional: some were so powerful I had to stop listening to them due the reaction they brought out in me. I started listening to records I found on a shelf I had never taken the time to listen to and learned to understand the power behind the music and the beauty in the composition. Electronic Dance has this amazing weaving of sounds and beats and tempo that in the right space with the right volume (awkward with one ear that hears sound at a different decibel level but I figured it out!) makes me feel euphoric and yet calm and focused at the same time (excellent for writing psychology papers at 2 am!) I found myself unable to focus if it was too quiet. Radio Paradise has been a savior. Youtube is my hero lately for the suggested songs. I miss when GrooveShark was a thing. How did I not know this about myself before? It kind of made me angry that, once again, I felt ripped off from missing out for so long….don’t get me wrong I have always loved music and appreciated it, but this is different and hard to explain. It might seem insignificant or small or even a strange thing to focus on when, clearly, I have bigger fucking fish to fry…but this discovery is important to me. Maybe I am starting to know “me” a little better. Also: everyone should make a “things about me that I didn’t know before” list…it’s very therapeutic to self reflect like that. Also I need more music to listen to.