I caught a glimpse of the CD this morning. I haven't seen it in a while. I can't even remember the last time I listened to it, but I can hear the opening notes of the album so clearly in my head I don't even need to.
Music is an awesome and powerful thing. Many people have songs, albums, and artists that can conjure up vivid memories from days past. Music becomes you and stays with you. It's pretty cool like that. Almost all the amazing moments if my life have a song attached to them.
But this album. Oh, this album is more complicated than that. It almost haunts me. It is a great album. It is one of my favorite bands that would surely be included in the soundtrack of my life. But this album is different. I think it is the combination of the almost melancholy tone of the album and the bittersweet moment of my life where this music and I collided that make it different.
In my early 20s my life opened up in a beautiful way. It was a time of great empowerment, improvement, and exploration. Things were so good. Life was awesome for the first time I could remember. I had emerged from a darkness and vowed to never return to it again. Music was a constant friend. The album was one of a few in the playlist rotation. I think it had just come out so I listened and learned the songs over a period of days and weeks, blaring loudly from my fast little purple car on those country roads I loved.
It was there holding my hand as I realized the guy I thought I would love forever would never really love me back.
It was there as I found out my grandfather's health was declining and my father and I took an impromptu road trip to see him and comfort my grandmother.
It was again there when my grandfather passed and I started to realize what happens when you love someone for 60 years with all your heart and have to let them go.
It was there when our beloved family dog left us.
And it was there when I had to pull off the road when my mom called me to tell me my dear cousin had taken his own life.
Those singular and simple opening notes play over and over as the events of this moment (which actually occurred over the course of a couple months) run through my head and wash over my heart. I don't know the last time I listened to it. It became too hard to hear certain lines that rang too true or to just hear the music itself.
Every once in a while the CD will pop up and I'm not sure how that happens. Sometimes I'm tempted to listen to it, submerge myself in it and let all the many emotions wash over me and see what comes out. I look at it as I would a time capsule- the smells, feelings, sounds, and emotions of that time period just bottled up and waiting to burst fourth into my world again. Maybe I'm just not ready to do that yet. Maybe the next time it turns up I will be.