So, a girl walked into a bar…
Just kidding. Well, I am not kidding, but,
I’ll get back to that.
I just had a first.
For the first time since I started this blog, which was approximately 2,745 days ago, I stopped, mid-post, and said, to myself,
“What are you doing? Why are you writing about this? This is not giving you the feels.”
And then I thought about a previous post inspired by Hemingway, instructing all humans to write about whats hard, clear and what hurts (to paraphrase).
I often stop myself when I go to pour my heart out on here, censoring my writing carefully; deliberately.
Today, I am doing the opposite.
I do not feel like writing an epic post, I feel like keeping this short, in fact, but I do want to write honestly.
I stop myself for so many reasons
(Is this too personal? Is this really, in fact, perpetuating my pain? Am I going to look like I am crying out for attention? Am I crying out for attention? Well, the latter I can assure you is never true) and I put proverbial duct tape over my fingers and, these days, snuggle up on my new couch in front of an old episode of Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix.
But, I feel like writing. And not about the difference between my daughter and my son (the other post), but about what’s hard. And clear. And what hurts.
Last night, I walked into my favorite bar, to meet my friend, to have a beer and a music strategy session, because this is what we do. It is our equivalent of the SATC coffee shop or Monk’s, just with less coffee and estrogen and more craft beer and notes scribbled onto the paper placemat. This bar actually holds a lot of history for us, and also represents a tremendous amount of growth for me. Another post for another day.
Without this getting too confusing or writing anything personal about people who have not, in fact, chosen to live their lives on a blog,
I got a chance to have a brief exchange with someone I met there with whom I seem to have a lot in common (like music and writing).
I asked him if he writes original music and he said, essentially, that he does so as an outlet.
I concurred. I write as an outlet, too. Except, I do not write music very much anymore.
I have used my words to pour my heart out, especially with some recent posts, but I am no longer writing music on the regular.
I want this to change.
Today, I revisited an old song. This song is from 2012 and the first that I ever really wrote. I collaborated a bit on the melody, but the words were my own.
“Are you ready to come home? There’s a spot for you here in my bones and/I still know you like the night”
I wrote a song about a relationship, and one with a painful ending. It was a made up story. It was about characters invented in my mind.
But, funny enough, “Good as Old” foreshadowed a lot about the next five years.
“My house was the home I made in you/built with every breath we drew/’til we burned down this place”
Sharing music and lyrics is extremely vulnerable, especially when it’s not during a particularly creative period in life.
Especially when it is in this context.
“Are you ready to come home? I’ve got no one to keep me warm and/there’s a hole in my soul that’s about your size”
Before this week, I had not revisited this song in years. Not because I do not like it. I actually love it. It just…
And last night, over a beer, a chicken cheesesteak and sweet potato fries, my friend and I talked about new ways to rework old songs. Ways in which to make them better; to take the good content, get rid of the bad stuff (quality/memories) and reclaim these pieces. Just like the reclaimed wood pieces that are so beautiful and trendy at the moment, with visible knots and imperfections; #repurposing is a big thing. And that is what we plan to do.
“Why don’t you come/and rest your weary feet/arrest me with your heat/we can let your wary meet my incomplete”
I spent time, last night, explaining something that I want to explain, here, now, as well.
I do not write things to pick at scabs or reopen old wounds or perpetuate pain. I do not write to try to get sympathy.
I write because it is my truth. It is what is hard. And real. And hurts.
And also heals.
Despite my (Becca-ish) brevity, this post is actually pretty emotional for me; it is very personal.
Today, I was moved to tears by the Time Magazine Person of the Year announcement: The Silence Breakers.
When I wrote my #metoo post, I joined that group, in a very tiny way. I could have written more, shared more personal details, exposed more facts and, perhaps, been more brave.
But I did not stay silent. I broke a silence that I had been keeping from you since October 28 of last year.
I was told, so many times, to stop. To stop myself before going too far in sharing my personal story. To stop bringing it up.
To stop feeling.
To stop letting it ruin my happy times. To stop ruminating. To stop bowing down at the altar of my pain. To stop living in fear.
To move on.
And, because everyone who is currently in my life is a good person, I am grateful for this loving advice, all aimed at helping me to be healthy and happy and well.
But, in this instance, I did not stop. I had been holding my hammer up to the glass of silence, geared up to strike, and yet still stopping before making a single move for so so so so so so so long.
And, because of these other silence breakers, and because I my arm got so damn tired, I swung.
I shattered the glass.
I refused to stop.
Hard. Clear. What hurts.
What moves. What feels. Like the old wood, what we can repurpose into something new and so beautiful.
Like the glass that I shattered, that we can now make into a mosaic.
Like all of the scary things that we all do every day.
So, a girl walked into a bar…
She sat down in a place that was so familiar, but with new eyes through which to view it.
She looked at the beer menu and saw that the good looking sour was kicked.
She talked to her close friend and met a new person and identified herself as a musician.
It wasn’t scary. It felt honest.
And then, before they could order from their signature spot, she and her friend got up. She and her friend walked across the street.
She sat in a new booth. She talked about the future of singing and songwriting and playing for other people.
She talked about the past in a way that was, perhaps, more honest than ever.
She ordered a different beer. She made a plan.
She thanked her friend.
She felt grateful.
She listened to her old song without feeling pain.
She came up with new ideas.
She decided to take chaos and turn it into cubist art.
She spent the next day working and being a mom and taking care of her health and writing.
And revisiting old music. And dreaming up new ideas.
And not being too scared to dream.
And she did not stop.