Things Carried Forward

I absolutely love music. I have a favorite band (Matchbox Twenty), but I also love a number of songs by a variety of artists and bands. Music is something that connects people, and connects events.

For me, certain songs remind me of certain moments in my life.

When I first heard “If I Die Young” by The Band Perry, I thought it had a haunting quality I hadn’t heard before. This was about three years before I learned I had a hole in my heart. When I listened to the song after my ASD diagnosis, well…it took on a whole new meaning. All of the lyrics are fantastic, but sink me in the river at dawn/send me away with the words of a love song/the sharp knife of a short life/well I’ve had just enough time. This song is one of my all-time favorites and, as a sidenote, I was lucky enough to see The Band Perry live at Artpark in July of 2016. So that was pretty damn cool.

I moved to Cortland, NY to start my first non-waitressing job about seven months after my surgery. I remember standing in the kitchen of my second apartment (the one I would stay in the longest), looking out the window at the first real snowfall of the season, and thinking there were so many opportunities to come, and just kind of reveling in my own potential. “Ready to Run” by One Direction was playing from my phone at the time, and I usually always think of that moment in Cortland every time I hear it. The lyrics that always get me are there’s a moment when you finally realize/there’s no way you can change the rolling tide/but I know, yes I know that I’ll be fine.

When I drove from Cortland to Buffalo for the last time after I’d moved all my stuff (and did two additional weeks of living at my parents’ place), this song came on the radio. I’d heard “Confession” by Florida Georgia Line before then, but on that drive specifically it really resonated with me. Moving to Buffalo was a big change for me, and there had been some doubt from some people close to me that I was, maybe, not doing the right thing. That guy in the windshield looking back looks just like me/but there’s a crack in the reflection/this is just a moonlight soaked, wind and smoke/right hand on a cold one confession.

(Some people still aren’t sure I did the right thing moving out here, but I regret nothing, so there’s that.)

If you look at the presets on my car radio, half of them are technically Canadian stations. This is probably the reason that I picked up an affinity for Marianas Trench, specifically “Who Do You Love”. There’s just something understated yet profound about well I’ve been deep in this sleeplessness, I don’t know why/just can’t get away from myself/when I get back on my feet I’ll blow this open wide and carry me home in good health.

Sometimes I’ll listen to the same song on repeat when I’m going to or from work. Sometimes, if I’m having a rough time — whether that’s from my own brain being a jackass or something outside of my control that I just had to deal with — I’ll put on this particular song as a sort of reminder. “Glorious” by Macklemore ft. Skylar Grey is that song, specifically for got a chance to start again/I was born for this, born for this/it’s who I am, how could I forget?/I made it through the darkest part of the night/and now I see the sunrise/now I feel glorious, glorious.

My current I am going to listen to this on repeat while I drive to work is a toss up between “Miracle Pill” by The Goo Goo Dolls, and Fitz and the Tantrums “Fool”. Of course there’s also “The Bones” by Maren Morris, “Here With Me” by Marshmello ft. CHVRCHES, “Brand New” from Ben Rector, and “Buy My Own Drinks” by Runaway June.

Pardon the fact that it’s been literal months since you’ve heard from me. Hopefully I do better.

Hope & Kindness,

-ML

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