I just want to be where they are singing right now. What an incredible backdrop for such a song. I’m really liking John Mark McMillan’s new album that came out in early March. His most notable and popular song, probably still to this day, is “How He Loves.” That song had such an impact on me as well as the story behind it. I think it may have been the first time I had ever heard a “worship” song sound so genuine, poetic and messy all at the same time. It got to me so much that the tree tattoo on my arm was inspired by the line “He is jealous for me, love’s like a hurricane, I am a tree, bending beneath the weight of His wind and mercy…”
My favorite lyric in the video above is, “Where the hounds run, track me in my sleep, when I can’t trust the company I keep, when I’ve push passed the point of pressing on,You’re what I’m counting on.” That hits really close to home right now.
Ya’ll… I KNOW you remember this song. I’m sure some of you hate it as much as some of you love it and feel all 2005 when you hear it.
I have a necessary relationship with “Bad Day” by Daniel Powter.
2005-2006 was pretty rough for this chick. While 2005 was the year I graduated high school (which to this day was one of the most relieving and liberating days of my life), I also went through some rough transitions. Earlier in that year I was broken up with, which just SUCKED SO BAD at the time. It was the worst! And thinking about it now, I feel silly even bringing it up. But at the time, it was so devastating to me. (You can read all about it in my LiveJournal…. if you can find it).
So “Bad Day” along with Kelly Clarkson’s “Since You’ve Been Gone” got me through most of that. Oh, and Jesus… I guess. Or maybe it’s better put that Jesus allowed those songs to keep me going, since I really wasn’t going to surrender anything to him, even though I claimed that I was a Christian.
I also did a semester at FIU, which I was not excited about at all. So, 2005 was weird, but kind of normal life. Then 2006 happened. I can look back at 2006 and pinpoint what may have been the beginning of the #RealLife Sanctification process.
My family started falling apart at the seams. It was one of those things I think I always knew was going to happen, and it was like a waiting game to see when the shit would finally hit the fan.
It hit, and the fan flung suffering all over us.
An argument turned into chaos on the front yard which pushed me to slam pictures on the terrazzo tile inside because I couldn’t contain my sorrow and rage anymore. My sister disappearing into the dark night as my brother cried in the garage while begging me not to go stay at Jessica’s house.
(It is really hard for me to share those last two sentences, because it forces me to relive them. I’m still forgiving myself for leaving my little brother in that hell).
The rest of that year is still one of the most painful years I’ve ever known (although the past 6 months are really trying to top that). The chaos only kept on coming, to the point where my mom and I never knew if everyone was going to be alive by the next day. People at church treated me and my sister like outsiders. My life was literally falling apart and all I got was a lot of religious platitudes.
(Disclaimer: if we went to church together during this time, please don’t hear that as a condemnation on you or our Church. I was just as guilty of doing to others what ended up happening a little bit to me, so there is no judgement coming from me. We’re all sinners in need of grace).
For the sake of everyone’s dignity, I won’t share much more details of that year. But this song… this song stuck with me. Back when Motorola flip phones were cool, “Bad Day” was my ringtone for everyone. I just wanted to hear it anytime, all the time.
One of the only redeeming moments of 2006 was when I had to spend the day in Downtown Miami to 1) go to court over a parking ticket and 2) visit my dad in a psychiatric ward. So pretty much the two worst things ever. After court, I had time to kill, so I took the Metro Rail to Dadeland mall, and let someone put makeup on me in Macy’s. I don’t even know why I did that, but it made me feel better. I got back on the Metro Rail to go to the hospital, and my phone kept ringing…
Cause you had a bad day You’re taking one down You sing a sad song just to turn it around You say you don’t know You tell me don’t lie You work at a smile and you go for a ride You had a bad day The camera don’t lie You’re coming back down and you really don’t mind You had a bad day You had a bad day
I didn’t answer it. I wanted to keep hearing the song. In that moment, listening to “Bad Day” on the Metro Rail with my face fresh with makeup and strangers all around me, I felt like I was going to make it to 2007. I even started giggling, and said, “how bout you’ve had a bad year,” and giggled some more.
So, it’s 2014, and I’m still alive!
Maybe one day, ya’ll can convince me to talk about my closet ZAO obsession in 10th grade.
Yesterday morning I decided to go for a jalk (a walk/jog because #ImOutOfShape), and I was already fighting off the feelings of failure. As the endorphins started to coarse through my veins and the pain in my chest, legs and feet were making me aware that I was very much alive, I passed this piece of paper on the ground. As I abruptly came to a pause and looked down at it, a smile creeped across my face.
Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?
I don’t know if some day-dreamy little girl decided to write that and put it there intentionally, or if it fell out of her backpack as she walked home from school the day prior. I’ll never know why it was there in the middle of the street, but what I do know is that it made me think of a good things both then and now.
I don’t have a lot of happy memories involving my family from my childhood, and I don’t say that out of self loathing (I already went through that phase), but it’s just the truth. So when something small allows me to reminisce on sweet moments from my younger days, I take full advantage of it.
From birth to when I was in 8th-ish grade, we didn’t have a radio in our car. It’s really weird to think of that now, but it was quite the 90’s #FirstWorldProblem at the time. Since we didn’t have any tunes to listen and sing to while daring the battlefield of US1’s traffic every day, a lot of times my mom and I sang whatever song would come to mind. She ALWAYS found the harmony, which is probably where I get it from. It was nice, because we would try to make the sounds of the instruments too, inevitably running out of breath from laughter. When my sister grew old enough, she joined in as well. A major hit in our tiny, blue Honda was Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen. Man! Could we sing the hell outta that song and laugh uncontrollably…
In recent months, Abe has started to remember and recite (or sing) phrases and songs that he hears more than once. It’s something you don’t ever think about until you watch a small human being sing a song. It’s phenomenal to me, that this once-baby who had no idea what language was, let alone words set to music, can now sing songs that HE MEMORIZES.
So, we drive a Volvo from 1991. It does have a radio, but last year when a tree fell on our car, it broke the long metal thingy that allowed us to receive most radio waves. With the exception of a fuzzy sounding 94.3, we have no radio.
And guess what we do now?
We sing. We sing A LOT. Even Daniel! And as of late, our car is filled with the Webb’s rendition of Frozen. I don’t care if it’s cliche and I don’t care if you think it’s stupid, because I adore it. We sing together, and we replace words with “fart” together, and we laugh together. If Abe or Daniel grabs the melody, I grab the harmony. Sometimes we will scream the songs, and sometimes I will pretend I’m Julie Andrews and sing with her voice. Every now and then, Daniel’s “Scott Stapp” makes a vocal appearance, and… well, you can only imagine.
That piece of paper with those 6 words on it not only reminded me of something good from the past, but it also reminds me of how good I have it now.
I need those reminders, because I’m kind of an a-hole and it’s really easy for me to forget all of the good in the midst of ol’ regular life that feels hard a lot of the time.