Hearing an old song from the 1990’s brought her back to fond memories. She was back in her 1984 Renaud V driving one of her children from a sleepover. A song started that they both liked (correction, Mom loved) and arriving home before the song had ended, she puts her car back in first gear and drives around the block until it ends. A smile is painted across her face now as she thinks about those times.
Music has allowed her to connect in some ways with her children. Her son had a rich eclectic selection of music and one was 1970’s Rock genre especially when he was playing guitar. She grew up moving to the beat of Motown, and so getting a chance to appreciate Zeppelin and Hendrix twenty years later were some of the benefits of having children.
Her daughter had joined a children’s choir in her preteens and she too opened her to classical music and allowed her to share her love of musicals with her daughter. She remembers going to Les Misérables in Toronto when her daughter was sixteen and looking over to see her face, now and then, as she was silently lip-singing.
She remembers having a block birthday party for her son when he turned five and playing Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” vinyl album and the kids thought that was so cool!
It is so amazing how music brings you back in time like that. She remembers lying on a blanket at her friend, Jane’s place, when she was twelve, studying for finals and listening to the hit parade on a transistor radio. They both vowed that day that they would always listen to the hit parade even as old as 40 years old! She chuckles at their perception of “old age” at that time.
Now she is a “senior” but still appreciates a variety of music. Indies folk acoustic is probably equal to her Motown love these days. Mainstream music does not attract her as much, so she probably left the “hit parade” scene in her early 50’s. Well, at least she kept her promise…listened to Mainstream popular music well passed her 40’s! [She smiles wondering if Jane still remembers that vow]
Music brings you back in time like the snap of fingers. It is magic, allowing you to travel back in time on that musical flying carpet. She can remember what she was doing and where she was when an old song is playing…some feelings of joy or melancholy wrap her for the duration of that song. This is something she also noticed when visiting her mother at the nursing home those last years.
When she would walk into her room, her mother eyes stared at the blank wall until she popped in a CD of Oscar Peterson, Frank Sinatra or Judy Garland. When she was still able to walk, they would dance and her mother would lip sing the songs. How she loved those moments and that is why she decided to include a few items in her living will…music and books.
She listed artists from the 1970’s up to the 1990’s to create a playlist if EVER her mind did drift away. As for books, well there is a list of English and French authors she likes (such as Atwood, Chaim Potok, Michel Tremblay, Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt, Khaled Hosseini, Lawrence Hill, Anne Rice, Barbara Kingsolver, Linda Hill, Julie Parenteau, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, Sreejit Poole) and a note to get a volunteer to visit her at a nursing home once or twice a week to read to her.
She created this to make her life tolerable and sometimes even enjoyable but mostly to try and avoid having her adult children feel obliged to visit if they are too busy and not to feel guilty because she wouldn’t know the difference as long as she had her music and her books.
Music, hopefully would cradle her like her mother’s lullabies when her time comes…if not, she has also a few mantras on her playlist…soothing songs in Sanskrit.
Her feline friend snuggles up close to her as they both relax to soothing music…
ping of a guitar
ripple of ivory keys
© tournesol ’19-05-25