Friday, June 30, 2017

About Canada/ Don't Stop Thinking About Tomorrow/ "All I want to do is to see you Smile, If it takes Just a Little While."/ Fleetwood Mac Lessons/Brilliance and Beauty in the Midst of Dramatic Life.

Fleetwood Mac's Rumours album is one I listen to any time my life feels overwhelming or dramatic. There are so many songs that are applicable to daily drama, probably because of the story behind the album, but the band was brilliant to start with.

Yesterday, my daughter forced me to watch Glee. She said that the episode, "Born this Way" was just what I needed. Turns out she was right. Glee has always expressed my soul. I go to certain episodes when I feel or need certain insights, inspiration, song love or friendship. "Born this Way" had me celebrating whom I was once again and taking back baby steps towards feeling good about myself. I Gaga'd up my game.

This morning we watched the follow up episode, "Rumours." The first time I watched Glee Rumours I was reminded of the Fleetwood album that I had not listened to in years. I downloaded all the original songs except the last two because for some reason, they don't speak to me. But the rest of the songs?  To say they were on repeat for weeks, is probably an understatement. It was the soundtrack to my life for a full spring and summer. It was when I was officially diagnosed with Autism and I had many conflicting emotions. I need these songs when I am feeling conflict. Critic Patrick McKay wrote, "What distinguishes Rumours —what makes it art—is the contradiction between its cheerful surface and its anguished heart. Here is a radio-friendly record about anger, recrimination, and loss." I love that polar opposite, raw, brilliant way of expression. Within those complex paradoxes, there is also optimism.

"If you wake up and don't want to smile, if it takes just a little while, Open your eyes, Look at the day, You'll see things in a different way. Don't stop thinking about tomorrow. Don't stop. It will still be here. It will be here better than before. Yesterday's gone. Yesterday's gone. Try to think about times to come, and not about the things that you have done, if your luck was bad to you, just think of what tomorrow will do. Don't stop thinking about tomorrow. Don't stop. It will soon be here. It will be here better than before. Yesterday's gone. Yesterday's gone. All I want is to see you smile, if it takes just a little while. I know you don't believe that it's true. I never meant any harm to you. Don't stop...It will be here better than before. Yesterday's gone..."

Tomorrow is Canada's 150th which has had me reflecting about the beauty and abundance I live within. In any country, there are troubles and issues, but with the focus on celebration, I have chosen to look at the positive. It's a bit easy for me because I adore Canada. From cheesy misconceptions of Igloo homes doting our vast landscape to the overused "Eh" or the symbols of Moose/ Beavers/ or the Canadian Goose to the more subtle beauties of a country young. The book How to be Canadian- Ferguson and Ferguson (CLICK) is a fun, sassy read on Canadiana.

This anniversary IS literally my tomorrow. But how does it apply to the larger picture of my life's landscape? The landscape of Canada is diverse, just like it's people. I love how a person could get lost in our country. I only have to travel two hours in each direction for a different landscape. Perspective is continually challenged and changed based on weather and geography. I wrote HERE (CLICK) , "The North has a way of giving and taking so suddenly. I believe this gives the many inhabitants a live or die mentality of savouring quick goodness and seizing unexpected moments quickly. Also installing resilience in those that manage to change with the seasons, or heck, the day to day...I am a 'Northern girl, wild and free with four strong winds to carry me'- Terri Clark...It's in me and I am in it. This is who I am and although I may complain at times, and it brings it's share of pain, it also brings great depth, freedom, raw strength and beauty. True, North, Strong and Free."

Canada calls for resilience. It also, in it's hopeful state, calls for compassion. Currently, there is drama heightened all over the globe. Pretty much everyone I know is struggling. There are horrendous stories in the news every day which is why I don't read the news. I choose to focus on only the issues surrounding me because it is there that I can make the most difference. Little ripples spread over the globe, if we all are the change we wish to see in the world, in our small parts of love and awareness. I am aware of the atrocities committed when I mention my daily issues, but I don't let these deeds overshadow my own pain either. That would mean I would be allowing the troubles of others to excuse my opportunity for growth. To say, "They have it worse than I do" is to neglect the soul work of actually addressing my own issues for a better world. It's a little lazy and wrong because anyone could say it to a degree. So, my own ideas are to process, allow the emotions, become the struggle and move through it with growth and sometimes even a bit of stagnancy. Sometimes we can only show up. Sometimes growth is not existent and out of seemingly nowhere a bud will bloom.

Yesterday is gone. Yesterday taught me something. There are pieces I will take with me on my journey, but it's also important to hold out for tomorrow. Even savour or get through today. It may sound selfish, but when I hear the lyrics that sing, "All I want to do is see you smile, if it takes just a little while..." I am actually singing to myself. I am being the friend to myself I would want someone to be for me. I have done this trick since when I was little and felt no one understood me. I became my best friend. Like Anne having a mirror friend, except my friend was a part of me. I felt that I had to be own hero and wait on no one to rescue me. Not even God, even though I believed in a conservative view of 'him' at the time. I thought even with my beliefs on redemption, that it was unfair to ask someone to come rescue me in my daily deeds. It was important to hope for rescue in certain circumstances, but it did not excuse my responsibility to make as much change for myself as I could. I still hold to that stance. When I forget it, I tend to do poorly in life. When I remember to be the friend and hero to myself that I would like, I am less of a burden on society, but I am also strangely more aided by society too. I begin to see 'help' in the strangest of places. Like Dumbledore says, "Help is always available at Hogwarts to those who ask for it." or "Happiness can be found in the darkest of places if one only remembers to turn on the light."

*DISCLAIMER: I have been depressed. I feel this does not apply to depression or circumstances when one requires help. There are times when I can not even help myself. Luckily, most of them have been shorter but some were years of just getting through and that was enough of an accomplishment. I am NOT saying 'suck it up princess.' My dad used to always use the phrase from Nietzsche that is often misquoted, "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger" and I HATED IT. I love Nietzsche but that quote is not in context plus it's untrue. Not all things make one stronger. They can in some regards, but some things do WEAKEN the body or the spirit...forever. Acknowledging this is the first step to freedom. Plus, it helps no one in a state of brokenness to hear this. Thus, I am not encouraging my readers to take full responsibility for everything that happens to them. I believe in healing and therapy. What I am saying, is if you can, in the little things, it is good to try to turn on a light for yourself, if you can.*

What I am doing is asking myself to help. Then I can ask others if I really can not do it. Sometimes we receive not because we ask not. A little Jesus tip that does apply in life. We need to ask because people can't read our minds and the worst they can say is a kind NO and then we find someone else or ourselves...I am also simply remembering to turn on the light. Sometimes, the task of turning on a light, is forcing myself to put on a song even though I don't feel like it, that suits my mood. This can be work and usually I pessimistically think it won't help, but when I actually take the time to find the right song, it can sometimes turn my day around. Other lights are time spent in nature, a favourite show to watch even though others would deem it a waste of time (45 minutes to change a day? WHY NOT?!), taking extra time on make up, sitting on the deck and soaking up the sun in gratitude, steeping tea, nourishing the body, walking, hugging my children, focusing on what is good, asking myself the hard questions and coming up with a few applicable solutions, changing my inner attitude, making a change for someone for good, indulging in art, decorating...the list goes on.

Turning on the light for oneself does not mean the drama ends. It does not mean that suddenly I am physically out of pain, don't have Lyme, Anemia or Mono right now, or that I do not have struggles with Z.  It does not mean my husband and I are automatically recovered from our roller coaster year. It does not mean my children will always have good health. At the Dentist the other day, they refused to work on my daughter because they said she had Autoimmune sores in her mouth and on her tonsils. I remembered to mention Mono. They said she was having a regression and it would be dangerous to work on her. No wonder we were both getting headaches, sore throats and exhaustion again! We were still sharing drinks because we thought we were both over it plus we both had it anyway, and didn't realize we COULD get it again. Most sites say that one can not but the forums are another matter. Plus the Dentist insisted we could. So that also threw another curve into my summer, I wish I didn't have to deal with, on my table. I am truthfully, barely making it through each day, even when I get a good sleep, because of severe exhaustion on so many physical and mental levels. But shit happens.

When I tell myself, "All I want to do is to see you smile...if it takes just a little while..." I then ask myself, "What would that take? What would I wish for someone to do for me?" And I try to make it happen. Once I smile, I then realize, that it is time to share that sentiment with at least ONE other person. Be their smile. For myself, that usually involves giving into my quirkier side with those I love. It's fairly easy with them. With strangers, it takes more.

Today Fleetwood Mac will be going on the stereo as I clean my house. I will make sure we get outside at least once even though I feel awful. I will also find a way to celebrate Canada in small ways this weekend. I am determined to be a True, Northern girl, strong and free, in the ways I can be. This is my tomorrow. It's not promised and it may not even be feasible when the moment arrives, but it's a mindset for today. Because it matters to hold on to something that makes us believe in the good of all. Whether that entails god or some other form of hope or goodness. Hope can damage too in some ways, so the hope should not be the only aspect to get one through, but it is an important piece sometimes. What should be present always is a sense of gratitude, perspective or support. "It does not do well to dream Harry and forget to live."-Another Dumbledore, J.K Rowling bit of brilliance. Hope sometimes is a dream that stops us from living now. Remember to live. DON'T STOP living in love until your end is nigh.

All I want to do is to see you smile...if it takes just a little while...

Post Edit: AFTER I wrote this post I was listening to the radio and another favourite came on that really applies to this post: "If you don't like what you got - Why don't you change it, If your world is all screwed up Rearrange it. Raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell
Raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell. If you don't like what you see, Why don't you fight it? If you know there's something wrong, Why don't you right it? Raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell. Raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell. In the end it comes down to your thinking, And there's really nobody to blame. When it feels like your ship is sinking
And you're too tired to play the game. Nobody's going to help you. You've just got to stand up alone
And dig in your heels, And see how it feels, To raise a little Hell of your own. Raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell. Raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell If you don't like
What you got, Why don't you change it? If your world is all screwed up. Rearrange it.  Raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell, raise a little Hell"- Trooper 

Song choice: Fleetwood Mac Don't Stop (CLICK):

Northern Girl- Terri Clark HERE :

Never Going Back again- Fleetwood Mac ( HERE);

Also, this is so beautiful. The sun will come out tomorrow- Idina Menzel CLICK. Another song I belted out in my youth:


S said...

Thanks for all the song suggestion. Fleetwood Mac was my favourite band while growing up and I am happy to find another person who loves it too ! Not too many people talk about it anymore !
Depression is hard and a meaningful song gives some outlet. I also agree that not everything makes us stronger, sometimes it makes us weaker. I wish someone said that earlier ! And now thank you, for saying that ! For instance, my poor health makes me weaker, lonely and so disoriented. So, I also don't believe in certain quotes, nor do I try to live by some of these quotes. Sometimes, I cannot find a way through darkness because I am too tired physically or mentally to even try it. In those situations, maybe, a friend or a loved one's touch or encouraging words helps me to have faith. Since a few days, I am down with severe back ache along with my hormonal sickness. Nothing seemed to work, except medications. So, it is like ups and downs and some days, I don't even want to speak.Stress is building up. And right now, I am searching for some coping techniques. Tomorrow, it might be better or worse, but right now I am reading your post and feeling what you have written here, it matches my sentiments at this moment. Keep writing, actually I needed this.
Hope you feel better.

Kmarie A. said...

S: I will be happy to talk about ALL music:)
Yes music is an outlet. Its my drug of choice.
Depression is very hard...Yes it helps to hear that not everything makes us is somehow empowering in a way.
I am so sorry you are suffering right now. Hormonal sickness is so awful as it effects more emotions than other conditions plus the whole body and depression. I am glad you have medication that helps. I understand not even wanting to speak on the hard days. Hmmmm Coping techniques...In those moments not a lot helps except hanging on to tomorrow ....but Little things may take the edge off like deep belly breathing, music, meditation, being with a loved one, and depending on your condition- sexual activity CAN help ( but it depends on how you are feeling to get to that in the first place but it has been reported to help with certain pains and conditions while making other ones worse...) , lot of water, and up your vitamin D to at least 5000 IU if you are not getting out in the sun for the times you are depressed or really sick (THis is harmless short term but dont do it if you are prone to vitamin D overload which is rare but happens-Im not a doctor:) Oh and take at least one vitamin C as it helps with gut issues...
I am glad you needed this. I needed it so I wrote it:)

Amy said...

Yes and amen, sista!

Wanna be Canadian over here :)))

Kmarie A. said...

Lol you are so nice you can be an honourary canadian citizen. Ha ha:)