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Monday, October 25, 2010

Stones in the Road

People who know me well, know that music can make or break me.  I feel my heart, my soul, and my energy rise with songs that I love.  Music can give me the energy or confidence that I need at any given moment, or it can commiserate with me as though it was my very best and most understanding friend.  I can listen to it over and over, or I can choose when I am done listening, walking away content and understood. 

I heard a song yesterday... here are some of the lyrics.

"When you walk into the edge of those
Dark and lonely woods and when I ask how was your day
And you answer 'Not so good'
And when nothing seems to be working out
Quite the way it should; I will shine the light.
When the skies up above you fill
With grey and stormy clouds.
And there's not a single face you know
In the maddening crowd...

When you're staring down your demons
Weighing in your darkest night
I will shine the light.
Sometimes we jump into the great unknown.
Sorrows we all will have to walk alone.
Waiting there in the end is a heart that calls you a friend.
That's me clapping the loudest welcoming you home.
So when your heart is heavy like a stone
From carrying it's load
And you look into the mirror and see someone you don't know
When the shadows are closing in on you like a hand around your throat
I will shine the light.
I will shine the light.
When you've given into your fears
When you've lost your will to fight
Let me know what I can do
Let me try to make it right.
I will shine the light."

Here is the song in it's entirety
It is "Shine the Light" by Sugarland.

I was sobbing by the end of the song.  My heart has been carrying around stones for so long, that I forget there is a light. 

The biggest stone I carry is the loss of my Mother.  She passed away ten years ago from lung cancer.  She was my Mother.  She was my Best Friend.  She was my Light.  I remember trying everything to get her to quit smoking when I was a kid.  I purchased kits they advertised on TV like the little plastic cigarette you could puff on and inhale nothing but air.  I tried replacing her cigarettes by putting a box of tic tacs in her cigarette case.  I had heard that chewing tic tacs can satisfy the oral need of missing cigarettes.  Let me say that one REALLY did not go over well.  She did not discover the switch until she was at work, so her cigarette break was not a pleasant one.  I remember telling her when I was a teenager that if cigarettes killed her, that I would never forgive her.  Well, I did forgive her.  But I miss her.

My kids shine their light on me.  They cast my stones into shadows, which makes me less aware of how heavy they can be. They make me happy, they make me proud, they also make me angry...but these are all signs of passion. Passion is the gift we all have in life and following it is how we succeed in life.

However, sometimes my kids' light shines right on the stones I bear.  Sometimes, my kids do something and I want to call my Mom to share the moment.  Or I want to ask her if I had ever done something like that.  Or I want to hear her say, I just bought the cutest outfits for the kids.  I'd like to hear her say she loves them, or is proud of them.  I would just like to hear her voice, or feel her hug again.  I would like to hear my kids say they love her, or see them give her a hug.

That stone is SO heavy, it is sometimes unbearable.  I know I am not alone in having lost a loved one.  I am not claiming to be the only large stone bearer.  Many of us carry large stones, some larger than the one I carry.  Among these large stones, are many other stones that are of different sizes.  Many of them are also shared by many of you.  They are made up of mistakes we have made, things we wished we had done differently, goals we did not achieve, fights we did not win, passions we did not follow.  Some weigh heavy, others are small but the number of them may add up to a burdenous load.

I guess that is why this song hit home for me.  It gave me recognition of these stones I carry, and made me aware that there is a light.  Everybody's light source is different, but we all have some.

It occurred to me by the end of the song, "What about those that are forgotten".  There are forgotten lives in this world, and I wonder when their light is going to shine.  Who will carry their stones? 

There are people who live in cruel conditions, people who have had great misfortune, kids with cancer, kids that have been abducted, people that are routinely abused mentally and or physically.  Where is their light?

There are many animals for which animal rescue people have been their light.  We cast away their stones and hold the animal in their new found light, we bathe them in that light, and we pass that light on to their new families.  Every once in a while, these animals hold onto their stones, despite the light.  But they are in the light, and that is what matters, that is what we have given them. 

But for the dogs residing in cages for their entire lives,  for the dogs sleeping on wire flooring instead of in someone's arms,  I am screaming for your light!  For the fighting dogs that are tortured and killed in the name of entertainment or sport, I am screaming for your light!  For the animal victims of crush videos, I am screaming for your light!  For the furry victims of hoarding, abuse, neglect, I am screaming for your light!  For animals abandoned in pastures, buildings, countrysides, tied to trees, I am screaming for your light.  For the healthy animals euthanized in overwhelmed shelters or lazy shelters everywhere, every minute, of every day, I am screaming for your light! 

I want to know where their light is!   Where is their light?!  And why on earth is it so hard to shine it upon them!  My inability to shine on you is another large stone.

We are wanting to shine it.  We are dreaming of shining it upon you.  We will continue to struggle in our attempts to SHINE this light upon you, to show you what love is. You are not forgotten.  You are loved, you just do not know it yet. 

For those animals who have lost their lives and succumbed in the darkness, welcome to your light.  Gather the other angels around you and feel their love.  Shine your new found light on those who are still waiting for their light, and I will continue to shout.  Meanwhile, my Mom will silently shine her light upon me.

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1 comment:

sharon houser said...

This is a great song. The woman has a strong voice. Thanks for posting your heart stones. Today was one of those days for me and it was good to have an outlet for my tears. I love your blogs.