Wise Words

"Wait on the Lord, be strong and of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart...wait on the Lord. Psalms 27:14


WWW As My World Turns

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

To be touched so deeply...is it a blessing or a curse?

How do I describe the experience I had over the weekend? I’m not sure I can adequately do it. Let me just preface this by saying that I am not normally like this. I feel deeply, I can be emotional, I’ve cried at movies, it’s very rare, but I have. However, very few things in this world touch me as I was touched this weekend.

Saturday morning, close to noon: My mom gets a call and it is one of her dearest friends. I have known Marilyn since I was about 7 or 8. To Emily she is Nonie. Marilyn has received 4 tickets to a show from her daughter who had bought them for her husband and the family was too busy to go so she offered them to her mother – free of charge. She didn’t want them to go to waste. She already had 2 other women from her church going and wanted to know if my mom wanted to go as the 4th. My mom couldn’t so she called me to see if I wanted to go. What was the show? Yes, I am full of cheese…it was Riverdance. Bill Whelan is some kind of musical genius. I said sure, I’d like to go. My mom watched Emily as I braved temps that the car temperature gauge read as high as 106.

So, here I am in the car with 3 other women, all well over the age of 60. One of them just WILL NOT SHUT UP. Nobody can get a word in edgewise. Marilyn tries to get the rest of us involved in the conversation and this *Obliviot is having none of it. After the show Marilyn calls me to vent about this lady and says that she has had it with her and no wonder her husband, who is disabled and very much needs her, acts like he is deaf and can’t hear her so that she won’t talk to him. But, I digress from the original intent of the story.

We go to our seats and we are 17 rows up from the stage. The theater is packed for the matinee showing. We are fairly close to center stage. I look at these tickets and they are 58.00 each. Holy moley. I could never even think of buying tickets that cost that much. Maybe for a special occasion like the Nutcracker or something, but all I could think of at that point was “Oh, Lord, thank you for not having to have me pay for this ticket!”

So they dim the lights and the music starts. Low, swelling, sweeping, haunting, mesmerizing…and I start to cry. I feel like my heart is breaking from the beauty and sorrow that this music conveys. The solemnity, the grandeur, the opulence. And I wonder to myself for a very brief moment why I am so touched by this. I don’t understand it. I’ve seen the show on video untold times b/c, as you know, I love everything Celtic. I’ve listened to the music more times than I can count. I’ve enjoyed it, I’ve relaxed to it, I’ve fallen asleep to it on occasion. I’ve never been so moved by it that I’ve burst into tears. I figure momentarily that I am crying b/c I’m actually here, watching it. But as I let the music sweep over me and ensnare me in its spell, I know that that is not the real reason. Deep wells of emotion are bubbling inside of my soul, inside of my heart. My chest feels like it’s going to burst it is so full of emotion. Extreme happiness and I think that maybe I’m happy b/c I am able to listen to this music in all of its grandeur live, but I know that’s not it either. There is also a large portion of grief. Not sorrow, not sadness but grief. Like I’m losing something or have lost something very dear to me. I don’t understand that either so much right then. I watch the dancers in awe and feel myself come alive and die a little at the same time. I hear the haunting melodies of the singers and feel my heart break and grow at the same time. It is like an arrow has pierced my heart. And I don’t understand it.

For most of the 1st half of the show, I am in tears. I can’t even smile at the beauty after a number is over. Normally when I love something or enjoy it, I get this unbelievably light, giddy feeling inside. Like my heart has wings and I could fly from the happiness inside. This time however, I want to just outright sob, like I haven’t cried in ages. Since Matt first moved out and moved in with her and broke my heart in a million pieces. Since my heart was first broken so many years ago as a young woman deeply in love with someone who didn’t love me back as much. I hold back though b/c I don’t have a tissue. So, I cry in quiet, in secret, as though I’m ashamed of the emotions that I am feeling, yet I let the tears flow as freely as possibly. Surreptitiously wiping the tears away, hoping nobody sees so that I don't have to explain why I'm crying, because I really can't at that moment in time.

I realize about half an hour later what this feeling is, it’s pain and happiness and gratitude.

Pain – deep, despairing pain b/c a part of me realizes that the one place I want to go more than anything is so far out of reach for me. I have a family and I’m tied here now with a beautiful daughter whom is the greatest experience I’ve ever lived and a husband who I’m trying to reconcile with and struggling with that b/c neither one of us are able to let go and forgive, even though we’ll never really be able to forget I would like to take Emily and even Matt there, but not for my first time. What I mean is I would probably want Matt there, but not Emily for my first time there. I want to have my Ireland/Scotland experience. Going to the little out of the way towns, grabbing a bite of local fare in a pub with a few pints of ale while listening to an impromptu music performance from the more musically inclined residents of the area until the pub closes in the wee hours of the morning. Staying in an old cottage, older than the age of my beloved America, on the property of a castle somewhere or on the edge of a village. Either go with Matt or go with a couple of girlfriends and just have fun and be free and enjoy life. Even if Matt were there will never have that though b/c I would be thinking of Emily and how much I miss her and if Matt weren’t there, I would be thinking of Emily and Matt too much to relax fully. I would be missing Emily something awful and I would worry about Matt’s reaction when I got back home. I will never have the experience I dream of. The travel that I yearn for now, and never really appreciated when I was younger and all I wanted was to party, erase old memories and ghosts with drinking and loud music and dancing. I grieve now for what I can never have.

At the same time, I feel gratitude and happiness, though in a lesser portion that the grief. Gratitude and happiness that I am able to listen to the beauty that is Celtic music and watch traditional, albeit sensationalized, Irish Step Dancing. To be there so close and have an almost tangible experience. To be able to reach out and almost touch the music and it drifts and soars through the air and rests in my heart.

I was talking to one of my dearest friends in the whole world that night (Saturday) and telling her about this experience and she said that the same thing happened to a friend of a friend in regard to The Lion King. That when they came out on stage at the beginning with all the puppets she burst into tears. Mary Cat told me that it was the first time this friend of a friend had realized that there was something more out there than her little existence. She believed in God but it never really hit her that there was more to life than what her day to day routine was, that she really wanted more but never realized it until then. I know how she feels. I believe that to be true. I’ve wanted before. I’ve desired other experiences before, but I’ve never truly YEARNED for them until now. I YEARN for something larger than my meager existence. My life has a few bright spots: That I know God loves me – even though I fail miserably most of the time I know that I can never fall beyond His reach or His love; Emily; my family including my in-laws and my other mother/other daddy; the very few dear friends I hold in my heart (most but for one in my writer’s group); even Matt when things are going good, even when it’s not always so good; my intelligence; my love of music and writing; and you, the reading public, who allow me to just vent and “listen” as I exposit in my posts and expose my heart to the vast unknown populous. I just yearn for more outside of this little existence of a life that I lead. In person, I’m really kind of dull and uninteresting – at least that’s how I personally feel. I used to not be that way. I used to be full of life and passion and fire, but time and life and experiences have kind of erased that, or at least tamped the flames. I don’t know. Ask my friends, see what they say. They may have a whole different view of myself than I do. LOL. Isn’t that the way it always goes!

I just have to remember to count my blessings rather than my trials and disappointments. :) I’m sure then I would feel differently. Maybe. Still wouldn’t erase the fact though that I desperately want to go to Ireland and Scotland for an extended vacation. Three or four weeks would do it just fine!

* Oblivious+Idiot=Obliviot

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