Thursday, March 6, 2008

It Must Have Happened - My Thoughts

I began listening to Mary Chapin Carpenter's music back in the very late 80's and early 90's. Especially about the time of my marriage trouble her music and her lyrics resonated with me.

Some people I know think she is romantic (as in idealistic) to a fault. I suppose it is my own romantic tendencies that finds common ground in her work.

In case anyone wonders I noticed the condescension towards me and my ilk in her latest offering, The Calling. I try to overlook such things is the answer. I don't suppose anyone ever really gets used to condescension or enjoys it but it is common enough that it is not surprising. It does surprise me a little coming from Carpenter. It is disappointing but not more so than any other human trait really.

There were two songs on the CD (I almost called it an album) that I felt were especially interesting. I previously posted the lyrics to It Must have Happened. I had thought at first I would not comment about it but just let the words stand there alone. But like so many things I've changed my mind about that.

On first listen I thought she probably wrote this song about a personal relationship that began with infatuation and ended badly. But then I read in the essays section of her website that the phrase "rowin' towards the moon on a single beam" actually originated from a childhood memory of her parents rowing on a lake towards a low hanging moon. Then I knew it was a song that covered a lot more time.

I still look at everything from my caregiver perspective. I wonder if that is permanent, no need to answer.

But some of the phrases in this song, including the moon one, are so intensely real to me. I even blogged a similar post like the title except I called mine Like It Didn't Happen.

Except for the part about the "punch-drunk cretin" I could have written the same words about caregiving. Thankfully I've never been "in a bed of roses with a punch-drunk cretin." But I heard on TV the other day that the average man has 13 partners and the average woman has 9 and I'm way behind. But average means that there are some people who are way ahead out there somewhere.

That part of the song about "losin' track of who I was s'pposed to be" applies to me for sure. I suspect all of us caregivers feel that. But then again maybe that's true for everyone.

Other phrases I noted (not verbatim): talking to myself like I had lost my mind; laughing at catastrophe; hopes going up in flames; trying to dull the pain; stranger's hand; signs and omens. Those are all things I felt at one time or another during my caregiving time.

Another interesting thing to me is that the artist had to cancel the tour for the release of this CD. She had chest pains, ended up in the hospital, and was treated for a pulmonary embolism. It could have killed her but she survived. Such an interesting happenstance given the nature of this particular collection. There is an NPR interview of Carpenter dated June 24, 2007.

I blogged on June 24, 2007. It is a private blog. It was before I went public. I read, just now, what I wrote then. It was a Sunday. We (notice how I switched to WE) had a new aide that day. I came home from church to a huge mess and an extremely combative dad.

It is just so strange that the same day Mary Chapin Carpenter was giving an NPR interview entitled The Learning Curve of Gratitude. It is interesting how much an incident with illness can change a person's perspective. But we all know that too well.

The other song on the CD I thought interesting was "The Leaving Song." I will only quote the first verse and chorus (emphasis is mine):

And you see that you're leaving
And you see that you're gone
And you see there's no saying goodbye
All the trees in mourning
The light is late from the sun
Casting shadow on shadow down from the sky

And it's hard not to want to turn around
And it's hard not to want to back on down
We're only as strong as our hearts within
Only as strong
Well, maybe the second verse, too:
And all you know of where the road goes
Is some place far and unknown
You would think
You would have gotten used to it all by now
But each day it just gets harder
Every journey alone
Never knowing if you'll make it
Back home
And the last one:
And the three greatest gifts of moving on
Are forgiveness, hope and the great beyond
After that perhaps peace can come
Peace will come
No, it is not exactly how I felt or feel. But I understand the feelings. Resonance is what I said earlier and I still hold that.

No, for me, I had peace actually all along although there were the notable interruptions as there are now. But generally I am at peace. I honestly don't know how people do caregiving that have no peace at the beginning.

Peace comes from my faith. I've blogged before on 1 Corinthians 13 that ends with the words "But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love." (1 Cor 13:13 NAS) So for me faith was first and it came from the outside but up through the inside and if you don't know what I mean then I can't explain it more than that. Hope followed immediately. Forgiveness came later with love and that a little later.

Anyway, interesting collection I thought.


nancy said...

i have never been a big mary chapin carpenter fan but after reading her lyrics and thinking about them, i'm intrigued and will probably try to listen to more of her. i also agree with you about feeling at peace. thanks for the post terry!

Annie said...

I am a longtime MCC fan. The line that resonates with me right now is "I'm going to dream not of things that I've left behind, but those I've found instead." from the song "Down in Mary's Land"

ღ.·´`·Ĉђřĭš⊰ said...

MCC seems to come out with songs I can relate to.

I think you and I enjoy the same types of music...well maybe not Amy Winehouse but hey, I will cut you some slack:)