I was coasting along today at work and everything seemed to be going fine when I heard a song that transported me to another place and time. I am not sure if I am typical of most people, but it happens to me sometime.
I didn’t so much start thinking about what if I had done this or she had done that but it did trip me up and has impacted the rest of my day. I guess sometimes music does that to people.
I have spent the last several years trying to get better about that. I do not want to stay trapped in my past but instead move forward into a much brighter and better future, but it is hard when dreaming about people from my past on an ongoing basis several nights a week. I am also working on a novel that is autobiographical fiction and focuses on some real-life and some fictional events surrounding my past. It has been very difficult to revisit those past experiences as I did not get my happy ending in that particular situation.
Maybe it was just a weird day. The past couple of days, I have had contact with several people from my past, one who is a good friend but who has been missing in action lately. Two others who I have recently been in contact with include a former colleague at a past employer and the younger brother of a good friend of mine from junior high school. So currently, my past has become very intertwined with my present.
So here I am on a Friday night sitting at my laptop while my girlfriend of four and one-half months is reading an article for a class in her first year of graduate school. She started class about a month ago and is starting to panic slightly as her first days of reckoning in the form of mid-terms are approaching. I am left to entertain myself quietly, waiting for her to finish. I certainly understand, having accumulated most post-baccalaureate classes and experiences than most people.
Come to think of it, it has been a very weird week. The week began with my mother in the hospital, 1,400 miles away and I was faced with the possibility of having to return to the home of my childhood, which I hate with a passion. Fortunately for me, she was released fairly quickly and my life returned to normal, but early in the week I had to form contingency plans for work in case I had to leave mid-week.
So here I am, attempting to write away the shadow cast upon my day, all because of a song. Isn’t it funny how one little piece of music can transport us and impact us and make us stop and catch our breath, our emotions hearkening back to a particular place, a particular time, a particular moment when you realized that your life was about to change.
At the moment the song was popular it fit the situation you found yourself in so perfectly, and while the chords and sound of the song remain the same years later, the message has become bittersweet. It is only fitting to pause for a moment and remember -- the circumstances, the person, the feelings. How then can I shake off the memories and return to the present, not looking back? It can sometimes be difficult to close that Pandora’s box and place it back on the shelf of memory. There it quietly sits, waiting in the darkness until once again a sound, a song, becomes a key to activation – if we allow it to.
I am not sure that I understand the mechanism of how it all works, these five senses we possess that enable us to be transported to another place and another time. But I do know that at times when this occurs, it takes all of my will power to slam the lid down, close the box and return it to the darkened shelf out of my view.
I don’t know if the view is the same for you. All I know is that it is…the view from here.