[Author’s note: Yes, it’s been a lifetime or two since I last blogged. Yes, buckets and buckets of things, bad, good and incredible have happened during this time. No, I’m not going to attempt to summarize or recap them here—that’s what Facebook is for. Yes, I’ll friend you as long as I see no evidence that you’re a bot or a teabagger. Yes, “Music Monday” and “Wordless Wednesday” are blog clichés used by sometimes lame bloggers who can’t just, well, write more, so they come up with cute concepts to prompt themselves to post more often. Anything else? That’s what the “Comment” box is for.]

Like most of us who aren’t dead (Widower joke. Ha fucking ha.), a good song can make me cry. Heck, a BAD song can make me cry, but it’s gotta be a really GOOD bad song. Most of the time, it doesn’t take a Psychology degree to figure out what about a certain song dovetails with our personal emotional landscape at that moment, even if it has little to do with what the songwriter might have been originally writing about. As Dave Matthews wrote:

Funny the way it is, not right or wrong
Somebody’s heart is broken and it becomes your favorite song

But other times, it’s more of a puzzle. More of a “Thick Picnic,” as Julie used to say. (She liked the concept so much it became the title of her first solo recording.) THIS was definitely a Thick Picnic.

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My dear widow friend from Australia, Simone, posted a couple of things that hit me like a ton of bricks. The more I have thought about them, the more I have seen them as a way forward from the unanswered questions raised in my last post, when I asked, “Should you trust your fear to keep you safe, or break it as shackles that are holding you back? When does your fear teach you not to throw your life away, and when does it prevent you from living? How can you tell?” Dr. Wayne Dyer has some guidance that really rings true:

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What are you afraid of, anyway? And why? Should you trust your fear to keep you safe, or break it as shackles that are holding you back? When does your fear teach you not to throw your life away, and when does it prevent you from living? How can you tell?

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GAWD! How do I get myself IN to these situations. (Shut up! Don’t answer that! Who asked you? No I didn’t, it was a rhetorical question!)

My friend Charlena recently said, “But is there really any other way to go but in over one’s head? Full out baby, that’s the way you play it, and it’s the best shit even though doing it this way hurts like hell.”

You know what? I’m tired of hurting. I’m exhausted by pain, anguish, uncertainty, soaring hopes dashed to pieces on jagged rocks. Flying without a net.

Truth is, I’m soft.

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We’ve all had the experience where something hits you like a ton of bricks. Out of the blue. From out of left field. Whacks you upside the head. I was blind but now I can see. The abundance of clichés verifies that this is not an uncommon experience.

If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you already know what mine has been: Brené Brown:

From her book, The Gifts of Imperfection

Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.

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