Songs that saved my life – May/June 2017

A friend of mine asked me if I would write a “Songs that saved my life” post because she was curious to read it. I once wrote a list of the 100 most important songs to me but this is going to be different. As people who have read the rest of this blog would expect, the three songs listed are all linked to my miscarriage. I will write another one some other time but not just yet. So here goes.

For Good – Wicked the Musical.

About one week after my miscarriage, I was listening to the radio and “For Good” from Wicked came on. I adore this musical and my favourite song has always been “The Wizard and I” because it speaks of naïve hope, something I wish people were allowed to have more. I have listened to the soundtrack multiple times and always appreciated “For Good” but I associated it with my husband or various friends. This time however, all I could think of was my lost child. And I cried.

“People come into our lives for a reason, bringing something we must learn.”

Over the last month, I have heard this song repeatedly and I am so thankful for my new interpretation. I have had issues in the past where I know I should have spoken to someone but I refused to admit to others that I needed help. In the last week I admitted that I needed to talk to someone and I’ve made the first step towards counselling. Two decades of stifling the need for external help and now my lost child has given me that push to accept help. I could never have done that without them.

“Because I knew you, I have been changed for good.”

She Used to be Mine – Waitress the Musical

I love musicals. I always have. They speak of a hope and jollity that doesn’t exist in normal life; but it could if people were a bit lighter. I often reword songs based on what is happening and sing them as my husband and I are in the car or walking down the street. It injects laughter into life and we could all do with some more laughter. “She Used to be Mine” from Waitress is not a song involving laughter. It is a brutal, uncut description of someone who has lost themselves by no fault of their own. I first heard it when I was struggling at work about 8 months ago. I’d lost the love of what I was doing and felt unappreciated and beaten down. I took an action to change and started applying for other jobs, getting one in the same organisation but working on completely different work to reinvigorate myself. I listened to this song and I felt powerful and compelled for my changes.

The first time I listened to this song after the miscarriage, I felt even more resonance with it than I had ever done before. The lyrics

It’s not easy to know
I’m not anything like I used be

allowed me to admit that I had changed but that it wasn’t an issue that I had done so. My mental state is perfectly described by one section of lyrics:

She’s imperfect, but she tries
She is good, but she lies
She is hard on herself
She is broken and won’t ask for help
She is messy, but she’s kind
She is lonely most of the time
She is all of this mixed up and baked in a beautiful pie
She is gone, but she used to be mine

I knew that I needed to stop feeling like a failure but I couldn’t quite get there. To see me, no one would know that that was going on inside; I always presented myself as a beautiful pie.

How Long Will I Love You – Jon Boden

My husband and I have loved this song since we saw the film “About Time”. I remember the Ellie Goulding version coming out and us complaining that it was rubbish in comparison to the Jon Boden version. I quite like the original by The Waterboys as well but my husband isn’t as keen on the folksy side of it.

I love to dance and I think there is nothing more romantic than a husband and wife ignoring the world and dancing to a beautiful song together. The first day I felt truly OK after the miscarriage, I put this song on when I was sat with my husband. He is not a dancer but he knows that if I put this song on, he must dance. He pulled me in close and we danced for the short duration of the song. I felt like I could be whole again because I knew that no matter what, he would be there for me.

How long will I want you?
As long as you want me to
And longer by far.

I knew that he meant every word of the song as he sang along to it and I needed that healing power of his words at that moment in time. I cried but this time it was a combination of happy, relief tears and tears of the child we had lost who we would have loved so much. I felt safe for the first time in weeks.

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