Love. Lose. Repeat.
Sounds kind of depressing.
Perhaps I've exposed myself a bit too much. But upon reflection, I think it's probably a "glass half full-glass half empty" type of thing. When I started out to do this CD, I was at the loss stage (Lines on My Finger). In the coming years I was to lose two grandmothers (including Jean), a grandfather, and my mother. A lot of "losing". It's easy enough under those circumstances to get bitter or at least very guarded and I've watched friends take that route. I knew when I started this journey 13 years ago that I had a choice when it came to love. Armor-up and focus on protecting myself from hurting or learn everything I could about who we are and why we do what we do-- and try again (can you tell I have control issues?). Happy to say I chose the second, but frustrated to say it's not as easy as I had hoped. In the end, it wasn't the wishing for something better (Someone to Watch Over Me and When You Wish), but accepting myself and where things were at (Jean, Always Our Children, Not This One) that opened doors for me. My dad (New Heart) and I (Home Again) are living examples that it's possible to love again in fresh wonderful ways. Smarter even. Although I still may have to work through problematic coping issues (Busy).

Rachel Remen, in Kitchen Table Wisdom, has an incredible story of how, as a child, she used to hide the dark pieces of the family jigsaw puzzle under the couch cushions, because she didn't like them-thought they were creepy. When the family couldn't finish the puzzle, she finally confessed. Her mother exposed her to an incredible life lesson as she took the dark pieces and put them into place--completing the puzzle. Rachel saw the beauty of the whole picture. She saw how the dark offset the rest. How the dark, somehow was important to complete the whole. For me, this story touches on one of the greatest mysteries/paradoxes of our life--human suffering. Somehow, even though we would never seek suffering or inflict it on others, when we work through pain in a purposeful way, we eventually can come out the other end so completely transformed in ways that are nothing short of miraculous.

On my good days, I remember that the truth is that the Source of All Love dwells within me (check out some Teresa of Avila writings). And that while it is part of the human experience to grieve loss and to focus only on the idealized romantic one-to-one type of love, I must remember the bigger picture. That Love is bigger than that and that loss, while all around us, does not have to define or control us. But it's hard to remember that every day and my personal struggle has played itself out on the stage--literally. This CD reflects, via a musical buffet, that struggle. Love. Lose. Repeat. It is the recipe for life. Not in a cynical way, but in a redeeming one.
Go forth and Love.

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