Sometimes it takes a collection of moments that span years of your life before that real subtle realization that they were connected all along..that life is not a random explosion of events that define you, but that there is something far bigger than you that threads them all together, working to teach you something, inspiring you to make the choices that will make you who you become. I made a friend several years ago who was from a rainy place. Something about this friend was so obviously different. They had a familiarity and affinity for sorrowful things unlike anyone I'd ever known. They saw this beauty in the rain, in the minor chords, and in the way that pain shows us we're still alive. I was fascinated by the way they saw things so different from me, a girl who'd been raised on the desert sun. Soon after that, I went to Scotland for a year, and it was there that I learned about the beauty in the sorrowful rain, the lyrics that can only be set to minor chords, and about just how painful it can be to miss your people, and even experiencing new depths of physical pain. I learned those things everyday for a year, and when I left, I was a different person. Fast forward 6 years later, I woke up this past Saturday with one of the worst fevers I've ever had. My entire body, even my fingertips ached, and the pain was all to real. After spending the whole day in silence in bed, around dusk, as the rain started to pour in Southern California, I reached over for an old familiar friend, music. And all over again I remembered how even in sickness, the loneliest of places, rain and music could be confided in, with old secrets shared. All day Sunday, in and out of sleep, I'd hear an old refrain, a familiar bridge, a perfect chorus, and the rush of rain, reminding me I've been there before, and how last time i was there, it taught me a new depth about being alive. And today, as I'm coming back to, and with the haziness subsiding, all I can think about is how good it feels to be reminded once again, that I'm alive...that pain is sometimes our greatest reminder of that...and that even in sorrow, there is great company. Pain does this thing, where it makes you stop obsessing over the next moment or moments past, and it makes you feel RIGHT NOW, in all too real of a way. Sometimes it's okay to feel all the things, and when you find the pain subsiding, when you find yourself landing back on earth, right back where you belong, push at least a little harder to make something of your one and only precious life.
Here's an angsty little playlist that might make you feel at least some of the things on this rainy day. (Sorry, speaking to Southern California here...but if you're anywhere else in the Northern Hemisphere, I think your weather's even worse, so you've certainly earned it too.)