Lessons

Some things are just never meant to be no matter how much we want them.

Sometimes the hardest thing to do is let go of what you wanted.

Sometimes your own pride is your worst enemy.

“I’m sorry,” are two of the hardest words to say.  “I was wrong,” are the hardest three words.

Sometimes the worst thing that can happen to a relationship is miscommunication.

Love will always prevail.  Hatred will always lose.

Sometimes a hug can speaks volumes.  An embrace can have more meaning than all the words in the world.

Every person you meet has been brought into your life for a reason, no matter how long or short of a time they are with you.  Either you are meant to change their life, or they are meant to change yours.  It’s rarely obvious immediately, but eventually you will understand why.

Never pass up an opportunity to say, “I love you.”

Laughter really can be the medicine, but sometimes you have to cry before you can laugh.

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“I Swear” I hate that song!

As some of you may already know I work in radio.  I am a d.j. and spend a lot of time in the studio.  As a matter of fact I am writing this while in the middle of my airshift.

Now, those of you who do not work in radio complain all the time about “OH MY GOD!  I AM SO SICK OF THAT SONG!  THAT STATION PLAYS IT ALL THE TIME!”  But chances are that you only hear “that” song a couple of times a day.  Try being on the other end of the radio and actually hearing “that” song EVERY time it plays.  To say that I am sick of “that” song is an understatement, since most radio stations have a two to four hour rotation for their Currents (the new stuff).  But I am not writing this to complain about the miniscule rotation of today’s popular radio stations.  What inspired this particular post was actually an older song that just played during my airshift.  John Michael Montgomery-I Swear.

For those of you who may not (somehow) be familiar with “I Swear” here is a bit of its history according to Wikipedia:

I Swear” is a ballad written by Gary Baker and Frank J. Myers that became a hit for two acts in 1994. Initially, it was a Number One single on the U.S. Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart for American country music artist John Michael Montgomery at the beginning of the year. His version crossed over to pop radio and climbed to #42 on the Billboard Hot 100. A few months later, American pop group All-4-One covered the song and achieved a great success in many countries.

I was initially familiarized with the version by All-4-One version during my senior year in high school and LOVED it.  I didn’t hear the John Michael Montgomery version until several years later.  By that time I HATED that song.  Picture this:  a 17/18 year old girl in high school, she has a boyfriend that she is over-the-moon for, “I Swear” is their song (as it was for many couples that year).  I had that song on tape and listened to it all the time.  I wore that tape out.  My boyfriend and I would be on the phone late at night and listen to that song together.  Now would be the perfect opportunity to roll your eyes and vomit at the cheesetastic sweetness of young love.  Just thinking about it makes me roll my own eyes.

Here it is 19 years later and I still hate that song.  The relationship did not end badly.  It just ended, as many relationships do at that age.  It just ceased to be.  The reason behind my intense loathing of “I Swear” (either version) is the fact that I listened to it soooooooooo many times that I burned out on it.  Many of us have had a bad night of drinking that ended with an up-close-and-personal session of toilet hugging and promises of never drinking like that again.  I overindulged in “I Swear” and can therefore never listen to it again without immediately wanting to hug the toilet.

Now, before you go calling me crazy for my intense dislike of “I Swear” think about what songs you can’t stand to listen to, and then think about why you can’t stand to listen to them.  I will bet that there is a song in your history that still makes you want to hug the toilet like you’ve just wrapped up a long night of drinking.

A few minutes ago “I Swear” came up in my playlist and, before I had a chance to replace it with something a bit less sucktastic (yes, d.j.’s take out songs they hate on a regular basis) it started playing.  I had to turn down the studio monitors and my headphones.  Yet, somewhere out in the lobby, just outside my studio, there was a radio playing my station . . . I could still hear that song.  I gritted my teeth and impatiently waited until it was over.  You can bet that I won’t let that happen again.

So you, as a passive radio listener, complain about hearing “that song all the time!!!”  Imagine the poor fool in the studio, such as myself, who does hear “that” song and all the others that they (and sometimes you) hate.  But you get the option of turning the radio off.  We are the radio.

And just for the record, any song by Taylor Swift also makes me want to hug the toilet with intense loathing.  My apologies to any of you Taylor Swift fans, but I have yet to meet anyone who works in radio that actually likes her . . . because we have to listen to her 5-thousand times a day.

Until next time . . .

Be still, my rushing brain

Have you ever had that feeling that there were words inside of you that wanted to come out but you didn’t know what needed to be said?  Have you ever felt like there was some feeling or emotion growing but you couldn’t put your finger on what it was?

I rarely sit down with the express purpose of writing.  When I sit down to write it’s because I have something that needs to come out, a feeling that needs to be purged.  I can actually feel it growing inside of me.  My hand aches to hold a pen and paper when that happens.  I am having one of those moments right now.

I can hear words in my head as they try to form themselves into lines of a new poem, but they are like mismatched pieces of different jigsaw puzzles.  One puzzle is the crappy way a friend (my son’s babysitter) got pissed at someone else but took it out on me over the phone today by screaming and cursing at me while I was at work.  Another puzzle is the friend that I’m pretty sure I pushed away just because I am a scared, stupid little girl.  Another puzzle is that I am attracted to that friend and long to be more than his friend.  There is so many puzzle pieces on the table.  There are not enough ink pens and notebooks in the world right now to put all the puzzles together.

This is the kind of night that leaves me with insomnia as the words swirl around and try to come together.  Writing is my outlet.  Writing is my punching bag, my hike through the woods, my temper tantrum, my voice when I’m voiceless.  But what happens when the words get stuck like a literary rush hour on the highway?  They all want out NOW with no rhyme or reason.  When that happens it makes me feel like I am going crazy.  My brain won’t stop churning and I can’t distract it into thinking of something else like marshmallows or YouTube videos or constellations in the sky (Orion is my favorite in the North American winter sky).  Right now I’d even settle for having some perky and annoying 80’s pop song stuck in my head.  Somebody cue Katrina And The Waves-Walking On Sunshine.  At least the beat and rhythm would start the literary rush hour rolling.  Or, if nothing else, it would shut the words up that want to come out and put them off for another day.

Maybe it’s not writing that needs to be done.  Writing is my personal coping mechanism.  Maybe I need to confront the babysitter and tell her that I did not appreciate her treating me crap this afternoon.  Maybe I need to confront my friend and apologize for being a scared, stupid little girl.  Maybe after I do that then I can pull him into a kiss and see if the attraction that I have for him is reciprocated.  Maybe . . . Maybe . . . Maybe not . . . Grand delusions of a shy introvert.  It would be nice to be able to do all that though.  But I can’t, so I will continue to write.

Tonight I will turn on 80’s pop on Spotify as I stare out my window at Orion and try to trick my brain into thinking of things other than the logjam that it is stuck on now.

Good night, fellow writers.  Hopefully your literary highway is not stuck in the same rush hour  as mine.

Until next time . . .

Disguise (poem)

Her musical laughter
Like a song out of tune
She floats through her days
Like a tornado in June
Her joyous smile
Hides the cracks on her soul
Her kind, gentle words
Hide the hurt taking its toll
But have no fear
She’ll wear her false face
She will hide all that hurts
And light up the place
She’ll look at you
Through pain-darkened eyes
And strive to make you happy
As her best disguise
Nobody will suspect
The secret that she hides
So nobody will hold her hand
When silent tears she cries
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
12.29.13

The Beast. (poem)

A desperate should will do anything
To find comfort and peace
Lie, cheat, steal, rob
Anything to escape the dark beast
Swallowed up by the festering anger
That threatens to kill the heart
Clawing out from the oppressive weight
Before it rips her apart
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
12.29.13

Wasteland (poem)

Empty, alone
Surrounded by life
Swallowed by darkness
Drowning by strife
Target for anger
Time bomb of fear
Wanting to be close
But please don’t come near
Reaching ever upward
Happiness beyond grasp
Sentenced to heartbreak
A living death that, forever, lasts
Sun shining down
Can not penetrate the soul
The barren soil of the heart
Can never be made whole
Inspiring hate and anger
The toxic mind of the world
Twisted, ugly, crazy
In the wasteland of a girl
Paying an endless penance
Eaten alive by the debt
Fighting to find a way out
But darker it continues to get
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
12.29.13

A visit from poetry past

You may have noticed over the last few days that I have been posting a lot of poems from well before I started this blog.  That is because I go through periods of flood and drought when it comes to writing.  Sometimes I can’t keep myself in paper enough to record all the words that want to come out.  On the other hand, I sometimes can sit down and stare at a piece of paper with not a thought in my head. Lately I have been going through a very wordy period.  This made me want to go back and re-read writings from other equally wordy periods.

Some of my writings were . . . bad, to put it nicely.  Horrible, to be honest.  Others were something I felt so proud of that I had to share them. By posting older poetry I was not looking to boost my number of posts, or to draw more readers to my blog.  No offense, but I do not write to entertain you.  I write to empty my head and heart of whatever feelings are overflowing.  Think of my pen and paper as a mental roto-rooter in a clogged up kitchen sink.  Sometimes I am angry.  Sometimes I am brokenhearted.  Sometimes I so full of happiness and sunshine that I am bouncing off the walls.  The best way to calm myself down is to write.

If you read any of them please be gentle in your judgement.  Some of them are written badly, but that doesn’t change the feeling they try to convey.  Like all writers, my ability has improved with time and practice.  There is one from 1997 that I am not proud of as far as its cadence and form, but it is one of my favorites because I can remember how heartbroken I was when I wrote it. Though I do hope you enjoy what I have shared from the archives of my heart and soul.

Sharing those poems with you was certainly an interesting trip down memory lane for me.  Many of those poems I have not read since I wrote them.  Upon re-reading them, though, I was immediately taken back to that moment that I put the pen to paper to empty myself of that feeling.  The sadness after losing my grandmother, the heartbreak of being twenty years old and being told that I would not ever be able to have children, the fear of the growing life inside of me when I was pregnant with my son, the love of my hometown baseball team-the St. Louis Cardinals, the peace gained after the death of a friend.  All of my emotions are there in their most raw form, on display for you.  In those poems my heart is truly on my sleeve.

Until next time . . .

A Sign (poem)

I sat by your grave the day after we buried you
And asked God for a sign
Something to show you were in his arms
And that you were doing fine
I sat in thick green grass
Under the warm May sun
Felt the breeze on my skin
Clouds in the sky, there were none
I glanced to my left
And looking back at me
A serene little bird
Was that the sign I asked to see?
It didn’t move or make a sound
Just shared a minute in time
And, in that minute, I was sure
That you were doing just fine
The bird didn’t move until I left
It watched as I walked away
And in those few moments that we shared
I started to see happiness again
Like the bird that watched me as I left
You will watch over us
You flew away to a better place
But the world can still feel your love
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
05.10.12

Real? (poem)

One day it will seem real
What was taken from us
We cry, we scream, we rage, we yell
Because we miss you so much
It’s so easy to say “I’ll see you again”
But that doesn’t quite stop the pain
I wish there was just one more chance
One more minute, hour, day
So much to say, if given the chance
So much to share with you
About the way you changed the world
And the people around you, too
Broken hearts mend in time
That is what they say
But the world is emptier without you
Brightening up our days
You did so much in your short time
You lived a full and wonderful life
You are at peace in Heaven now
And we’ll all see you again, in time
There is still sadness when I think about you
Still pain when I remember you’re not here
But each day gets a little bit easier
And one day there will be no tears
I hear the stories of the boy you were
Your impact on your family and friends
Maybe you were an angel all along
We didn’t realize it till the end
You may be gone
But you will never part
You will be with us forever
In our memories and hearts
Smile down upon us
Sometimes help us through
But our guardian angel
We will forever love you
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
05.08.12

Without My Angel (poem)

I know an angel
She sits in Heaven watching over me
Though there are times I wish she were here
I know, with her as my angel, alone I’ll never be
But there are days
When I miss her so much
I miss her soft voice
And her gentle, loving touch
I miss her smile
I miss her laugh
And I plead with God
To let me have her back
But how can I ask God
To let go of an angel like her
When the only reason I want her back
Is pure selfishness, I’m sure
I don’t want to let her go
Afraid of forgetting the angel that once lived
But I’m jealous she’s with God
And not here with me
Doesn’t God understand that I need her
I need her knowledge, her advice and love
And to feel her embrace
Gentle as a dove
She’s no longer in my life
I can’t hear her voice
I can’t let her go
But it seems I have no choice
I can’t hold on
And live in the past
But I can’t let go
For life is moving on without her too fast
I would give all I have
To see her one more time
To give her one last hug
And to be able to say goodbye
Though I know she’s watching over me
My own angel in the sky
Can she ever forgive me
For not being there one last time
I wanted to die from the guilt I felt
So filled with anger was my heart
How could she leave me
How could God tear us apart
She gave me so much
I took for granted that she’s always be there
I’ll never understand why God took her away
My selfishness screams, “It’s not fair”
I want to scream
I want to cry
I want my rage to reach the heavens
Sometimes I want to die
I miss her so much
And don’t know how the world can go on
How can life continue
When its brightest angel is gone
She was everything I hoped to be
Smart, beautiful, and strong
But how can I learn from her now
When that tender angel is gone
She is my angel
Watching from Heaven over me
But do I make her proud
Or is a disappointing sight all she sees
Life is not the same
The world is a little more dim
Greedily, God wanted her in Heaven
To be an angel to the world next to him
So how do I come to terms
With the aching in my heart
How do I heal the wounds
Of a soul that’s been ripped apart
How do I know that
Over me in Heaven she’s smiling down
How do I know that
I have not let her down
I pray she knows
I pray she sees
I hope I make her proud
As she watches over me
I find little comfort
In the knowledge that she’s here
Watching over me from Heaven
So far away, yet so near
She is my angel
Sitting in Heaven, watching over me
And, one day, I’ll see her again
And unhappy I’ll no longer be
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
10.13.03