Friday, June 13, 2014

Early Morning Musical Musings

A funny thing happened Thursday morning as I was driving into work while most normal people are settling into their last REM cycle before the alarm goes off. It was 4:30am, and maybe that added to the humor, but I promise that I did actually laugh out loud when Sara Bareilles’s song, “I Choose You,” was immediately followed on the radio by “Gives You Hell” by The All-American Rejects. Laugh. Out. Loud! Can you think of a more diametrically opposed lyrical duo? As I sat at a red light, awkwardly cracking up in the drivers seat, the honest thought that came to mind (as I enthusiastically sang along) was that I can truly relate to both songs.

I would imagine that for most people, at least one person quickly comes to mind when they hear “Gives You Hell.” I know that the sentiment is neither very Christian, nor charitable, nor forgiving in nature, but singing along is kind of a lovely, super-passive-aggressive means of getting out any pent up frustration towards the said individual(s) with whom you associate the song. Plus, when the instruments drop out at the end of the song and all to be heard are many voices are belting out the chorus, I just can’t help but get caught up in joining.

For me, “Gives You Hell” now just brings up memories of a time that I felt let down and heartbroken as I worked on healing my aching soul. In a weird way, it is a nostalgic feeling, because I do not look back on it with sadness or resentment, but rather, gratitude that I managed to thrive through the hurt feelings and because I now have so much joy and happiness in my heart.

Today, “I Choose You” is far more relevant to my life, especially since Drew and I just celebrated our One Year Wedding Anniversary! Although we do believe that God used the many events and experiences in our lives to bring us together, we also know that it was by our own free-will that we sought out a relationship with the other and chose to marry and journey through life together.

Pre-anniversary-dinner selfie

Post-anniversary-dinner toast with the champagne flutes from our wedding. :)

How do we celebrate our anniversary? By taking artsy-fartsy photos of the condensation on the wine bottle.

I know many people who are in the “I Choose You” phase of life; some are experiencing “Gives You Hell,” and others go back and forth between the two. I just found it so strangely appropriate that these two songs were played back to back. It reminded me of another song, “This,” by Darius Rucker, because I am eternally grateful that all the events in my life, both wonderful and difficult, have led me to where I am today. In conclusion, I am constantly amazed by how much a song can strike a chord with me and become so attached to certain periods of my life (bonus points for those of you who caught the very intentional pun in there).

What songs do you feel describe your life now or in the past? Or what you want in the future? Leave a comment below!


  1. Elton John's "Tiny Dancer" reminds me of when I dated Mike. It wasn't like "our song" or anything, but we both just loved to sing it, and it is the crux of a very awkward moment.

    Before we broke up, Mike had bought us tickets to see Elton John in GNV. In a cruel twist of fate, Elton John got sick and postponed his tour for two months later, and by that time, naturally, we had broken up. Still, we agreed to still go as friends and Mike agreed to still pay for my ticket (out of pity, I'm sure, but I'll take it).

    And I really was not ready to be friends, but I kept thinking that he would hang out with me and like me again (aww, so naive), and it's ELTON JOHN! Of course I wasn't going to miss my free ticket to that.

    Anyway, we go together, and the concert is almost over, and I've somehow made it through all the romantic songs, including "Your Song." And then we get to "Tiny Dancer," and I can FEEL that tears welling up in my eyes. I tried so hard to push them back, but they came (quite furiously too), and in another act of pity, Mike reached over and hugged me. I hated him for it, but it was ELTON JOHN, so I pushed through the weird pain-yet-sheer-awesomeness I was feeling for being at this concert and hearing this song.

    So now when I hear "Tiny Dancer," I no longer am sad or angry, but rather I bust out laughing because I think the whole situation is hilarious and incredibly unlucky, and, like you said, had it not happened, I never would have met Kevin. (Even the events way before him led me to him!) =)

    1. Thanks for sharing that story; I can't imagine how difficult that concert was for you. Drew and I also like to think back to all the events that could have gone another way that would have kept us apart. It's fun! We also like to figure out what was going on in our respective lives at a certain time. I am pretty sure we were both in Italy at the same time back in 2001, which blows my mind a little bit.