Song A Day Challenge Day 5… The Final Chapter

Hello dear reader(s)!

You thought it was over.  You thought you were safe.  You thought the songs were finished.  But today, the songs return for one final rampage!

From the blog-type-thinger that brought you all four of the previous Song A Day Challenges on this here blog-type-thing, comes the final chapter in the horrifically horrific Song A Day Challenge series.

Starring a post about something.  Featuring a song or more.  Coming to a device near you!  Who will survive the chaotic final chapter?

Speaking of surviving…

One of the more common themes in my posting has been about surviving.  If you know anything about me, you know why this is.  Survival has been the focus of my life for the past five years.  In that time, there have been many instances where people wondered whether or not I would survive.  There have been brief periods where I wondered whether or not I would too.  Admittedly, there have even been a few times where I wondered why I bothered trying to.

But if there is a key to my survival that I myself had something to do with, it is that I kept those periods of time very brief.  When all seemed hopeless, I fought hard to hope.  I believed in the impossible.  I refused to believe the apocalyptic percentages many doctors gave to me.

And when I experienced the loss that made me think all my struggle was in vain, I made sure to reach out to friends to remind me that life is still worth living.  I reached out to people to talk to, and keep me from believing the worst thoughts I was having.  I dared to hope that things could get better once again.

They did.  And then they would get worse.  But I dared to hope.  There were plenty of times I questioned whether the little good things that were keeping me going were too little.  I wondered if I was just fantasizing about the possibility of being genuinely happy once again.  As time passed, I felt isolated, and began to think I may be ready to start dating again.  I had a couple of relationships, with good times, but of course you can’t rely on someone else to make you happy.

Shortly before my last relationship, something changed.  I started to feel better about myself.  I started to feel not only okay with who I am, but good.  I started to feel like I had some control over my own attitude.  I wasn’t happy about plenty of things with my life at that time, but I felt good about me.

And when I got into that relationship, I knew that I would not allow my happiness to be completely based on that relationship.  When it suddenly ended, I was shocked.  I was upset.  I was hurt.  And I was scared.  Scared that I would get depressed.  Scared that I would feel worthless.

That fear lasted for all of about six hours.

Then that fear turned to anger.  I was pissed.  I began to evaluate what happened, and I realized that the end to that relationship had absolutely nothing to do with me and any of my value.  I was going to be okay, and I knew it.

I took that anger and turned it into a fire in me to work to change my situation, and since then, as you can probably tell if you are so masochistic as to actually read these posts, I have been on top of the world.  Things aligned to help me and I took advantage.

Are things perfect?  No.  Life isn’t perfect.  I am going to have bad days.  Sunshine and rainbows are wonderful, but they aren’t constant.  I recognize there are going to be struggles.  I know that for all the things I gain, there will be some losses.  I know that some of the people who were important to me will leave.  But I also know that I have met and will meet other great people who belong in my life and might not.

I have learned that when people leave, it isn’t necessarily a reflection on me.  I have learned that while losing something or someone may be painful, sometimes it is necessary to make room for something or someone in your life that is better for you.  I’ve learned the famous quote from LJ Vanier often shared on memes that says, “Sometimes when things fall apart, they may actually be falling into place.” is often very much true.

And I know that no matter how bad things may be, if it is possible to make it through, things will get better.  They may get bad again in the future, but then they will get better.  If you survive, I know, for a fact, that you will experience a time when you are glad you did.

So if you are struggling, continue to hope.  Do everything you can to survive.  If you do, eventually, you will be so glad you did.

I was challenged to do a song a day challenge for 5 days.  I accept, but I want to make the songs an emphasis on a thought I would have already posted about that day.  I was challenged by the wonderful A Momma’s View, go check out that excellent blog.

The rules are:

  • Post a song a Day for five consecutive days
  • Post what the lyrics mean to you ( optional)
  • Post the name of the song and video 
  • Nominate two different bloggers each day of the challenge.

These songs are about survival.  I am posting a few, because I am just so generous like that.  We start with one of my favorite songs of all time.

Survive, by Rise Against

Next we have Carry On Wayward Son by Kansas, which I would just like to point out to reader(s) that I liked before I saw Supernatural.

And finally, a song for when you are glad you did survive, So Far Away, by Staind.

I nominate anyone who wants to participate.  Congratulations to those who have survived 5 of these posts!

Song A Day Challenge Day 4… Song vs Song

Hello dear reader(s)!

Are two songs competing with each other today?  Um, I don’t know.  Maybe I’ll have a few today that you can decide which you like better, but that isn’t why I chose this title.  I am, once again, following with the standard sequel title, ala Freddie vs Jason, or Alien vs Predator.  So for those of you expecting a steel cage match in an octagon of doom to the death between a couple of songs…well, if you want to imagine that, I guess have fun with that?

I remember when I first accepted the notion that magic was a real thing.  Of course, I am not talking about illusionists performing tricks, but of forces we don’t understand that seem to help grant us opportunities.  And as soon as I began to believe that was real, I started to notice the way things often seemed to come together in ways that are too organized to be coincidental, too directed to be born from the chaos of chance, and too perfect not to be magic.

And noticing it has helped me to do things I never thought possible.

Once I noticed, I began looking for ways to use it.  I sincerely believe I have used it successfully on a few occasions.  Of course, magic isn’t a science.  Not everything I do will be successful, but on occasion, it seems as though those failures are actually pointing me in the direction of a better success.  A deeper happiness.  More meaningful connections.  More internal strength to overcome challenges.

To me, there is no doubt my life has been touched by magic.  I have seen it.  I have felt it.  It is just as true to me as the fact that water is made up of hydrogen and oxygen.  Using magic is an art, but the existence of magic is as much of a science to me as physics.

I am not wihtout a little healthy skepticism.  Just because someone claims to be able to use divination to tell me hidden truths doesn’t mean I believe them without hesitation.  I do not automatically believe that because someone has a sign in their window that says “Psychic” that they absolutely are.  I know about cold reading techniques.  I know the power of people only acknowledging the truths of what people think they want to hear.  I understand that there is a psychology to certain claims of magic.

But I also believe that too many things have happened in my life to be explained by any other thing yet known.  I have met people with the ability to read into truths that are not possible to be known otherwise.  People who do not profit or aim to swindle anyone, simply to share their magic with others.  I have seen things that couldn’t be explained and were witnessed by others.  I have seen the immediate and specific results of spells I have cast.  I have done my own extremely accurate divinations and watched as the truths learned later came to light.

Right now I feel like magic has brought me to a place of extreme peace and contentment.  Maybe that is delusional.  Maybe it is a placebo-effect in my mind.  Maybe all these positive feelings are simply a matter of perception.  Maybe the seeming patterns and lining up of events in strange ways is simply something I want to see.  Maybe.  I don’t believe so, but I certainly can’t definitely prove otherwise.

But if it makes me feel great, and works to make my life happier, isn’t that magic in and of itself?

I was challenged to do a song a day challenge for 5 days.  I accept, but I want to make the songs an emphasis on a thought I would have already posted about that day.  I was challenged by the wonderful A Momma’s View, go check out that excellent blog.

The rules are:

  • Post a song a Day for five consecutive days
  • Post what the lyrics mean to you ( optional)
  • Post the name of the song and video 
  • Nominate two different bloggers each day of the challenge.

You may have guessed today’s theme is magic.  I can’t imagine why, it isn’t like I mentioned it in here or anything.  So on that note, I am going to work my magic on this post and post a few of my favorite songs having to do with magic.  And I magically extend this nomination to include anyone who wants to participate.

We start with That Old Black Magic, by Frank Sinatra

Moving on to This Magic Moment by Ben E. King and the Drifters

Moving on to Black Magic Woman by Gypsy Queen and Santana

And of course, my personal favorite song having to do with magic, Blood Sugar Sex Magik by the Red Hot Chili Peppers

Well dear reader(s), until tomorrow, make it a magical day!

Song A Day Challenge Day 3… Return of the Song

Hello dear reader(s)!

I am so sorry for the delay today on this post.  It is hard to find a song that fits your mood when you are having trouble defining it for yourself.

I do know that my mood is great.  There are a lot of factors, some of which I have already posted about.  There are some factors I will not post about at this time.  There are some factors I simply don’t understand.

One factor I realized, is that I am really comfortable with who I am.  I have made a lot of peace with the challenges I face.  I still know I have value.   I am who I am, and I have people in my life who know that and are still here.  I have some people who have been there for me for as long as I can remember and some I just recently met that know who I am and still like me.  I do not have to be anything other than myself.

And the best part?  They are themselves too.  I value individuality.  All my life I have dealt with fake people.  People who try so hard to conform to the herd.  And I get it.  Standing out can be difficult.  You make yourself a target that way.  But it is dishonest to pretend to be someone you’re not.  It isn’t fair to anyone who might want to know you.  Masks always slip.  So why wear one?

Besides, do you really want to be like everyone else?  Everyone else is kind of dull.  Unique people are not only more attractive, they are more genuine.

Here is a news flash.  Everyone is different.  In some way, no two people are exactly alike.  Even identical twins have different personalities.

Yet so many people hide them.  They think they are going to be considered uncool.  And guess what?  They are.  Someone is always going to take issue with something about you.  But it’s going to be worse for you if you lose yourself trying to fit in.  Cool is just short of cold.  Do you want to be cold?  Hiding your passions and the fire within you until it dies out?  I sure as hell don’t.

To some degree, you have to fit in.  You don’t live out in the mountains in your own cabin on acres of land completely self-sufficient and isolated from the rest of humanity.  I mean, some might I am sure, but they usually become uni-bombers.  And even he had to get his bomb parts somewhere.  So there are some basic things you must do to avoid serious conflict with those others with whom you interact.

But you should never let that change you.  You should never be ashamed of who you are or what drives you if it isn’t directly harming another.  Be proud of what makes you different.  Embrace your weird.  Everyone is weird.  Only the brave show it.

I was challenged to do a song a day challenge for 5 days.  I accept, but I want to make the songs an emphasis on a thought I would have already posted about that day.  I was challenged by the wonderful A Momma’s View, go check out that excellent blog.

The rules are:

  • Post a song a Day for five consecutive days
  • Post what the lyrics mean to you ( optional)
  • Post the name of the song and video 
  • Nominate two different bloggers each day of the challenge.

But you know what?  I’m me.  I don’t need to follow these rules!  Why should I conform to some arbitrary challenge rules that really don’t have any impact on the true meaning of the challenge?  I am an individual!  I am going to do this my way today!!!!!

Aren’t I so rebellious?

So I am giving you not one, but two songs today, because I’m crazy like that!

We start with Subdivisions by Rush

And then move to Be Yourself by Audioslave

And since I have decided not to conform to these rules today, I am not nominating two bloggers to participate.  I am nominating anyone who feels like participating.  That’s right, don’t you know I’m loco?

Song A Day Challenge, Day 2… The Revenge!!!

Hello dear reader(s)!

Okay, there is no real revenge in this post.  I just think all sequels should have something like that in the title.  I figure I will follow the standard horror movie trope, since they typically have the most sequels.  Tomorrow will probably be something like, Song A Day Challenge, Day 3… Song Returns!  Or something equally ridiculous.

I am sure that you dear reader(s) have noticed that I am in a much better mood lately than I have been.  I feel like I broken free of a rut, or broken out of a self-created prison.  I feel like I was stuck in glass, able to see the outside world, but unable to experience it.  I had spent the last while trying to make the best of a situation that was not very beneficial to me.  I took an opportunity to change that situation when it arose and haven’t looked back.  I feel like a whole new person.

Sometimes we don’t realize when we are unhappy.  When you do everything you can to see the light in the darkness, sometimes you trick yourself into believing you aren’t actually in that darkness.  Don’t get me wrong, it isn’t like I didn’t have some great times in the recent past.  It isn’t like every day was awful.  But overall, I was unhappy and I knew it.

Sometimes you need a person to wake you up.  You need a person to force you to remember who you are and what you are capable of.  Sometimes you need to be backed in a corner in order to come out swinging.  Sometimes a friend lends you a hand.  Sometimes the person who wakes you up is yourself.  Sometimes someone comes along and breaks the glass you are trapped in.  Sometimes it is a combination of all of that.

Changing a situation isn’t always easy.  Sometimes it is a mistake.  Sometimes you get stuck.  But if you are unhappy in a situation, and as soon as you are not stuck, you really owe it to yourself to change that situation.  It is easier and more comfortable to stay in a rut sometimes.  But if you see that rut is leading you to a place you don’t want to go, you need to get out of it and take a different road.

People look for the easiest road.  They take the path of least resistance.  And that path is often being stuck in a rut.  It is often being in a situation you know isn’t ideal yet you go along to avoid the trouble of forging a new path.  Somewhere along the way, you realize that taking the easy way was a mistake.  Sometimes you build a little world for yourself and unwittingly trap yourself inside.  You think you are making yourself safe from the dangers of the outside, but you are really just building yourself a little prison.  You wish someone would have shattered the glass enclosure you created for yourself that kept you in the unhappy world in which you were in.

And sometimes those people come along.  But sometimes that person needs to be you.  You are not a tree.  You can more.  It isn’t always easy.  It may not happen right when you want it to.  There are a lot of factors at play.  But if you want to be free, sometimes you need to shatter the glass you built around yourself.

I was challenged to do a song a day challenge for 5 days.  I accept, but I want to make the songs an emphasis on a thought I would have already posted about that day.  I was challenged by the wonderful A Momma’s View, go check out that excellent blog.

The rules are:

  • Post a song a Day for five consecutive days
  • Post what the lyrics mean to you ( optional)
  • Post the name of the song and video 
  • Nominate two different bloggers each day of the challenge.

Today’s song is a bit more modern than yesterday’s, Shatter Me, by Lindsey Stirling, featuring Lzzy Hale.

I like this version best, as it showcases the musical ability, not covered up by electronics.

Today I nominate Joey at Joeyfully Stated, and Ariel at Writing Radiation.  As always, no pressure to participate, especially if you have a good reason for not posting that I may or may not already be aware of.

 

Song A Day Challenge Day 1

Hello dear reader(s)!

I am in a great mood this morning.  Perhaps it is the new moon in Aries.  Perhaps it is the partly cloudy skies.  Perhaps it is the fact that the store trip I made this morning was relatively easy and quick.  Perhaps it is because they had bison.  Perhaps it is the coffee.  Perhaps it is the happiness of having great friends.  Perhaps it is my overuse of the word “perhaps”.  Who cares?  It is a beautiful day!

Yesterday I talked about feeling like I wanted to go on an adventure.  One of the comments was that it was likely Spring Fever.  I give some weight to that theory, and certainly think it might be a factor.  But, I also think it is just the solidification of a philosophy.  A defining and clarification of what the meaning of life is to me.

I have all kinds of theories of what life should mean.  I have my own ideas about how the universe works, and what our place in it means.  Other people have their own ideas.  But when you take away those things that are merely ideas, those ideas and feelings we have, there is only one thing we can know for certain.  We are alive.  Therefore the only reason for life we can determine with total certainty is that we are here to live.  What is living, but not experiencing what we can in the time we have?  We all have a common fate, in this life, with these bodies.  We will all die.  This is something we can not escape.  What happens next, if anything, is something we all have our own ideas about.  The only thing we can prove, is that we are alive now.  We are alive, and that is the meaning of life.  We must live.

Yes, we weigh how much we want to live based on a balance of how much time we think we have to experience things verses how much we can experience.  We plan for a future that we do not know we will experience, but we place odds on in a bet against death.  We decide that we can experience more over a long lifetime, than in a couple of days.  And likely we can.  It is a balancing act, for certain.  But I think that too often we are overly cautious.  We try to extend our lives to such a degree that we take away our ability to experience things.  I think we need to work toward finding a better balance of risk and reward.

You really see that clearly when you almost lose your life way before you thought you ever would.  You look at the caution with which you lived with disdain.  When I was diagnosed with cancer at 34, a cancer not linked to lifestyle or anything else, I suddenly felt like I spent far too much time worrying about the future.  I finally got that it isn’t promised.

Again, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have goals.  It doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t think ahead a little.  You have to balance it.  If you just did everything you wanted in a day without thought or regard to the future, you wouldn’t last very long, and you would fail to experience very much at all.

What it does mean, however, is that you can’t waste the present moment you have worrying about a future you may never see.  This is easier said than done, I know, but it is important.  Find a balance between the present and thought of being able to experience more as time goes by.  If your reason to live is to live, than thoughts of how you are going to survive is vital.  But if all you do is survive, well you are not really living.

I feel very happy knowing that.  I feel like I understand now why I grow restless sometimes.  I feel like I have a good grasp on what I want out of life for me.  I know the experiences I like, I want more.  I know what I don’t, because I have tried them.  There are plenty of things out there I don’t know about that I want to experience.  There are some I know about and don’t want to experience simply from experiencing the stories from those who have.

I am not going to be afraid of that which I do not know.  I am going to use my reason to keep a balance, but I am going to live this life.  I am going to say “yes” to things more often, within reason.  I am going to make all days as beautiful as I can, and not waste this life in worry.

I was challenged to do a song a day challenge for 5 days.  I accept, but I want to make the songs an emphasis on a thought I would have already posted about that day.  I was challenged by the wonderful A Momma’s View, go check out that excellent blog.

The rules are:

  • Post a song a Day for five consecutive days
  • Post what the lyrics mean to you ( optional)
  • Post the name of the song and video 
  • Nominate two different bloggers each day of the challenge.

Today’s song is Let’s Live For Today by The Grass Roots

Today I nominate Shopgirl Anonymous, and Jewish Books are Awesome.  Y’all don’t have to accept, of course.

Adventuring

Hello dear reader(s)!

I am super tired today.  I barely feel like leaving the house.  It took me a lot of work to even break out the computer to post.  I wasn’t up too massively late.  I didn’t party very hard last night.  I am just very sleepy.  Maybe because it has been kind of cloudy.  Maybe because I am still recovering from the sinus gunk.  Who knows?

But oddly enough, I really want to go do something.  Something a little crazy.  I want to go on an adventure.  I want to see something I have never seen, and do something I have never done.

I’m very torn between knowing I need to take it easy, and wanting to go do something crazy.

I’m not even sure what or how crazy, I just know I want to do something new.  I want to experience more out of this life than I have.  I want to have more stories that are about what I have done, rather than what has happened to me.

So now I just have to figure out what kind of adventures to do.  What I am capable of, what I need to do in order to have them, who I should invite to adventure with me, etc.

What I have figured out, is that no matter what challenges you face, life is meant to be lived.  Life doesn’t happen in front of a computer.  Life is an adventure that must be had.

So now I must start with my first adventure today, getting in the shower. finally.

Happy Sunday, dear reader(s), make it an adventure.

I’m Not Old

Hello dear reader(s)!

Last night, while talking to a new friend, I realized I was going to be an age this year I was always terrified of becoming.  It was both shocking (because I literally forgot how old I already was), and concerning because I remember being younger and thinking that all of the people that age were so boring and old.

And then I thought a little about it.  And I realized I don’t give a rat’s ass how many times I have passed around the sun.  It means absolutely nothing.  I’m not old.  Not only that, I will never get old.

Old people are jaded.  They have no hope.  They tend to grow cold to the feelings and emotions of others.  Not only is that not me, that will never be me.  Old people stop looking upon the world with wonder.  I will never do that.

Just because someone might be 75 years old, doesn’t mean they are old.  They aren’t old unless they act like it.  You don’t become old until you stop trying to live.

You can be an old soul.  That is different.  But being an old person is simply a state of mind.

I’ve got some grey hairs in my goatee.  It takes me a little longer to get out of bed than it did when I was fifteen, but I do everything I can within the limits of my body.  I make time for my friends and the things I want to do.  Old people invent responsibilities they really don’t have in order to avoid living.

I’m not a huge party guy.   I never have been.  But I like to have fun.  I try to be happy.  I try to enjoy the time I have here.  Everything isn’t always perfect.  There are plenty of times where I have had a really bad time.  But there are so many more times where I have had an amazing time that would have never happened if I didn’t give it a chance, knowing it could have gone badly.  Old people don’t do that.

I have met some amazing people.  I have had to meet a lot of shitty people to do that.  Old people, meet their first few shitty people, and assume that everyone must be shitty.  Then they miss out on the opportunity to meet great people.

Old people stop trying.  Their world exists between their home and office.  They fall into the same old routine day in and day out.  Yes, people have to do what they have to do survive.  Yes, some people enjoy their jobs.  Old people, they work for some prestige that won’t mean anything when they are gone, and hate it.  Then they come home and sit in their homes unable to enjoy anything they are working for.

Life isn’t perfect.  I have had more than my share of bad things thrown at me in this life.  But at least I’m living it.  At least I am still experiencing things, and am still making connections during it.  At least I haven’t given up on it.  At least I am doing more than going through the motions.

Old people take no risks.  They wouldn’t leave and move half way across the country.  Old people never leave their home town.  They close their mind to the different perspectives of people outside of their small little world.  Old people never try to expand their circle.  They do not put themselves out there to meet people who could add to their lives.

Old people stick to their same indoctrinated views, and never question the validity of them.  They care more about tradition and their sense of propriety than what they want or what they truly feel.  They do things that conflict with their own self-interest because that is what is expected of them.

Old people think they know everything.  They believe there is nothing new they can experience or know.  They think they are always right.  They confuse their opinions with fact, and do not understand that perspective matters in how one views the world.  Old people react to things that challenge them with fear and anger, and never an attempt at understanding.  Old people are assholes.

Old people can be 13.  Old people can be 89.  Young people can be 103.  Young and old is not about age.

I was scared I was becoming old.  I’m not.  I will be never be old.  I will die young, even if my body makes it to 150.  Bad back, mostly deaf, mostly blind, hunched over and holding a cane, I am going to be young.

Now get off my lawn and turn down that infernal racket.