Funny how a melody sounds like a memory...
Springsteen by Eric Church
Not many things are as deep-rooted, ingrained and buried in your soul as music. A song can take you back to a moment, a place, a year, a so very specific feeling that you remember what you wearing, what the room smelled like, what the air felt like, how fast your heart was beating, what you were thinking at each moment. A song can bring you back so explicitly to a time with a feeling so the same that the goosebumps it brings back feel like the same goosebumps you had that moment so long ago.
What is it about music that can do that to us, that can take us back and drop us smack in the middle of a moment, a time in our life so sweet?
When you are lucky enough to have someone to share your life with (be it a friend, partner, soulmate), songs become markers of your time together. Add to that two people who have grown up with music in their bones and music becomes a major part of identifying your relationship as is the case with me and Husband Mike.
Songs transport Mike and I to different eras of our relationship: Signed, Sealed, Delivered (Stevie Wonder) brings us to our wedding ceremony, Good Life (One Republic) brings us to our first year abroad, Feeling Good (Michael Buble) brings us directly back to sitting in my car outside of my house, eating pizza before we headed to the mall on one of our first little dates together.
But few songs bring it back to a deeper place like Van Morrison's "Here Comes the Night". Whew! Does that song bring something back. It doesn't just bring back the place, the moment, the year; it brings back a vintage collection of feelings boxed in its original case, tucked in a secret drawer of two people that are exactly the same living very different lives than when they had first started out.
This songs transports me to a moment in time before we were real adults. We were utterly in love - stinkin' silly love - the kind with no bills and no kids - no dogs even. Our time was our own. Want to take a walk? sure. Want to play catch at the park? Yeah. Want to lay on the floor and talk? MmmHmm. And even more enticing? Our time was limited. Because we didn't live together the excitement of being together was thick enough to make the air hard to breath. We didn't make any excuses to be alone because we were still so new that there was nothing more exciting than getting to know each other. Why waste time muddled with other people? It only gets in the way of being with you.
Oh my I miss those times sometimes.
I love where our life has journeyed. And I love that we have journeyed it together, side by side. But remembering the times when each other was the only priority is bittersweet. Oh yes, we still make time for each other. Dare I say that we spend a lot of time with just one another. We make sure that the babe is asleep every night by 7:00pm so that we could eat an uninterrupted dinner together: eating, talking, just being. At least, one night a weekend is devoted to Movie Night - complete with a projector for the chosen rented movie of the night. We go grocery shopping and run errands together. We spend hours a week talking - not about the baby's schedule or what bills need attention, but about life and things we've read, and interesting ideas, and work (when you are married to a teacher, I believe you can't help but talk about best practices and reaching kids). I thoroughly and completely enjoy Husband Mike's company. I could say that honestly and openly and without him needing to pay me to say it.
But after 5+ years of being together, the mystery of it all escapes you a little. It's not so new to see Mike everyday because, well, we live together so I'm supposed to see him everyday. I see him in every way shape or form that you could imagine seeing someone - sometimes in ways I wish I didn't see him.
And please don't look into this and tell me that infatuation shouldn't fizzle out just because you get married and have kids and take on responsibilities, that we must keep the courtly romance alive. Of course it's going to fizzle out. Because we are no longer two ships sailing freely with abandon and without anchors on the open sea. We are one big fucking tanker now. One big boat with a crew and lots of anchors. 3 anchors to be exact. 3 very cute and heavy anchors. And sailing this kind of boat isn't as romantic or liberating - it's hard work.
But, if you can stay strong together, the courtly romance makes way for other amazing things like passion, intimacy, deep friendship, unwavering loyalty, true romance - the kind that moves you to make dinner when you know the other person is utterly exhausted.
And when all else fails, we still have Van and "Here Comes the Night."
...here it comes.
That will never change.