Connection Isn’t Canceled

So we’re living in strange times to make a gargantuan understatement.
Lots of major life events for millions of people are being canceled and postponed and significantly altered.
We can’t worship as groups. We can’t go to sporting events or live artistic and musical performances. We can’t have weddings or funerals. We can’t graduate or have confirmations, baptisms, and bar and bat mitzvahs. We can’t collectively grieve or celebrate.

I know. It sucks. People around the world who are huggers and hand shakers and friendly cheek kissers are super bummed, and I get it. I really do. It is incredibly sad and frustrating to say the least that we can’t come together for the things we’re used to congregating for in joy and grief and just even routine. But the thing is? Even with all the canceled events, CONNECTION isn’t canceled. We just have to exercise some creativity and maybe a little optimistic spite. Pardon the French, but Fuck This Virus and all the turmoil and societal flaws it’s revealed. It’s a scary and jarring reality for many people to realize for the first time just how imminently and intricately connected they are to everyone else. Literally…EVERYONE else. Those groups we like to pretend aren’t real people? Nope. They are the same as us. Celebrities? Same as us. The virus doesn’t care how old or rich or what gender or skin color or religion you are. It doesn’t care who you love or what human constructed standards of purity you’ve lived your life according to. We’re all connected. That can be terrifying to think about when you think that your own survival is linked to that of other people, but it IS, and the really scary part is…*it always has been.* And we can all get down in our little hole and be afraid of that cold truth. Shit, I’m pretty anxious all the time and I normally have a rough time stopping myself from catastrophizing everything. But oddly? Not now.

Now, I’m here writing and living and thinking of ways to convince other people that the connection is 1. still there, even though we remain (and should remain) physically separated and 2. is a good thing and it’s worth maintaining. So I enlisted a little help this morning from the Internet at Large and this idea to honor those whose celebrations and communal gatherings have been altered in unorthodox ways or canceled or postponed by sharing music.

willie

I believe Mr. Nelson. And I think that music is a great way to connect with people from a safe distance, and show people we are thinking about them, and that we still believe their love, their grief, their accomplishment is still worth recognizing and connecting over. I do believe that. I have a friend and a family member who are new parents…but I haven’t snuggled a new baby, and they aren’t getting the regular support of family and friends people normally offer at such a time because…well…
I have a cousin who postponed his wedding. I know there are drive thru funerals happening and frightened patients in hospitals receiving no visitors and postponed religious rituals and graduation ceremonies (or maybe these have even been canceled). So for the next couple of days here, I’m going to post some playlists (no links…look the songs up however is easiest for you…Spotify, Amazon music, iTunes, your private digital music, CD, or record collection, YouTube…whatever…) from the years I had big life events happen that I got to conventionally celebrate. And I’ll also just add here, as an introvert? I didn’t really want the big wedding or to walk graduation myself. I did those things for other people though…to please other people. Because we’re all connected…conventionally or not. Some of them I’ve even featured in blog posts before, because maybe music is something that speaks to my soul louder…has more meaning…is more memorable…when something big in my life is going on. And I don’t think I’m alone there. So I’m going to use it to try and connect to other people.

So here’s the first set…
In 2007, The Boy was born. J and I didn’t really have much practical help and were pretty alone, even though there wasn’t social distancing that year. So if we could survive, all you new parents kinda freaking out right now will probably be alright too. Here were my favorite songs in 2007:

  1. Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol
  2. Like You’ll Never See Me Again by Alicia Keys
  3. How to Save a Life by The Fray
  4. Umbrella by Rihanna and Jay Z
  5. Hey There Delilah by Plain White T’s
  6. Snow (Hey Oh) by Red Hot Chili Peppers
  7. Apologize by Timbaland and OneRepublic

Tomorrow I’m going to do 2005, the year J and I got married.
Hang in there, everybody. We’re gonna get through this. Together and still connected.

It’s not much but other than the goofy music postings to hopefully cheer some folks up and offer a lighthearted distraction and reinforce and create some connection, I am also still selling books. If you’d like to read them and can’t afford them, please contact me and we’ll work something out. An Assembly of Love is for sale with all the sale profit going to Feeding America and Doctors Without Borders to help offset medical need worldwide and food insecurity. And sale profits from Lit still go to The Trevor Project and always will. Thanks to everyone who reads the stuff I write. I hope it’s bringing you a smile or two. ❤

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