a musical memory.

i was never musically inclined.  i always wanted to be in the band, but my parents never went for it.  i wanted to sing a solo, and i did sing a few, but when i realized i couldn’t actually sing…well, that was humiliating.  i’m one of those types who can’t sing and clap at the same time.

but i love music.  i’ve been in love with music since the first time i listened to relient k.  my first switchfoot album.  a combination of top-40 and country and alternative and songwriter and indie and everything in between.  and sometimes songs put me back in a specific place, at a specific time.

cue the avett brothers.  I-20 and I-85, driving back to the carolinas.  crying, most of the way.  partially out of realizing God’s goodness and graciousness, and realizing my life was about to change, and realizing the great sadness that was inside my heart.

john mark mcmillan.  sitting in chapel at beeson listening to “death in his grave” during communion.  totally overwhelmed by life, and at the same time overwhelmed by the blood and the promise of new hope.  the promise that one day, i will live in the “not yet” of the already, not yet.

taylor swift. south carolina. walking on the bricks of the horseshoe.  sunshine.  beautiful day.  when my life wasn’t very complicated, and i made apple crisp on the weekends for my roommate.  when i had everything figured out and i could put different parts of my life in a box, and not deal with them. when i thought i had all the answers to all the problems.

kelly clarkson.  checking out at wal-mart in my home county.  hearing “break away.”  picturing what that would be like for my 18 year old college self, to break away and finally leave home.  i imagined lots of things in my head.  most of them haven’t come true yet.

civil wars.  sitting in the kitchen of the blue house on scenic view drive, making cookies instead of studying for a hebrew exam last year.  wishing i could change lots of things about my life.  talking with a dear friend from camp and being overwhelmed and comforted all at once.

ben rector.  getting ready in that same house, in my bathroom.  putting on makeup, and dancing to “dance with me, baby.”  my bathroom smelled like cupcakes.  it was a new january, with new hopes, and new perspective.

probably the strongest memory comes from mumford and sons.  i listened to the first album over and over, as i sat in emmet o’neal and wrote a paper for Greek on the transfiguration in Luke.  over, and over, and over, on repeat.  until i found it on amazon.com for $3.99 and purchased it that day. i wrote, and i listened, and i missed you.  i missed you, already, even though goodbye had not even happened yet.

i sat in the library at samford today, and mumford and sons came on, again. i don’t even remember what song my pandora station played.  i felt the great happiness-sadness i feel every time i hear them.  and so i typed these words, because i had so many things to say, but so few things i could actually utter.  and i still miss you.

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