Silence is not golden anymore.
I seem to write about songs quite often in my blog. You might say the music channel switches on easily in my mind.
Sometimes speaking a mere word immediately reminds me of lyrics and music to some tune.
It’s a gift, I think. Or maybe it’s like the ancient Greek philosopher Plato once said, “Music and rhythm find their way into the secret places of the soul.”
But even though music has always taken up permanent residence in some section of my brain, I very seldom listen to music any more. I find that a remarkably strange conundrum and I am quite baffled over it because music has always inspired me, lifted my spirit and often brings me to tears.
I grew up in a household where music serenaded my ears. My sisters and I all took piano lessons, so someone tickled the ivories almost every day. And my family sang together at the piano often.
My mother listened to the radio daily as she performed her household chores and cooked home-made meals. As a child, I awakened every morning to the sound of that radio playing in my mother’s kitchen. My sisters kept the record player spinning, and I can still sing the lyrics to many golden oldies.
My dad, especially in his later years, possessed an extensive collection of tapes and CDs and passed many hours listening to his music. My maternal grandmother sang melody after melody with me as we rocked our blues away together in her special chair. A dear older friend of the family taught me how to sing alto and harmonize.
As a teenager and college student, music continued to maintain its importance in my life. I listened to it; I bought it in the form of records or cassette tapes; I attended live concerts to experience it; I played it on piano, and I sang it. Music wafted from my stereo or my car radio at all times. I would even fall asleep to it.
For many of my adult years, I joined choirs, performed in church musical productions and continued playing the piano for enjoyment. I attended orchestral concerts, operas, ballets, and live stage musicals. When I became a mother, I taught songs to my children and listened to their music from piano lessons to chorus and band concerts.
But somewhere along the line, I stopped wanting to listen to music and preferred silence. At home, I turned the radio on less frequently while I cleaned my house. I seldom played the stereo and the shelves of albums, tapes and CDs became dust catchers.
Music sometimes even irritated me. In the car, I rarely drive with the radio tuned in or a CD playing. My husband downloaded songs he thought I would enjoy on an MP3 player for me, yet I hardly ever use it.
I’m mystified as to why the music in my life suddenly turned mute in the audible world, although it still resonates in my head at the drop of a hat. Did my life become so stressful that silence was more agreeable to me than the lilting strains of a violin, the trills of piano keys, the strum of a guitar or the human voice in melodic song?
I don’t know, but I want my music back. Today it was quiet in my office, too quiet. My fellow staff members were cubbyholed into their own offices and the silence became unbearable to me, perhaps because there is so much of it in my home, the empty nest.
So for the first time ever in my office, I called up Pandora on the internet and devised my own radio station of songs on my computer. For most of my work day, I actually listened to tunes while I worked and I hummed along and at times I even sang a little.
And I realized in my book of Opportunity on Page 17, Chapter 1 (January 17), that I’ve still got the music in me.
“Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music.” ~Ronald Reagan