It is easy to love the people far away. It is not always easy to love those close to us. It is easier to give a cup of rice to relieve hunger than to relieve the loneliness and pain of someone unloved in our own home. Bring love into your home for this is where our love for each other must start. -Mother Teresa

Thursday, May 9, 2013

H & H Assigment: Music Mondays in May (1)

My Homesteaders & Homeschoolers Blog Group's assignment for the month of May is writing about music.We picked music not just because of its alliteration with the name of the month but because also because we realized how many of our memories are connected to music. We knew there are endless directions you can head with a topic this broad.

Obviously it isn't Monday and I am running behind.

I am not a musical person.

I do not know how to play an instrument or even read music.

My brain just doesn't work that way.

But Nan's brain does. She plays the piano whenever she has a spare minute. She gets a song into her head and will want to work on it until she can play it. One time it was the theme song from the Backyardigans. She worked on worked on it until she could play it and her mother was certifiably insane.

More recently she has been working on a song that I am pretty sure she shouldn't know. It usually takes at least a few days until she gets it close enough that I can pick out what she is trying to play. When I figured this one out, it gave my heart a little startle.

Was my daughter playing Van Halen? 

No, she couldn't be. How would she know it?  We don't listen to it purposely because it makes me cry.

Yes, Van Halen makes me cry. My memories are bittersweet because they are of a dear friend who has passed away.

My friend, Cody, was a drummer and loved music. He LOVED Van Halen. The last time I remember standing and listening to Van Halen for any extended period of time was at his visitation. Lightly playing over the speakers throughout the funeral home was his favorite music. I stood in a long line that weaved outside and down the street for hours behind two little gray-haired ladies. At one point, the line took us directly below a speaker and the music was the clearest and loudest it had been during the wait. One of those gray-haired ladies exclaims,"My lands! Do you hear that rock music?"

The other replies," There must be someone living upstairs. How rude when a visitation is going on!"

It actually made me smile for just a moment. Obviously they didn't know the music had been purposely chosen and played to honor Cody! I think the phrase, "THAT rock music" would have made Cody smile too.

I had been in the funeral home just a few hours earlier with Cody's younger sister, Bailey. We were dropping off pictures for the displays. (Wow, I am totally crying as i write this. I haven't really thought about this stuff for a long time.) She and I had gone that morning to Cody's house to look for those pictures. We walked into his house and it looked just as it had a few weeks earlier the last time I had been there. Cody had been sitting at the table with friends playing Risk, talking smack, and laughing.

She and I walked passed that table back to his bedroom. We stood in the doorway just a minute and surveyed the huge mess it was!  Bailey went over to his bed, laid down, and bawled just holding his pillow. The pain was so raw. My heart aches just thinking about it now.

Cody's death is memorable not only because he was such a dear friend but also because it was the first time I had lost a peer. It is without a doubt a milestone moment in my life and very likely my first giant step into adulthood.

As my daughter has been plucking away at the piano keyboard, I have finally figured out what she is playing. It brings back those sad first few days of his passing but if I am willing to really think about it, it also brings back many happy memories.

 Michael finally gave Nan a little more guidance on the song. She hasn't completely figured out the whole thing yet but she is certainly well on her way.


Cody Levi Chronic

December 1, 1977 - September 4, 1999 




  1. Sad, sweet post. Glad you finally got it up - worth the wait!

  2. what a beautiful post. It's funny how a memory comes flooding back when you write about it, isn't it?! I've written a few posts through tears myself. Hugs.

  3. Very touching!
    And how cool that Nan can do that on the piano! That is soo great!