Sunday afternoon found me driving over the Bay Bridge, exhausted from an epic weekend of two kiddie birthday parties, one of which involved a late night drive home from Sac the night before. I found myself that morning at birthday party number two, feeling like a mommy imposter, as my fatigue pinned me on a couch with a cup of tea. Having had my fill of my own social awkwardness*, I hightailed it home while the jubilant four year old sacked out in the back. Then I glanced at the clock and realized that the best part of the week had arrived. I clicked on the radio, Mary Tilsen’s warm and humorous voice filling the car with the back 40. As I waited in line for the toll, I nestled down into a comfy place within myself. A smile started in my heart, spreading out to all four limbs, as each song knitted me back together. By the time we rolled up to the stoop, I felt normal again (albeit, still tired).
For the past 15 years, my Sunday tradition has been to turn on the radio starting at 11am. I catch all, or the first hour, of A Prairie Home Companion, and then by 2pm I head on over to KPFA for America’s Back 40, and then at 4pm, either Pig in a Pen or Panhandle Country. For years, Sunday was sacred, and I wouldn’t leave the house, listening and dancing all day while I did the weekly chores. Since having the babe, and entering partnership, I’ve had to have a looser grip on my weekend plans. Still, each time I get to tune in, I am filled with gratitude for these programs that have helped me go deep with my love and appreciation for my favorite kind of music…old time, bluegrass, western swing, americana…eclectic.
Someday, I’ll start going to shows again, taking my daughter with me. Until then, she likes to listen too…if we turn on A Prairie Home Companion, she will listen intently to the whole thing (especially Fred Newman’s bits. That link is so fun, do click). And the best part of all? Whenever I turn on (hardly) classic bluegrass...Doc Watson or Del McCoury, for instance, Fern’s face lights up as she says Oh I love this!
I’ll enjoy it while I can, until she hits her tweens and becomes infatuated with a Bieber type.
In the meantime, I made a playlist for you, a little sampling of the kind of medicine that suits my soul. Enjoy!
What kind of music stitches you back together when you are unraveling? Any recommendations?
*Despite my extreme introversion flare-up, both bday parties were wonderful. Kudos to my Cousin Kristin and friend Denise…amazing job, ladies!