So much of my childhood revolved around music.
Whether it was singing in church choirs, or playing Grandma's piano on the farm; music was always a safe place no matter where I was.
Though as I grew it came to mean something more.
That safe place to reside became a safe from which space to speak as well.
Within the boundaries of music I heard ideas that were only partially reflected in the world around; though they seemed so vibrant, accessible and real between the rhythms, harmonies and melodies.
And from this place I was able to find my own words.
Though in this series I will reflect on songs the songs that spoke to me then, and still do now.
# To The Family
At first I thought of this as a way to reach out to the family that neglected to see me.
For all their behavior, there is a part of me that wants to believe there remains an ability to not just see my humanity, but to embrace it.
Sometimes, that requires some willfull negligence on my behalf.
My own relationship with the woman who adopted me, so often, seems contingent on my ability to tow a very skewed narrative.
Oh how she loves to praise me in the sun, while denying me shelter through the storms in my life. This has been a theme; albeit one that taught me to break down doors with stubborn, tact and occassionally, compassion.
# For Grandma
There is a song in the newest collection of music I'm working on, where I've dedicated a song to the mother of the woman who adopted me; Grandma Shan.
She was purity incarnate.
A mother, a nurse, and a true community member.
Even now as I write this, it is hard to keep tears from falling; she was that beautiful.
She saw me; she was the first. And there are times when I thought she might be the only one to see my heart and my dreams for what they were, and not as a threat.
I've since ceased attempting to make amends with her first child, and instead seek to sing the rest of the songs in this series to her.
She was always willing to listen, and even now, wherever she may be, I know she can hear me; and shares in my laughter and my joy, while comforting me in my sadness.
Here's to you Grandma, thank you for everything.