Memory of Emotion

Right after Mini was born, I could not listen to music.  It didn’t matter if it was something I had heard a hundred times before, or something completely new — I would be in tears within a few bars of the song starting.  At the time, I thought I was going crazy; it was like my soul had been ripped open when he was born, and I had no defenses against emotion of any kind.  And music for me has always been emotion.

It hit me again the other day, I was sobbing on the drive home to Norah Jones.  My period started that night.  So I’m thinking that my crazy has a hormonal component, and I’ve decided to ignore it.

As of now, I’m sitting here sniffling, listening to random stuff that has been saved to my laptop while I’m working.  The boys are upstairs asleep, letting me get in some more hours on this project.  But despite knowing that, these particular songs have transported me back to where I was emotionally BEFORE I got pregnant.  I have a particular playlist of songs that *meant* to me while I was wondering if I would ever become a mother.  A set of music and lyrics that touched me, spoke to my heart, evidenced the struggle I felt inside but could not articulate. 

The power that these songs have over me is … perplexing. strong. odd. frightening. pavlovian.  I remain amazed that a few notes can completely shift my emotional landscape, take me back to the fear and the anger and the sadness.  It’s different — the emotions now are memories; I remember how awful I felt, and how the songs gave me the release that I could not find on my own.  How they were able to let me open up enough to grieve, if only in private.  And many of them have SPECIFIC memories associated with them — driving in the car from the bank back to work, sitting in the driveway sobbing in the dark, sobbing to myself here in the living room. 

Perhaps it is actually me that is odd.  I’ve never had any desire to “get over” infertility, to “move on”, to “forget.”  That idea of moving on, of putting the past behind me, doesn’t make sense.  This is who I am, this is how I became this person sitting here.  It is part of me, not something that can be discarded or cut away and left behind.  Maybe this is me still integrating the changes in who I thought I would be with who I actually am.


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