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Saving Your Life

June 11, 2012

I heard the song at the grocery store today and it made me grin like a fool, so I thought I’d re-post this from December 2009.


Sometimes it is the smallest things. You’re beaten, you’re down, you’re alone, you don’t know where to go or what to do.

Then a door cracks open and out spills just a sliver of light and suddenly you can see and you just KNOW that you can reach over and jerk that sucker open and walk through that doorway, out of the darkness and into a new place, a place that is, at the very least, different from where you are.

I don’t know why songs are so often the thing that pops the door open. Something in music connects right up to Control Central right there in the middle without having to travel through the buzzing wiring in our brains. It just gets in there and does what it does and we end up laughing or sobbing or gasping or standing up and shaking parts that we didn’t even know we could shake anymore.

So there I was a while ago, driving around. I lived with someone who made it seem like he hated me and who was perpetually unhappy, both about my existence and about everything else in general. I had felt FAIL for so long that I couldn’t even imagine what WIN was anymore.

I was getting on the freeway, heading home, feeling like crap. And then “Jump” by Van Halen came on the classic rock station.

Could anything be more silly or ridiculous? It’s not great music. It’s not gonna be on anyone’s top 100 list. But that day, in that place, it GOT me.

Even though I was hearing it on the radio, the thousand times I had seen the video rushed back to life in my head and I was driving along seeing that nutty video play in my head and singing and laughing.

Might as well jump.” Damn right.

Suddenly I knew to the marrow of my bones that I was going to be ok. No matter how much anyone tried to keep me down, I was going to get up, to jump, and the jump was NOT going to be off a building.

I was going to leap through life with goofy, goony joy, the same kind of crazy life force that caused Diamond Dave to put on that wack red net corset-y outfit and parade around the stage like a low-rent Mick Jagger with bigass hair, the same joy that kept Eddie smiling his little elf smile while wearing possibly the most unattractive yellow tiger-striped jacket ever made.

Might as well jump.” From then on I had a little piece of that song in my head and Eddie’s sweet smile in my heart. On the outside, I put on my best blasé look in the face of overwhelming criticism and attempts to chop me down.

I just went through the motions and did what I had to do so I could put my escape plan into motion. But inside, I knew who I was. I was someone who could always jump.

I’m so thankful for that song. It gave me something, you know?

Tell me about something that saved you.

  1. June 11, 2012 19:49

    It wasn’t really a moment that saved me, per se, but I do have a rather strong memory (and good outcome) attached to the Dixie Chicks “Ready to Run”:

    • June 25, 2012 07:55

      What a great story! Thanks for linking it up.

  2. June 12, 2012 08:45

    I was at the end of a long relationship with a boy/man who I loved very much and had no interest in marrying. He was my first love and things had just turned totally bleak. We were headed toward a very short marriage. I didn’t know what to do. I was home from college and my dad came home from work early. My dad NEVER comes home early from work.

    He asked me what was wrong and I told him. He said “Sarah, you can love a lot of different people. You have to find someone you want to be with that shares your goals.”

    He was totally right. The entire conversation lasted less than two minutes but it made everything better. The boyfriend broke up with me the next day and I knew it was going to be okay.

  3. June 13, 2012 11:50

    I loved Eddie’s lil elf smile 🙂 Such a happy song!

  4. June 15, 2012 07:54

    These days it’s usually songs that remind me about my kids flying the nest. And then I cry. Formerly the A. Lounge

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