Like the story of my life but with more rhythm. We were asked this week on our team thread which song most represents our life. While this might give some people pause to figure out just which song fits them, my answer was instantaneous. "Both Sides Now" by Joni Mitchell. No question.
I love this song for many reasons and at different points in my life it has meant different things to me. I see in these a lyrics a woman who is an optomist, even while knowing her optimism is foolish. I see a woman who was once hopeful and positive, has had life beat her down and with pain in her heart still looks back and sees the good. I see a lot of myself.
My life has not always been easy, but neither would I say that it's been terribly hard. There has been pain to be sure. Perhaps the most vivid, biting scar is the one laid upon me when we lost our first son not too long into the second trimester. Pain like that lingers. Clouds that once looked like ice cream castles can quickly turn black and only block the sun. The light that once reflected off them and shone through them disappears, almost as if we never felt it's warmth at all. But if you're like the woman in the song, you remember that warmth and the memory is enough to remind you that you will feel the warmth again.
I have looked at life through the eyes of a young woman, a child really, who sees only bright futures, candy coated love stories and circus crowds. I have also looked at life through the eyes of an older woman who knows that love stories sometimes end sadly, that futures can be cut short and circus crowds sometimes trample you. It's not the pain I hold in my heart though. It's the good. The simple and the beautiful and the often profound that sneak into my life and fill me with such joy I cannot even fathom the pain. Something is truly gained by living every day. I gain it each day I choose to embrace what I have, accept that is mine and own it.
But then again, I often wonder if I really know life at all.