Monday, March 16, 2009

More on Music (With a Little Humor Thrown In)

This isn't an IPod commecial. It's about music. I’ve already talked about music as a powerful tool to keep us from negative storytelling. But when I talked about it before I emphasized making our own music by singing. We all know that surrounding ourselves with good music can also protect us from falling victim to negative feelings. But sometimes we forget how powerful it can be. I had an experience with this once that I recorded in my journal. I had lunch with a friend I hadn’t seen for a long time and on the way home was running an errand. Here’s how my journal records what happened next. “I parked beautifully. No car damage. No problems. Got out of the car. Locked the car. Shut the door. Noticed that the car keys were dangling from the ignition. (In that order!)

Taking three long slow breaths I asked myself, what now? I could swear (which I'm unaccustomed to doing.) I could scream. (Which I have done on occasion.) Or I could walk home and get the extra set of keys. I opted for the latter and having my new Ipod in my purse, I put on some encouraging, up beat music to dispel the mood—the Beachboys—and began marching homeward. I hadn't gotten far into "Surfin' USA" when I realized that my house key was also locked in the car. No matter. That music is very cheerful and so I hoped Josh was home to let me in. Then just into the catchy, "Be True to Your School" I realized that during the hustle and bustle of getting all the girls to airports and switching cars after Dad=s funeral, my second set of car keys had been lost. But how sad can you be when you're listening to "Shish boom bah! Rah, Rah, Rah" sung in full harmony by males who were in their prime 40 years ago?

Since we were going to the temple tonight, I was very concerned that my heart not be polluted with things like anger and self pity—so I turned the music up louder, marched faster, and made it home in record time trusting that some miracle would happen.

“I got home. Josh wasn't there, but someone had left the back door unlocked! Miracle number one—accompanied by "Fun, Fun, Fun Till Daddy took the T bird Away."

“I found a Honda key in a drawer. Prayed it was to my car. And walked out just as our neighbor was backing out of his driveway. (Miracle number 2 accompanied to AThe Girls on the Beach.”) I begged a ride, and out of politeness took the ear phones out of my ears. He took me to my car, waited while I found out the key was to Carl's Honda not mine, and then drove me back home.

“As soon as he left, I put the earphones on again. "Let Him Run Wild" was playing. Still calm and collected and surfing mentally, I called the car dealership where I bought my car and asked if they had any suggestions about getting into it. Miracle number three was accompanied by "Don't Worry Baby." It seems that they offer free roadside assistance to their customers. They would have their Knight in Shining Tow Truck there in 15 minutes to open my door.

“That gave me just enough time to walk back to the car—accompanied by the rousing tempos of "Help Me, Rhonda" and "All Summer Long." When I arrived, I discovered the Knight was late and the door wasn't yet open so what could I do but go into the nearest clothing store and shop to the music of "I Get Around." It was their clearance sale and I found a sweater, a pair of pants and a shirt all for less than fifty dollars! By the time I'd made my purchase the car door was open. I drove home, my heart pure and clean of any negative emotion thanks to the gift of portable music my family had given me.

P.S. The temple session was wonderful.”


Anonymous said...

Sis. Johnson, I love that and isn't it wonderful you recorded it. I agree, good music is wonderful to lift and elevate our spirits. I use it often to change the mood in my home as well. I love your hair short too by the way...TeLene

Karen said...

I enjoyed this so much. I am going to follow your example the very next time I am stressing over something. Thanks!

PS I am coming to Women's Conf. =)
I can hardly wait! Alyssa has a lot of other things planned as well, should be fun. I will definitely come by for a vist!

Thanks again for the inspiring thougts.

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

TaLene, Yes, music is magic. I really couldn't believe how it helped me through that day. I was honestly laughing instead of stressing!

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

Karen, I'm so glad I'll get to see you! I'll be there with my daughter!

Anonymous said...

After I stopped laughing, I realized that every single song you mentioned I recognized the melody and a lot of the words. Amazing what floats in our brains 40 years later. I loved the Beach Boys, but I had never pictured them as a vehicle to keep a good, positive attitude in times of duress. It reminds that the tools necesary to keep ourselves positive and clearminded are there if we just pay attention. An I-Pod isn't really a spiritual tool normally, but it allowed you to get through this and end up in a temple session in the right frame of mind. I have to say, though that I wish there was a video, it would be a hit. :)
Cathie Totten

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

Cathie, Your post made me laugh! Thanks for the chuckle. It is surprising what can be used for good.

Iris Monson said...

Sherrie--I am so sorry to hear you were going through this trauma with Grizelda these past few months! But happy to know that you are doing better!

I have to say after reading your blog--you are so angelic! I have to ask myself what I have done in my life to warrant such an angelic friend! And as a sister in the gospel--thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing your wisdom to one such as me! I do and have gleamed so much from your example! Thank you!

Come to think of it--if I didn't have such a strong sense of hope--a friend like you would be so depressing--but with hope seeing how good you are makes me want to become, rather than shun!

I love your goodness!