I heard the announcement for the Brandenburg concerto before it came on and I was glad. I was on my way to work, with all the people I care about swirling around in my head. Some of my best talks with God are on the way to work. I see the Ford F-150 I see everyday and I pray for my brother because that’s what He drives. I pray for my Mom and Dad who despite their advancing years, have little down time for themselves and so I pray for them too.
And I was praying for Elaine too. Today she has to deal yet again with the director of the care home her Mom will hopefully be going into soon. The truth came out yesterday after he hemmed and hawed and he said, “Well, I don’t really agree with the caseworkers’ Level 1 assessment…..and I really don’t deal with her anyway, I have my own……and actually we get less money from the state for Level 1 care…..” Really.
“Unless,” he said, “the family is willing to contribute monetarily.” So it seems it’s mainly about the money not the care, and that’s disheartening. And when I think of how much stress she is under already, I don’t know why she should have to put up with this as well.
The first strains of music started playing and I wasn’t prepared for the tears when they came. Mascara liquefied as I tried to staunch the flow. All of a sudden, I was 18 again. It was the fall after I had purchased my first stereo, bought with my own money. When I got a real job, it was the first thing on my list. It cost me either $179.00 or $79.00, the years and inflation have skewed my memory on that one.
It took up my whole closet with big tower speakers placed strategically apart on either side of the room. My first classical music album was borrowed from the public library. It was Vivaldi, but one of my first actual purchases was the Brandenburg concertos by Bach. That fall I listened to them over and over.
I would gaze out my bedroom window and watch the gold leaves fluttering in the wind as I listened to that music fill the room and those moments solidified in my mind. Anytime I remember fall back then that’s what I think of.
Right along with cracking walnuts on the garage floor, Halloween, crackling fires, flannel shirts and coconut rolls from the bakery on the corner.
My Mom would tell me to turn it off because it made her nervous. The fast parts anyway. And the slow parts she said made her sad. I think that was what sparked the tears this morning, thinking of her. And my tears fill all over again at my desk just now, because I love her and she is much too close to Heaven for my comfort level and so is my Dad.
And I just want to tell everyone I care about right now, how I wish everything could be easier and I wish I could make it that way for them. And just when I was feeling like one of those silly sentimental people who cry at the drop of a hat I looked across the street and the silly fountain on the corner seemed to be squirting right in time to the music.
It was a Grace moment.
I have learned that God does those things all the time. We just don’t notice all the time. But today I did. He always seems to find a way to make me smile, God does.