Click the blue link to hear my newest song:
When life holds pain
it’s just like rain
It pours, then it clears
I see a rainbow through my tears
Those tears I’ve cried
have always been my guide
My heart may still bleed
but with my tears, I’m freed
When life was hard
I put up my guard
I locked inside
feelings I denied
For many years
I would hold back my tears
But when I let go
I saw the rainbow
Color burst into the sunlight
Darkness faded into daylight
Every hue was within view
Numbness was replaced by feeling
For so long I despaired of healing
Now I know, it appears
Hope came with the rainbow through my tears
I used to pray
I would see that rainbow someday
When I couldn’t smile
All the while
I tried to find
colors in my mind
But grief was like night
without an end in sight
I didn’t know
when I’d see that rainbow
There was always hope
with the rainbow through my tears
For many months almost daily, I picked up my guitar and tried to write a new song. I hummed and experimented with chord progressions, but nothing came to me.
Three months earlier, I did hear a rainbow song. I heard it in its entirety and even recorded myself singing the first verse.
But I didn’t like the chorus. It was difficult to sing. The melody jumped down low in a few places. Most significant was that I didn’t believe my song. It just wasn’t touching enough for me. My vision was foggy and I wished I could see that rainbow.
I decided that my song needed a lot of improvement and then I would embrace it.
At the time my song was revealed to me, I also created an image for a story on my blog named “My Song Garden.” I used one of my existing floral paintings with a rainbow sky above.
It was fascinating for me that I also chose that particular image for the cover of my first promotional CD. And I even created an alternate image for that CD using a rainbow and a picture of myself smiling with my guitar.
My subconscious was definitely speaking to me with rainbows, but still I would not finish my song!
For this story, I added an image of my hand holding my mother’s over the flowers in my song garden.
Her beautiful hand within mine happens to be the last picture I have of her. I took it while she was on her deathbed.
I understand now that I could not accept this song while my mother was dying.
My song finally emerged two months after her death because I wanted to counter the fog and sadness clouding my vision. I didn’t want to lose hope of feeling better.
The link below has audio and shares more about my story:
The verses for my song came easily and I had a lot of lyric lines to choose from. I decided to pick only lyric lines that were especially gentle. An example would be two choices I had below. Both were very true for me:
“Grief only stole, the life I couldn’t control.”
But I liked this line better:
“Grief was like night, without an end in sight”
Both were about hopelessness. But the second line did not allow me to blame myself for my despair.
I originally wrote the first line of my chorus as:
“Color melted all my sadness; no longer would I live with madness”
It was no surprise that I wrote that because those words perfectly described my current life. I knew my song deserved lyrics that were sweeter, even though grief and stress definitely were “madness” in my life.
But I could not find a replacement.
It was because my life became increasingly filled with stress related to my divorce and demanding large children. I abandoned my song.
The months went by. Each time I played my guitar, I felt uninspired.
My arranger, George, kept asking me when I’d have a new song. Finally he convinced me that he could help me finish my song.
From the moment I played the first chords for him, suddenly I felt my song magically healing my soul. I could not find enough ways to thank him. Once again, I was singing throughout my day.
For a few sessions, George and I worked on the arrangement even though my lyrics weren’t set. The song truly became joyful when we added four-part harmony to the chorus.
George has often told me that backup vocals add a lot to any song. Even though I sang in my high school choir, staying on pitch while singing harmony lines was quite a challenge for me!
I did follow one of his lyric suggestions. George grimaced when I sang the word “suppressed.”
I grinned when he said, “Jude, you’re using those big words again!”
Suppressing tears was an important concept in my song. I asked him for a replacement and he suggested, “I held back my tears” instead of “I suppressed my tears.”
George also worked with me to discover a beautiful bridge for this song. As soon as I heard the haunting music, an additional lyric line magically appeared. I found myself teary every time I sang: “I used to pray, I would see a rainbow someday.”
It was a perfect “bridge” because it enhanced the message for my song.
That’s because I easily pictured myself praying for hope during some of my darkest moments.
“Precious versus pressure”
For me, my words and thoughts have a powerful effect upon my mood. I often try to replace words that are negative with positive ones.
At a pivotal hypnotherapy session, I bemoaned how stress was detracting from the preciousness of my life. I was overeating and biting my nails again, which were familiar and unhealthy coping mechanisms.
Pressure, pressure, pressure – it was too much!
Pressure vs. precious were two words that sounded similar for me.
Every time I felt overwhelmed by stress and pressure, I thought instead about how much I wanted life to be precious.
I didn’t want joy to be squeezed out of my life!
I desperately wanted to celebrate my courage and freedom. There was not a single shred of regret within me for changing my life. I decided that I did not have to suffer with circumstances that overwhelmed me.
I had the power to change my life, and it didn’t stop with separation and divorce.
One of the most important line of lyrics in my song benefitted from adding the word “when.”
Originally I wrote: “I didn’t know I’d see a rainbow” or “I didn’t know there’d be a rainbow.”
Positive thinking was about having faith and certainty about healing. I changed it to: “I didn’t know when I’d see the rainbow.”
The rainbow through my tears was something I had seen before.
It was important for me to remember that even if I wasn’t seeing it at the moment.
When my divorce was official, I was certain there would be a huge rainbow in my life. A court date was looming ahead and no settlement was in sight. The lawyer fees for each of us were mounting. Facing my husband in a courtroom was a deeply unpleasant prospect for me.
I decided to take charge and not wait for my rainbow. I searched for ideas to help myself feel better.
MY LIST OF WAYS TO MAKE MY LIFE MORE PRECIOUS
1. I booked a flight out-of-state to visit my former voice teacher, Peaches Chrenko. Next week I will see her for the first time in over a year.
2. The week after that trip, I am excited to meet a dear blogging friend named Sandra Callahan. Sandra is coming to California from Georgia to celebrate Christmas in Yosemite National Park. I will be taking a road trip to Yosemite with my childhood friend, Joni. I have never met Sandra. I have never taken a trip with Joni as an adult. It will be beautiful for us to relive all the childhood memories from vacations taken together when we were young children.
Meeting Sandra is truly one of the most precious things I could imagine doing. Because Sandra is terminally ill, she has inspired me greatly to treasure my life even more.
3. I plan to bring a new baby into my life. (Not anything living that will add more pressure!)
I am shopping to buy a classical guitar since I gave my old one to my daughter. I haven’t really played a nylon string guitar since I was twenty. I used to study classical guitar when I was in college.
I was having my hair colored at a friend’s home. She was my personal stylist for many years now and a good friend. I adored her and she called me “her sister.”
Her husband was sitting on the couch as his wife dabbed hair color onto my roots. His eyes were kind as he said, “Judy, you look beautiful. You are glowing and I don’t see the beaten down woman that I saw a few months ago.”
My eyes began to water and I honestly wondered how he could think I was glowing. I definitely wasn’t out of the darkness and in the sunshine yet. But I appreciated his words and I thanked him.
Then he said, “A woman should always hear those words; it’s important. Also, I mean it. You really do look much happier.”
Tears spilled down my cheeks. I couldn’t wipe them away because I was wearing a black plastic gown and hair color could get in my eyes. It was an awkward moment.
My friend finished applying the color. I hugged her goodbye and left with a plastic hair-net on. I would rinse my hair at home.
I quickly got into my car and put on my exquisite arrangement of “Rainbow Through My Tears.”
As I drove, I sang at the top of my lungs. I didn’t care if anyone thought I looked strange while conducting myself with flailing arms at a stoplight.
My song surrounded me with a rainbow of love, comfort and joy during a challenging time in my life.
I thanked God for my jewel of a song.
© Judy Unger and http://www.myjourneysinsight.com 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Judy Unger with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.