Glee

As months go on without knowing when I will be going back to work and looking for something to quell my anxiousness, I started watching Glee. I never paid much attention to it when it was in its heyday. But with a pandemic, having never lived through one, it tends to make you do things you wouldn’t normally do.

I was looking for something to take my mind off the day to day news and have always loved musicals so this seemed the perfect fit when I was surfing the many options we now have in TV land.

I have to say from the moment I tuned into the pilot I was hooked. I found myself watching sometimes four in a row not because of the storyline but because of the amazing talent that this show put together. Yes, it’s about a group of high school kids who are being looked upon as misfits and are thrown together in a glee club. That’s a lot of singing and dancing and competition. But it was so well done and the talent so immense I was addicted to the show every night.

There was one character in particular that I immediately fell for as I’m sure so many did because he was so well, likable. There was a sweetness to him that made him sexy and vulnerable. Not to mention his powerful voice.

It was Finn. I will say there were some whose voices were definitely stronger but when Finn sang it melted your heart. Well, my heart anyway. Off-screen he seemed quiet and shy which made me like him even more. Everyone who spoke of him said how funny and talented he was but he also had a dark secret.

Cory Monteith (his real name) was an addict. He had an addiction since he was a young man and had fought to stay clean. He seemed to be winning the battle for a while until finally, it took his life at 31 years old. That’s my son’s age so his youth was close to home. As I was watching him perform as well as all of the others I was in awe and even envious of how lucky they were to have such talent. I have always thought that if I had that kind of talent I wouldn’t have a care in the world. Everything would be perfect.

Addiction is tough even in the best of circumstances. On the outside, Cory seemed to have the world at his feet and yet it wasn’t enough. These are difficult times right now and people are trying to live with uncertainty and fear of what the outcome will be. Now more than ever we need to really focus on our mental health issues. Depression is real and not a “condition” we can wish away. I encourage everyone to seek help even if you think you don’t need it. Just knowing you aren’t alone is the first step.

There are so many agencies out there to help. I have seen a therapist many times and I am not embarrassed in the least to say so. When I was younger I went through a dark period and turned to therapy. Even today it has helped me get through tough times in my life. Having someone listen who is totally objective puts clarity on things that sometimes are too cloudy for me to see. I urge anyone who feels lost now to reach out for help. Whether there be a pandemic or not, just knowing you’re not alone can make all the difference in the world.

Healing takes time and asking for help is a courageous step. Or to quote Albert Camus, “In the midst of winter, I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.”

WORD

The truth. What is. The expression WORD is just that.

I know that we have to focus on taking care of each other.

The questions we need to be asking are… Is what I am about to say kind? Is it true? Is it necessary? Life happens when you listen.

I have a responsibility to listen more and hear what people are saying. I must focus on giving people the space to feel safe. That the moment to moment is all we have right now to find peace.

Hopefully, the reality is that voices are being heard loud and clear and that there will finally be a change in the right direction. The time is now. No excuses. To be judged not by color but by character.

Word.

Listen

“Careful the things you say. Children will Listen. Careful the things you do. Children will see. And learn.”

Stephen Sondheim wrote a beautiful musical called “Into The Woods” and in it is a very poignant song called “Children Will Listen.” Those words from the song hold very true today. Our actions and our words are so important to our children. Especially now they need to feel safe and cared for even if we are afraid and unsure. We are all they have.

My son is 31 with a son who is almost 1. I love watching him take care of and protect his son and wife. These are uncertain times and a feeling of hope is all we have to cling to right now.

“Guide them along the way. Children will glisten. Children will look to you. For which way to turn. To learn what to be. Careful before you say, “Listen to me.” Children will listen.”

“Careful the spell you cast. Not just on children. Sometimes the spell may last past what you can see. Careful the tale you tell. Children will listen.”

In these times when spending time with family whether with or without children it’s hard sometimes to be aware of not listening. I think people don’t want you to solve their problems or ignore or minimize their feelings. They just want recognition, understanding, and acceptance.

I don’t think we need a pandemic to understand the importance of listening. Words are important but not everything. Sometimes it’s just your willingness to listen that speaks volumes.