Although I don’t know how it works, I do believe in time travel. I keep experiencing it. I can remember a moment in 1971 that keeps repeating itself. It was a defining experience in my life and probably in the life of my generation. Carole King brought us with her through her album “Tapestry”. It is the music that brings us back and forth every moment we hear every song. We sing along. We remember everything about the album…the cover…the playlist…the words. We remember where we were and how we felt. It became our mantra.
I stood in the audience at the PPAC (Providence Performing Arts Center) after sitting through the show “Beautiful” yesterday afternoon. The last moments of the performance had the actress who plays Carole King inviting the audience to sing along to “I Feel the Earth Move”. We were in complete harmony, in sync, and totally full of the joy of the moment and the memories of our past. I stood next to my FHB and we sang our hearts out. We knew all the words, and felt every word, and moved like it was 1971. We didn’t know one another back then but in our collective minds, I was seventeen and he was twenty-one, and it was now, but it was then. Eavesdropping on the awakening and the love life of Carole King and Gerry Goffin, as we witnessed the story behind the music, was bittersweet. We knew how it ended but knew that this was where Tapestry began.
We all have our own stories of becoming our future selves as teenagers into adulthood. We know the feelings of love and love lost and unrequited love. We knew what we wanted in our imagination, might or might not be our path. My life began and ended and began again at age forty. I remember listening to Tapestry at certain crossroads in my life and knowing that the songs and words would help me through. If it helped Carole get to where she was going, could I hope that I would also find my way?
There were a lot of tears yesterday as I thought of how I had gotten from then to now. I don’t know how it happens. They weren’t necessarily tears of sadness, but more of the recognition of shoulds and oughts. I should have paid more attention and as much as I remember, I imagine there is as much that I don’t or don’t want to. As I often say, I am unique, but my story really isn’t. I ought to be grateful, which I am as much as I allow myself to be, both then and mostly now. Sometimes this aging thing takes my breath away.
We walked in quiet as we left the theater. We held hands. For this time I have now, I am going to revel in it.