Monday, October 8, 2012

For my fellow Tori fans...Sneak peak at a part of a chapter that is being edited for my book...

From (Chapter 2)                 “Little Earthquakes”

I have always been a sad girl, a sad girl who found her friendships with libraries on every military base she lived. There are things that make me feel a little jolt of happiness still to this day. Books and Music. But Music has always been the only thing I could turn too when I felt like I couldn't go on. Even now after the death of my mother is still as fresh as a new wound there are days that music is all that can get me off the couch, help me do the dishes. Music has saved my life when I needed it.
            When I was a little girl I would curl up next to the speakers in the living room and listen to whatever my parents where listening too. My mother had the better taste in music. I still love a lot of the music she used to listen too. But then with that little pleasure comes music that can shake my soul, I think of the music that was playing when my father would come home from work and it takes me right back to those moments. The despair I felt the rush that would overcome my body when he stepped in the door. To this day I can’t listen to The Little River Band. It brings back so many horrible memories of my father. My mother would put on the album for him when he came home from work. They were his favorite band. But for me I have tried over the years to listen to them, but the thoughts are too much. I can close my eyes and see his leather boots coming through the door, I can see his uniform, and I can smell his cologne. It makes me sick to my stomach.
            Why does music make a place in our brains like this? And why can’t I stop it from happening. Some music is so heartbreaking and than there are the songs that are a huge catharsis in healing.
            Music is still my shelter, despite not being able to listen to a few bands or songs anymore. I can still turn on my favorite music and it can take me away from the pain, the loneliness and the despair of my past. When I was 13 I first heard Tori Amos’s album “Little Earthquakes” I actually was in the Air force library on Gunter Air Force base where I lived in Montgomery, Alabama. I went to the library a lot after school to get some time to myself before I had to be home at 6pm for our regularly scheduled dinner. And that is no joke…I would have been sore for days If I was late for dinner. I was not allowed to be late for family dinner…ever! I dreaded having to sit around the table with my family and eat every night. Just like each night before my mother would fill my plate military man portion size and I would have to eat it all, this leading me to be overweight and always feeling sick to my stomach. Stuffed.  My father made me eat it all, there where no excuses. The more I think about it, I think my father loved me being overweight. Control. Even though he would tease me about it later, he got off on control.
            The one thing he could never control was what music I listened too. I would go into my room and drown out to the sounds that came from my little pink cassette player and my headphones. I would regularly check tapes out from the library, and this is how I came across Tori Amos. I was flipping through the rack one day and saw the cover picture of this red headed woman in a box. “Little Earthquakes” she found me that day. And I told the library weeks later I lost the tape, and since it was the first time, they didn’t fine me at all. I still have that tape. It sits on my bookshelf with all of my special treasures.
            I remember that day so clearly, once I saw the cover of  “Little Earthquakes” and I turned it over to see the titles of the songs. Some of the titles stuck out to me and I felt something.” Crucify” “Silent all these years” “Tear in Your hand” “Mother” those titles just hit me like a blanket. I cannot describe exactly what I felt, but I had found something and it felt right. And it still does. Once I checked out the tape and a few books that I cannot remember the titles of now. I walked home looking at the insert of the cassette.
The first few lyrics to “Crucify” really got to me.
“Every finger in the room is pointing at me
I wanna spit in their faces
Then I get afraid of what that could bring
I got a bowling ball in my stomach
I got a desert in my mouth
Figures that my courage would choose to sell out now”

It was everything I was feeling about my life. At 13 years old, this was the first time I felt like there was somehow help for everything I was going through. I started to cry as I walked home, I didn’t know why I was crying. I just felt overwhelmed and I couldn’t wait to listen to what this woman had to say. I got home and I noticed I had about an hour before my father was home from work and I saw my mother in the kitchen preparing to have dinner done by 6. So I said Hi, she didn’t say much back to me. She never really ever asked how my day was or how was school. I always went to the library right after school. The bus dropped me off closer to the library than to my house. She knew where to find me if she ever needed me.

(I don’t remember in my life a time when my mother ever took me to the library. She didn’t read books to us as kids. She used the tv as the babysitter. And I don’t remember her ever sitting in a chair and just reading.) add to revision Ch.4-section 2  ( brother add in the part about both of you having tvs in your rooms and the event that lead up to it and the next day you went out to buy tv's (journal 5,page 46)

So after visiting my mother in the kitchen I went through the living room, where my brother was glued to the tv. He didn’t notice me pass by. I am 3 yrs older than my brother so he was about 10 at the time. I went to my room, I closed the door, took off my shoes. And sat on my bed with my pink cassette player and my headphones, and I put the tape in.  From the first beat of “Crucify” I was sucked in. I listened as this woman sang about how she was “looking for a savior” I thought to myself, I am too. Someone to save me from the daily terror I feel, the aching inside that is slowly eating at me. And then she sang, “Why do we crucify ourselves everyday”? I cried I cried so hard. I didn’t know that I could feel this way listening to music. I normally tried to listen to music that made me feel happy.

Before Tori the music I was listening too... write more about other musicians you where listening too at that time. More about your parents music and songs, and those that still make you violently ill.

When the next song “Girl” started I felt haunted by this woman Tori Amos, I felt like she had stepped into the shadows of my bedroom my life and she knew everything about me. From her lyrics “She’s been everybody else’s girl, Maybe one day she’ll be her own”  It destroyed me. I didn’t know I could cry this much, and I had a hard time listening to the end of the song where the man’s voice come over and says “Sit in the chair and be good now” I had to turn it off when the song finished. I pulled my self up from my bed and went into the bathroom. I sat down on the lid of the toilet and turned the water on and cried more.
            After about 10 minutes I got up and washed my face and put on some of mom's makeup she had in the bathroom little to cover the redness of my face. I knew it had to be close to that time, and my father would be home really soon. I didn’t want him to see me upset. So I pulled myself together and I went back into my room. I walked over to the bed and sat and looked at the pictures and words in the insert for the cassette tape. How could this music make me feel this way? I took the tape out, put it back in its case, and tucked it under my pillow. I felt like I had to hide her. I had never hid music before, never had a need too. But I didn’t want anyone seeing this girl for some reason. 

P.S. Later that night my father and I had our worst fight and he found the tape. But it was the last night my father ever touched me.

       You will have to read about that in my book....stay tuned....editing is a bitch...and I am a crazy writer,I hand write alot, and chapters from my journals have to be put together,I am seriously an editors nightmare. It is all over the place. but we had someone look at it and that has helped. a professional too, they have given us lots of advice and we are going to start working again! Could be another year before it's published, but this is the exact thing we need to do to get through this grief finish this book! My mom would be proud if I finished it too, I feel I have some more motivation now to do so. it is all written, just needs to be put together. We are finally going to finish it.

"I gotta have my suffering
So that I can have my cross"

~Tori Amos 

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