Through a string of events that can only be explained by the existence of God, Hope Dunbar (local songwriter, mother, writer, soldier in the army of all things growing) and I played a show tonight. Here are the highlights:
1. I love singing harmonies with Hope. There's nothing better than melting into "Your Cheatin' Heart" and knowing you mean business and that you'll survive because there is a friend beside you helping you work it all out through your voice.
2. Family and friends and some new friends. There was a man who makes ukuleles there. What are the chances?
3. I can't look at the crowd yet. I've played in bands, but I've never in my life sat with a guitar and my voice and tried to do it on my own. And when I closed my eyes, it was home there. And I didn't forget the words because I knew every word in my heart and I could imagine I was just sitting on the porch and the breeze would come up, and yes, I was.
4. I got a 15 dollar gift certificate for BBQ at Chez Bubba, which is located just 4 corn fields down from me in a town so small, the houses are separated by dirt roads and gardens only. You might think I live in the middle of nowhere, but I have everything I need within 7 miles of my house. Everything. (Mom, this is if you are calling me from Utica to say you are almost here.)
5. Nora singing the first song: "And this is my first show, so hello, and testing testing, can you hear me?" "Okay, the next line is coming up next."
I don't know, folks. The other night I was sitting on my couch praying and crying hard and I told God a lot about how lost I felt and how angry I was that I was where I was, this beautiful place that still seemed like something far away, something not enough. And tonight I feel like He showed me a lot in relation to what we talked about. Believe me, I expect to feel lost again. Don't get me wrong. I don't believe we are ever "fixed." We're always growing in His love and in His gentle and challenging way. Sometimes I feel distinctly that God is making some of the choices for me. And for this, I am thankful. Tonight was like that.