Tag Archives: music

The Music

It’s interesting. I just posted that I won’t be able to post that often and here I am posting.

Something came up.

A lot of things actually.

A lot of pain in the world and death and destruction.

There is a lot to talk about and a lot of people are talking and writing and spouting off what they think and politicizing tragedy.  I’m not going to do that.

I’m interested in people’s hearts and souls and stories.

My best friend from childhood’s brother passed away yesterday. They lived across the street from us all the years I lived at home (18 years). He was a big presence. He was a state champion wrestler and a football player. Mostly I remember him as a musician. He was in a band in high school and I remember when we were young, he played everything by ear.  I can visualize him sitting down at the piano and just playing something he heard on the radio. I also remember walking into their house and hearing the drums being played in the basement.  It was loud.

We looked up to him.  He was 3 years older than us and so cool.  He didn’t care about being cool which made him that much cooler.  He was a really, really kind soul.

I had a lot of drama in high school.  Much of it created by me.  I remember him telling me one time, “Sue, you have to ignore what other people think and say.  Just be yourself.” That meant a lot to me of course because I needed to hear it. I cared (care?) too much what people think.  I want everyone to like me and it was way worse in high school.  I’m learning. But he was just himself. Always.

Yesterday when I heard he passed I cried. We hadn’t talked in years and like I say, he was my best friend’s brother so he was like a side story to my friendship with her really.  I mean, to him, I was just his little sister’s friend.  I’m sure much of the time, super annoying. What I realize now is that often it’s those people on the periphery that affect us.  God works in the margins, amen?

Also, when he was around, he became the main event.  Honestly, he had charisma and charm and talent and kindness and the coolness just oozed out of him.

I didn’t know a house filled with live music being played except for theirs until now – my husband plays the guitar and my kids have all played at one time or another.  Music is a big part of our household now.  Thinking back on this makes me realize how much we are all part of each other’s stories.  How much we can affect someone with a kind word, some music, a song. I have no doubt he affected many.

It was fitting last night that I was at the Austin City Limits Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony while they honored great songwriters and musicians.  I thought of him and his love of music. Music brings people together.  It’s a balm for weary souls.

I don’t know much about his life after high school except the updates I received from his sister.  From the outpouring yesterday, I know he had a family and friends who loved him deeply. I do know he still played and sang.  And that brings me comfort.

There are a million memories of neighborhood shenanigans but the memory that will stick with me forever happened just about a year (or two?) ago.  We were at his father’s funeral.  He went up and sang a song for his dad.  He played the guitar and sang, “Why Me Lord?”  Afterwards I went up to him to say how great it was and he was humble as ever, he said, “I hope it was what he wanted.  He asked me to sing that one for him.”

I want to share it with you. I cried like a baby.

To Dan. Thanks.

©2015 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved

Trust Without Borders

I can’t get enough of this song.

“Spirit, Lead me where my trust is without borders.”

Borders can be anything. They can be in our minds.  Limits we put on ourselves, lies we believe, fear we succumb to.  We can be telling ourselves old stories about where we can go and why  we must stay and how we can’t cross this or that line.  We may still be acting for others.  We may have walls of our own creation trapping us in and holding us hostage.  We may be fighting addictions and strongholds that have held us for decades or generations.  We may be warriors fighting battles in our minds and hearts every day.

Or we may be facing down giants like violence and death and war across actual, physical borders of enemy territory.  We may be the kind of warrior that puts on his or her boots and grabs a gun and fights for freedom and prays for safety.  The kind that carries a picture of loved ones and wears a dog tag and can’t sleep at night.  The kind that takes orders and stands tall and faces fears and dreams of coming home.  The one that has courage that we don’t always understand…passion and purpose and a rare kind of bravery…we are in awe…we see them in the airport and want to say something…we want to say, “thank you” and “you are brave” and “I appreciate you”.  Sometimes we approach them and they are humble and honored and grateful.  God has called them into a trust without borders and they have answered that call.

This song is for all of us.

But on Memorial Day, it’s especially for the warriors who fought valiantly for our freedom and lost their lives while doing so.  It’s for those who “called upon His name” and whose souls now “rest in His embrace”.

Thank you.


Need a good book for summer?

It’s time for another official book review!  Check out the discussion on BlogHer at


The book in review is Where She Went by Gayle Forman.  When I signed up to review it, I did not know it was a sequel to a book called, If I Stay.  I was kind of bummed at first thinking I should have read the first book  but it really didn’t matter.   I could follow the story even without reading the first book.  However, I did end up buying the first book because I liked this one so much!  The first book is from the woman’s point of view and this book is from the man’s point of view which I think is brilliant!

Imagine my surprise when I received the If I Stay and it has a review on it from USA Today that says it “will appeal to fans of Stephenie Meyer’s TWILIGHT”.  Whaddya know??

I have yet to meet a tween/teen book or movie that I don’t enjoy…especially a love story. This one hooked me from the first line.  “Every morning I wake up and tell myself this:  It’s just one day, one twenty-four-hour period to get yourself through.” 

This book is written from the perspective of the man, Adam, and it is honest and gut wrenching at times.  We see his insecurities and his fears and feel his longing.  He had made a promise to his girlfriend after she was in an accident.  He told her that if she lived, he would do anything for her.  He begged her not to die.  She lived and then she left him.

This is the story of how Adam feels about all of it – the accident, the promise, the fact that she left him.  Forman does a great job of writing from his point of view.  I was swept up in his emotions and I really liked him even though (because?) he was flawed and not always so “nice”.

Adam and Mia were high school sweethearts and both musicians so music and lyrics play a big role in this book which I love! Since the accident, he has become a famous rock star which makes reading his thoughts very interesting.  It’s as if we are getting a glimpse into the interior life of a celebrity and realizing he is just like us…flawed, lonely, angry, needy.

Where She Went is romantic and suspenseful and hopeful.   Parts of the book are sad but to me, the book is filled with real emotions that ring true.  You feel like you know Adam and you root for him.  Honestly, I couldn’t put it down.  I read it in a day.  This would be a great  read for mom and for her teenage daughters!

Just in time for summer!

This is a paid book review for BlogHer Book Club but the opinions expressed are my own.
image of book cover from bornbookish.blogspot.com
©2012 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™ All Rights Reserved