Mix Tape Memories

Music speaks to me– it always has. I wake each morning with a song on my mind. The lyric aligns with my thoughts for the day yet comes out of the blue.

Today as I worked a song came on my mind, completely out of left field. I haven’t watched Evita or heard “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” in a very long time. As I loaded the truck, I sang the song in my mind. It reminded me of the mix tapes my husband made when we were dating. Mix tapes were his love language. He loves to share things he appreciates and wanted me to have a copy of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s music.

Of the lyrics I could recall, the lines seemed reminiscent of recent conversations. Loved ones fearful I was creating an unbridgeable gap as I cope with difficult circumstances. I looked up the song (Madonna’s version from 1996) and enjoyed the lyric as I worked. The lyrics were hauntingly similar to how I was feeling. Rather than feeling the struggles akin to Eva Perón, my mind was taken back to 1991. My heart warmed as I remembered how falling in love felt. It has been far too long since I have felt this way. It was good. Very good.

I can’t carry a tune in a bucket but I sang the song a few times while I worked. Thank goodness I work alone! The melody stayed on my mind for a long time. I whistled while I worked and wondered if I still had the mix tapes buried in a cabinet. As soon as I came home, I crawled below the television and was delighted to see they were still there. I like to purge things that aren’t being used but mix tapes cannot be repurposed. I simply tucked them away.

As I looked through the modest collection housed in my 80’s Case Logic folio, my heart grew twenty sizes larger. It was a beautiful reminder of the music we both appreciated as we discovered each other 28 years ago. Music bridged our age gap, the one we were unaware of until we were already in love. I’m glad I hadn’t recycled the mix tapes during our estrangement. And I might become a bit less hasty to clean closets in the years to come. My dear husband rarely gets rid of anything. I’m glad he decided I was a keeper.


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