Tuesday, November 26, 2019

...what kind of memory we'll be...a Thanksgiving Blog

When I write songs, I frequently foreshadow things to come. Lyrics have not just become more potent over time, but it’s as if I write things I somehow know I’m going to need to hear later on. This phenomenon still surprises me, even though it’s been going on for eons now.

A few years ago, when I was writing songs for my upcoming record, I went to see Beautiful – The Carole King Musical, which was in previews at the time. By intermission, I looked at my friend, Anthony and said, “There hasn’t been a good song about friendship in a really long time. We should write one.” So Anthony and I started to write a song with my friend, Tanya, who was producing the album.

I thought I knew a lot about friendship with each of them and their spouses. Heck, my friendship with each pre-dated their spouses. I thought I understood, not just the good times, the dinners, the laughter, the happier moments, but the loss of parents, the items salvaged in the aftermath of floods, the holidays shared, the highs and lows of careers and personal choices. I thought I understood the depth of what friendship could be, at its best.

I really had no clue. The lyrics to “Friends Like Me and You” were a nice sentiment when we wrote them, until they became the truth, word for word.

Five weeks ago, I felt myself losing not only blood, but the battle for consciousness, too. It happened quickly. It was unexpected, and as with things that catch us off-guard, I didn’t realize the extent of the situation I was in, until it was critical.

There’s a lot I do not remember now or just plain wasn’t conscious for, but I do remember hearing, whether psychically or physically, Tanya’s husband, Arnie shouting, “Call 9-1-1!”

I did.

Anthony and Renato got to my house before the ambulance did.

Renato stayed with my 91 year old father, while Anthony rode with me in the ambulance. It was a bumpy ride I never imagined myself taking.

When we got to the emergency room, Tanya was there. I do not want to know how she got there in that short time. I’m sure there were guardian angels involved and a lack of proper law enforcement on the highways.

Tanya and Anthony stayed with me all day and into the night, through emergency surgery and blood transfusions. They updated my father, reached out to my brother in California and my closest circle of friends, whose prayers and help were both necessary and appreciated.

My friends did everything I needed, from laundry and meals in the days to come, to rides, groceries, doctor visits, keeping company, handholding, you name it.

Suddenly I understood the lyrics to my own song, “…when the chill took hold and my strength was gone, you carried me till I could carry on, cause that’s what true friends do, friends like me and you.”

All of us will become memories to others in days ahead. I look at my friends and they are forever etched in my memory as the people who showed up, whose compassion and love outweighed convenience and whatever else they could have been doing at the moment I needed them most.

My health is improving every day, and my gratitude has never been greater.

Traditionally, I write a Thanksgiving blog and end it with a laundry list, in no particular order, of whatever pops into my mind that I’m grateful for at the moment. So here are just some of the things that come to mind this Thanksgiving…

I am grateful for…

Life. Being right here, right now.


My family.

Dreams that have come true, and those that haven’t.

Musical theater, cause I believe life is best lived with outbursts of song and dance.

Nourishment for my body, mind, and soul.

Natural beauty, like sunsets, and autumn foliage in New England, and mountains no human could have conjured, let alone carved.


Puppies and babies.

Jokes that make me laugh till my sides hurt.

Unexpected opportunities.

Three-part harmony.

Clean drinking water.

Time spent with people I love.

Football. Okay, that one was just to see if you were still paying attention. I am not the slightest bit grateful for football.

Kindness, compassion, and mercy.

Gut instincts, flashes of inspiration, and knowing when to listen to both.

Friends like me and you, both the song and the actual friends…

Whatever you are doing this Thanksgiving, I hope you find yourself being a beautiful memory for those around you.

Thank you for stopping by and for sharing a few minutes of your life with me.

Peace and riches blessings to you,


#friends, #friendslikemeandyou, #songwriters, #singersongwriters, #kennyloggins, #duet