May 1, 2014
Who inspired today's broken heart song?
A woman who has experienced tragic heartbreak throughout her life from losing those that she loved. At age 9, her mother died. Then, at age 18, her father was killed in a car accident returning home from moving her into her new apartment at the beginning of her second year of university.
She never felt like she fit in given her experiences. She certainly never thought she would be entitled to the fairy-tale of meeting someone and having a future with that person. And then, at age 29, she met him. They dated for about two years and then got engaged. They had a magical wedding that she never thought she deserved or could possibly have. It was the best day of her life.
Nine months later, she was returning home from a short vacation with an old college friend. He was supposed to pick her up at the Newark airport. But he wasn't there. His aunt and cousin were there instead. She knew immediately that something was wrong. They told her that he had a seizure on the train, and was in the hospital. The car ride to the hospital felt as long as the car ride when she was told her father was killed. She was convinced that her husband was dead.
For the next six months, they went through several tests to determine what was wrong. After a biopsy, a surgeon told her that her 31-year-old husband, the most innocent and loving person she had ever met, had the most aggressive brain tumor that was essentially a death sentence. She was left to deliver the news to her husband. She fought the tears as she walked to his room. She laid down on the bed with him, looked into his eyes and told him he had a tumor. He looked at her, smiled and said, "I bet you never thought one night at Doc Watsons would end up like this." Doc Watsons was where they met. They both laughed, and laughter was how they fought the battle .
On January 9, 2008, she told him in his ear that it was okay for him to go and be in peace. He didn't need to worry about everyone else, which he always did. On January 10, 2008, he passed away with her holding his hand.
Where did you play?
Lexington Avenue — 59th St.
How much did you earn?
Did anything unusual happen?
For some odd reason, I was extremely nervous to perform today. I have been having an off week, and I felt just as scared as I did on the first day I sang underground. It took me about an hour to feel comfortable and confident. Before then, no one really approached me or donated.
Today's song caught some attention. It's really jazzy and haunting, and quite a few people stopped and stared as I sang it. One woman watched and listened to the entire song before donating. Another stood with her back to me, and then picked up a card right before getting on the train. Another woman took a video on her phone for almost the whole length of the song.
Did you meet anyone interesting?
I didn't chat with many people today, but quite a few of them picked up cards. I met a man who stopped to ask me about Fifty Days Underground. As I was explaining the project, another man came up to listen. They both loved the idea, and took cards. One of them smiled and waved from the train as it left the station.
What's the best advice you received from a stranger?
The couple times I have performed at this particular station have been amazing. Some of my highlighted experiences have taken place there. But it's really difficult singing over all the crowd and train noise.
There was a man who came up, and turned his ear to me. He kept walking around me. He was making faces and I could tell he was upset that he couldn't hear me. He told me that I sounded great, but was totally washed out by all the noise. His advice to me was to get an amplifier because I have a great voice that should be heard. Maybe I should start looking into a permit for that.
How are you feeling?
I'm feeling pretty tired. Juggling this project with a full-time job is not easy. Hopefully I will be able to find a part-time situation again soon so I can dedicate more of my energy into finishing this project and starting the new ones. It's nice to finally see an end in sight. There was a time when I wasn't sure I'd actually finish all fifty days. There's nothing more rewarding than setting your mind to doing something and completing it. I'm already anticipating a celebratory drink on Day 50!
It's scary to think that half of this year is already almost over. I can wholeheartedly say it's been one of the most amazing years of my life so far. I used to stress out so much about my future, and now I just trust that God is taking care of me. And it seems the more trust I put out there, the more rewards I'm given. As a freelancer, I often don't know if I'm going to have a job in the following month, sometimes even the following week. But it doesn't faze me anymore. I have learned that things always work out in life. Once you overcome your greatest fears, you have less and less to be afraid of. Once you fall down and get back up, you realize that you can bounce back from any hardship that comes your way.
I can't remember a time in my life when I felt so full, self-aware, confident and happy. I used to spend most of my days complaining that I wasn't doing music. And now my life revolves around it. Of course like anything else in life, there are cons, but the pros certainly outweigh them. I've met so many incredible people, and I've unleashed a part of myself that I always knew existed but was too scared to let out. I'm looking forward to more stories, more songs and more meetings next week. Remember, it's never too late to submit your story. :)
© 2014 Kelly Bazely