I keep trying to get something done around here. The house is a mess and there is dirty laundry everywhere. That pile of towels in the boys' bathroom is going to touch the ceiling if I don't get with it here pretty soon. But I can't seem to do anything but scroll through my Facebook feed clicking on post after post about Prince.
I've never really been one to get all wrapped up in celebrity news and gossip. When I hear of ones passing, I feel sadness (especially if I was a fan) and empathy but normally I am able to say a prayer for their loved ones and continue to carry on with my day-to-day. Robin Williams hit me pretty hard because I was a huge fan, as most of us were, and well...the circumstances were just.so.tragic and baffling.
This news of Prince's passing though, has gotten to me good. The depth of emotion and sense of loss I'm experiencing over this surprises me. It's not like I ever met the man or even saw him in concert. Yet, I have cried real tears of sorrow over this and judging by the countless expressions of grief poured out all over social media the past couple of days, I am not the only one.
There has been so much tragic loss all around me this week that it's beginning to feel as though my sad news bucket is just about full for the year yet it's only April.
But about Prince.
As I've stated here time and time again, I'm a music lover through and through. Aside from hard heavy metal, there ain't much I don't listen to. I was a tween when Prince hit the big charts and although I didn't understand many of his way-too-adult-for-my-young-ears lyrics at the time, I knew I liked the sound of that. And I never grew tired of it. He had me fantasizing about parking sideways in a little red corvette, strutting my stuff in a raspberry beret, laughing and bathing in some ethereal purple rain, hearing doves cry, getting delirious, going crazy, acting my age (not my shoe size) and partying like it was 1999, all before I was old enough to drive a car.
I've listened to nothing but his music since the news broke, driving down the road with the windows down and the sound wide open while belting out every verse, sometimes dancing in my seat and sometimes with tears rolling down my face. Here's to hoping nobody who knows me witnessed any bit of that. Because I'm sure it was quite the freak show. (Dig if you will, the picture) Last night, alone in the house and about 7,500 steps to go to satisfy my daily Fitbit goal of 10,000, I put on Prince, cranked up the volume, and had myself a dance party of one. Reached my goal in record time.
During all this pondering, scrolling, reading, listening, watching, dancing, singing and trying-to-get-to-the-root-of this sudden, uncharacteristic obsession with this artist I never met who has just up and left us way too soon (as it seems the best ones always do), I came across this quote that I traced to someone named Juliette who posted it on twitter back in January, after the loss of David Bowie...
"Thinking about how we mourn artists we've never met. We don't cry because we knew them, we cry because they helped us know ourselves."
Yes! That is exactly it, isn't it? That's what great artists do. They get inside our souls, stir something up, and awaken those sleeping parts of us that we often didn't even know we possessed. They make us feel things. All the things. Prince was one such artist for me. So thank you, Prince Rogers Nelson, for sharing your phenomenal gift with us. Godspeed. And peace be with you in the world of never-ending happiness.