“Winter”
Tori Amos

Snow can wait, I forgot my mittens
Wipe my nose, get my new boots on
I get a little warm in my heart when I think of winter
I put my hand in my father’s glove

I run off where the drifts get deeper
Sleeping Beauty trips me with a frown
I hear a voice: “You must learn to stand up
For yourself
‘Cause I can’t always be around…”

He says when you gonna make up your mind
When you gonna love you as much as I do
When you gonna make up your mind
‘Cause things are gonna change so fast
All the white horses are still in bed
I tell you that I’ll always want you near
You say that things change, my dear

Boys get discovered as winter melts
Flowers competing for the sun
Years go by, and I’m here still waiting
Withering where some snowman was

Mirror, mirror
Where’s the Crystal Palace
But I only can see myself
Skating around the truth who I am
But I know, Dad, the ice is getting thin

When you gonna make up your mind
When you gonna love you as much as I do
When you gonna make up your mind
‘Cause things are gonna change so fast
All the white horses are still in bed
I tell you that I’ll always want you near
You say that things change, my dear

Hair is grey
And the fires are burning
So many dreams on the shelf
You say I wanted you to be proud of me
I always wanted that myself

When you gonna make up your mind
When you gonna love you as much as I do
When you gonna make up your mind
‘Cause things are gonna change so fast
All the white horses have gone ahead
I tell you that I’ll always want you near
You say that things change, my dear

Never change
All the white horses

Lately I’ve been falling further and further into my own mind, getting lost in myself, drowning in thoughts and driving myself mad. I’ve been unable to focus on much anything else. It hasn’t been any one thing, it’s just been everything running together: my brother, my marriage, my friendships, my daughter, my parents, myself. I think perhaps grieving can have this effect — you begin examining yourself and everything in your life down to excruciating detail, evaluating, critiquing, approving or disapproving, deciding where changes have to be made.

On Saturday, Danny and I went to Lee and Mike’s apartment to fetch Mike’s bed and to just see the place and his things. One of the things I wanted to do was look through his CDs. Among the ton of heavy metal CDs I had virtually no interest in were some Tori Amos and some of my Alice in Chains CDs. I took those with me. Yesterday afternoon I popped in Tori’s Little Earthquakes CD and before long got to “Winter.” And I was immediately drawn in by the solitude and emptiness of the piano, and then her voice, and then the lyrics.

So this is a message for me. All the self-punishment, self-judgement and maniacal self-control — the second-guessing and guilt and urges to apologize merely for looking the way I look or feeling the way I feel or saying whatever I’ve just said — it needs to stop. Living like I’m about to rip the rug out from under myself is so pointless and so isolating, and I am so very sick of it. I shouldn’t have to feel like a dragon and a mermaid wrestling each other inside a locked box. But no one will ride up on a white horse and fix this for me.

This is why I found this CD.

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