Tuesday, November 01, 2005
There comes a time in every person’s life when memories and relics of our youth provide comfort. I remember as a child when the “oldies” radio station exclusively played the music of the 50’s; and, with time, the repertoire expanded to include the music of the Beatles and other 1960’s classics. Of course, today, the oldies or classics are from my youth and I love the opportunity to once again revel in the readily available Madonna, Culture Club, and B52’s tunes I loved in my formative years. Of course, just as I look back and cringe at the height of my bangs and bigness of hair, I also find comfort in the memories of the simple joys of listening to my favorite album (yes, they were still vinyl). I also take comfort in knowing that my musical palette has matured and broadened immensely.

My nostalgia fix is very similar to my mother’s enjoyment of watching The Lawrence Welk Show reruns on public access television every weekend. For each generation there is a time when the pop culture nostalgia once again becomes a marketable commodity. At what point in our lives does that happen? When does a song go from being just old to becoming a golden oldie? When does a dance go from being outdated to retro? When does something go from being routine to being tradition?

I gave a lot of thought to this as I spent time at my mother’s house this weekend. I found myself cooking traditional comfort meals, anticipating the brightly colored suits of the Lawrence Welk band members, looking forward to Mass and breakfast with the ladies on Sunday morning, and looking forward to the upcoming holiday traditions. Somehow when I spend this much time in the family home, it feels as though I never left. I remember when I first left home and enjoyed the first feelings of independence in my own apartment and embracing this change, wanting to do things differently for myself and looking forward to a bright, unknown future. Not that I thought I was doing things better, just different. My way. Slowly over the years I have returned to my roots and the feeling of nostalgia is now embraced rather than the idea of change.

After my pensive nostalgic weekend, I’ve come to realize that the days of carrying my Charlie Brown lunch pail to school, the days of listening to early 80’s pop music with my big curly perms, the days of coming home after a shift at the restaurant to find a friend sitting with my mom icing Italian Christmas cookies, and the pre-Starbucks days of using home brewed espresso to stay awake and study for mid-terms, harkens back to a simpler time when life was filled with simple joys and even simpler problems. Embracing nostalgia, then, must happen when that simple life becomes more complex to a point where the nostalgia then brings a sort of comfort that eases the burdens of complexity. Maybe the nostalgia switch is thrown when the old days look good in comparison to the present.

A trip down memory lane is good for the soul. Ah yes, the good old days when cancer didn’t hang in the air, trips to doctor’s appointments weren’t the main radio listening periods, and useless pop culture facts in my head weren’t replaced with a medical vocabulary and treatment reference library. I’m not all that surprised that nostalgia has become my new favorite old sweatshirt. It instantly makes me comfortable and cozy, even if it is only for a little while. Now, where is my Journey CD?
Written by Jeannette Vagnozzi
6 chimed in

Name: Jeannette
Location: Southern California, USA

This is my story about being diagnosed with breast cancer at age 39. I thought I was out of the woods, but four years late it came back. This is my quest to be a two-time survivor.

E-mail me here
Please leave your mark
and sign my guestbook!

Enter your Email

Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz
I'm Too Young For This! Cancer Foundation
  • Click to join sistersinsurvivorship

    Click to join sistersinsurvivorship

  • www.flickr.com
    This is a Flickr badge showing public photos from TwoHands-Jeannette. Make your own badge here.
  • © 2004 - 2009 by the author of Two Hands

    The contents of this website are protected by applicable copyright laws. All rights are reserved by the author.

    Disclaimer: This site does not provide medical or any other health care advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional. Two Hands does not guarantee the accuracy of content and is not responsible for information on any of the websites that are provided as links.

    Powered by Blogger

    Search For Blogs, Submit Blogs, The Ultimate Blog Directory

    "Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer." Romans 12:12