Still Walking On Sunshine

Writing about my divorce yesterday stirred up memories.

And then my blog friend Leslie at Five To Nine  wrote about her courageous announcement to her parents when she became engaged at a young age, like me.

I noticed the calendar.

Gasp!

25 years ago today.

Yes, I was a child bride. Well, not a child. 21. But too young to know what I was choosing. Too young for me.

He was 10 years older than me. He had a successful career. He knew what he wanted. Who he was. I was still stifled by my parents. I wanted out. Out from their control. Away from my childhood.

And I was in love. I was following my heart. On that May 11th, 25 years ago, just before going out the door to arrive at the church, Katrina and the Waves came on MTV singing “Walking On Sunshine.”

“Wait,” I said to my sister, “I love this song!”

“We’re going to be late,” my sister said.

“I don’t care. I want this song in my heart today.”

So I sat there, with my hair and make-up expertly done, veil already attached. Wearing blue jeans, t-shirt and flip-flops. Soaking up the song. Singing along. Smiling like a fool.

I was so happy that day. So excited to start my new life.

As soon as it was over we raced to the church to get properly dressed, humming that song, dancing with my sister in the courtyard while we sang.

Every time after, whenever I’d hear that song I’d remember that beautiful day. My wedding day was like a fairytale. I have no bad memories. Nothing went wrong. Not that I can remember, anyway.

And then. Eleven years later. We divorced.

Not that popular of a song anymore, I rarely heard it. But when I did, I would fall into a sad little funk. What was I thinking? How could I have been so blind? I was so stupid.

Slowly, gradually, I’d hear the catchy refrain and I’d catch myself humming along. And I realized, it no longer reminded me of something I’d lost. It reminded me of what I was living now.

“Walking on sunshine. I feel alive. And it’s time to feel good!”

Always the optimist, always glass half full, “Walking On Sunshine” still has a power over me. If it comes on the radio I have to turn it up. If I’m home, I have to dance around the room with a child in hand. I grin like a fool every time I hear it.

Yes, 25 years ago today I took a chance on something that failed.

No. Not failed.

Ended.

And today I’m experiencing a new chapter – dancing, laughing, singing, crying. I have no idea where this chapter is taking me.

But I’m having a blast while I’m in it!

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19 Comments

Filed under Growing Up, Hey! That Reminds Me!, Music

19 responses to “Still Walking On Sunshine

  1. Still able to enjoy that song. . . that’s absolutely sunshine-y!

    How do you keep cranking out these goodies? (It’s the three kids that throw me! I’m amazed!)

    • They’re all in school during the day for the first time in my life. Save your amazement for this summer when they’re bouncing off the walls and I’m still able to write. Ahhh, I think this may be wishful thinking!

  2. What a great outlook to have on something that could be so terrible! You really do walk on sunshine Jane! :)

  3. Guess what? My girls LOVE that song! It immediately sends them hopping and dancing. I love your optimist soul!

  4. I hate that song. I absolutely hate it. But I love that other people like it. I have songs that make me feel like that, but not that song itself. Uh uh. No way.

    I’m glad that it still is a good song to you. =)

  5. unabridgedgirl

    It is interesting how songs can take on new meaning. Thank you for sharing this personal post. Lovely!

  6. Glad that you were able to close this particular Ex-File, Jane. ;)

    And I’m marveling at your consistent ability to tell a story and extract the positive from it without sounding preachy or unrealistic. Thanks, Jane!

  7. Great to see you looking on the bright side – and I love this song!

  8. My daughter loves that song too — I think she got it on a minipops cd from some fast food place (that we hardly ever go to, honest). I’ve never loved it (although the sentiment is great), but then the did the mash-up with Walking on Sunshine and Halo on Glee, and I thought that was brilliant.

  9. Cheers for sun, in its many forms: immediate and remembered. Impressed with the perspective you’ve brought to a difficult situation. I hope to have that kind of optimism someday when I’m looking back at the tougher times in my past!

  10. “No. Not failed.

    Ended.”

    Many things in life only need a different perspective to take on a difference meaning. Isn’t that funny?

  11. When one door closes, another opens. Trite, but oh so true. Every relationship is, at the very least, a learning experience. Those that are no longer contributed to who we are now. Enjoy your journey!

  12. I like that you choose “ended” over “failed.” And that you still dance and sing and grin while you’re “Walking on Sunshine.” And that you’re full of perspective and resourcefulness and not regret.
    I’m really happy to be following your new chapter.
    (And I always call myself a child bride. I’m comfortable with it, but the jokes still help.)

  13. I love your attitude Jane; you are an inspiration!

  14. subWOW took my line…knowing that ending is not failing, that taking a chance IS the moral of that marriage is such a gift of wisdom, Jane.
    I hope you are walking on sunshine more often than not. Because the not comes to everybody, but it takes someone special to take advantage of the breaks in the clouds.

  15. I like your attitude. I think that if you’re happy with where you are now then there is no point in regrets and dwelling on the past. The positive and the negative experiences bring us to where we are today.

  16. My husband and I met on the 11th May 14 years ago. Last year on the 11th May I put the divorce papers in. Yesterday he sent me 14 red roses. We never did get divorced because we realised that it wasn’t what we really wanted. I might write a book about it someday!

  17. Great post…seriously. I am an eternal optimist and I like how you changed it to “half full” instead of half empty.

  18. Pingback: Still Walking On Sunshine (via Theycallmejane’s Blog) « Rainbow Drops

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