Apr 132012
 

 

 

Tomorrow is the anniversary of the Titanic’s sinking.

Like many in our generation, most of my knowledge about that tragedy comes from the Leo and Kate movie. I’ve only seen it once because I don’t think I could take it again, but I truly loved it.

The movie Titanic was brutiful because it was about Who People Become When Their Ship is Sinking. Literally, in this case, but I think it worked beautifully symbolically, too. It was brutiful to watch how people acted in the face of death. How some gave up their lifeboats for strangers, how some kept their cool and others went mad, to note the last words a father chose for his little girl as he passed her to a stranger  –“be good.” How some bribed officials to take seats reserved for children, how some officials pocketed the bribes and how others didn’t. How some couples held tight to each other in bed, dying together, while the water rose all around them.

Do you remember how often Jack said Rose’s name?  Every time he spoke to her, he said her name. Sometimes twice in one sentence, “Rose, come this way, Rose.” I think that was one of the ways the film makers were able to convince us that Jack and Rose were so deeply in love after only hours. Because they said each other’s names so often, and with such tenderness and precision, as if it was the most important word they’d ever uttered. Fresh on their lips each time. Jack. Rose. I was thinking about that this morning.  People love to hear the sound of their own names. Names are a really precious part of a person. I suspect that the more someone uses our name, the more fond we become of her.

My favorite real life person from the Titanic was Wallace Hartley. I loved his character in the movie, and the way he handled himself in the face of chaos and horror is etched into my heart as Truth.

Hartley was a passionate and dedicated musician. It was his job to lead the small orchestra that serenaded the rich passengers on the Titanic. When Wallace Hartley understood that the ship was sinking, that there weren’t enough life boats, that most men- including himself and his quartet- would die, he simply instructed his musicians to keep playing.

Imagine it. Thousands of screaming, panicking people running, pushing, knocking each other down, water rising, surrounded by nothing but the pitch black of the ocean and the pitch black of the sky. He was a smart man.  Hartley knew it was over and so he said – we will keep playing. So each musician put on a life jacket, and they played. I imagine there must have been some people, maybe children, who thought – it must be okay, because someone is still playing music.

Continuing to do the work that one is called to do in the face of fear is so brutiful. To keep showing up, to keep making music when your ship is sinking. To add something – to offer something right up to the end. That’s the ultimate act of hope. We cannot control the fate of the ship, but we can control our response. Wallace Hartley did, and that’s why we still remember his name.

If your ship is sinking – Keep Playing.

Keep Playing.

 

Love,

G

 



Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
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  119 Responses to “Keep Playing”

  1. [...] our future or decisions being made for us. My sister-in-law shared this with me. She read it on the Momastery blog. “Continuing to do the work that one is called to do in the face of fear is so [...]

  2. What a beautiful post, and just what I needed to read today. Am having a sad day, and feeling lost and thought, I need to go to Momastery! You always have just the right thing to say. Thank you!

  3. “Continuing to do the work that one is called to do in the face of fear is so brutiful. To keep showing up, to keep making music when your ship is sinking. To add something – to offer something right up to the end. That’s the ultimate act of hope. We cannot control the fate of the ship, but we can control our response.”

    ~~ Love this, Glennon. You summed up so much in 5 llovely sentences. This “translates” in so many ways for all of us (which includes you as you are the “us” too!). Beautiful piece here!

  4. He knows my name. He knows my every thought. And he hears me when I call…

  5. Sometimes – as a teacher – there are some similarities. One of my many mottos is to just keep showing up. You never know your impact sometime – but you certainly won’t have one if you don’t show up (and keep playing).

  6. The image of the children finding comfort in the music put a lump in my throat. The terror that must have been in the air that night has always weighed heavily in my heart. To protect the innocent is the grandest calling we have as parents and humans. I will keep this image in my mind when my babies are driving me nuts tomorrow. Thank You.

  7. We had a rough year too – but kept getting up every day to get it done. Now that it’s almost over I can look back over my family video for the year and see that it wasnt too awful.

  8. Glennon,

    This is my first ever comment here and I wanted to let you know that because I love it when people say that on my blog – I am new to this corner, and hello. I have read much of your words and admire your realness, your honesty, your stories. That you love what you do – the parenting, the writing, the thinking – is clear as day in your sentences, in your questions, in your very story.

    And today you run with a beautiful metaphor. And it grabs me. It makes me think of my own father. Dad. He was chugging along, leading a rich and good and real life and then BAM terminal cancer. He had months. His therapist asked him a few questions as he faced his own demise.

    How do you want to spend the rest of your days?

    What would you change?

    And Dad said he wouldn’t change anything. That he loved his family, his work, his places. He wanted more of the same. More of the same. And the proof was in the pudding; he didn’t change a thing even as his body failed him, and swiftly too.

    His ship was sinking and he kept on playing.

    I need to run and grab my girl from school and take her to soccer (ah, real life) but I wanted to write these words and thank you for them, for making me feel something hard and real and gorgeous, for making me think of Dad as I sit here sipping coffee and tackling my day. A good writer makes people think, and ask, and feel. You are good.

    I hope your ship is sailing along as smoothly as life will allow and if it isn’t, if the waters are cruel and choppy, keep on playing. Because you play beautifully. Patently, I am not the only one who thinks so either :)

    Cheers to real life and real writing.

    Insecurely yours,
    Aidan

  9. This year has been the most difficult of my life. And yet, when I look at my children and read your posts I know that it’s still more than worth living. Thank you for all of the joy you put out into the world for people like me to hang onto and take forward. I am grateful.

  10. Thank you. I feel like my ship is sinking right now and it’d be nice to just cave in – but those around me need the music. I’ll try.

    • I don’t know you or what you’re up against, but I wanted to say I’m rooting for you and your music!

    • I’m rooting for you too Crystal. Those around you not only need the music, they need the music only YOU can play. YOU need your own music.

  11. Brutiful….you said it. This is the perfect word for it

  12. Crying… Deeply moving…

  13. This reminds me of a phrase we often use in our church… “endure to the end”. After the important necessary steps of faith, repentance, and baptism we must “endure to the end” to achieve the eternal outcome we so desire. We must endure to the end, which kind of means “endure it well” another phrase we use quite often. Like you, I don’t carpe diem too well either, but I am SLOWLY learning to endure to the end and endure it well. :)

  14. Lovely, truly lovely.

  15. yup. this is just what I needed to read right now. Bless you Glennon, and thank you so deeply for being so *alive* and sharing truth and love with us. Your writing has been very important and meaningful to me, as I go through quite a challenging time. It has helped me through feeling overly lonely, and reminded me that we’re all here together.
    with so much love, I thank you.

  16. my ship is literally sinking. i so desperately needed to hear your words today “if your ship is sinking-keep playing.” thank you so much. thank you for being so real. thank you for being inspired. i appreciate you more than you will ever know.

  17. [...] Christian: HomeAbout100 years agoApril 14, 2012 By Fred Clark Leave a Comment “If your ship is sinking – Keep Playing.” [...]

  18. Wow, I needed that today. Thanks

  19. Sometimes a particular writing strikes me as being perfect and this is today’s. This month’s. This year’s. I work with children with AIDS and find myself wondering if I do enough, if there is a way to help more children, to do more for each of the ones with whom we work.

    Some days, I feel like I am sinking and I drag myself up and remind myself not to despair but to keep playing, to keep hoping, to keep moving. I think of a verse in Job that says “But if it were I, I would appeal to God. I would lay my cause before Him. He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted”. And that is how I continue to play on.

    Thank yor this post. I needed it today and I know I’ll remember it tomorrow when I’ll need it again.

  20. HUGE congratulations on your book published!!

    I will be buying copies to give away…for everyone who needs to find these words, to find them.

    Thank you.

    And thank you for the way you love those on this planet with you.

    Even in the suffering, we can find the beauty.

  21. I needed this word today, to continue to do the work one is called to do in the face of fear. . . I am a mom of three and new to this blog community. I live and work in an impoverished community in a country that is not my own, and although some look at my life and see a noble effort, I find myself fearing that I am not doing enough, well enough. I know I am called here and called to be a mom of 3 and of many others who come to my doorstep but, life is overwhelming, tiring, scary and hard. . . But it is true, for myself and for my kids, I will continue to play, to move forward even if it is only a tiny step, I will continue.

  22. Lovely. Thank you for a nice reminder to keep singing, keep playing, keep dancing and keep loving till the end. And hey – it may not be the end after all.

  23. I really needed to read this. This past year has been brutal, and I feel like I have just been trying to keep my head above water. I’ve stolen my mantra from Dory in ‘Finding Nemo’ – “just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming, swimming, swimming…” It has been exhausting. This post made me re-frame things in my mind in a way that I think will not only be helpful, but actually healing.

    Just keep playing, just keep playing, just keep playing, playing, playing…

    Thank you.

  24. Love this post. How incredibly true and brutiful.

  25. My husband and I have been discussing name usage lately for a similar but different reason. We are finding it more and more difficult to remember names of acquaintences and new friends (especially couples at church). So we figured if we use each others names every time we address one another, then maybe it will start a trend and our new friends might do the same with their spouces and we will not feel so silly all of the time whispering that all too familiar question back and forth. I think Leo kept repeating her name so he wouldn’t forget it…you know how dodgy your brain can be after making out in a tiny car and plummeting into icy cold water. It would really kill the mood if he said, “Tina, Stacy, Jessica, Daisy? ROSE! ROSE…your heart must go on Rose!” I could use a LOT more name dropping in my life!

  26. Lucky me: another brutally honest, long-winded comment accidentally lost forever. Lucky you, too.

    Summary: I stopped ‘playing my instrument’ completely. Three years ago. I don’t do anything. I write crap online, as I do here. That’s what I do, and I spend weekends entertaining my girls and trying to stay awake when they are awake. In this, I consistently fail. When they head out to the lifeboat (Mom’s car) every Sunday at lunchtime, I head back to my deck-chair and watch a bit more of my ship slide into the cold, black water until they get off the bus here the next Friday afternoon. I had actually been thinking of just this fact right before I read this post. It sounds like laziness, but it’s really more a passive-aggressive rebellion, coupled with an absence of interesting ideas. So it goes.

    The names thing is interesting. It really does mean a lot. I stopped saying my former wife’s name almost completely as we became more distant and confrontational, and I truly can’t remember either of us EVER calling the other’s name in a loving or pleasant way. I use my kids’ names a great deal, but many times it’s in prefacing telling them to either do something, or to stop doing something, and I always destroy the pleasing effects of using their names by first saying the wrong one’s name. Every.Single.Time.

    I avoided watching “Titanic” completely until I finally rented it about two years ago, and I only watched it then to see how truthfully the incident was portrayed-a boy’s fascination for ships and shipwrecks, augmented by the fact that my grandfather was a captain under sail all his life, was my only interest. I wasn’t disappointed, obviously. The added story-line of Jack and Rose means a bit more to me now that I’ve read this than it did then, when I just thought “they ain’t no Rick and Ilsa from “Casablanca.” (I’m thoroughly confused at someone here’s dismissal of the movie based solely on its portrayal of ‘infidelity’-I don’t recall that either of them was married and, anyway, if there was an event in history that exemplified ‘Carpe Kairos’ more, I can’t think of it. Love now, for your chance may be gone, soon…)

    By the way, the only reasons I avoided the film for as long as i did were that a) I have this tendency to be stupidly condescending toward anything that’s too ‘popular,’ and b) I just hate “that %#£@! song.” I was so relieved that it’s only played during the end credits, so I didn’t have to hear it to see the whole film.

    Anyway, I never got good at the instrument, and I can’t think of a song I’d like to play, anyway. So I’m not one of the ship’s band. At times, I’ve been a ship’s steward, a stoker, a fireman, even a minor officer. Now, I’m just one of those waiting. I won’t be part of the panicked crowd scrambling for the fantail, I won’t be fighting for a seat on a boat. Nor will I be one of those in a dark corner with a revolver and my eyes shut. I’ll be helping women & children into the boats, happily knowing I did all I could, and did it well, while I had something to do and a little time to do it.

    • If everyone played the music, then no one would be left to help the women and children. That IS your music. That IS the point. We all play a different song and EACH ONE of our names will go down in history with a specific melody attached to it. You have children so you have left the strongest blueprint humanly possible upon the world. Music crescendos and decrescendos. It has multiple movements (if we are lucky) all played at various tempos. I adore the classics but am equally moved by modern compositions such as yours. You ARE playing…right now. What is the next movement going to be about? How will you effect other compositions (especially your children’s) with the melodic choices you display? Love you Paul.

    • I don’t know if either of them were married but they were not married to each other.
      *Also, as an aside, the nudity really could have been left out. I began to wonder why my husband always stayed up late watching this “historical” movie. He was acting out on his sexual addiction. That took the beauty out of the movie for me. Come ON, Hollywood.
      ~Just sharing my experience~

    • I’d kinda like to give you a hug, Paul. Hang in.

  27. Thank you.

  28. Beautiful! This has to be one of my favorite things you have written!. Thank you.

  29. If music be the food of love, play on.

  30. Keep playing. That is what people do and sometimes it is a purposeful action. Perhaps a forced one. Okay, I can do that. Seriously, in my head I will say it and do it. When I don’t want to. When I am tired. And when I don’t think I can anymore. Like today. Thank you G.

    And yes, what is it about a name? Never before have I heard that said just as you just did and yet, wow, it is so true. To have someone know us to call us by name. Is it in the knowing that we feel the love? To be known. I’m not sure. But it is so true.
    Thank you, once again.

  31. I wish there were a “like” button and a “thinking of you” button here. So many monkees say such amazing/interesting/heart wrenching things, and I hate to see them without any follow-up comments. But to follow up on everything could be someone’s full time job (and what a great job!) I have tears in my eyes over one comment & then a smile on my face at the next, and you lovely monkees don’t see that. This little something is for all of you – I hear you and I am thinking of you.

  32. If you can find this, read it – it is about gypsies in the concentration camps – and the people who played violin while their families and others were led into the gas chambers – to calm them, to comfort them. Yes, they were ordered to do it, but it seems they considered it an honor.

  33. Today, it is 3 years since I lost my husband to cancer. He was a musician and teacher …. he certainly kept on playing until the end. For 12 years, he played in the face of this insidious disease. Today, our three grown sons and I will honor him the way we always do – by playing all the music he loved and played! We will remember and cry for our loss!
    And then ….. we will pick ourselves up and …… keep on playing, as we move forward in our lives.
    Thank you G for this most appropriate post xx

  34. Such a beautiful and true sentiment. The story of the musicians has always warmed my heart.

    My husband rarely says my name anymore. And while I love his nickname for me, sometimes I miss hearing him say my real name.

    • Make sure and tell him that. :)

    • Wow. I read this comment, and thought, “Yeah–I always give my husband a hard time about that, too.” It’s not like it signals the end of our marriage, or anything–I just like hearing him say it! He calls me by nicknames, and terms of endearment, but I tease him a lot–“Why won’t you call me by my name?!” It’s become a recurring joke.

      Anyway. I read the comment, and was going to reply, and then realized–YOU’RE an Erin, too! So funny. I honestly had a moment where I thought, “Wait. Did I already comment on this post?!” before realizing it was just a coincidence.

      Maybe there’s just something about “Erin” that doesn’t inspire our husbands? ;)

  35. This is beautiful. Thank you for writing it.

  36. Ah, this is so true. I had to “keep playing” when I felt my world crumble around me as I lost my mom at 17, my dad at 21, my best friend 2 years ago, and in the face of my latest loss, a miscarriage last month. I am 37, and just continuing to live my life is what has gotten me through each time. Sometimes it is all you can do.

  37. Okay…let me pause as I wipe a tear from my eye. Love that movie. Breaks my heart every time I see it. To know how much truth is in it breaks my heart even more. And yes, I love love love when my Hubby says my name!

  38. My friend and I, in the thick of the baby/toddler stage with multiple children, had “Keep pedaling” as our motto. It’s proven useful way beyond that stage of our lives, though.

  39. I thought you might enjoy this clip from a CBC Radio show, the Current, which features an interview with the grandson of Jock Hume, 21 year old violinist on the Titanic. We think of them as mature men, but they were really just boys on an adventure.

    http://www.cbc.ca/thecurrent/episode/2012/04/09/titanic-anniversary—titanic-band/index.html

  40. “Keep playing” These words speak so much truth to me this morning. Thank you for noticing them and sharing them. It takes a special person to find lessons like that amongst everyday life.

    I live in Christchurch New Zealand, I don’t know if you have heard of us down here but we have been having severe earthquake for the last almost 2 years. We. Are. Over. It. People have died, buildings have fallen, families have moved away and I think “I just want to leave” Lets pack the family up and go. But then I remember I love this city, I committed myself to its rebuilding. I can’t build stores or businesses but I can help build hearts and that is why I am here. I just need to keep playing.

    Thankyou for that reminder.

    x
    PS- SO EXCITED FOR YOUR BOOOOK!! I will be building a copy.

  41. There is a wonderful Harry Chapin album, Dance Band on the Titanic……..the last line of the song right as the ship sinks……..’Wont you dance with me? Hmmmm.

  42. You got me with this one. I’ve teared up a few times with the last posts, but I’ve held it together… but I’m crying with this one! Now I have to go to soccer practice with puffy eyes!!

    I always love everything you write, but this I feel like this piece was different than they’ve been lately, and it was really beautiful.

  43. I understand what you mean so very well – I will never, EVER, be able to watch that film again. The story of the band playing on has always made me sob a little on the inside. For the hopelessness and the strength. It epitomizes the situation.

    And the old couple spooning on the bed as the water begins to fill their cabin? That image will be etched on the backs of my eyes for my lifetime.

    It’s interesting…my husband and I never call each other by our names. Honey, sweetie, love. We only use each other’s first names in public, trying to catch one another’s attention.

    I do feel using names is important in general, although I’ve known people (often who have been to seminars where they are told how important name usage is) who use them TOO often. It’s uncomfortable and feels phony. I think it must be done in a natural, sort of restrained manner, or I feel like I’m being addressed by a used car salesman.

    • We don’t use our names except in public, when calling, “Babe,” might not be effective. It is funny enough when I mention him to other people by name. I’m not sure why. Neither of us LOVE our names, maybe that is why. But I do like to hear him say it. Now that I think of it, we met in the army and initially only knew each other by our last names. You’d think after 7 years we’d use each other’s names. I don’t know! I even have him listed as, “baby,” in my phone, which people laugh about.

  44. Definitely food for thought, and beautifully written as always.

    My ship effectively sank when my daughter died. And somehow, I keep playing. I’m playing for her, every song dedicated to the memory of her short life. That’s why I started my blog; why I attended an event in honor of World Down Syndrome Day even though it was so, so hard, and why I’ll keep doing the hard things; why I’ll join the Promise Walk for Preeclampsia; why I’ve taken up photography and capture hearts everywhere; why I go on loving in the midst of my sorrow.

    But it wasn’t I who sank with the ship. Instead, I was rescued and forced, kicking and screaming, to give up my daughter to the murky depths. In all honesty, there are times when I wish I would have joined her there. The guilt and heartbreak of it is tortuous to bear, and sometimes I stumble and think being enveloped by those dark waters would be a relief.

    Yet, I keep playing. For Molly. I hope with all that I am that she can hear me.

    • Thank you.

    • I believe Molly can. I have to believe that. Today is my mother’s birthday. We lost her December 2010, right before Christmas. Today I baked her favorite cookie, only because I know she loved them. The smell of the cinnamon brought back vivid memories, and through the tears, I smiled.

    • Thank you for writing this. Today has been a particularly sad day, for no apparent reason, in missing our son who died almost three years ago. And yes, I will keep on playing, right to my end; for him, for my husband, our daughter, for me. We honor and remember our dead loved ones best by continuing to live out the life we were given, as painful as it is without them. Playing to the end, as they did.

    • I truly believe she knows and hears.

    • You do capture hearts with your photography. Thank you for continuing to play Molly’s song so beautifully… You are brutiful.

  45. Okay. I’m bawling. As a violinist and mom of three, I’ve been having a REALLY hard time lately. REALLY HARD. This analogy is perfect. Just perfect. For me. For us all. For always. Thank you. I needed this today. Loves.

  46. beautiful, love it! I think I am going to make my hubby watch the movie tonight!!!!

  47. This post and the recollections of that moving are making me way more emotional than I like. I don’t think I want to watch it again either. Painfully beautiful.

  48. Thank you, Glennon! Tearing up as I read it, like many of your posts. Seeing the movie next week and will pay extra attention to Wallace’s actions. Such a touching and important lesson you identified, I just hope I can remember it when I need to. :)

  49. Thanks Glennon! I needed this today. Sometimes I feel like my ship is sinking or at the very least has sprung a leak. So much heartache and beauty mixed up in this world. I’m going to keep on “playing music” even when the waves come crashing around me. Keep on using the beautiful gift God gave you of expressing yourself to others.

  50. Absolutely despised the movie – nothing glorious about infidelity. But I do love the post, as always. :)

  51. Maybe now is a good time to admit, I never saw the movie. {{{cringing}}}

  52. Beautiful, insightful and so eloquently put as always Glennon.

  53. Wow. Love this. LOVE the movie- saw it 6 times in the theater. Anyway another point that hit home was not only saying a loved one’s name – but how you say it. I never thought of that before and I’ll now think twice before I say my husband’s name in an exasperated tone of voice. Great way to start the weekend G!!

  54. Totally needed that. With the words wrapped in a hug: thank you.

  55. Love this – You need to add some “Life is Brutiful” merchandise to the Monkee Shop (or just “Brutiful”).

  56. My husband mispronounces my name 98% of the time. Just out of laziness. Back when we were dating I’d correct him occasionally, and he always seemed to find it trite. I finally gave up. Still, 11 years later, I so often catch myself about to correct him, and then think to myself “really, is it SUCH a big deal?” So I don’t say anything at all. But for some reason that I’ve never been able to put my finger on, it IS a big deal. To me. Thank you for validating those feelings for me, Glennon.

  57. This chimes with my view of ‘one foot forward’. Whatever will happen will happen. What will be changed will be changed. One just has to put one foot in front of the other and keep going.

    I am new to The Momastery and get a similar feeling to the one I get at Derfwad Manor – welcome, community, challenge and acceptance. Thank you Glennon.

  58. Just went on a precious date night with the hubby last night and saw Titanic 3D so this is so fresh in my mind this morning. Keep playing.

  59. Omg! Chills! You are so right. Well said. Yes we must play on! Love this!!

  60. Beautiful reflection Glennon- thankyou:)

  61. And if you cannot make music, dance it out…

  62. this is such an ELOQUENT point. honestly, i’ve seen the movie many times and every time i thought that they played on because they were arrogant and rich. like they didn’t realize the gravity of the situation and clung to their fancy notions of the world, which would naturally include violins and crap. glennon, your heart is so big that it saw this with beauty when mine didn’t or maybe couldn’t. you’re amazing! thank you!

  63. My husband can make my heart skip a beat, then recover right afterwards with an extra strong one, just by using my name. Just what is it that makes us so sentimental / sensitive to that one word?? What a wonderful observation you make about the characters in the movie… such a sensitive soul you are!

  64. Glennon Melton ~ you always say something that touches my heart…which you did once again with “To add something – to offer something right up to the end. That’s the ultimate act of hope.” And it’s always paired with something that really makes me think…”Names are a really precious part of a person. I suspect that the more someone uses our name, the more fond we become of her.” I believe you are so right, although I’ve never really thought of it in quite that way. I’m going to go about my lovely, ordinary day with that piece of information and try to use it in a way that makes someone feel more loved and noticed!

  65. This one had me in tears for some reason I can’t quite define because it has been a perfectly wonderful day and I have no reason to be crying. I guess you don’t know what your heart needs to hear until you hear it (or read it, for that matter). Thanks, Glennon. Your words are a very special gift.

  66. I love your comments, G, and you make some very good points about people’s names and how important it is to use their names, to make the personal connection. I only wish it had been used on a different movie because I have to say, “The boat sank…Get over it people.” I think I’d feel differently if, some of the proceeds went into funding for the families survivors. But this rerelease of the movie, in 3D no less, is just commercialization and profiting off a terrible tragedy.

    PS I just read your earlier post on having more than one child…I think it was called 1,2, 3.etc, and I wanted to tell you how beautiful I thought it was. I shared it with my sister’s moms group…they are young moms, and many have just one, maybe two…and they are constantly discussing how to love more than one, how to manage 2. I have 4 and I lacked the words to adequately explain how ok it is. You said it all. Thank you. :)

    • Felt the same way about the movie. I can’t take it’s disrespect that way but you are right glennons words and what she saw was beautiful and inspiring. Love the point about the band;)

  67. I have only recently learned the name of my distant relative who was among the Titanic passengers that died. I’ve known the story for a long time, but my 5yo daughter wanted to know WHO. His name was William Carbines – he was 19, destined for northern Michigan to be a copper miner. My little firefly said to me the other day on the way to school, out of the blue – “Mama. Our relative who died on the Titanic, his name was William Carbines. Don’t forget.”

    She often understands beyond her few years.

  68. I love this, Glennon. I, too, think it’s so amazing that they kept on playing. If you get the chance to see the Titanic exhibit at a museum, it is totally worth it. Actual wreckage brought up from the site, 2 1/2 miles under the surface of the ocean. It’s really amazing. Keep playing, Glennon! You are keeping so many afloat!

  69. One other hero who used music right up to the end was Rick Rescorla. He was the Director of Security for Morgan Stanley / Dean Witter. He brought “his people” down from one of the World Trade Center towers on 9/11, and sang the entire time to give them courage. As a result, VERY few people from that company died that day — a mere handful. More on his life and heroic activities before and during 9/11 are here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rick_Rescorla

    Also, the story of his life was made into the opera “Heart of a Soldier” which had its world debut last September 10 (the day before the 10th anniversary of 9/11) by the San Francisco Opera, with Thomas Hampson in the title role. It’s amazing what music can do to help people, in their darkest hours.

  70. thank you for this gentle reminder to use people’s names. It’s so so important and sweet and nice and I think that just might be the lesson I teach to my daughter this weekend. :)

  71. Darn it, thought I might be the first to respond…and I thought that would be a pretty amazing feat here at Momastery. Brooks beat me to it:)

    Thanks again for another moving, thoughtful piece. Love.

  72. G — many of your posts hit home but for some reason this has me in tears. Thank you.

  73. Love this. Also, even though my family and closest friends all call me by my nickname (Broo), Dave (husband) doesn’t. He asked me once if I minded. I said no. He said, “Good, because I like the way your whole name feels in my mouth.” :)

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