Olivia Newton-John is my muse

It’s been a few weeks since she passed, but I am still trying to figure it out.  Olivia Newton-John is a big part of my life. At age seven, I saw Grease in the theater. From the ad on the TV I knew I would like it since it was about the 50s and I loved Happy Days. Then I saw it and it changed my life. Grease was my world. I saw it three more times that summer in the theater. Convincing any adult I could to take me again.  I’d have to wait years for it to be on TV or VCR.

Every day after school, my best friend Kate and I would act out the whole movie. I was Sandy and she was Danny. She was mad about that until at her wedding I toasted that she can now be Sandy (and she is still happily married to her husband).

My first concert ever was her Physical tour.  Later I moved on to Madonna and boy bands but she was always there – being in theater and hoping I could be in the play of Grease (never happened) but I made my students read it in class and,  of course, I was Sandy!

As a teen I didn’t play her records all weekend anymore like I did in middle school. (which I never could in just one weekend!) I moved onto world travel. So, I was delighted as an exchange student in France that my host father said he loved Grease also. He had seen it 8 times in the theaters.  I was placed in the perfect family!  They were so nice that after I graduated high school and left that exchange program, they let me return one summer off from college. I came back with a picture book of Grease and used a dictionary to translate the songs. My pere had told me that they never translated the songs which is half the story! Since it was before the internet I gave him the gift of my translations of the songs!

I didn’t keep up with her records and she has so many.  I only bought up to Heart Attack.  She moved onto healing music with her first cancer diagnosis. She dedicated her life to fighting cancer and was proud of that.  I’m amazed by her strength and that voice!

In 2007 my mother and I weren’t speaking (the one and only horrible time).  We were arguing over homeschooling. She was scared of it.  In that hurtful time, I found a song by Olivia about love and forgiveness. The youtube video got me through. Luckily, we went to a mediator and figured it out and now my son just got grad school acceptances this week.

Of course I have been listening to her music again.  Not that I ever stopped – it’s on my Pandora station at work.  One song and lyrics stuck out to me. It’s from “Something Better to Do”

A shoulder to cry on would make me feel fine

But it’s not much comfort when I’m cryin’ all night

Friends and relations

Are running out of patience with me

That’s why I blogged!  My friends and relations were tiring of hearing me talk about my pain from cohousing.  It has been healing. It has been a blessing. I’m finally feeling that it worked just as I thought it would – write it out, therapy. And I hope it doesn’t happen to others and that they go into cohousing knowing it is full of humans and groups and sometimes they can turn ugly.  But, it was mostly to get it out.  Now I don’t have to tell the birds to find something better to do.

So, that’s my blog tribute to Olvia. I have a podcast too but I’ll wait to upload it since I”m thinking of doing a completely different podcast and focus more on things like Olivia Newton-John and wave goodbye to cohousing forever especially since I don’t live there anymore.

About CJ

I was a Spanish teacher for 5 years in the Public School system in 3 different states. I homeschooled and taught at a democratic free school. I heard about cohousing in 2010 and wanted to move in right away. I met a group building one in 2018 and got to move in the summer of 2019. It only took a year to want out.
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4 Responses to Olivia Newton-John is my muse

  1. Flower says:

    “My friends and relations were tiring of hearing me talk about my pain from cohousing. It has been healing. It has been a blessing. I’m finally feeling that it worked just as I thought it would – write it out, therapy”

    Responses like that from “friends and relations” would be very hurtful to me and it would make me question my relationship and create trust issues. It would probably create distance for me.

    I did chose therapy as well as researching in books given the situations that I experienced which had a massive impact on trust. Writing is a form of release as well.

    I was initially fearful to see a therapist, because I thought that they would “blame” me for the problems that I faced, because I was used to being “blamed”. In fact, I found the opposite. It was supportive and healing and the exact opposite of what I found out in the “real world” where I experienced, “My way or the highway,” and “It’s all about me,” behaviors.

    I could never get onboard with cohousing with the types of experiences that I’ve had and especially so if potential problems are glossed over or ignored. There’s no way that I would be willing to make myself out as a potential scapegoat and walk into that kind of hell. NO THANKS.

  2. CJ says:

    Therapy has been amazing. She made me see that I was a fish in the water at cohousing, not knowing what water was! I didn’t realize how toxic my group was being, esp. by treating me like a pariah and she opened my eyes!
    My friends and relations were very patient with me but it is good to talk to a professional. It did hurt my kids a lot. they don’t even want to hear the name of the cohousing. That’s the worst part – we moved there thinking it was forever, and then had to run away! I was shocked that some adults even stopped looking at my kids. How immature! It taught them a lesson that not all adults are worth looking up to!

    • Flower says:

      It’s good they were patient and I agree about talking to a professional. My experience of people is that they were/are impatient with me because it is not all about them. I experienced a lot of judgments and labels and one of those was “too sensitive,” which is destructive and dismissive. I think I’ve read that narcissists are attracted to warm, sensitive and caring people–every thing that they are not.

      “It taught them a lesson that not all adults are worth looking up to!”

      I learned that at a very young age and it was a horrible lesson–very harsh. I will say that it created resilience and hopefully it will for your kids.

      It’s ironic that I thought I would be blamed and criticized when I sought therapy, but instead I felt validated and supported. It was also the only place where I finally felt heard. It was the first time anyone ever asked me how I felt about something instead of people trying to tell me how I should feel or make every thing about them. I usually encourage people to seek counseling, especially when they are trying to dump on me and they have big problems, but they usually don’t interpret it in a positive way. They don’t see it as an act of caring. Instead they act insulted and angry, but their seeking me out as a therapist is distressing and violating too. It’s all about balance and taking care of yourself.

  3. CJ says:

    That makes me feel better that the experience created resiliency in my children!
    It is such a relief to feel heard instead of being told how you are supposed to feel.
    I hope we get to a place in this country where therapy is normalized and seen as healthy – which it is!

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