I was still single, had a great job and I had a few friends. I was still an insomniac but I had a great life and then I thought I heard a familiar voice, could it actually be him or was I fooling myself?
It had been ten long years.
Ten years of healing and finding my true self.
Ten years of missing the one person that I can truly say cared and possibly loved me but I pushed him away thinking I knew what was best. But I was so wrong; I missed him dearly after I disappeared from his life and because of the heartache from the loss I think it helped me gain control of my life after I plummeted into the rabbit hole of depression. But I know after much therapy that it was best for me to push him away because I would have taken him down into my misery with me and I knew by pushing him away he could find the true happiness he deserved.
I never knew where he went or if he found his true love but I was hoping he was happy. He deserved to be happy.
I decided then and there I would make sure to listen every night so that I could get soothed by his voice and I would at least have that much of him.
So I listened and learned and the three of them cracked me up on a nightly basis. I learned that they were all still single and enjoyed their lives of mystery. But it never answered my question as to why they didn’t use their true names.
I guess if I kept listening I would find out sooner or later.
It was when they started a nightly game of Name that Tune, that I figured I could approach them in a roundabout way. I was hoping they would recognize my voice but I figured after so many years they would not, plus I was trying my hardest to get rid of my southern drawl so that my students could understand me better. But like them I would not use my true name so I picked Southern Belle or SB for short.
I loved being a music teacher but having a thick drawl in a state where it was not so apparent was difficult for my kids so I intuitively sought out the help of a language coach to tone it down some. I think it worked but when I got around others with a drawl it naturally came back out.
I led two lives it seemed, my life during the day and then my more nocturnal one while having long bouts of insomnia. It never affected my work and I made sure of that. More times than not, I found myself taking power naps when I got home from school every day. Since I was on my own I could nap when I wanted to and be awake to hear their voices during the week. It was during the weekend that I longed to hear them again so I kept myself busy getting ready for the next week at school and making little adjustments to my home.
I had basically redone the interior over the years with a rustic vibe, but now it was time to do the outside.
I wanted a place to escape to and my back yard was perfect.
So I set out to make my oasis for when the weather was good. It stormed in the panhandle of Florida so you never knew what we would be in for but I wanted to be able to spend time outside as much as possible. So I set out to enclose a small patio that I learned how to build with my own two hands with the help of a neighborhood contractor named Russell Edgington, who later became a good friend. I wanted to be able to sit outside on the cool nights to read, cook out and enjoy the peace and quiet.
A few weeks had gone by and I seemed to be the only one able to answer correctly to their ‘Name that Tune’ game. I reveled in the knowledge that I was throwing them off. You could tell they were getting upset with my quickness and my correct answers, I think that is why they stepped it up a bit and changed how they wanted to go on with the game.
I was more than ready and I answered everything they threw at me. It was after 4 weeks that Eric became part of the game too. I could tell he was involved since the game changed a little bit and I could tell his hand was in how the questions were worded. They sounded like how he would ask the question but Alcide is the one that always spoke about the game on air.
I was up for the challenge.
I beat them at their games but I think they grew weary of my winning and after the difficult last few nights of questions I think they were a bit perplexed with what to do next.
I would miss it if they withdrew the game, it was the only contact I had with them because I did not know where they lived. I looked for them when I was out and about but never saw them.
So after four nights of long questions and them not asking any question on the fifth night, I gathered up my strength and called in to ask them a question. I was hoping to talk to Eric but it was usually Pam and Alcide.
So I asked, “What song by Slash has a spirit in it?”
Of course it was Ghost; it was one of my favorites by Slash. It was Eric who answered, it seemed like I threw the other two off by asking but I didn’t mind. I figured if Eric answered this one maybe if I threw one more question out he would answer me again.
I hesitated asking another question and my nerves got the better of me but when I recited the words to the song, it made me more emotional than I needed to be, but the words made a lot of sense to me since I found my true self years ago and it conveyed how I felt about Eric even though he did not know that.
“What song are the following lyrics from?
‘At times life’s unfair and you know it’s plain to see; hey God I know I’m just a dot in the world; Have you forgot about me?; Whatever life brings; I’ve been through everything; And know I’m on my knees again; But I know I must go on; Although I hurt I must be strong; Because inside I know that many feel this way; Am I hiding in the shadows?; Forget the pain and forget the sorrows: ….?
Eric was the one who answered with “Creed, ‘Don’t Stop Dancing’ and he followed it with more lyrics to the song: ‘At times life is wicked and I just can’t see the light; A silver lining sometimes isn’t enough; To make some wrongs seem right; Whatever life brings; I’ve been through everything: And now I’m on my knees again: But I know I must go on; Although I hurt I must be strong; Because inside I know that many feel this way’….”
I was floored, literally.
When Eric answered me the way he did I got more teary eyed then I already was because it was like he was speaking directly to me. By his response I was unsure if he knew it was me or that he was excited to get a formable opponent.
Before I lost myself again I told Eric thank you and when I hung up I realized I had said his name to him and out loud.
Oh shit I screwed up there, but did he hear me, I was not sure. I was hoping in some ways that he did but in others ways I was hoping he didn’t. . Hopefully it was soft enough that he did not hear it.
But I did decide that night that I would step it up a bit and ask for songs to be dedicated to my friends but I would start by using initials and then move it up a notch. I was hoping they would figure it out but I second guessed myself about that too, was I being a silly stupid girl or was I taking the bull by the horns.
I wanted these three in my life again and I was determined to have that now. So bull it was.
I spoke with Russell and Talbot the following day about finding an old friend and I wanted their advice on how to proceed. They told me it was about time and to get on with my life that I needed to be happy and have some more friends in my life then just them and Amelia.
I knew they were right but I also knew that after I pushed him away ten years ago he may not want to be in my life again.
To hell with it I was going for it, so come Monday at about 10:30pm I called in to the outgoing DJ and asked if I could leave a song request to be played at 11pm when I knew they would be changing shifts and coming on for the night shift. He said that would be fine and he would make sure it played as they changed their shifts and it would give them song play in the interim.
I knew it was devious of me but I would rather not talk to Pam about it because she may figure it out before I got to request all of the songs for all three of them. And the outgoing evening DJ, Jake, was none the wiser.
So I set it up so that the first played song was for Pam. I was working my way up to Eric so I figured Pam was a good start. I would only use their names as a last resort but I figured the initials would be better than their call names on the air.
So I called in a request for our Mistress of Darkness:
To PR, you know what the song is for, think about it. Theory of a Deadman’s, ‘Bad Girlfriend’, from your GF SS.
I know a little lame but the next night I followed up with.
To Pam, you know it’s you and I miss you, Theory of a Deadman’s ‘Bitch Came Back’, from an old friend S.
They never mentioned on those two nights if they heard the songs or if they figured them out but I decided to wait until the following Monday to put in the next request.
So come 10:45pm the following Monday I called in a request for the Wolf:
To AH, Kelly Clarkson’s “Behind these Hazel Eyes”, from an old friend SS.
And on Tuesday:
To Alcide, miss you Bro, Theory of a Deadman’s ‘Sacrifice’, from a southern belle S.
I figured for sure that they would start figuring it out and during this time I still called into their ‘Name that Tune’ game so as to not give myself away.
It had gotten to the point that one night they would ask a question of the audience and then the following night I would ask them a question about a song. I found comfort in the fact that they included me in their show. Plus all three of them were answering my questions not just Eric.
It was the Friday before I was to request Eric’s songs that Alcide asked me a personal question. He asked me why I knew so much about songs. My response, I am a Music teacher and then I hung up the phone before they could ask more of me.
Monday was a hard day for me, we were having midterms and the kids were nervous and I was nervous because of the song request tonight. It was do or die for me but I knew that I had to play it out if I wanted a response from them.
I almost backed out because of my nerves; it was 10:50pm before I called in. Jake made the snarky comment about how I almost missed him and I would have had to talk to the Mistress of Darkness since she wanted to talk to the caller about the requests. I thanked the gods that I made it in time otherwise she would have caught me before I got out Eric’s songs. I was willing to reveal myself in due time but I wanted to play Eric’s songs first.
So my Monday request was for the vampire:
To EN, you are the one for me, Nickelback’s, ‘Gotta Be Somebody’, from an old friend SS.
I listened closely to Eric’s voice and I did not hear him falter in any way, so it peaked my interest more on the fact of whether or not they knew it was me or if I was just kidding myself.
But determination won out and I called in Tuesday night, this time at 10:40pm, just to be safe.
To Eric, listen to the words, it says it all, Nickelback’s, ‘I’d Come for You”, from your little one, S.
Well I was never expecting a dedication back but I guess he knew or he was hopeful that it was me by what he played and since I never used my name just initials he knew it was me.
To Sookie, you are the one that got away, Daughtry’s, ‘Crashed’ from Eric.
I was so floored I couldn’t even do tonight’s game and it was my turn to ask the question.
But what I did do was cry. I bawled my eyes out. He knew it was me and I affected him just as much as he affected me.
Now just to figure out where this little fact would lead us.
Could I do this?
Yes, I could.
Life was giving me Lemonade, no longer lemons.