Thursday, June 26, 2014

An Anniversary Celebration!

"Sometimes, you find yourself in the middle of nowhere, and sometimes, in the middle of nowhere, you find yourself." 
- Anonymous 

June 26, 1998 - 16 years ago I attended my first ever Hanson concert. It was the first, but it was not the last.

You might as well know that I kind of have an undying love for this band of brothers from the 90's.

I can't believe that night was 16 years ago. Wow, how life has changed so much since then. In so many ways, I have been so blessed because of this band.

Having a love for music runs in my blood. I can't play an instrument or carry a tune but I feel music so passionately. This band has been the first of many that has ignited my heart and given me hope and inspiration. As well as something to jam out to in my car and impromptu dance parties in friend's garages.

When I fell in love with Hanson I had no idea the doors it would open. Their first CD "Middle of Nowhere" was constantly on repeat. I loved the quote I found tonight as I was writing this, "Sometimes you find yourself in the middle of nowhere, and sometimes, in the middle of nowhere you find yourself." My friend and I recently chuckled about God's plan. It's so funny. You see, I met her when I was a Hanson fan, some 15 years ago. That's half my life! So half my life ago I met this amazing girl and we were friends because we loved Hanson together. 

Recently, I felt called by God to reach out to someone to grow in my faith and networking of Christian friends. I thought of my friend, whom I hadn't talked to in a while and whom I haven't seen in forever. We got together to talk about God and life. We realized He has had this planned this whole time. 

I have pictures with Hanson but I have so many more pictures of the memories I've made because of them. Pictures of friends that have that connected with each other because of Hanson and stayed together because we realized that we are just awesome. True story.

It's more than just friends though. 

It paved the path for me to want more for my life. 

If you look at my family's history, I don't have much inspiration. College, full time career? Just graduating high school was a first.

Yet, because of Hanson I became very connected with a few awesome radio DJs. Like, really good friends. We would talk all the time on the phone, they called my mom, "Mom". Amazing. I wanted to be just like them. Even though I was still in high school, this became my dream job. It encouraged me to further my education. 

Though I am obviously not a radio DJ today, I did graduate college. I have a full time job. I bought a brand new car that I just paid off today! (Woohoo! This date is amazing! ;)) So. Many. Things. This love grew my desire to network on social media. Hi, my name is Sheri and I used to have an E-Newsletter titled "Hansonitis". Yup.

Things I never thought were possible. Dreams I would have never realized if this band didn't open my heart to do more with my life.

One of my all time favorite songs was more like a prayer for me. I realize today that as I sang along God knew this was a true desire in my heart. One He has definitely begun to fulfill.

I'm looking for a song to sing,
Looking for a friend to borrow.
I'm looking for my radio,
So that I might find a heart to follow.
-A Song to Sing

I'm not going to lie. I still get giddy at their concerts. And yes, I still go. 

In fact, I went to a concert this summer and it was the best concert of theirs I have ever been at to date. Old songs, new songs. Old memories, new memories. I jumped up and down singing the whole time and felt the 15 years I had aged in my shortness of breath!

That night I felt so connected to a higher power. Literally, everything worked out perfectly. Because, Hanson fans are still crazy, they still wait line for GA. We skipped the crazy party that day (only because we didn't have another choice - otherwise you bet I would have been there). We still had an amazing spot. In fact, one of the best I've had. It was amazing.

My mom had been heavy on my heart and mind that day. She loved this stuff. She encouraged my crazy and laughed along with me. During the concert they played a song they hardly ever play. It's from their first album I owned. It's called "With You in Your Dreams" and they wrote it about their grandmother who had passed away. I felt like this was a sign that my mother is still with me even if I can't see her. I even asked her if she would be so kind as to let us meet Hanson after the show.

And we did! It wasn't the first time for me but it was something I really hoped would happen again!

Listening to their music always makes me feel free. Makes me feel alive. Everyone has a place they feel home. When I hear this music it always takes me back to a time when life felt so carefree even though it wasn't. A place of peace, happiness, and joy. Even if it's just for 3 minutes and 30 seconds.

So today, on the anniversary of my first Hanson concert, I wanted to share.

To show that life can change so much. But God is orchestrating it all. The people I have met, the memories I've made, the friendships I've had. It's all been such a blessing and it's one that I am still reaping the benefits from. 

I would have never thought that God would take something like a small band of brothers from Tulsa, OK to change a girls heart and life in Lil' Rhode Island, but He did.

He always meets us in the most unexpected places. Where has He met you?


Broken angel you've got to learn to fly
Get up and earn your wings tonight...
-Hanson, Broken Angel

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