When You Replace Me

It is going to happen. You love someone and then,one day, it ends and while you try to figure out what went wrong, they find someone else.

Almost five years have passed since I first met her. She sat towards the front of the room and she had one of the prettiest faces I had ever seen. Her eyes were bright and full of life and she had an energy about her.

Before long, we would begin dating and I wanted to marry her. I wanted to wake up next to her, start a family with her, grow old with her. Somehow I fell in love.

While we were together , I kept a journal. I would constantly write in it. Every entry was written to her and one year, on her birthday, I gave it to her. She cried and smiled and hugged me and kissed me.

Each page was filled with memories of our nights and days together. Writing to her helped me learn how to love her and took it to a depth that I never thought possible. Even though the writing brought about a depth of emotion, it couldn’t be sustained. In time it came undone.

She said she felt like she was settling by being with me and that she deserved better. I was dealing with a lot of inner struggles, including my health. It all fell apart but not before I started another journal … a journal that I kept for close to 6 months after the break up.

I felt like I had no one to turn to, with the exception of a good friend by the name of Richard, and I really didn’t want to put him out. So, I turned to the journal and I was no longer writing for the sake of love but to heal and forget and let go.

In that journal are the lyrics to ‘When You Replace Me’. It was perhaps one of the last entries.

The song is a goodbye. It is about wishing someone well and hoping that they find everything they ever dreamed.

It is going to happen. You love someone and then, one day, it ends and if you really do love them you will wish them all the best even if that isn’t you.

‘When You Replace Me’

“When you replace me
I hope that he’s strong
Can carry your heavy heart and help you along
I hope he’s your charming prince
and can do no wrong
When you replace me
I hope that he’s strong

When you replace me
I hope that he’s brave
Can stare down all your fears
and drive them away
I hope he’s the kind to rush in
and save the day
When you replace me
I hope that he’s brave

Oh, all that you want and all I’ll never be
You, you did what you must
I know you have to leave
All that you want, All that you need
I hope you find love
Even if it is without me

When you replace me
I hope that he’s kind
Can take away all your cares
One kiss at a time
I hope that he rides a white horse
Wears armor that shines
When you replace me
I hope that he’s kind”

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Waiting On You

Just recently I attended a songwriter showcase. While there I always enjoy the opportunity to speak with other musicians and listen to their constructive feedback. In a recent gathering a fellow songwriter mentioned how I write an awful lot about relationships and he is right. I do.

It has always made a lot of sense for me to write about relationships. Relationships bring about strong emotions and plenty of lyrical fuel but at the same time each relationship has a unique story to tell. ‘Waiting On You’ is perhaps one of my favorite stories to tell and yet the story is just a bit hidden. This was done on purpose.

“The night is quiet. The road is empty
We’re parked to one side
I look in your eyes. You’ve got something to tell me.
You breathe in and let out a sigh
You’re biting your bottom lip
Balled your hand up into a fist
And I’m reaching out for you expecting the worst.”

One autumn evening I was driving in my little red Dodge Neon and my girlfriend was in the seat beside me. We had pulled over to the side of the road because she needed to talk. Of course I am thinking that this is a break up. I was wrong.

In that moment with the streets wet and the dead leaves strewn about the ground, she was mustering up the strength to tell me something entirely different. Not knowing what she was going to say, I sat there and waited for the next word to come out of her mouth.

“Your eyes are closed. The words come slowly.
Look up to see me smile.
A little bit nervous. It wont overtake me
We sit in silence a while
I brushed my thumb against your cheek
Run my fingers through your hair.
It will be so hard to get to sleep. I know we’re both scared.”

What I thought was a break up ended up being a different conversation altogether. She told me that she was “late”. She didn’t know how I would react to the news. I only smiled.

She asked me what I was thinking and I remember reaching out to touch her. This wasn’t something I was going to want to tell my parents but at the same time I told her that if she is pregnant then I would be there for her and the child.

At this point she gave me the greatest compliment I have never received. She said ” I think would would be a good dad.”

Once again I was waiting for her. I was waiting to find out the results of a pregnancy test. I was waiting to find out if I would indeed be a father and I was excited to not only start a family but to start a family with her. 

For those that know me, you know I do not have any children. So, does that mean that the pregnancy test came back negative? Yes and no. Yes the pregnancy came back negative but no it did not come back negative after that night.

A few days after our roadside conversation, she made a confession. She told me that she knew that she wasn’t pregnant and that she had taken a pregnancy test a week prior. She told me that she just wanted to see how I might react. She then asked if I hated her.

The only feeling I had was of disappointment. For a few days I thought I was about to be a parent only to find out that I was lied to by my girlfriend to test me. I didn’t hate her but we did drift apart.

The song has a much happier feeling than the actual experience and that is because I did not want to focus on the lie and the disappointment. I think the song, as is, makes for a better story.