“…Rock?  Where you at? Over there with a bad attitude ’cause I just don’t care.  Where you at, Rock? Where you at?”

There are SO many directions I could go with this lyric.  SO. MANY.

-Not being able to find a damn thing in your house.

-That bad attitude you may be carrying around because you can’t find a damn thing in your house.

I’m goin’ in a different direction here though.  Bear with me for a little bit, okay?

So it was early 2002.  I was 25.  I was still relatively skinny.

My husband and I went at our first Kid Rock concert in Roanoke, Virginia. (Yes, yes, that’s where it began.  Well, kinda.  It’s really my husband’s fault, if you want to know the truth.  He was the first one to start blasting Devil Without a Cause in 1998!)

I still vividly remember what I was wearing- jeans, white v-neck t-shirt, awesome navy and white Nike hoodie…  I froze my ass off when we had to stop to get gas but I looked CUTE.

Our seats were…Well, we didn’t have seats.  We were on the floor.  In the pit.  General admission!  AND I WAS EXCITED!  GA means if you’ve got the determination, you can get to the stage! And holy balls, that was my plan!  (Just so you know, that’s ALWAYS my plan so if we go to a concert one day together don’t be surprised, okay?”

Well, soon after our arrival at the venue- after we stood in line to get our GA bracelets from what I’m sure was a really sweet man who used his second skin of tattoos as a defense mechanism-my husband and I made our way out onto the floor, not really knowing what to expect.  It WAS our first show and lemme tell ya’, there were some SERIOUS fashion faux pas on display. SERIOUS.  One will forever be burned into my memory. A larger woman. A black leather…ensemble.  Not enough leather for said woman.  That’s as far as I’m gonna go.  No one should be subjected to that again.

Anyway, as we ambled towards the amassing crowd, my husband stops me.  He points to the sound board area about 3/4 of the way back from the stage and says “That looks like a mini-stage.  We need to hang out here.”  I only had eyes for the stage.  ONLY FOR THE STAGE.  After heatedly discussing where we should stand for several minutes, my husband says something like this- “Look, we’re not goin’ to the stage. You wouldn’t let me bring my knife in and I don’t wanna go to jail tonight.  I think we need to stay back by the sound board.  I’m telling you, KR is GONNA be back there.”  I replied with some shitty, sarcastic retort, the exact words of which escape my memory right now, but we ended up about halfway to the stage.  A good twenty feet or so in front of the sound board.

About twenty minutes later, the concert started and my world was forever  rocked.  FOREVER. ROCKED.   (I’ll spare you details  but I could write a novel about how that bad boy opened!)  About halfway through the show, THIS song- the one at the top of the post- started.  The chants of “Where you at. Rock?  Where you at?” echoed throughout the arena for several minutes.  And then the spotlight fell.  ON THE MINI STAGE AT THE SOUND BOARD.

SON OF A BITCH, MY HUSBAND WAS RIGHT!  

IF WE’D STAYED WHERE HE WANTED TO STAY I COULDA TOUCHED HIM. SERIOUSLY, IF I’D HAD A BUSINESS CARD (Back then I was just a super cool sixth grade teacher who played hooky to go to this show!) I COULDA SHOVED IT IN HIS POCKET.

That was over twelve years ago and I still kick myself.  STILL. And believe me, my husband reminds me of it EVERY time we hear this song.

You’re probably wondering what my point is, right?  Probably wondering where the hell I’m going with this, huh?  I mean, yeah, it’s an entertaining little anecdote but WTF?

Well, here’s my point.

If I hadn’t been so caught up in MY vision, in MY plan back on a winter night in early 2002, I might have a Cocky-era Kid Rock wife beater t-shirt in my collection of guitar picks and drum sticks.  If I had gotten out of my own head and considered, EVEN FOR A MOMENT, that someone aside from myself might have an awesome idea,  I coulda made a new acquaintance that night.  IF I HADN’T BEEN SO ARROGANT AND DEAD SET ON DOING THINGS MY WAY…well, who knows what may have happened! At the very least, I’d have THE best concert story of my life instead of having to settle for a near miss.  An “Oh shit, I shoulda listened to the hubs.” incident  (Unfortunately, one of many!) instead of “HOLY SHIT GUESS WHAT HAPPENED!?” experience.

Hearing that song this morning brought it all back to me.  And made me wonder.  What are we missing out on because we’re too stubborn to change our ways?  What awesome things are passing us by because we refuse to look at a situation from a different angle than the one that WE’VE decided is best?

Think about that for a second. I realize my example is a teensy bit ridiculous but it’s pretty powerful.  There are no guarantees that KR and the OOG fam would’ve become BFFs that night in Roanoke but if I’d taken the advice of someone who loved me, who really did want the best for me, who was able to see the bigger picture, we sure as hell woulda been closer than twenty feet away.

I’m gonna be real honest about something right now.  I struggle with being a control freak.  (Say it ain’t so!) I struggle with “I know best” syndrome even when it’s completely illogical.  It’s taken a lot of work and DEFINITELY some bumps in the road for me to be okay not living by MY checklist.  To be okay really trusting the people in my life. You know, the ones that I rely on for my “team”.  And all that came at a cost.  The close-encounter-that-wasn’t with Kid Rock instance isn’t a serious example but it definitely gives you some insight into my personality.  Because see, I GET IT.  I get that it’s hard to let someone come into your life with different ideas about how things should work. I TOTALLY understand that it takes work to be open to different approaches other than the one you’ve settled on.  I. GET. IT.  And I think that means a whole lot when a client invites me into their home.

So right now, as we finish up this fine Friday afternoon, I want you to think about something.  What are YOU being stubborn about?  What won’t you look at from a different perspective?  What habits or ideas that YOU think might be the best course of action might really be holding you back?  Who have you patted on the head while turning a deaf ear to their advice when that advice could be the very thing you need to set your life on fire?  And who could you allow in your life to give you that alternate perspective?  

Just a little something to ponder this last weekend of May.