I heard “Somewhere over the rainbow” on Pandora this morning.
This song brought me back to a dark auditorium that smelled like dusty curtains and old wood.
I looked into the audience; tops of their heads illuminated by the light from the stage. I tried to remember all of the words but was focused on my terrible voice. I hoped it would just blend in with the rest of my classmates’.
We were singing to celebrate our move from one grade to the next. We were graduating from third grade? Fourth grade? I don’t remember exactly but for weeks, I practiced Judy Garland’s version of “Somewhere over the rainbow.” The version from the movie had a hint of sadness and hope.
I remember watching “The Wizard of Oz” and was impressed by Dorothy’s guts. Armed only with pigtails and a scruffy dog, she went on a journey to find answers, to search for home. Her innocence created openings to learn about herself while she overcame challenges. And despite her circumstances, she persisted down the yellow brick road.
Dorothy is a heroine; courageous, empathetic and curious. I admire her for these characteristics and I relate to Dorothy’s quest for answers. I always ask myself, where is my place in the world? Where is home? What makes us who we are? Do our environments inspire or deter us from our paths?
These are some of the questions that motivate me to find answers. This is why I want to learn from others, read, write.
Dorothy and Toto, thank you for paving the road for me.