Mixtapes + memory
Since 1987, I've complied generally 2 mixtapes of songs a year (Best Bits 1998 Vol. 2, etc...) and also compilations of classical music. I started on C90 cassettes, moved to CDs and then on to iTunes/Apple Music playlists. Right now, I'm listening to a mix from 2013. I often associate particular mixes or tracks with moments in my life. It's fascinating to look back at how there's often a subconscious narrative thread running through the choice and order of the tracks. Listening to these mixes helps me remember events and how God has been with me each step of the way. This never fails to bring comfort, as do photos. I've also always taken lots. I currently have over 16,000 on my computer, including paper photos of family members that I scanned onto computer nearly 20 yrs. ago.
Since 1987, I've given a one or more mixtapes/CDs/playlists each year as a Christmas present to one of my sisters who moved to New Orleans in 1979. We've remained close despite the distance. She once told me how the mixes were a link with home that helped her get through her own dark times. I suppose the combination of music and photos (and also diary/journal entries) is a way for me to look back and see the footprints in the sand, sometimes one pair, sometimes two; sometimes he's walked by my side, sometimes he's carried me. Remembering and recognising this leads to joy, gratefulness and trust that no matter what is happening now or may happen in the future, God will never abandon me.