Amanda Vernon

Catholic Evangelist

Sing It Like You Mean It

I only sing songs I believe in.

A few weeks ago, our local production studio was set up for our recording session. After work on an original piece, we proceeded to a cover song. It was a mash-up of a current hit by Alessia Cara, with an older release from Taylor Swift. Before the session, it seemed like these songs would blend well! The mashup came together quite seamlessly, but there was a problem. I just couldn’t sing it with conviction.

The audio engineer shook his head good-naturedly when he heard laughter through the microphone. “What is this even about?” I asked. “I just don’t believe in this song. I can’t sing it!” We decided to resume again another day, with a cover that was a better fit. So this week, it’s a pleasure to share a different mashup, with two songs that happen to be among my favorites. If the recording sounds happy and lighthearted, that’s because those are my true feelings expressed through music.

It’s called In Real Life for a reason.


Amidst the Mist

California Foothills

Growing up in Michigan, fog was a rarity among our vast array of intense weather. When I moved to California, I experienced fog dense enough to create a whiteout. It looked similar to driving through heavy snowstorms back in the Midwest, except without the treacherous road conditions.

Bay Area fog gave me the first visual image of what postpartum depression feels like. Something about it was so comforting. Because in my opinion, the Bay Area is the most beautiful place in the country. And yet, when it's enveloped by fog, it's beauty is sometimes completely hidden.

About a month after our youngest daughter was born, I went over to AC's house with our tight group of friends (who are more like family). Bell turned to me and asked, "How are you though? I know postpartum depression can be really serious." All eyes were on Serra and me. My friends listened intently as I explained about the fog. Since my favorite way of expressing my feelings is through music, I sang part of my newest song for them:

"This valley is encompassed by foothills
Of redwood forests
Winding roads through green meadows
Spanish roofs on quiet homes
And my eyes cannot make out
Any of it now
Amidst the mist and I don't mind it
The sun will come for me
Amidst the mist and I'm surviving
Glory surrounds me"

Most of us were misty-eyed afterward, as we sat in silence together for a while.

Fast forward 5 months: my family and I are enjoying the warm Arizona winter, and the majority of my fog has evaporated! I'm continuing to write about this experience, though, for others who might still be in the thick of it. I have friends and family members who live in that fog every day, no matter the season. I'm grateful to be able to relate now, even though my experience of it is transient.

David and I filmed the newest episode of "In Real Life" while we were on tour in Hawaii this month. Baby Serra was our sidekick, so the shots are pretty simple. I hope my heart comes through the song, though. Thanks in advance for checking it out (with sound up!!!), and be assured of my prayers for you, if you're navigating through the mist today.

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