Do you ever have one of those bands or singers that just click for you? Do you distinctly remember the first time you heard them—where you were, or what you were doing precisely when your head perked up as you heard them? Well, for me it's Stevie Nicks. My parents are both HUGE fans of her, so I was an avid listener of Stevie and the band she's in, Fleetwood Mac, from back when I was still in utero. But the first time I clearly recall hearing this gypsy-soul was when I was four years old. I was on my way to the hospital with my mom to visit my grandma after one of her surgeries. I was sitting in my carseat, popping Fruit Loops into my mouth when Stevie's song "Edge of Seventeen" came on the radio. I stopped eating and I sat, transfixed, as I lost myself in her voice. We pulled into a parking spot at the hospital, but I made my mom sit in the car until the song was over so I could hear it in its entirety.
This is the day Stevie became my queen.
Now I am nearly 21 years old and on December 1st, my lifelong dream finally came true. At Madison Square Garden in my favorite city in the world, I saw Stevie perform live in concert. I have no words to accurately describe the level of magic that exudes from her very essence. And spending those few hours in her presence was most definitely beneficial for my very soul. There was one moment during the show when she looked out into the audience and spoke straight to my heart. I recoded what she said so that I'd never forget it:
"This is my thought for you tonight. The testament is: dreams do come true. Anything you want is out there for you to reach out there in the stars of Bella Donna and grab one, because it is all there...you must continue to believe that you can have what you want. Don't ever let anybody tell you that you're not talented enough or smart enough or any of that, because you are. You're totally beautiful. You can do anything you want. Never let anybody get in your way. Tell them to get out of your way. You're on your way to greater things."—Stevie Nicks, 12-1-16.
When I heard her say this, I began to cry and I couldn't stop. I wasn't simply crying because I'm a fangirl that was overly excited to be there (even though there is nothing wrong with that), but I cried because she reached out and touched me in a way I haven't been touched in a long while. She spoke out of personal experience, because many moons ago she was my age, waiting on tables and cleaning people's houses; barely scraping by. And at my age, she was working to follow her dreams, too. She spoke to me on behalf of all the times I've ever doubted myself, all the times I thought I wasn't good enough, and all the times I've had people look me straight in my eyes and tell me that my dreams are far-fetched and unattainable. And even though that one piece of advice was clearly directed towards the entire audience, I couldn't help but think she was talking to me, personally. I felt like I wasn't just another face in the crowd. She made me feel like she believes in me, even though she doesn't even know who I am. But above that, she helped me to believe in myself, and reminded me that no matter what rough-patch I'm in at the moment, I must continue to believe that I'm on my way to greater things.
In light of this, I decided to sing her song "Gold Dust Woman" as a tribute to her, because she has shaped me as a person since I was that little girl eating Fruit Loops in the parking lot of the hospital. This is my favorite song by her, and one of the songs she sang during the concert that made me smile and cry and feel and sing and dance...all at the same time.
So thank you Stevie, not only for putting on a concert I will never forget as long as I live, but for everything you've unknowingly done for me throughout my whole life. I couldn't ask for a better role-model, and I love you always.
To the gypsy that remains, from the gypsy that is still trying to find her way.