For the first time in my life I have an amazing sound system in my car. In fact, I may go deaf over the course of the summer. I’ve been blaring the new Madonna album MDNA so loud it’s bending the windows. I’m sure some teen next to me is thinking, ‘rock on Grandma’ but I don’t care.
Listening to the lyrics on this album can sometimes feel like a punch in the stomach though as Madonna works out her anger, sadness, and remorse about her marriage to Guy Ritchie. I watched (through the lens of marriage-obsessed media) as this highly independent, financially secure (understatement), incredibly talented woman walked down the bridal path for the second time and lapped up their whole romantic story.
Their love was one born across a table in Sting’s house who hosted them both at a luncheon. It was love at first sight apparently. Then they had a traditional romantic fairytale wedding complete with Scottish castle, church, and haunting moors. Cue music.
However, I knew there was trouble in that marriage when on her last album she wrote ‘Miles Away‘ and ‘Devil Wouldn’t Recognize You‘. But I wanted to believe in the fairytale…Oops, that fairytale just awarded Guy Ritchie one of the largest settlements in divorce history. Ouch.
Madonna is mad. Just listen to Gang Bang.
You can hear plainly in this album Guy Ritchie must have had an affair. Then soaked her for all she was worth. Marriage, it’s a beautiful thing right? Sometimes I guess. Maybe because everyone wants to remain in the bubble, the marriage dream, the happily-ever-after dream they don’t look at what is really going on in their relationships. There’s just so much…..to lose.
The bigger the bubble–bauble?–the bigger the bang when it bursts.
I watched a Goldie Hawn interview recently (who is famously unmarried to Kurt Russell) and she said something that really resonated with me: “I want to be free to choose and I want the person with me to be free to choose. Every day of their lives. To wake up and go to sleep making the choice to love that person and fully be in it.”
Choice. I wonder, do we lose some of our choice when we get a big fat diamond ring on our finger? As a woman, is this idea even relevant anymore? Do we need to show the world our emotional collateral? ‘Look, see? Right here on my hand, there it is folks!’ Apparently it is very relevant, because Pinterest is a living experiment of the fairytale very much alive and well and pinned to the hearts of hopeful women around the globe.
My favourite song on this new album has to be Love Spent where she writes with a frank, bare honesty about money and its tragic place in their marriage. I suppose money doesn’t buy happiness after all, go figure.
I want you to take me like you took your money
Take me in your arms until your last breath
I want you to hold me like you hold your money
Hold me in your arms until there’s nothing left
So, from a sanctioned marriage with a priest, Madonna gets fleeced and now has a broken heart and when asked by David Letterman if she would marry again she flatly responded:
“I would rather get run over by a train.”
I feel lucky that 2011 emancipated from my need to ever be married. I’m all about Goldie’s philosophy, and having choice. Personally, I think women have earned it. I know I have.