"Music washes away from the soul, the dust of everyday life"- Berthold Auerbach
Growing up, music was a big part of my household. Not that any of us played musical instruments but just, enjoying it. Dancing around the house. Singing at the top of our lungs. We all had different tastes in music. So the house was filled with different genres. Let’s all be adults and admit this to ourselves. We all had those embarrassing bands or singers that we loved/love to listen to because it brings up memories. If I hear Backstreet Boys on the radio, I start texting my sister the lyrics. Their album, “Millennium”, was pretty much played for a month straight when it came out in 1999. I was an A.J. girl, just stating. -Disclaimer: No one was hurt in the household in 1999 due to wanting the same band member. She was a Nick Carter girl-
Music connected me and my siblings while it also connected us to other people. You hear someone playing your favorite artist, you’re going to be like, “Hey! Is that ___?” But what’s more, is that it connects us to ourselves.
I was a sophomore and got an English assignment. We were to pick a favorite song and write what it meant to us, describe certain lyrics, etc. It was an interesting, brilliant prompt! Using music to connect teenagers as a whole.
Now, I cannot remember what song I chose but I do believe it was of the hard-rock genre. I was quite...edgy in my early teen years. -Queue laughter on my end because there is no proof to be found of such due to picture avoiding ways-
Have you ever thought of why your favorite song is your favorite? Normally, your favorite songs tend to bring up some type of emotion, memory or experience. Understandable. I mean, as teenagers, we all switched favorite songs from week to week depending on what we are going through, right?
My tastes are very eclectic in music. What kind of music I’m listening to depends on what type of mood I’m in typically. I am still the only one in my immediate family that can openly tolerate country music, something that ties memories to my grandfather, who I was very close to and had southern genes. So, country music equals my grandfather in memory.
Growing up, I always connected music to my emotions. I think that music is one of the easiest ways to convey what we truly feel inside. Some people, like myself, have a hard time putting their emotions into words. I just scroll down my playlist of songs and are finally click, going, “This is the song right now. This is how I’m feeling.”
When I first learned I was a consumer, I played “Crash” by Cavo constantly. It reminded me of my caregivers. And it made these memories come forth that made me feel...pain because of what was going on and the inability to control it, to help my caregivers get through the process as well. I took pride in being the shoulder to lean on for my family and at that time, I couldn’t be that shoulder for anyone. Waking up one morning and feeling so hyper, alive or so down, you want to live everyone behind.
It also bought pure happiness forward because even though I felt like a burden or bothersome, this song helped me go to my caregivers when I absolutely needed them. The first time I heard it, I went to a caregiver and finally asked for help with sleeping, an anxiety pill that was prescribed to me that I refused to touch. Many people know that I don’t get along well with medication on a sensitivity level, I react quickly to them. A blessing and a curse.
A main lyrics of this song is, “Every mile gets you further away from the past,
Feels like you’re shattered and covered in broken glass,
And I’ll be here the next time that you crash.”
It actually made me learn to accept help from medication, therapy and people in general, as caregivers. Now, I don’t know if this song is about a mental illness. I relate to it majorly in a manic way. “Losing control, Can’t you see that you’re running too fast?” Eventually, I’ll crash and need someone there to help me stand again. And this song reminds me that I’ll have someone, always, to be there when I do. Whether it be my immediate caregivers or even the mental health community!
The lyrics put into words what I believe our minds go through when changing into a manic or depressive episode, “You’re a beautiful wreck now you’re out of control, crossing the double lines.” And what our caregivers feel like when we do start an episode. Helpless. I am a caregiver myself towards others in many different situations and when I cannot help them, I do feel that way but at the end of the day, I just remind them that I will be here when you need me again. “But I’m right here when it’s just too much. You can let me take the wheel.”
I love hearing songs that relate me to being a consumer. It lets me understand I’m not alone because lyrics that are written are generally from experience. It also helps me explains me to myself, when I don’t know what’s going on, and to other people. I’m good with typing emotions onto paper but speaking of emotions? That’s entirely different. So, I generally speak with music. If my caregivers don’t hear music for days from my room or just depressing songs, they normally get the hint.
But because we all relate to music, let me give you a couple other songs I think can come from consumers or caregivers with positivity. I’ll try to hit every genre:
Through The Dark- One Direction (For caregivers to get through to their consumer)
Hurricane- Lifehouse (For caregivers helping a consumer to recovery after an episode)
Second Wind- Kelly Clarkson (For the consumer against stigma)
Each Tear- Mary J Blige (Things I think all caregivers want to truly say)
Motivational Rap Song- Anthony Alston Jr (Pure motivation for continuing)
Stand- Rascal Flatts (Pure inner-strength positivity for a consumer)
Dig- Incubus (My mom’s caregiver song for me, a consumer)