I love those hokey, uplifting sayings that always float around the Internet and on signs in kitschy home stores.
Dance like no one is watching
Love like you’ve never been hurt
And so on. You know the ones. Hallmark philosophy. I think they’re cute, but they also serve as lighthearted reminders that we shouldn’t take ourselves, and life, too seriously.
My car is my concert hall of choice. I have a weird mix of music in it at any given time. Soundtracks of favourite musicals, Opera, recordings my dad made for me of Irish artists, Chris de Burgh and Adele. Dixie Chicks. Black Eyed Peas. Eminem. Robbie Williams and Blue Rodeo. I know them all. I know the words, the nuances, the pauses. And I sing them all, everyday. It relaxes me, fires me up, makes me laugh out loud and sometimes makes me cry.
My music choice will more often than not, reflect my mood. If you hear Billy Joel blasting from my car, I’m probably in a really good, slightly nostalgic mood. If it’s opera, I’m lost inside my own head, in my thoughts, memories, or, I’m writing something and plotting pieces of the story.
We all have difficult moments in our lives. And they always seem to happen in clusters, don’t they? One or two hard things I can usually handle, but when the hard comes in all at once, I falter.
So I sing.
I get out my eclectic collection and find something that is going to speak to me and soothe my mind, ease my tension and bring me out of my head and the swirl of thoughts that threatens to overtake and overwhelm.
And so I sing.
Maybe in my car, maybe in my kitchen. Maybe just in my own head. Because it’s hard work for me to bounce out of the cyclone of negative thoughts that threatens to take over whenever I’m going through something hard. For someone who has struggled with both depression and anxiety and has been previously medicated for both, it’s been a long journey to get me to a place where I can cope on my own. But I can’t always do it alone.
And so I sing.