I happen to really like baths. To be more specific, I like long hot baths, with bath salts or yummy smelling bath foams, with a glass of wine and perhaps a cheeky cigarette (I don’t smoke any other time), an empty house and a music device. And why do I feel the need to mention this specifically? Well simply because this is where I was and what I was enjoying this afternoon when I had this thought.
First of all, singing in the bathroom and particularly tile bathrooms give awesome acoustics. As far as I’m concerned from what I heard today, I’m a rock God and should be given a record deal. But this is besides the point.
I know it’s pretty damn common for people to go to songs when they’re in a mood… there’s a song for just about every mood. Something I’ve also noticed is that for some people (my boyfriend), the mood is all about the rhythm, the bass, the attitude and feel of the music itself. For some people (me) it is much more about the lyrics, the poetry or the raw expression of thought. I think we all fall somewhere within those rough guidelines.
I don’t tend to share this information a whole lot… perhaps it’s a little too raw, real and scary. But music may well have saved my life. I think I’ve mentioned before that I recall having a really intense depressive episode in my mid teens, somewhere around 2004. That one episode has kind of set the backdrop for my whole adult life so far, and as much as that completely and utterly sucks, it’s scary to think that there were days I almost didn’t get here.
I have distinct memories of walking to the bus after school, along a busy road. Probably struggling with a mix of regular ironic teenage angst and the niggling black cloak that I had no idea would make itself a permanent wardrobe item… I hate saying this for the pain it may cause people who’ve lost friends, family, lovers. For every truck that would buzz past, I would imagine myself taking that one seemingly small step off the footpath. It seemed like such a better alternative, to deal with physical trauma or even to end it all together, than to have to contend with the mental trauma that was secretly silently plaguing me.
It’s a super sore point for me, remembering having people around me like my parents who should have noticed, should have stepped in. Even worse, I remember telling one of my closest friends that I thought I had depression for it to be dismissed. I resorted to self medicating in which ever way I saw fit. No one ever noticed that I occasionally would mix some Kahlua with milk after school while Mum was still on her way home from work. I had another friend dealing with a rotten home situation, and probably depression was part of her headspace at the time too. I found out she was cutting, and the idea intrigued me. At first it scared the hell out of me, in fact one day I went and told the school counselor about how she was hiding in the girls toilets cutting herself with a razor she’d unscrewed from a pencil sharpener; something she hated me for and only forgave me several years later. But ironically knowing that she’d done this triggered the idea for me to try it myself. It was a coping method that lasted for the rest of my high school life, and still pops up as a valid method on my very lowest days.
But this post isn’t meant to be about me. Actually the joke of the above little vent is that the idea for the whole post was borne of the fact that some days I can’t or don’t want to write long posts. Typical Hayley.
Woah. Have to hurry this post. Feel a bout of angry irritable impossible perfectionism coming on.
To cut to the chase, the only good form of self medicating I did for myself was therapy through music. I found music that either vented my inner turmoils, or lifted me to a better place. In fact there’s one song I remember singing as I walked by tat busy road, trying to keep my feet on the footpath in my own little peaceful and quaintly niave way.
I want to share this song with you, and in the future when I am just struggling to get the threads of the black cloak from my mind, I want to share with you other songs that pulled me through, that lifted me up or shared my feelings in ways that I couldn’t succinctly put them myself.
Here’s my personal sounds of silence, Vol #1, provided to you with lyrics because as I said, I’m a words person. 🙂