How Music Saved My Life
I have been debating whether or not I should tell this story. Partly because it’s so personal, and partly because I didn’t know how to capture it all into words. But today, after some time thinking, I decided to sit down and share a part of my life not many people know about.
*Disclaimer* This post contains sensitive subject matter regarding abuse and suicide.
When I was about one and a half, my dad walked out on my mom and siblings, after deciding he wanted to live a different life. So, my mom raised us on her own, with occasional visits to see my dad.
We were very poor, and often times wondered where we would live, with the streets threatening to be our next home.
But even through this struggle, we were happy. My siblings and I were very close, and always made the most out of our situation.
Now, when I was about 10 years old, my mom met someone, and decided to remarry. He seemed nice, and my mom seemed happy...at first. It wasn’t long before there were some tell tell signs that things were not right. Lies started to come out, and there were fights and arguments constantly. Our home suddenly felt more unstable than it ever had.
The severity of our situation got worse and worse as time went on. He became extremely emotionally, physically and mentally abusive towards my mom, and then towards me and my siblings. We constantly lived in fear, and every night worried there would be an episode, so we would sleep lightly to make sure we could hear if anything happened, and could intervene.
He often would walk out of the home and be gone for months at a time leaving my siblings and mom with little.
My sisters and I felt completely unwanted. Our dad had walked out on us and now this man who was supposed to care for us and love us, made sure we knew he thought we were deplorable. Our life was completely consumed by surviving and living in this twisted world he had created for us. And it started to eat as us on a deep emotional level. It affected each one of us differently, but I found myself falling into a dark pit inside of myself. It felt like I was suffocating, and all I wanted was for it to end. I often thought that the only was out was to die. And even sometimes hoped my stepdad would end my life so I didn’t have to. I often fantasies about this. It seemed like there was nothing to live for anymore.
That is, until music came into my life. I was 16(as many of you know) and suddenly became OBSESSED with the cello. It sparked a light in me that I completely forgotten was possible. I could pour my hurt, and anger and pain into this one thing. So I did, I did it every day for hours and hours, and it began to lift me out of the place of darkness I had been living in for so long.
The cello allowed me to completely forget about the life I was living, and I began to find myself again. The girl I had lost many years before. I was able to imagine myself living a different life, free of the cage my stepdad had built around us. I saw myself on stage, performing in beautiful dresses, to loving audiences. I saw myself traveling around the world, making beautiful music.
Then, it shifted. I began to not just imagine these things, but make them happen. I put my all into changing my life, and making the things I imagined, into reality.
And so I did.
Music helped heal a part of me I did not know could be healed. I honestly believed this dark life would be the rest of my life. I couldn’t ever see past it.
I never imagined I would still be here, on the other side telling my story.
Know that in even the most hopeless situations, there will always be a light at the end of the tunnel, just waiting for you.