themighty logo

What Releasing a Song About Mental Health Taught Me About Vulnerability


The ​most​ ​important​ ​thing​ ​I’ve​ ​learned​ ​is​ ​that​ ​the​ ​brain​ ​can​ ​only​ ​handle​ ​what​ ​it​ ​can​ ​handle​ ​when it’s​ ​ready​ ​to​ ​handle​ ​it.​ ​“Be​ ​patient​ ​with​ ​yourself.”​ ​This​ ​is​ ​something​ ​I​ ​tell​ ​myself​ ​all​ ​the​ ​time​ ​as​ ​I try​ ​to​ ​grow​ ​and​ ​become​ ​the​ ​person​ ​I​ ​want​ ​to​ ​be, ​as​ ​I​ ​figure​ ​out​ ​the​ ​person​ ​​I​ ​am.​ ​For​ ​a​ ​long time​ ​I​ ​tried​ ​to​ ​escape​ ​myself.​ ​There​ ​are​ ​many​ ​things​ ​I​ ​have​ ​run​ ​from.​ ​Many​ ​things​ ​I​ ​have​ ​not been​ ​able​ ​to​ ​explain​ ​about​ ​myself​ ​and​ ​about​ ​my​ ​behavior​ ​for​ ​as​ ​far​ ​back​ ​as​ ​I​ ​can​ ​remember.​ ​It’s a​ ​scary​ ​feeling​ ​not​ ​being​ ​able​ ​to​ ​explain​ ​your​ ​own​ ​behavior​ ​and​ ​feelings.​ ​The​ ​fear​ ​of​ ​your​ ​own mind​ ​is​ ​perhaps​ ​the​ ​worst​ ​fear​ ​I​ ​have​ ​ever​ ​encountered.​ ​I​ ​am​ ​lucky​ ​to​ ​have​ ​had​ ​music​ ​in​ ​my​ ​life. Music​ ​has​ ​allowed​ ​me​ ​to​ ​be​ ​vulnerable​ ​in​ ​ways​ ​I’ve​ ​never​ ​imagined​ ​possible,​ ​and​ ​vulnerability​ ​is the​ ​greatest​ ​strength​ ​there​ ​is.

I​ ​am​ ​lucky​ ​and​ ​grew​ ​up​ ​with​ ​amazing​ ​parents,​ ​in​ ​an​ ​amazing​ ​neighborhood​ ​with​ ​amazing schools​ ​and​ ​amazing​ ​resources.​ ​But​ ​life​ ​can​ ​hand​ ​you​ ​cards​ ​that​ ​you​ ​don’t​ ​know​ ​how​ ​to​ ​play. Things​ ​that​ ​you​ ​cannot​ ​control​ ​happen,​ ​and​ ​you​ ​cope.​ ​I​ ​am​ ​not​ ​sure​ ​I​ ​will​ ​ever​ ​even​ ​remember everything​ ​that​ ​has​ ​happened​ ​to​ ​me.​ ​I’m​ ​not​ ​sure​ ​I​ ​really​ ​want​ ​to.​ ​The​ ​brain​ ​forgets​ ​things​ ​for​ ​a reason.​ ​

I​ ​have​ ​struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD),​ ​clinical​ ​depression,​ ​insomnia,​ ​obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) ​and​ ​addiction​ ​at​ ​its finest.​ ​All​ ​of​ ​which​ ​have​ ​stemmed​ ​from​ ​childhood​ ​sexual​ ​trauma​ ​and​ ​an​ ​assault​ ​that​ ​occurred while​ ​I​ ​was​ ​in​ ​college.​ ​A​ ​lot​ ​of​ ​subsequent​ ​abuse​ ​and​ ​assault​ ​followed​ ​me​ ​through​ ​middle school,​ ​high​ ​school,​ ​college​ ​and​ ​beyond​ ​due​ ​to​ ​the​ ​path​ ​addiction​ ​and​ ​self-destructive​ ​behavior often​ ​lead​ ​you​ ​down.​ ​

I’m​ ​now​ ​in​ ​recovery​ ​(I​ ​call​ ​it​ ​discovery​)​ ​and​ ​have​ ​been​ ​finding​ ​myself​ ​all over​ ​the​ ​place​ ​simply​ ​by​ ​sharing​ ​my​ ​story​ ​through​ ​my​ ​music​ ​and​ ​with​ ​my​ ​fans.
There’s​ ​something​ ​extremely​ ​liberating​ ​about​ ​vulnerability,​ ​isn’t​ ​there?​ ​

Vulnerability​ ​allows​ ​us​ ​to connect​ ​to​ ​one​ ​another​ ​on​ ​a​ ​much​ ​more​ ​real​ ​level;​ ​it​ ​allows​ ​us​ ​to​ ​be​ ​aware​ ​of​ ​ourselves​ ​and​ ​of others​ ​in​ ​a​ ​deeper​ ​and​ ​more​ ​open​ ​way;​ ​it​ ​enables​ ​a​ ​sense​ ​of​ ​humility​ ​and​ ​empathy​ ​that​ ​creates a​ ​more​ ​selfless​ ​overall​ ​human​ ​nature.​ ​If​ ​fear​ ​is​ ​what​ ​confines​ ​us,​ ​and​ ​the​ ​truth​ ​sets​ ​us​ ​free, vulnerability​ ​is​ ​the​ ​strength​ ​that​ ​takes​ ​us​ ​from​ ​fear​ ​to​ ​truth.​ ​But​ ​being​ ​vulnerable​ ​is​ ​not​ ​at​ ​all easy;​ ​it​ ​takes​ ​time​ ​and​ ​a​ ​lot​ ​of​ ​effort​ ​to​ ​break​ ​out​ ​of​ ​your​ ​comfort​ ​zones.​ ​For​ ​me,​ ​it​ ​wasn’t​ ​until​ ​I took​ ​the​ ​plunge​ ​and​ ​put​ ​out​ ​my​ ​song​ ​“Somebody’s​ ​Someone,”​ ​those​ ​floodgates​ ​finally opened​ ​and​ ​I​ ​found​ ​myself​ ​breaking​ ​down​ ​my​ ​own​ ​walls​ ​and​ ​starting​ ​to​ ​live​ ​my​ ​life.

You​ ​don’t​ ​realize​ ​the​ ​weight​ ​your​ ​carrying​ ​until​ ​you​ ​try​ ​to​ ​throw​ ​it​ ​out​ ​there.​ ​”Somebody’s Someone”​ ​will​ ​forever​ ​be​ ​the​ ​song​ ​that​ ​changed​ ​my​ ​life​ ​because​ ​it​ ​lifted​ ​a​ ​giant​ ​weight​ ​off​ ​of​ ​my shoulders​ ​and​ ​allowed​ ​me​ ​to​ ​think​ ​about​ ​my​ ​art​ ​in​ ​a​ ​whole​ ​different​ ​way;​ ​it​ ​allowed​ ​me​ ​to​ ​see my​ ​art​ ​as​ ​a​ ​platform​ ​for​ ​my​ ​own​ ​personal​ ​growth​ ​and​ ​well-being.​ ​I’m​ ​not​ ​even​ ​talking​ ​about​ ​the actual​ ​song,​ ​I’m​ ​talking​ ​about​ ​putting​ ​my​ ​story​ ​​out​ ​there​.​ ​Because​ ​there’s​ ​a​ ​difference​ ​between being​ ​vulnerable​ ​with​ ​ourselves​ ​and​ ​being​ ​vulnerable​ ​with​ ​other​ ​people.

It​ ​was​ ​such​ ​a​ ​vulnerable​ ​moment​ ​for​ ​me,​ ​not​ ​only​ ​because​ ​it’s​ ​a​ ​very​ ​personal​ ​song,​ ​but​ ​also because​ ​of​ ​the​ ​context​ ​it​ ​falls​ ​into:​ ​mental​ ​health.​ ​Mental​ ​health​ ​is​ ​not​ ​something​ ​​we typically​ ​talk​ ​about​ ​openly,​ ​(although​ ​that​ ​is​ ​starting​ to​change)​ ​so​ ​naturally​ ​it​ ​felt​ ​very​ ​scary for​ ​me​ ​to​ ​publicly​ ​talk​ ​about​ ​these​ ​issues.​ ​Not​ ​that​ ​I​ ​haven’t​ ​written​ ​personal​ ​songs​ ​before,​ ​I​ ​just haven’t​ ​put​ ​my​ ​most​ ​personal​ ​songs​ ​out​ ​there.​ ​This​ ​felt​ ​very​ ​different.​ ​I​ ​wasn’t​ ​sure​ ​how​ ​people would​ ​react.​ ​Thankfully,​ ​the​ ​response​ ​has​ ​been​ ​a​ ​hopeful​ ​and​ ​inspiring​ ​one.

I​ ​am​ ​so​ ​very​ ​grateful​ ​for​ ​the​ ​overwhelming​ ​support​ ​on​ ​the​ ​release​ ​of​ ​the​ ​song.​ ​I​ ​can’t​ ​tell​ ​you how​ ​incredibly​ ​inspiring​ ​it​ ​is​ ​to​ ​see​ ​a​ ​song​ ​you’ve​ ​written​ ​from​ ​your​ ​soul​ ​doing​ ​some​ ​good​ ​in​ ​the world.​ ​It’s​ ​truly​ ​all​ ​I’ve​ ​ever​ ​wanted.​ ​I​ ​am​ ​so​ ​grateful​ ​to​ ​have​ ​the​ ​encouragement​ ​to​ ​continue​ ​on the​ ​positive​ ​path​ ​I​ ​am​ ​on,​ ​and​ ​I​ ​plan​ ​to​ ​continue​ ​to​ ​challenge​ ​myself​ ​in​ ​these​ ​capacities.​ ​My​ ​only hope​ ​is​ ​to​ ​continue​ ​to​ ​use​ ​music​ ​to​ ​connect​ ​with​ ​people​ ​who​ ​are​ ​seeking​ ​that​ ​positive​ ​path​ ​and want​ ​to​ ​spread​ ​that​ ​vibe​ ​around​ ​the​ ​whole​ ​wide​ ​world!

After​ ​releasing​ ​“Somebody’s​ ​Someone”​ ​I​ ​am​ ​feeling​ ​more​ ​connected​ ​to​ ​the​ ​world​ ​and​ ​especially to​ ​my​ ​fans​ ​and​ ​friends;​ ​I​ ​have​ ​gained​ ​a​ ​new​ ​level​ ​of​ ​self-awareness​ ​and​ ​awareness​ ​of​ ​the others​ ​around​ ​me;​ ​I​ ​have​ ​a​ ​new​ ​sense​ ​of​ ​humility​ ​and​ ​empathy​ ​and​ ​I​ ​have​ ​gained​ ​a​ ​strength that​ ​has​ ​allowed​ ​me​ ​to​ ​face​ ​my​ ​fears​ ​head-on.​ ​At​ ​the​ ​end​ ​of​ ​the​ ​day​ ​are​ ​all,​ ​or​ ​have​ ​the​ ​capacity to​ ​be​ ​“Somebody’s​ ​Someone,”​ ​we​ ​just​ ​have​ ​to​ ​let​ ​ourselves​ ​be​ ​vulnerable​ ​enough​ ​to​ ​know​ ​it.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Photo provided by contributor


Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.