What Mike Shinoda's New EP 'Post Traumatic' Meant to Me as Someone With Mental Illness

If you’re a Linkin Park fan, you’re probably familiar with the huge loss the band experienced last year with the passing of lead singer, Chester Bennington. It sent shockwaves of grief through the music community, their fans and their loved ones. I grew up listening to their music and relating to every word Chester sang, and I continued to listen to their songs as their sound evolved through the years. I was — and still am — devastated over his passing. He gave me hope to know I wasn’t alone in my struggles and that I could survive through the pain.

Losing someone that remained a voice for the voiceless over the years is never easy, even if you don’t know them personally. But it’s even harder if you were close with them. Mike Shinoda, one of the band’s founding members, just released an incredible EP titled “Post Traumatic.” I’ve listened to it twice today and both times it’s given me those chills that only happen when something resonates with you.

Track 1: “Place to Start”

‘Cause I’m tired of the fear that I can’t control this.
I’m tired of feeling like every next step’s hopeless.
I’m tired of being scared what I build might break apart.
I don’t want to know the end, all I want is a place to start.

The three-song EP was accompanied by three videos shot by Mike, which gives you an intimate look at his own grief and internal struggles. At the end of the first song, “Place to Start,” you hear messages from concerned friends checking on him. It’s such a personal way to hear and feel what life was like during that time for him. At times, the videos were comforting for me to watch because it’s proof that grief can be expressed in many forms, and it helps remind me those who have passed are never truly gone. Other times it was heartbreaking to listen to because I was watching as someone relived their past and current pain.

Track 2: “Over Again”

And all I wanted was to get a little bit of closure,
And every step I took I looked and wasn’t any closer,
‘Cause sometimes when you say goodbye, yeah you say it over and over and over and over.

I’m thankful to now have the words to explain how I felt during the dark times in my life. The song shows that grief can be channeled in unexpected ways to help you cope. But I couldn’t help but remember the reason for these songs was because of the loss of a life. I’ll always follow Linkin Park during their musical journey, and I’ll cherish the songs that have helped me get through troubling times.

Track 3: “Watching As I Fall”

They’re watching as I fall, they’re staring as I go.
I gave until my soul hurt, and never told them so.
They’re watching as I fall, to somewhere down below;
But maybe I’m just falling, to get somewhere they won’t.

In times of grief, you’re reminded what’s important in life, so hold your loved one’s close and be there for those who need you. I want everyone to be here to see tomorrow, so let’s stay in this world so we can watch the sunrise countless more times together.

If you ever feel lost, scared and alone, please reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741.

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Photo via Mike Shinoda Facebook page

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