I’ve stumbled across a band, Elephant Revival while listening to St. Cinder on Spotify. Typically when Spotify decides to add on songs that sound similar, they don’t always work out, but this time they had my attention. The lyrics in Home In Your Heart by Elephant Revival felt comforting. Just working a typical 9-5 and I have Spotify to trick myself into believing I’m not actually working, not that I dread coming to work, but life has its way of being monotonous.
The lyrics were beautiful, and the first line is something I think everyone can relate to at some point in their lives:
Falling down, Spin me ’round. No one said this would be easy now, But you’ve gotta keep moving somehow.
I’m at that age in life, friends with kids, friends engaged, and then there’s me; single, graduated, not fully in a career. I don’t hate that I’m not with kids or a significant other, but it definitely feels like a confusing time, especially when I see others my age with a full on career and family. Back to the music. Elephant Revival gives off a folky vibe, but not necessarily a Mumford & Sons type, more like you’re chilling at a local bar and they come on and you wonder to yourself why you hadn’t heard them before. Doing some quick research on the band and come to find they are on a hiatus to re-focus on their family, themselves, and what they believe in. You can really hear it in their music, their passion for their loved ones, and for what they do. On their site, they have their intro titled – “WHERE WORDS FAIL…MUSIC SPEAKS”- when it comes to music and why I often find myself searching for new bands, it’s in hope of finding something I can relate to. There have been times in my life that I don’t have the right words to say, but then I find music, I can’t explain it, but can hear it and it’s perfect. I hope they take all the time they need and until they come back, I’ll be listening to their beautiful banjo music.
Link for more info on Elephant Revival: http://www.elephantrevival.com
It is crazy how quickly you can click with some people. This is precisely what happened between myself and a fellow blogger here on WordPress.
I recently met Southern Musician and we chatted and got to know each other a little over a couple of days and Southern came up with a wonderful idea of starting a mental health support group. I was keen on this idea and was very interested in being part of it. We discussed and decided on a platform to host this group and it is now up and running.
The platform we decided on is called Discord. It is an app of sorts, quite like Skype, but with far more features. It gives us the option to categorise chat rooms and voice chat rooms, so there is something for everybody. I know that there will be many of you who will not have heard of…
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“Get over it already.”
That’s what my mom said to me a few days ago after I woke from a dream about my friend Stephen
. I shared Stephen in previous post, seven weeks ago he took his life after knowing him for ten years. In the dream he was alive, which I hear is something not a lot of people experience once a loved one has passed. He seemed stressed and sad, I imagine this is what he looked like the last few months, but I wouldn’t know because I didn’t go see him. He was telling me he had to find a job to make his parents happy, he always wanted to make them happy. His parents are hard-workers, but they told me they are slowing down some. Stephen’s dad has always worked 60+ hours and he would tell me he wanted to be just like him. In my dream I knew he was going to take his life and was trying to prevent that.
Stephen was saying he had to move to Houston for the job and I told him I would go with him and it made him happy. I remember saying my resume sucked and he that wasn’t true and it’s one of the best. Funny because I’m currently looking for a new job and it’s been a struggle.
By the end of the dream I knew he hadn’t taken his life.
It skipped time somehow, because it’s a dream and it can do that, and I saw a lady reading an obituary, she said her husband took his life. I looked down at the obituary and it was Stephen’s face. It was the strangest thing, but when I woke up I realized that there was nothing I could have done. As I was telling my mom about it, I just started to cry. I didn’t mean to and it definitely doesn’t hurt like it first did, but it does hurt. I’ve been keeping myself busy, but it’s all just a big healing process isn’t it?
My mom has experienced a lot of loss in her life and I don’t hold her reaction against her one bit. I just hope she can change it somehow. I run head first into pain that comes my way and I know most people don’t like to do that. It’s easier to build up a wall and not let anything phase you, I’ve been there, and I’ve done that at times. I just know that it doesn’t work. If I don’t allow myself to experience the whirlwind of emotions I have from this loss in my life, I’ll retreat from life, and not the good kind either.
“I have time, time does not have me.” – Stephen Aerts
My friend said this quote above, I think that’s awesome. I googled it to see if anything would come up, thinking maybe he got it from somewhere else. Nothing. Lately, I’ve been trying to create more time for myself. It’s easy to get sucked into meaningless things of this world, from my first thoughts in the morning, until I lay my head down at night. What was the first thing I did this morning? Social Media. What did it do? Made me mad. Simple as that. There goes about 30 minutes of my life that was wasted being mad at someone I have never even met in person. It’s pretty crazy. I have to really keep myself on a tight leash when it comes to how I manage my time. If I’m not careful I’ll let myself waste away doing things that don’t really matter. Does this blog post matter? Nah, not to everyone, but it does to me. I love to write and it’s an important part in keeping me sane. I wonder if other writers can relate?
I notice I click on my phone quite a bit, just to see it lights up still I guess. Hoping I have a text from someone that I’ve messaged numerous times, and yet still nothing. I was listening to a podcast today called The Beautiful Writer’s Group and they had Tom Hanks on. I didn’t even know that he wrote a book, but he got my attention. He said he opens the Washington Post app on his phone constantly, but he doesn’t even read a single article. It’s like we do this thing out of habit. It’s really disturbing in a way to think we put so much into these devices. I can’t even count how many times this tiny device has caused me a whirlwind of emotions without me having to hear someone say anything or actually talk to someone. I don’t want to keep giving this my energy, not when I could be doing something better with my time, for myself. It’s sad to think that I haven’t really challenged myself much. I hope it’s not too late to start.
I can remember sitting in Family Christian Bookstore by my house seven years ago, I went alone and I came across a book with just quotes in it. I took a photo of a page that was red and it said, “We are going to suffer. And it is going to shape us. We will become bitter or better.” This year I have been thinking about that quote a lot, even before losing my friend. I’d walk around thinking to myself, “Bitter or Better.” I knew that I had become bitter since the day I took this photo seven years ago. I was only 19 at the time. I was carefree and I had hope for a big future, but only to an extent. I had a vision of what I thought I wanted out of life, but I put a limit on God. I struggled with my self-worth a lot. Any church event I would go to people would come up to me and hug me and tell me that I had value. I would ignore them and act as if I didn’t know what they meant, I tried to act like I had it all together. But I never wanted to be noticed. Ever. I would wear hoodies and only stick close to about two people. I didn’t want to let people in, I found when I did that, then I would get hurt. I loved Jesus, but not his people, not enough to get to know any new ones anyways.
Since losing Stephen, I decided that yes, people will hurt me, but I can’t be afraid to let them in. I have had friends for four years that never met my best friends, and I never really let them know a lot about me. This weekend I went on a road trip with a few friends and I let myself open up, I talked A LOT, which has always been easy for me to do, but only with certain people. I figured they were going to either want to still be my friend after the trip or think, “We are never hanging out with her again…” I was happy when they said we should hang out more. Why? Because I am a little strange, honestly! Plus, I’m pretty random and well, I’ll say…quirky. Lol But I’ve always struggled with letting people see me like this, I stay more reserved even though that’s not really how I am.
For my sake, and my family and friends, I have got to let this situation make me better. I was so bitter living each day, and miserable. I forgot to find joy in the little moments because I was too busy thinking things should be different. I was looking at all of these circumstances in my life and using them as a crutch to not move forward when in reality, I wasn’t moving forward because of me. I was holding my own life back and I’ve decided I won’t be doing that anymore. I owe it to myself and to my friend, to live.
I don’t write as much as I used to. To be honest, I don’t know why that happened. Or how. Don’t you find it frustrating that we live in a world that makes it almost impossible to admit that you don’t know something?
I don’t know why I don’t write as much as I used to. Yes, I write blog posts. On two different blogs. But those have become an almost subconscious habit. It’s scary in a way. I can write blog posts anywhere, anytime, no matter the conditions, my mood… I can write anywhere.
It is scary because I used to approach writing with a lot more respect and admiration. As if it were magic. Don’t get me wrong, words are magic. If you use the right words in just the right order, you can change the world a bit. But my words are no longer magic. My words…
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