I talk a lot about how music means a lot to me; how it drives me, how it’s a huge part of my life. I mention specific songs and how I relate to them, but I don’t think I’ve ever gone into specifics about why. Some people don’t like music, or enjoy it but could live without it, and some people, like me, can’t imagine a world in which music was not a part of their everyday life.
Music is my automatic response to every situation. Good, bad, ugly, glorious, sorrowful; everything to me is defined in music. It helps in a way that I can’t quite put my finger on without describing a feeling and hopefully getting my point across.
Sometimes I get overwhelmed. It’s a difficult feeling to describe unless you’ve ever had an anxiety attack, and if you have you just get it. It’s not a life-ending problem, and I’m lucky enough not to have to deal with it daily, but every so often it’s a feeling that I have to overcome. There are a number of ways that do that, and they all culminate in listening to music once it’s over. After an anxiety attack I’m left with this kind of bundle of energy right beneath my heart; similar to the feeling of an adrenaline rush, but more nervous, more self-conscious, and it tends scramble my brain a little bit. The one way that works for me to calm down after this is music. Today I turned to The Mountain Goats. Sometimes it’s Eddie Vedder, or Blitzen Trapper, or my collection of lullabies.
On a happier note, music is a guaranteed way to get me pumped up and excited. Especially after a long day of work, if I’m going out I will put on something synthy with a good baseline or drum beat and I will be ready to go. This can have an opposite effect on me at times though; if I put on something calming before going out, I will probably end up not having fun if it’s something introspective that makes me want to spend time alone. My pump up music is usually Fun. or Maroon 5 or The Violent Femmes.
There are countless scenarios where I turn to music. Rap music gives me confidence; makes me feel like I can take on the world. The Beatles fuel my creativity. Relient K, depending on the song or album, can make me feel happy, nostaligic, silly, or understood.
Without this collection of sounds and lyrics, I would be at a loss; drowning in a sea of feelings without knowing how to deal with them.
That is how music helps.