Monday, 5 September 2016

The Album That Was There For Me

The year was 2012. I was 22 years old.
I was working, I was in a relationship, I had successfully moved out, I felt a sense of comfort. I was content with my life 
...and then Christina Aguilera dropped her new album, Lotus.
All of sudden, feelings I wasn't particularly aware that I had were being catered to and nourished.
She was singing words that made me feel like I wasn't alone. That I was strong. It was all going to be okay. I would be alright in the end.
For the longest time I listened to those particular songs on repeat. Whenever I went out I would have them playing on my Ipod.
Kind of like affirmations. Like, the more I listened, the more it became a part of me.
I wanted to be as strong as the person she was singing about.
It felt like someone had heard my thoughts, fears and worries and was reaching out to me.


Then 2014 happened. I was 24 years old.
I was out of work. I was single. I was living back at home. I felt worthless. It was when my mental illness' well and truly took hold of me.
This was going to be my life. I had succumbed to the fact that I would never be happy again. I was just existing.
Over the last two years I have most definitely hit rock bottom, there's no other way to describe it. I could see no light at the end of the tunnel.
I couldn't listen to the songs that once brought me so much comfort and strength.
I felt so weak and helpless that even the thought of fighting my own brain was impossible to me.
About two months ago I had a rather unexpected and major breakthrough.
I decided to try to get better and live with my mental illness' rather than be completely controlled by them.
And then it happened. I found myself walking one day and searching for those songs which I had pushed away for so long.


It is 2016. I am 26 years old.
This evening I sat and listened to some of the tracks. My heart begins to race.
I am miming along with the words as if there was never a day that went by that I didn't do so.
It all feels so familiar but like I am hearing it with fresh ears at the same time.
Looking back, the album helped me through so much all those years ago, more than anyone or anything could ever have.
It taught me to find inner strength. That I could get through a lot and not crumble. To start learning that I was stronger than I thought.
I won't lie. Since then I have crumbled.
But I think that strength is still with me. It has been buried deep below the surface but I feel like with effort and time it will rise up again.
I have been through tough times but I feel it has helped make me who I am today. The good, the bad and the ugly. I am thankful for it all.


Christina Aguilera's Lotus album means so much to me 
- her too but that's a whole other post ;)
it has helped me to feel comforted, strong and dare I say, it has started to make me feel whole again.
The songs in particular that touch my heart, soul and parts of me that I didn't know existed are the following :D

ARMY OF ME
"Now that I'm wiser
Now that I'm stronger
Now that I'm a fighter
There's a thousand faces of me"
This song reminds me that even when you're in pieces, each piece can be strong and still remains part of you.

BLANK PAGE
"I would do anything for us to make it through
Draw me a smile and save me tonight
I am a blank page waiting for you to bring me to life"
This song had a particular meaning to me and then after my breakup I heard it in a completely different way... That and the fact it's just beautiful :D

BEST OF ME
"Think I'm steel
Tough as nails
Never feel
Never fail
But you're wrong
So damn wrong
Feel the weight
Of your hate
I still bleed
My heart aches
As you take
And you take"
This is my favourite song on the whole album (and possibly my favourite song of hers) Hits me on every level every time.
It's like it was written for me 

EMPTY WORDS
"The hardest part of this
Cannot be heard or seen
This journey starts when I begin loving me"
This song has reminded me time and time again that I am strong enough to not be broken by words.


A long post but one that means a great deal to me 
I feel like music has truly managed to heal me at times and I am hopeful that in time, it will continue to.
I used to feel like a strong person and I found it within the lines of these songs.
I feel like this amazing artist has taught me that there is nothing wrong with being a strong woman and celebrating that.
Like the lotus I will rise from the mud and bloom again.
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