The Power of Music During a Mental Health Crisis
This is me during a major mental health relapse in 2012. At the time of this video's recording I was suicidal, but I wasn't ready to share that with anyone. This song in particular was chosen by me, almost as a cry for help. I wanted people to feel my sorrow and reach out to me because I was too afraid to ask for help.
Sometimes we choose the music we share to emote to our friends and relatives how we are feeling. When we share sad, or heartbreaking songs we look for others to say, "Yes, I feel that. I like that one too." It helps us heal. Our empathy heals us. Giving our suffering a voice, or a song, is empowering us to connect with the common brother/sisterhood of man. All of the sudden we find ourselves as a small part of something bigger, something more. Our suffering is not just our own. The music becomes a shared sacrament that has the potential to pull us through even the most heartbreaking moments.
The next time some one plays a sad song for you don't block it out, don't scroll past it or avoid clicking the link. Don't ignore it because you perceive it as "negative" or "depressing." Ask yourself why it is being shared. Ask yourself what the person sharing it is trying to tell you and open your heart to the answer without judgement.
The music we surround ourselves with and share with each other says a lot about how we are feeling in that moment. This could have been the last song my friends and relatives ever heard me sing. Luckily I was one of the strong ones.
Preventing mental health episodes can be as simple as noticing something small. The type of music we listen to. The way we smile. The way we talk or move our bodies. The signs are always there. Be mindful. Observe. Listen to the music of those around you and always remember, when you hear, you heal.
- N. Daniel -