music as therapy, how it helped me find my words [Part One]

by mental health and wellness, recovery, healing & living well despite

This is a blog post mostly made up of the words of others. They are the music and lyrics that said what I could not say but desperately wanted to during some of the most challenging years of my life.

Compiling these songs onto a double CD nearly ten years ago was therapy for me. Listening now I am still transported to a different time, a seeming different life.

These Resonant Voices, as I called them then, are a very real account of the turmoil, devastation, yearning, humour and hope that lay in my struggle to recover from anorexia and heal the effects of childhood sexual abuse (amongst other things). Put together in this way the heartwrenching edge of these/my experiences is palpable.

The resonance of these songs continue to move me, they are a part of me. These lyrics were a first critical step in connecting me to others, through them I came to know I am not alone. They are the words that allowed me to start to make sense of my experiences, to find my own words for them. They provided the foundation for articulating and expressing some of what I was grappling with in life. Because of these words I started on the path toward accepting it all, to being who I am.

 

Through this music I found, and became myself. This music saved me.

 

scars are souvenirs you never lose

the past is never far

did you lose yourself somewhere out there?

and don’t it make you sad to know that life

is more than who we are

Name

Goo Goo Dolls

and I need you now somehow

and I need you now somehow

Ana you’re my obsession

I love you to the bones

and Ana wrecks your life

like an anorexia life

Ana's Song (Open Fire)

Silverchair

learn to evolve with the new transition

to act upon a hypocritical vision

learn to evolve, learn to, learn to evolve

Spawn Again

Silverchair

helpless, helpless, helpless,

helpless, helpless, helpless,

 

baby can you hear me now?

the chains are locked and tied around my door

and baby, will you sing with me somehow

 

helpless, helpless, helpless,

helpless, helpless, helpless,

helpless, helpless, helpless,

helpless, helpless 

Helpless

KD Lang

that boy needs therapy, psychosomatic

that boy needs therapy, purely psychosomatic

that boy needs therapy

 

lie down on the couch, what does that mean?

you’re a nut, you’re crazy in the coconut

what does that mean? that boy needs therapy

Frontier Psychiatrist

The Avalanches

so I keep watch and you keep breaking

breaking formation to become someone else

and your eyes become corridors, where I wander

with a candle, calling out to you

 

and you only hide … because you know i’ll find you

  

you say you just wanna feel

the way you used to feel

the way you should feel

and I wander, I wander through

the lost city of you

 

and you only hide, because you know i’ll find you

and you only hide, because you know i’ll find you

You Only Hide

Something for Kate

here is where I stand

here is who I am

and i’m not interested in

fitting in

I only want to be

to be this girl

i’m not interested in

giving in I only want to be

this girl

This Girl

Kylie Minogue

we are the casualties

no one tells you about us

you’ll hear stories, but you have to live to believe

don’t run away, we’re a cautionary tale

walk softly and take heed

don’t offer us your sympathy

you don’t know what we need

don’t come to me for happiness

i’m an open pit and you will just fall in

don’t ask me what my problem is

I wouldn’t know where to begin

Casualties

Red Delicious

I don’t like myself much anymore

I just need some time to myself

Time to Myself

Lioness

I am falling on the ground

trying not to make a sound

here I go again

I am falling at your feet

trying not to be this weak

here I go

and I am falling

Ice

Stella One Eleven

it’s not a habit, it’s cool, I feel alive

if you don’t have it you’re on the other side

i’m not an addict (maybe that’s a lie)

free me, leave me

watch me as i’m going down

free me, see me

look at me, i’m falling and i’m falling

Not An Addict

K's Choice

you lost your place in line again, what a pity

you never seem to want to dance anymore

I hear you’re counting sheep again Mary Jane

what’s the point of trying to dream anymore

I hear you’re losing weight again Mary Jane

do you ever wonder who you’re losing it for

please be honest Mary Jane

are you happy

please don’t censor your tears

Mary Jane

Alanis Morissette

and I don’t want you and I don’t need you

don’t bother to resist, or i’ll beat you

it’s not your fault that you’re always wrong

the weak ones are there to justify the strong

the beautiful people

the beautiful people (aahh)

The Beautiful People

Marilyn Manson

because of you

I never stray too far from the sidewalk

because of you

I learned to play on the safe side so I don’t get hurt

because of you

I find it hard to trust not only me, but everyone around me

because of you

I am afraid

 

I lose my way

and it’s not too long before you point it out

I cannot cry

because I know that’s weakness in your eyes

i’m forced to fake

a smile, a laugh everyday of my life

my heart can’t possibly break

when it wasn’t even whole to start with

Because of You

Kelly Clarkson

some of them want to use you

some of them want to get used by you

some of them want to abuse you

some of them want to be abused

Sweet Dreas (Are Made of This)

Marilyn Manson

I like it – i’m not gonna crack

I miss you – i’m not gonna crack

I love you – i’m not gonna crack

I killed you – i’m not gonna crack

Lithium

Nirvana

i’m a Barbie girl, in the Barbie world

life in plastic, it’s fantastic!

you can brush my hair, undress me everywhere

imagination, life is your creation

come on Barbie, let’s go party

Barbie Girl

Aqua

and I don’t want the world to see me

’cause I don’t think that they’d understand

when everything’s made to be broken

I just want you to know who I am

 

and you can’t fight the tears that ain’t coming

or the moment of truth in your lies

when everything feels like the movies

yeah, you bleed just to know you’re alive

Iris

Goo Goo Dolls

strumming my pain with his fingers

singing my life with his words

killing me softly with his song

killing me softly with his song

telling my whole life with his words

killing me softly with his song

Killing Me Softly

Fugees

and everything is sacred here

and nothing is as sacred as I want it to be

when it’s really all compared to what

Central Reservation

Beth Orton

what’s the use in regrets

they’re just things we haven’t done yet

what are regrets?

they’re just lessons we haven’t learned yet

Sweetest Decline

Beth Orton

spend all your time waiting

for that second chance

for a break that would make it okay

there’s always some reason

to feel not good enough

and it’s hard at the end of the day

I need some distraction

oh beautiful release

memories seep from my veins

let me be empty

and weightless and maybe

i’ll find some peace tonight

Angel

Sarah McLachlan

I want to run

I want to hide

I want to tear down the walls

that hold me inside

I want to reach out

and touch the flame

where the streets have no name

Where the Streets Have No Name

U2

something in the way, mmm

something in the way, yeah, mmm

something in the way, mmm

something in the way, yeah, mmm

Something in The Way

Nirvana

if I lay here

if I just lay here

would you lie with me and just forget the world?

Chasing Cars

Snow Patrol

I keep breaking all the promises

that I keep making to myself

you’d think that by now i’d be over this

instead i’m feeling sorry for myself

so why does everything seem desperate now

I should be feeling so alive

but it feels like something’s missing

something’s wrong somehow

it feels like something deep inside has died

so why do I feel desperate now

why do I feel like dying

why do I feel desperate now

Desperate Now

Stabbing Westward

Jesus, Jesus help me

i’m alone in this world

and a fucked up world it is too

Wake Up Dead Man

U2

very, merry xmas

and a happy new year

let’s hope it’s a good one

without any fear

Happy Xmas (War is Over)

John & Yoko

e girera e girera

il cuore mio assieme a te

e girera il la terra

girera la mia vita

e un giorno lui si si caprira

Gira Con Me Questa Notte

Josh Groban

blackbird singing in the dead of night

take these broken wings and learn to fly

all your life

you were only waiting for this moment to arise

Blackbird

Sarah McLachlan

when the night is falling

and you cannot find the light

if you feel your dream is dying

hold tight

you’ve got the music in you

don’t let go

you’ve got the music in you

one dance left

this world is gonna oull through

don’t give up

you’ve got a reason to live

can’t forget you only get what you give

You Get What You Give

New Radicals

 

I know that we all have songs and lyrics that resonate like this. Send me an email or visit me on facebook and tell me about yours.

… with heart,

Ellie.