This was the first line of a paper I wrote last year about a meaningful experience in my life.
I've come to find since writing that paper that there was never one experience that changed my life but several that saved my life: several nights of falling into the comfort of notes of songs, immersing myself in lyrics, and surrounding myself with the love that resonated through my empty room from my speakers.
If you never read another of my posts, please take the time to read this one.
I have told this story and will tell it again and again through my career.
I want to be a writer, because I want to help people.
I want to make people feel that they belong, that someone out there cares about them, and that they can make it through whatever this world may shoot at them alive-- The world can fire, but one can evade the shots. I feel as if it is my duty to carry on the legacy of what completely changed and - I will say it- saved my life. That is, music.
To me, music is among the most powerful things in the world, and I want to be a music journalist, because I have felt the full power of music and want to pass it on.
In May, 2008 the website ThankYouMCR.com was launched. This site showcases stories from fans of the band My Chemical Romance that tell how the band has changed, saved, or positively influenced their lives. My story was among the first featured, and I would like to share it with you here.
Asking me how My Chemical Romance saved my life is almost like asking me my birth date. It's so ingrained in me that, literally, the day I found MCR was like a re-birth, or-- perhaps- the birth I should have had.
I was always a lonely person, an only child and a friendless child. I never quite fit in even at the youngest of ages. Imagine this: a seven-year-old girl trying to explain to her mother why she doesn't want to have a birthday party, knowing at that young of an age that the other kids would not attend...
I lived my life in quiet solitude for fourteen years; then, I finally hit a bottom and no longer wanted to live. The year 2004 was definitely the worst of my life, and I-- at that time- had every intention of its being my last. Little did I know at that point that Gerard Way of My Chemical Romance was feeling the same helplessness.
One day, I sat watching the TV. All the videos of my favorite songs passed my numb senses; then, a video caught my attention: "I'm Not Okay (I Promise)" - it was such a simple song, but it heightened my interest when I had lost interest in almost everything. The song made me feel something when I thought I would never feel again.
I immediately began to research the band and saw that, though this group of men was older than me, they were all outcasts and they encouraged the lonely and underdog to stand up for himself. They gave a positive message, and I took it fully to heart.
Their music gave me something to which I could relate; something that spoke to me and seemed to put my feelings into metaphor, a sort of audio friend.
Through them, I have learned to stand up for myself and for others, I have been given a voice that will never be silenced again, and most importantly, I have been given a will to live, and a hope that I someday can help people as they helped me.
Thank you, My Chemical Romance, for saving my life and others' lives.
Link to story
The video that changed it all:
Thank you guys so much for reading.
"Never let them take you alive"