The Places Where Music Takes Me


Source: © Photo by Pavel Danilyuk | Pexels

During an 18-month period from 2005 to 2007, I suffered a important depressive episode with intense suicidal ideation which essential six inpatient psych admissions. I’d just began working with a psychiatrist, Dr. Lev, who specialized in TFP or transference-focused psychotherapy, a remedy created to treat BPD or borderline character disorder. We didn’t get also far into TFP, when in session I started detailing how I intended to go dwelling and kill myself, so Dr. Lev had no option but to hospitalize me. During a single or more of these admissions, I received a course of ECT or electroconvulsive therapy, which helped for about a month, but then we couldn’t discover a medication or mixture of medicines to sustain the improvement.

As I was making the playlist on my telephone, I downloaded a single of my all-time favored songs, Because the Night, by Bruce Springsteen and Patti Smith, as covered by Natalie Merchant and 10000 Maniacs on “MTV Unplugged.” While I was in the hospital, I listened to that CD on my Discman more than and more than once more. Laying in my hospital bed, also depressed to join the neighborhood, I mouthed the words as Natalie sang them. Tears ran down my cheeks as I fantasized about getting dead.

Come on now, attempt and fully grasp
The way I really feel below your command
Take my hand, as the sun descends
They can not hurt you now
Can’t hurt you now
Can’t hurt you now

Because the evening belongs to lovers
Because the evening belongs to us
Because the evening belongs to lovers
Because the evening belongs to us

When I listen to Because the Night now, strangely, though I can recall that girl sobbing on her hospital bed, I do not really feel sad. I really feel energized by Natalie Merchant’s effective voice. As Kelly Jakubowski wrote in a current sychology Today post, “The power of music often lies not only in the sound itself, but in the emotions and memories it can conjure up.”

Another favored song that nevertheless energizes me is Rachel Platten’s Fight Song. After I had my stroke in May 2018, when I was wheeled into the health club for physical therapy at the rehabilitation facility, I often requested they play it. I worked extremely challenging to relearn to stroll and regain complete use of my left arm as my left side was impacted due to the stroke. I also suffered cognitive harm, but I was relieved at least I could nevertheless recall the lyrics and sing along with Rachel.

And all these points I did not say
Wrecking balls inside my brain
I will scream them loud tonight
Can you hear my voice this time?

This is my fight song
Take back my life song
Prove I’m alright song
My power’s turned on
Starting appropriate now I’ll be powerful
I’ll play my fight song
And I do not truly care if no one else believes
‘Cause I’ve nevertheless got a lot of fight left in me

When I listen to Fight Song today, I really feel the energy of how challenging I worked and I really feel alive. Just as I am grateful I had access to the intensive remedy I required to recover from my mental illness, I’m grateful that 4 years ago I had access to the very best OT and PT in an outstanding rehabilitation center that was ten minutes from exactly where I lived.

A study titled “Music-evoked autobiographical memories in everyday life” discovered that music “can be a especially powerful cue for bringing a single back to the sights and sounds of events from across the lifespan.”

I could create a enormous list of artists who evoke meaningful but distinctive memories from my previous beginning with David Cassidy and The Partridge Family whose show was on tv just about every Friday evening when I was in grade college.

Who are some of your favored singers and what memories do they bring up for you?

© Andrea Rosenhaft

Source: © Andrea Rosenhaft



Originally published in www.psychologytoday.com