“There will be an answer, let it be, let it be” – “Let it Be,” The Beatles
I first heard these lyrics from an interning music therapist at my first hospitalization. She had her guitar, let us choose songs from a list that she had, and gave us the lyrics to follow along. I had never heard “Let It Be” by the Beatles before, but when her voice ignited the notes, I found myself crying. It was so beautiful, and I realized then that dying by suicide would mean never again having the chance to enjoy the simple, uplifting chorus of a song.
“I believe you’ll outlive this pain in your heart and you’ll gain such a strength from what is tearing you apart…I believe that you’re gonna be alright, I believe that I’m gonna be alright, I believe that we’re gonna be alright.” – “It’s Going to Be Alright,” Sara Groves
This song came up on a list of music to listen to when suffering from depression. It became my lifeline and impacted my recovery journey greatly. It’s a calming, soothing, repetitive message; after listening to it a hundred times over, I truly have faith that I and you and we will be alright.
“I just hope I can find you, and tell you that I know you’ll smile again…I’m begging you no there’s more life left to go.” – “Life Left to Go,” Safetysuit
Another song I found through an online list. It’s emotional, releasing, and helped me through that dark time in my life.
“You’re gonna make it, and the night can only last for so long. Lift up your eyes and see the sun is rising.” – “The Sun Is Rising,” Britt Nicole
This beautiful song has inspired me time and again. I’m always referring back to this song and its lyrics if I need to just to get through that difficult moment.
“All those things I didn’t 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…Starting right now I’ll be strong.” – “Fight Song,” Rachel Platten
I first heard this on the radio, and instantly fell in love with it. It’s become my recovery’s mantra song and I was pleased to find that there were quite a few other individuals at the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Institute (OCD-I) who knew of its existence, too. I particularly like the line about regaining a voice. For me, it’s been an empowering song which inspires me to punch the OCD in the face (and what a fun activity that can be!).
“You know you’ve been told, you’ve gotta find something to hold on to. It gets better in time please just keep that in mind. Don’t break more inside.” – “A Better Place,” Jay Putty
I cried when I first listened to this song, and it’s made a lasting impact on me since. I can recall many crises where I was soothed by its cascading “it gets better.” I listened to it so much that the “better place” it speaks of became a psychiatric ward, where the person in my mind struggling gets better and lives a happy, long life.
“You’ve got the fire in you to make it through another day. You’ve got the fire in you to stay…You matter more than all the stars in the sky, don’t want to hear you sing your last lullaby.” – “The Fire In You,” Juliet Weybret
This is another song that brought me to tears, and whose lyrics have inspired many positive messages I’ve given out to others—as well, of course, as reminding myself of my own strength.
“Stick around another day. Give it a little time; believe me the sun will shine. You see you ain’t a loser, your life isn’t worthless, you’re here for a reason, believe it you’ve got a purpose.” – “Try Again,” Seein
This song gave me an understanding of how my struggles with suicidality were affecting those around me, while also reminding me that I wasn’t alone in my thoughts and feelings. Sometimes that reminder is all that matters.
“And everybody fights but not everyone survives. I’m still in recovery; help me make it out alive. We will recover, the worst is over now.” – “Recover,” Natasha Bedingfield
This song gives me hope when I’m struggling and I need to focus back on what recovery means to me.
“’Cause I know the smallest voices can make it major…Once I was twenty years old, my story got told.” – “7 Years,” Lukas Graham
I think fondly of this song because it reminds me that there’s potentially a lot of time on my hands in life and that I can get through what’s difficult now to make it to the better days that are ahead.
All of these songs act as positive music that I listen to when I’m either struggling and need hope or when I’m creating a new piece of artwork. The songs are featured in a playlist I made last year called Choose Life; Make Action or CL;MA.
Through the combination of positive music and positive phrases, alongside medications and therapy, I’ve made a lot of progress in just a year. The impact of this positivity is clear in my life, in my recovery, and especially in my artwork. They all have truly shaped my healing perspective.
To see more songs in my CL;MA playlist, you can find me at h-everybody-lies–md.deviantart.com. I have a journal there titled “Positive, Inspiring and Hopeful music” that also features some great artwork from the DA community. And, you know it’s coming, stay safe.
Mass Media Article #7. Written April 28 and 29.2016