How Music Helped My Battle With Depression

When I didn’t listen to anything for a while, I lost myself. I won’t let that happen again
Me belting out a song!
Katy Mann
Me belting out a song!

Music is a vital part of me. It influences my mood. It links interchangeably with events in my life. I can pinpoint different stages of my history just by hearing a certain song. It can whisk me back to a time period within hearing the first few beats.

It has only been recently, with my battle with depression, that I’ve realised how important music is to my soul. It has the power to lift my mood with the right song and bring me to tears with a different one.

I use music as a form of therapy. After my first grief counselling session, the first thing I did was play some music. By some coincidence or higher force (whatever you choose to believe) one of the first songs to come on was the song we played at my son’s funeral. I hadn’t heard it in eight years and the force of emotion was incredible. It took me right back to that day and in some way was helpful in my grieving process. It forced me into facing that day again in my head and processing those thoughts.

In the depths of my depression I listened to songs that made me feel good. Ones that reminded me of good times. I used to love dancing. Sadly I’ve lost the ability to dance with my feet by being in a wheelchair but I can still throw some shapes with my arms. It may not be conventional dancing but I give it all I’ve got.

Unfortunately I wasn’t born with the gift of a beautiful singing voice but it’s one of the things I love to do. What I lack in talent I make up for in enthusiasm. One of my current inspirations is ‘The Greatest Showman’ for its feel good music and positive story about those who are different. It might not be the true reality of what really happened but it’s touched the hearts of people like me. People who are not the “norm”.

I certainly wouldn’t be put up on stage but I don’t need one. My stage is my garden, my house, the car, anywhere where I can belt out a song. That’s my passion and pleasure in life. I’m inspired by a huge variety of music and I regularly post my song of the day on social media. It can be anything from Dr Hook to Kylie Minogue, just whatever fits my mood that day.

Music brings us together. It reminds us of the good and the bad. It defines and shapes our lives. I know my friends will always associate me with certain songs and I love that. I love that when they hear a song they think of me. I do the same and when I hear a song that I associate with someone it reminds me to get in touch with them.

I’ll never be the greatest singer but even just listening to music gets me through bad days. Some songs just reach a place nothing else can. They can touch your emotions and express what you can’t always say. They tug on your heart strings, make you smile or just make you want to get up and dance.

I couldn’t live without music. When I didn’t listen to anything for a while, I lost myself. I won’t let that happen again. So if you hear someone belting out a song (sometimes badly), smile and remember the joy it is giving them.

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