My hero in life
I thought I was poised and ready to take my last breath. Let us talk about the importance of music and its role in sustaining life for those of us who have experienced intense and very dark episodes of depression. My personal hero is Jason Wade. Jason Wade is the lead singer of the band called Lifehouse. You may have heard their hit song "Hanging by a Moment" on the radio once or twice if you were alive in 2000. It is almost a certainty.
I remember I was a freshman in high school when I had seen their first music video on MTV. (Yes, I am showing my age here!) I cannot really explain in words what gravitated me towards their music, but something about it was highly appealing and sucked me in.
That same summer, I purchased the record No Name Face from the Tower Records store in Houston, Texas. This would be the album that would absolutely revolutionize and change my life when I least expected it. This would be the exact work of art I would need to help me survive my dramatic and less than desirable teenage years.
You see, when I was a teenager and entering high school I was as just as lost as all of the other kids around me were. Like everyone else, I was afraid to admit that I was a sinking ship destined to go down at any second.
I was afraid of the backlash and humiliation these kinds of thoughts would create. Deep down inside I was suffocating and the devil on my shoulder was delighted. I was not sure if I would ever come up for air again, and if I did, it was becoming increasingly difficult to breathe and exist in my own skin. Add to that the challenge of having a physical disability that leaves me dependent on a wheelchair, and you have a full-fledged disaster. I was the only person in my designated high school who had to rely on a wheelchair. This left me feeling misunderstood and even more isolated than before.
All of this would become the worst tangled mass of depression that I would ever experience. As a result of my depression, my grades were suffering. There was a time when I thought I would never get out of the hell hole that was high school. I did not know who I was, and all I desired was to find my place in an out-of-place world. Being an outcast was as demoralizing and as lonely as it sounds. I have been the only person sitting at a table in a cafeteria full of other kids.
This whole situation would lead me to question the essence of life itself and all that surrounds me. In fact, it got so bad that I started to think about hurting myself. Every afternoon, I would rush back to my bedroom, lay on the floor, and start my CD player. Once I purchased No Name Face, it became the only CD in my CD player for months at a time. Once the music started, I would close my eyes and let the music take over. It is this very thing that helped me realize that I was not alone in this life. It helped me realize that I was not the only person being verbally assaulted by bullies who had nothing better to do with their time than to hurt others. I now realize that their terror was only a reflection of how they felt about themselves. It had little or absolutely nothing to do with me personally.
As a teenager, though, I did not have the mental capacity to realize such a thing. It was not that I was not in control of myself, but I was naïve. Being naïve meant that I did not understand why the bullies chose to pick on me, but eventually, I would start to slowly believe that there was something wrong with me. This is when Jason Wade’s music became my lifeline and the thing that would sustain my life. Because of this especially important aspect, I will always consider Jason to be the person who came to my rescue when I needed it most. Nearly 18 years later, the same thing rings true. It seems like I have a soul-to-soul connection with the band that is ever-lasting. They seem to put out new music when I needed it most. I have searched for other connections with similar bands, but it just does not seem to connect in the same manner. I consider this as something that is meant to be. The connection to Jason Wade’s music will last forever.