deaths of despair

How Music Saved My Life by Annabeth McNamara


I recently had someone scoff at the idea that I may have ever been through really dark times. 
I am wanting to be vulnerable and share that I have spent a good part of my life struggling with suicidal thoughts. 

I know for a fact I'm not alone, as I hear there is a veritable epidemic of "deaths of despair" going on these days...

A big part of my journey has been learning how to stay balanced and grounded as waves of dark emotions crash over me, seeping up under me through the night and waking me with an icy splash in the face, drawing me unwilling back to harsh life and its million tiny pressure, responsibilities, and miseries. 

Over the years, I have learned to become a hunter, with my golden arrow of focus pointed at things that will lift me up out of these dredges and into a brighter shine.

As a result of my predisposition for darkness, I've become obsessed with positive psychology: the psychology of happiness.

Yes, there is a science to it. Yes, anyone can learn how to raise their emotional set-point.

Flow state is one petal on the flower of happiness. That is, getting lost in an activity...

Music has been a lifeline for me-- it's always been there no matter what. It's a touch-stone I can always reach for, as easy as reaching out to a warm wooden instrument and seeking the harmonies latent in its strings. Music is this magical key to my life-- I can sing and suddenly I'm present, filled with oxygen and resonant frequencies that please my bones. I can sing with others and suddenly we're connecting in a rapturous state of transcendence. I can sing and suddenly I'm plunged into a watery world of wavelengths where I can shut my eyes and dive beneath the waves and forget my troubles, erase my troubles, or express my frustrations and swim past them.

In this bubble of harmony, the harsh pain of 3-dimensional life eases into a wondrous doubt-- that perhaps this "real world" we attribute so much gravity isn't actually as real as the subtle sonic gossamer we're cocooning ourselves in. That it's merely the flimsy, shiny sheen that hides beneath it a huge and vastly deep current that is the Source of Life, where we go when we die, and can't music be heavenly? Don't you just sometimes die a tiny death and rise up on a sunlit cloud of feeling when you hear a beautiful strand of music come to take you home? 

The fact that sharing my heart-songs has become a big part of my career never ceases to amaze me. And now I've gone another step along the path to share my knowledge, to press the golden keys and hand them out to the beautiful young people who have come to knock on the door to music, so they can learn to speak and write and dance and live and breathe this medium as well...

Yes, I've been through dark times. But you wouldn't know it, because I have built a house of song around myself where I can sleep sweetly while I'm awake.

So. If you haven't gone to my kickstarter page to hear me talk about why I'm making my next album, you've got 44 hours to donate and add fuel to my creative fire:…/larkspur-needs-your-help-to-r…

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Thanks so much to everyone who's donated so far. You really see me and honor my gifts. It's an amazing realization.