On one of the other blogs I follow (sorry, I don’t remember which one), the author posted that when she is down, she tends to listen to music that makes her even more down. I can totally relate to this. I’ve always been this way even when I was a little kid.
I used to have a stuffed cow with a music box inside. It’s been nearly 30 years, so I don’t remember what the tune was that it played, but one of my earliest memories is of winding it up in the dark and letting it play until the music stopped. This was right after my grandfather died and there was something about the music slowly dying that somehow made my sadness make sense.
I’d like to think I’m a bit more sophisticated now than I was when I was 4, but I still listen to sad music when I’m sad. In a way, that’s how this blog got started. I was thousands of miles away from home, half drunk in a hotel room, barely suppressing my sobs as I listened to a particularly sad song. I had to get it out. The music amplified what I was feeling and gave it form, so I started a blog to record it.
There is however a fine line between listening to music to sooth the soul or to give voice to the pain we can’t express in words, and allowing the music to take control and drive us even lower. I’m hesitant even to mention it, let alone link it, but there is a song by Moby that I listened to when I was planning my death. It’s a song about being tired of fighting just to keep your head above water and finally letting go. I can’t listen to it anymore because I makes me feel even more hopeless and more like letting go. I find myself humming it sometimes when things are really bad and I have to fight it, usually by listening to something more upbeat.
I don’t know that I really have a point to this post other than to say that I too like to listen to sad music when I’m sad. It’s cathartic to hear beauty in the midst of pain, don’t you agree?