There are days when I feel like quitting. Those days are the hardest. It’s as if all hope is lost and negative thoughts cloud my head.
During those days, it’s so easy to choke on those negative thoughts. On those days, my dreams feel like they are so out of reach, so impossible.
And then I come across someone who’s doing what they love and they are succeeding at it.
First, I feel bad because I think if they were able to do it, then why do I feel stuck??
Then, when I am done allowing my self-doubt to take over, I think, if they were able to do it, so can I.
There was a day I was feeling particularly sad about where I was in terms of my dreams, so I turned to some of my closest friends. I told them how I felt.
In grade school I learned that being an “author” or “novelist” was an actual job, and since then, I’ve dreamed of publishing best-selling books worldwide, yet here I was with the same story—a decade later—still unpublished.
I also discovered that there was such a job as a music photographer and I wanted to be that, too. I’ve wanted to work in the music industry since I was 12. I started my first music blog as ohfortheloveofmusic because I wanted to intern for a music magazine, and also saw blogging as a great way to showcase my work online and practice being a music journalist. Then I learned that you could actually BE a music photographer and that would allow you to tour with a band…
My friends reminded me that I shouldn’t compare my journey to others. I had to step back and remind myself why I started a blog in the first place. I believe music is a vessel for hope, for connecting people with one another, and for making us feel like we are not alone.
I recently came across the first post of my first music blog. I’m going to share it with you because up to today I still believe in what I wrote back in 2011.
For the longest time, I wanted my own little nook in the worldwide web where I could just write about one of my passions – music. I was on a writer’s block for quite some time – the kind where though I would write, I felt like it was not my best. When I was thinking about what my first post in this site would be, I came across Anberlin’s lead singer, Stephen Christian’s blog. A post entitled “We Owe This to Ourselves (King)” caught my attention. As I was reading on, the wonders of his thoughts struck me:
“We owe it to ourselves to end racism in our generation, to see the good in people, to fight against segregation, and to become a more just and non-judgmental global community.” –Stephen Christian
It was only when I finished reading his entry that I realized the meaning of Anberlin’s song We Owe This to Ourselves. The murky waters of hypothesizing on that song’s meaning turned as clear as the purest crystal; it was one of those light-bulb revelation moments. It’s not just the music that hits a person, but the one who plays it; the artist who crafts the lyrics and the tune; the fans; and the experiences that come along with a certain song.
“Never underestimate a girl’s love for her favorite band. Never think even for a minute, that she won’t defend them to her death. Because it’s not just the music that makes that band her favorite. It’s the guys, the gals. It’s the fans. People whom of which she has interacted with, thanks to the band. That band might have saved her life, or just made her smile every day. That band has never broke her heart and has yet to leave her. No wonder she finds such joy in her music” – Alex Gaskarth (All Time Low)
Stumbling across Stephen Christian’s writer’s guild was no accident of sorts, rather it was the match I needed to re-ignite the fire of writing. I was reminded of why I loved music so much; why I even thought of starting a site like this – to show others that their passion about music or whatever their dream is, is more than alive. It loses its intensity sometimes, but one just needs that kick or push to get Mr. Inspiration back.
Music isn’t limited to sound. There’s so much more attached to it than one can see at a glance. The music itself is already a huge factor in what makes people happy or sad, but it’s also the people behind and connected to the music – the musicians, the tour guys, the producers, the fans, the promoters, and the experiences tied to the song or band that makes music what it is and what we love it for.
When nothing seems to escalate our mood meter, when we feel like no one can understand us the way we want them to, or when we feel ecstatic, there’s always a song that’s perfect for the moment. Most of all, through the song, lyrics, or the musician, music gives us that indescribable feeling of hope.
And maybe that’s why I still fight to pursue my dreams even if they seem impossible. I know I can’t give up when I’ve gone a long way… maybe I’m closer than ever to achieving my dreams.
Sometimes, we just need a reminder that we are slowly getting to where we want to be. Sometimes, we just need other people to believe in us when we forget to believe in ourselves.
My dreams may not be your dreams. You have your own that you may have had also for years now… your own battles in the path to pursuing those dreams.
So let me tell you this: please do not give up.
I believe in you.