The Light Through The Darkness

A little over a year ago I was attending Journey’s Warp Tour in Connecticut with my husband, his best-friend and his family. While there were only a few bands that either I’ve heard before or checked out on YouTube and wanted to see I was introduced to an artist known as Andy Black.

As I stood there in the blazing sun watching this man perform and listening to the words of his music there wasn’t any way that I was leaving the tour without his CD in my hands.

One of his most incredible and powerful songs is “Put The Gun Down” and while you immediately think of a song about suicide it is more than that it is about being lost, being defeated, being burnt out and drowning in that feeling of “I’m Done.” And yet there is hope in the beats of the music the words define how you are feeling yet the vibration of the music gives you hope it brings you to a place where you want to rise to escape these feelings.

I recently watched his video on YouTube the story behind this song and was so inspired by his presence, talking about the loss of his friend, feeling exhausted on tour and while he himself has never experienced this kind of darkness he has been touched by it, he can empathize with the reality and emotional toll that life can have on others. Watch the Behind The Song: Put The Gun Down.

Ironically, as a person who battles depression on a daily basis and often can feel like I want to throw in the towel, not take my medication daily, not do my meditations, my journalling, and just give in to that darkness — his song Put The Gun Down finds a part inside me that shines the light.

In my 47 years I’ve slit my wrists on more than one occassion, I overdosed in 7th grade, and just over a decade ago I sat in my car parked on the train tracks swallowed 100+ sleeping pills, chased them with vodka mixed with a fountain soda and was ready to let it all go to give in to the pain of sucking as a mom, a wife, a fight with my father two hours before he died, coming from a family with so many secrets and judgement I was done.

At some point I noticed that there were some things belonging to my two children in the back seat and I managed to drive myself home. I don’t really know how I did without hurting myself or anyone else on the road.

To this day the bits and pieces that I remember from the moment I pulled my car infront of my home to the lights of the emergency room is all that was real. For several days all my memories did not happen. I laid there and the world not knowing why or when I’d wake up if at all.

From that moment I swore to myself that no matter how dark I felt that I would not want to ever put my childrent through that choice of what to do or why I made that choice. It is not a selfish or coward choice to make as it is within us and we believe that living with the person who battles this fight every day in their mind is worse than not living with us. I do not expect anyone to understand that who doesn’t go through this fight.

But to those that do know you aren’t alone and there are those of us who will not judge you for the thoughts and feelings you have. I do recommend you listening to Andy Black’s song “Put The Gun Down” and find the hope, the courage and the strength to move through the feelings and thoughts in your mind. Buy his album The Shadow Side — there are so many songs that you can relate to the light and dark fight in your mind.

May you find the love and understanding in this article and I will not preach to you. I see you. I understand. I know that the fight is real.