My friend KB always sends me screen shots of what she’s rocking out to on Google Play. She does this because she knows what’s up. When you’re in your 30’s in the year 2016, something awakens your soul when 90s hip hop and R&B comes on. You’re like instantly transported to driving around with a carload of your friends, deciphering beeper codes spelled out in numbers, passing around a 40 or Snapple spiked with Dubra, looking for some sort of fight or keg party in the woods. It’s like time stands still and we never got married or had kids or have real jobs. You know every word and start driving with one hand on the wheel while the other is up in the air. This is especially true for some reason in the early Spring when the first 70 degree weather hits. Sunroof opens, volume cranked and it’s this feeling that can’t be described. All I know, is I can’t even believe I even have a sunroof these days or gas money and that I just paid $10 for this pack of cigarettes that I’m hiding from my family. Oh how I miss the old days.
Music sparks something in us that few other things can. One of the best things about music is when it turns us into our alter ego or earlier version of ourselves. You can be a stressed out sloppy mess in sweats, but when Fifth Harmony’s “Work From Home” comes on, you forget that. You’re suddenly this twerking goddess, even if you are in the kitchen cooking with a whining kid in the next room watching Paw Patrol. Driving in the car on the way to preschool and Selena Gomez comes on singing I just wanna look good for you, and there I am sexy Marcey checking myself out in the rearview mirror, applying lipgloss, with child in backseat, saying to myself “Wait until he sees what I can do”. Uh huh. These are the moments when we know who we really are inside and that sometimes the day to day hustle takes precedence and we tend to lose ourselves. But the important thing is knowing that we still have it in us. Whether it’s our inner Foxy Brown with the ill nana, a genie in a bottle that just needs to be rubbed the right way or a slightly less buff version of Channing Tatum showing us how to ride a Pony.
As a therapist, I am always teaching others about the importance of using coping skills and outlets. If I had a dime every time I mentioned or wrote the phrase “coping skills” every day, I wouldn’t have to make a dollar out of 15 cents..legit. But it’s true, something is on your mind, you’re feeling a little low or anxious, the best thing you can do for yourself is find your strength or lose yourself in something you love, something that makes you feel good. And if you’re like me, music is one of these things. All music, new music, old music, crappy music you would never admit to liking, (insert Spice Girls, Hanson and Coolio). Grab those memories, the good ones only please, and think about a time when you were carefree and know that this is still you, no matter what is happening right now. So if you still own a CD player, throw on your old mix, compliments of Napster, and decide if you are East or West Coast.
All the Best,
East Coast for Life.