The first time I listened to Led Zeppelin IV, my life changed for the better. A door was opened in my mind that I never knew was there. I developed a belief in music. Here I was, age 15, listening to the popular rap and pop songs. I didn’t really like them, but I was trying to fit in with that high school “in crowd.” For some unknown reason, I felt the need to be popular. It was the most important thing in my life.
Then, my parents came out with the news of their separation, which I had seen coming, but I never thought the day would actually come. After my mom moved out, I slipped into a deep depression. I was lost in life, and I withdrew myself from the “popular pretty people” I called friends. I didn’t care about being accepted by them anymore. I wanted to rebel against them and their standards. I grew to dislike that crowd, for I felt they were fake and selfish. Plus, they didn’t seem to mind the fact that I was upset. They were too wrapped up in their own beings to care.
I wanted to be alone, but I found that only made me feel worse. I would lay in bed at night, in the silent darkness and feel miserable. I felt like I was in a deep dark hole of nothing, and each day I would fall more and more into that hole, and there was no way out. That is until I discovered my father’s CD collection, containing music from the 1960s Cultural Revolution era, and the 1970s rock bands. I popped Led Zeppelin IV in my CD player, curious about the music, and halfway through “Misty Mountain Hop,” I said to myself, “Okay, now I get it.”
These tunes were made way before my time, but I liked them. I understood their messages, and for some reason, I felt that those musicians could vicariously sympathize with my life through their lyrics and music. The sounds coming from the speakers seemed to somehow bring all my bottled-up feelings to life. At the end of each hard day, I turned to the music to comfort me. I got sort of a natural high from it. It relaxed and mentally soothed me.
To this day, those same songs continue to have meaning in my life. They keep me from falling back into that hole of depression. I smile when I hear certain songs, because it takes me back to those hard times, and how the songs helped me through them. And I smile because I can still sit back, relax, and listen to those songs meander through my head, and it helps.
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