So it turns out I'm kind of a mess sometimes. Anxiety is my poison and as with many moods, music can be a cure. So when I'm all worked up, I frequently turn to one of the following:
1. Age of Worry by John Mayer
This song tends to the anxieties particular to those who seek to find themselves: timing and missed opportunities, paving your own path, achieving dreams and botching them. Been there, felt that, happy for the refrain: "Alive in the age of worry. Smile in the age of worry. Go wild in the age of worry. And say worry, why should I care?"
2. Keep Breathing by Ingrid Michaelson
I have a tendency to think I'm not doing enough with my life, with my days, and my moments. It's an altruist overachiever's obsession with the idea that one person can make difference to the world. But I don't make a difference, sometimes. Sometimes I just want to sit in my bed and stare at the wall.
So I hear "I want to change the world, instead I sleep" and feel a pang of guilt. And the mantra, "all that I know is I'm breathing. All I can do is keep breathing. All we can do is keep breathing, " repeated and escalated is a good reminder that I can do what I can do, and what I can do is just fine.
Plus this scene from Grey's Anatomy is just heart-wrenching, ain't it?
3. How Firm a Foundation
This was my mission anthem. Riding bikes down the street at a million degrees, stressed and tired and emotionally invested in the hearts and lives of people whose decisions I had really no control over. The best is the third verse: "Fear not, I am with thee, oh be not afraid/ For I am thy God and will still give thee aid!!" It's almost shouted (hence, exclamation marks). It's especially memorable in Thai, where that last line has a strongly phrased (and rhyming) "Rao ben Pra Jao" (I am thy God) that just oomphs right out of your mouth. The declaration resurfaces in my mind and out my mouth from time to time, usually when I feel more frantic than melancholy (where the other two come to aid).