BY: CAITLYN JENKINS

Going through my old email, I came across this essay that was written by me over a year ago. Before you read it, you should know some things.

1. It is personal. Not too deep into what I feel but it’s not vague.

2. I wrote this a long time ago so don’t judge my writing abilities.

3. When I wrote this, I was a very different person than I am now.

That being said, I still feel like music has such a big impact on me and has helped me grow into who I am today. I’m thankful that as humans we get to experience something so beautiful. I thought this essay would be fun to share (It was written for a college application by the way).

Almost everyone on this planet could tell you what is most meaningful to them, whether it be a tangible item or an idea. While a lot of things are meaningful in my life, the one thing that has helped me get through a lot of things is something we cannot touch, but something that we can hear: music. This idea may seem silly to most, the idea that music can mean so much to someone. On the surface, it could probably appear like something not worth writing about, but music has touched me and impacted my life in ways that are almost too hard to express in words.

My real interest in music started in tenth grade, when I was sixteen. I had always loved music, but it was in that time that I learned what it really meant in my life. There had been things I struggled with my whole life. My parent’s having me at such a young age and getting divorced shortly after always made me feel unwanted in their lives. My move from a private school to public school in middle school always left me feeling different from my peers and struggling to fit in. I struggled a lot with the idea that I was never good enough or important to the people around me no matter how hard I tried.

Then, I found music. I stopped pretending to like what everyone else liked, and branched out into the world of music that I had never experienced before. The songs I listened to taught me very important things about myself. I learned that I was good enough, and I was worth something. The music made me feel like I was not alone, and that it was okay to mess up sometimes. Music showed me that I could express myself, and be anything I wanted. The feeling of security and hope the music gave me continues to inspire me to this day. In dark times, my love for music has always been there for me. Music is so important to me, and so many other people because it lets everyone know that there are other people out there that are dealing with the same things as them.

Going to concerts and seeing the people that make me feel so secure gives me such a sense of happiness. In those moments, I know that I am in a room full of people that feel the exact same way as I do. It is one of the best feelings in the world. Whether I’m listening to music on my record player or from my iPod, playing guitar and singing, or experiencing live music, it always gives me a sense of security and purpose in this world where it is so easy to feel like you do not belong.

Ultimately, music has made me into the person that I am today. I learned from so many artists the importance of being yourself, in the realest sense. Being myself and being happy with my life truly changed my perspective on the world today. I am no longer afraid to be different. Some people may laugh when I tell them the impact music has had on my life, but when I feel like my words cannot do my feelings justice I can always go to one of my favorite quotes from Alex Gaskarth. “Loving a band with all your heart is something you understand when it happens to you. On the surface, others can see it as a petty obsession, but they’ll never know the feeling of putting so much faith into a few people on the other side of the world. It’s hard to explain it to them. And they can’t understand why one band could matter to you so much. And you think to yourself, because they saved my life. But you say nothing, they wouldn’t understand.”

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