When I heard this song for the first time yesterday, it took me back a few years ago. Back to when I was 12 going on 13, and just new in high school. It started out great, but everything changed after a few weeks when my best friend started to bully me. She made it clear that I wasn’t popular, I wasn’t pretty and I wasn’t someone everyone wanted to be friends with. I was weird. A loner. A freak. Stupid. Emo. Dumb. Ugly. Fat.
People bullied me. They called me names. They laughed at me. They told lies about me. They taunted me via the internet and made it seem as if everything was always my fault. They set more and more people up against me until I had nobody left to trust. No one to go to when I needed support. I was broken, down, and at one point it got so bad I wanted to kill myself. I just didn’t want to anymore. Every day was the same: getting up with pain in my stomach and feeling nauseous because I’d have to face people in my school again, then going to school, being bullied practically all day long, teachers knew but they didn’t do anything, then going home, isolate myself from my parents and brothers and eventually cry myself to sleep. I was sick of it. I just wanted to end it all.
Thanks to music I didn’t.
‘Hold On’ from Good Charlotte and ‘Welcome To My Life’ from Simple Plan were the two songs that had the biggest part in saving me from committing suicide. Those songs kept me holding on, they pulled me up, helped me and pushed me through every day. Music just made my life bearable. It made me realize that I’m not alone and I’ll never be. Music was there when no one else was, and I’ll never be able to express my feelings of thankfulness towards the bands that saved me.
I’m not bullied anymore (save from a few taunts and nasty comments here and there, but it’s not as bad as it used to be). I’m not going to say everything’s better, because when the bullying stopped, other problems tumbled upon me and my family and friends: my brother has OCD, my mother got breast cancer, my family fighting almost nightly, my best friend’s mom died, almost losing my other best friend, a little friend died from cancer, and I’m struggling with self-harm, insecurities and minor depression. Music still helps me. Still gets me though the day. Still gets me up when I feel down. Simply said: music saved my life, and keeps doing it.
Even though I now listen to a lot more and different bands than I used to back then, I’ll always remember how much Simple Plan and Good Charlotte mean to me. I still listen to them, just a little less than I used to, but my love for them hasn’t faded one single bit. Call me childish for loving Simple Plan and Good Charlotte so much, but I’m still alive thanks to them. And so when I heard ‘The Rest Of Us’ I laughed with joy, I cried tears of recognition and thankfulness and I felt immensely proud of these guys.
I could count all the stars, every blade of grass, every raindrop that falls and every cell in a human body. The sum of those together won’t even come close to how much I love my bands.