I Was On the Ledge

by Jen on April 20, 2009

Writer’s Name Withheld

I have a small problem with keeping my priorities straight. I put the world in front of the Lord and the church. Starting at age 11, I wasn’t on the right path. In fact, I was more on the rocky ledge, grasping for a hand hold on to, so I wouldn’t fall to the bottom. I have a great family, and I had great friends, but my environment wasn’t too great. I became involved in things that I shouldn’t have, and now it has scarred my life.

I loved the music I listened to everyday. It had a great beat, catchy lyrics, and I thought, at the time, that it related to me. It didn’t, but I wanted it to. I wanted the song to be about me. Thinking back, I was so involved in the world, that the scriptures should have been my song. The trials that the men and women of the scriptures went through, I could relate to.

Are you listening to music you know you shouldn’t be? Read my story about how poor music choices almost killed me.

I would sit in my room, on my bed, and listen to the worldly music, blasting it into my ears, memorizing the words, crying. The song made me cry, I thought that it was because it touched my heart, that there were other people going through the same things I was. I cried because deep down, my heart was being torn, it was trying to tell me to turn it off, throw it away and walk away from it. I didn’t want to, it was my security blanket. I didn’t want to talk to the Lord, how ashamed he would be. I didn’t think about it. I went to church, I went to YW, but I was never fully there. It was like a ghost, the real me was somewhere trying to get my attention. I didn’t want to listen. The music didn’t allow me to. The loud screams and noise coming from the speakers pushed the spirit away. My room was always very cold, or very hot, never just right. I would always either sleep with three blankets, or sleep without one. The spirit was gone, I thought. He has other people that need his help. I was alone.

As a girl, I naturally liked guys, but the boys in my classes, at school or church didn’t really interest me. I liked the guys with piercings, and tattoos, and hair that covered their eyes. They wore tights pants that probably cut the circulation off for their toes. I liked it; I thought that it was so hot! I tried to make myself look like that. I straightened my beautiful curly hair, gave myself bangs, wore eyeliner, and I wore more black than I should, even in the summer.

This went on for about two years. It was the same day over and over again. I would fight with my sisters and my mom. I would pray, but only for dinner, and sometimes the family prayer, if I wasn’t “asleep”.

My family moved, to another city, not that far away, but it was hard. My mom threw away all of my CD’s. I was so mad; I thought that I would never forgive her. My new house was much smaller and I didn’t have my own room. I was, in my opinion, depressed. I didn’t smile, I didn’t laugh as much. I kind of just walked around, lifeless. I had gotten more music of the same variety, and was listening to it more than before. I was fighting with my family more and yelling more. I would leave my house and take a walk for about an hour, when I would get really mad. I made my sister cry; she was only in 5th grade. When I would walk, I would sing the songs in my head, the lyrics providing some comfort, I would think, “There are other people out there, they feel the same way. My family just doesn’t understand.” I would come back and fall asleep on my bed.

At one point, I had tried to end my life. It was the single most horrible decision I have made in my life. I took my baby brothers belt, and tried. I couldn’t. I didn’t know what I was doing.

The next Sunday, the lesson in class was about the importance of choosing good media. That day, I broke all of my music, and threw them away. I took a pair of scriptures out, and put them on my pillow. I laid them out every morning. I still wasn’t praying, but I knew that I was making progress.

I was laughing, smiling, I was happy. I had a talk with my stake president about my incident, and I was so glad to get it off my chest. The thought still pops up sometimes, when I am stressed, but I block it out. I think about the prophets; they had such a hard life, no one listened, the people would mock them and hurt them. They imprisoned them, they even killed them, but God was always there. He was always ready to come in and help the prophets.

The music had tricked my mind into believing that I am nothing, that no one out there is going to help me, they don’t want to. The words poisoned my heart; I caused the people that I love pain. The music I was so in love with, the loud annoying noise that I would listen to everyday, a million times a day; that was the devil, talking to me, coaxing me into his hole. I finally realized what was going on, when I was on the ledge, the outer rim of his black hole.

My family is the most wonderful support system I have ever had. My mom is a convert, and my dad has been a member his whole life, they both served a full time mission; they have seen the effect of not having the spirit there to lead and guide you.

I still have a problem with leaning towards my past, falling the rut that I spent time in. But then I think of David Archuleta; the Mormon American Idol runner up. I have his new CD and I listen to it all at the time. He has the spirit with him, you can tell. I also listen to classical music, and Josh Groban. I have Jericho Road and Sons of Provo on my computer, and I listen to them in the car all the time.

Having fun beats and catchy lyrics are how the adversary leads the youth of the church in. I have fun rocking out to Jericho Road and singing along with Josh Groban; I don’t need any more than that.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Andrea, Maria& James May 20, 2009 at 8:25 pm

Thanks for sharing, music really is meaningful and an emotional connector. If you need another Happy Place type song, listen to Sam Densley at http://www.myspace.com/samdensleymusic One of my favs is “Sit Back Relax”…

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Melinda Morco June 28, 2009 at 3:24 pm

Awesome story. I'm glad to hear that you're happier now.
After all, that's what the Gospel does to people-
It makes us happy.
Thanks for sharing your story 🙂

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butterflynymph December 6, 2009 at 12:24 pm

I am now married with two beautiful daughters but when I was a teen and young adult I had a huge problem with music too. I also had to throw away the bad cd's. Going through the temple further refined my tastes in music. There is so much out there positive to listen to -don't let addictive music used by the adversary suck you in!
Great article.

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trumpy27 February 6, 2010 at 12:59 pm

Wow just read that story while looking for some lds music. I'm sixteen, and I went though a similar phase, including the almost killing myself bit. Never actually got around to the actual attempt tho. Something kinda held me back. I thought that I listened to was ok: there wasn't actually anything bad in it, but the messages they sent made me feel alone. I started thinking there was a voice in my head, which i talked to regulary; she was like a totally different personality! I then noticed that I felt calmer when I listened to church music, and the voice would kind off become mine again. I now have loads of lds music on my mp3 to get me in a good mood when I'm down, and the music that once made me feel alone now makes me feel better because i can now recognise the truth and remember why I started 2 change my music style. Its good to know that other people face similar problems. Makes you feel that you're 'not the only one' (name of a song on the efy CD 2009! Ha ha) Thanks 🙂 xx

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