This morning when I checked my Facebook I was shown a memory from two years ago.
It showed a picture of me: blond short hair, pink top, black leather imitating pants, huge make-up, all 80’s style, on stage. No, I didn’t dress like that in my day-to-day, I used to sing in a 80’s live cover band.
Sometimes these memories from years ago open a door to reflect once again how far we have come, and what has changed and who we are now.
So, this morning I reflected on that, and I am absolutely astonished what has changed in only two years.
A little bit of a backstory: For those of you who don’t know me well, I have studied music production and that included a full studies in singing. I will save a more detailed backstory about that for another blog. But let me tell you: I have always loved music, and my biggest passion was singing, and I started very early: with age four I would imitate performing like a singer on stage and my parents and family were my audience.
When I saw myself on that picture it felt like as if I was looking at a total stranger. I felt so far away from her, yet I remember her, I know her, this version of me that I have outgrown long ago.
I loved it. I loved playing with such amazing and wonderful colleagues and musicians, all so professional, all so dedicated and in love with music, re-living these weird and innovative styles of music and fashion of this crazy decade we all had a very special relationship to.
It was a blast, it was hard work, too. We had high standards.
Playing in this band was a great way to explore so many different colors of sound and character, and to train my voice in styles and directions I normally would not go to.
Whether it was Madonna or Prince, Michael Jackson or Stevie Wonder, Eurythmics or Phil Collins, Kool an the Gang or Queen and the like, we played them all.
Yet the time would come when I needed to quit my job in this band. I didn’t have the energies anymore and the love seemed to have faded.
On my path to myself I couldn’t continue doing something that was not in alignment with me any longer.
I couldn’t have these long, and for me draining concert days anymore, where you wake up early in the morning to do your voice warm ups, prepare your outfits, rehearse the playlist and all the choreographies, show up at the venue so freaking early for stage setting, backline and soundcheck, voice warm ups, crazy make-up and styling. Not to mention the long wait backstage for the show to start, then the show would start and you give 100%. The nights would not end until 3 – 4 o’clock in the morning. And all that toxic hair spray and make-up on my body – not me.
It was just not me any longer that was having fun with singing other people’s songs, cheering up a crowd. I didn’t want to live that kind of lifestyle. Something major has shifted.
Since my spiritual practice and my profession as a healer and transformation coach has evolved I could not continue living these two extremes.
When I decided to leave the band it was hard because I knew it would mean saying goodbye to my old life, which was very painful because once I used to build on that life.
I felt the need to go inward, to focus on me, on my goals, on where I wanted to go and how I can align my singing with my healing and coaching business.
I soon realized that all the years that have passed I never was really myself. I did things because they seemed to be good for me, they gave me a certain image I could hide behind, but only to find out later that it wasn’t really me. I could see this pattern repeating itself over and over again. I guess at some point in my life I somehow stopped believing that I was able to write my own music, even though I used to write a lot, but I had found great ways to sabotage my own creative, musical expression. When I discovered this truth about myself, I was crushed and heartbroken, you know that feeling you have when you realize that you have betrayed yourself in a certain area of your life. Not nice, really not!
And that is where my sound healing and chanting experience got deepened. A journey back to my voice, to my own signature, to my own vocal expression, no fancy make-up or masks needed, just me and her – my voice, reconnecting to that inner child that could not stop singing because she simply enjoyed it so much as if that was the only thing that she ever wanted to do.
So, today I am grateful for all the versions I used to be, I am grateful for all the detours I took, for all the paths I walked, for all the things that I didn’t know back then.
I cannot stress enough how important it is – when we evolve into the next version of ourselves – to not disrespect and dishonor who we once used to be. It is all part of the great mystery, all these tiny pieces of the big puzzle that is slowly coming together.