Music Therapy: Harmonies in Healing
Hey, I am Zora and I am, “Living my BEST life”! A mantra that has been synonymous with my journey to self, mental health, and abundance. After turning 30 this past February, something in my life just, clicked. It's as if someone turned on a light in my life and made me want to live it to the fullest. I began to use #Thisis30 after every experience. Almost as a reminder that I had made it to an age of no return, a milestone. After losing a cousin who practically was my twin brother to gun violence, and losing him to the prison system for much of our adult life, I realized that 30 is not a promise but a gift.
A gift that I was incapable of seeing before turning 30, as I spent most of my 20's as a depressed person. Someone who couldn’t recognize or even be thankful for the blessings that were happening in my life. I walked around this world with an eternal cloud over my existence. I allowed my joy to be dictated by others and allowed the mishaps of life to become near death experiences. Then just like that, some perfectly placed rainbows appeared through my clouds, and eventually those clouds dissolved into clear vision.
A vision so clear that it started to feel like an X-Ray. It allowed me to examine my life, my partnerships, my choices and really start to Iyanla Vanzant myself, to really start to fix my life. It started with a small but powerful practice, the practice of saying “no”. Something that I struggled with as most people do, but at 30, “no” just started to taste delicious. It allowed me to reclaim some of the power that I had given away to family, friends, coworkers and even parts of my detrimental self. From "No", I began to understand what “yes” meant, Every time I said "no" to someone else, it allowed me to say “yes” to myself. I started to build such an intimate relationship with myself and my feelings. This allowed me to realize the toxicity of my relationships and how I truly didn’t need them in order to have value. Once I started to clean house in my relationship sector, I made time and space for my talents, passions and opportunities. Being able to literally “shoot my shot” and reach out to Lesbionyx is my “best life” being manifested. Being able to trust my talents enough to say "hey, I have something to contribute" is something that never would have happened before 30. You know what else wouldn’t have happened before receiving the wake-up call that is 30?
Me finally taking control of my health and deciding to pursue weight loss surgery. I am a black, lesbian, educated woman living in New York City, and I currently weigh 390.6 lbs. This is a number that I personally can’t even believe, but as I come to accept it, this weight matched my mindset of my past. Mentally I was so heavy that I physically began to match the weight in my mind. As soon as I began to do the work and really clean out the mental, I began to get uncomfortable physically. I began to see myself again and I did not like what I saw. I did not like knowing that I couldn’t physically do things that I deserved to do.
Six months ago, I went to a consultation and as I type this, I am less than a week away from having Gastric Sleeve (sleeve gastrectomy) surgery. There is not enough space to write how emotional this journey has been for me. What I can talk about is how I am managing those emotions and that is through music. They say "an apple a day keeps the doctor away". I am not too sure about this, as I have been to the doctor more in these six months than I have in my entire life. I recall an apple or two on those trips with me. While this is a cute saying to speak to the power of a healthy diet keeping you from falling ill, for me it should read “A song a day.” As for me and for millions of others, music is my medicine. Whatever the feeling, whatever the occasion, there is a song prescribed in my life.
While I am saying “yes” to my life and my mobility by having this surgery, i’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scared, overwhelmed and uncertain of the life to come with such a transition. I have been able to find so much peace in my Apple Music playlist during this time. I have crafted a playlist that uplifts me when I am down, motivates me when I am unsure, hugs me when I am sad and a track for every emotion for the roller coaster in between. I am known to be a “know it all, who knows nothing at all” but music is one thing I pride myself on. I do my absolute best to share the healing powers of this art form. So while I can’t promise that every song will be as impactful to you as it is for me, I am sure you will find something on my list to make you smile. You can check out my playlist here. Also, I am always ready to share and listen to new artists so please don’t be afraid to share one of your lyrical doses with me via twitter @zoraknows as well as to follow along as I continue to chronicle my weight loss journey. Let’s all have a soundtrack to living our BEST lives!