Monday, 24 July 2017

Goodbye Chester

When I first disclosed my abuse in 2012 I discovered, late in the day I have to admit, Linkin Park. Now I love music, and I've blogged about music before, but my usual go to pieces didn't cut it. I was raw, I was angry, and I needed music to say the things I couldn't say.

My ears would bleed listening to "Numb" as loud as I could. Chester Bennington's voice could go from sounding like an innocent, angelic child to a roaring beast within 20 seconds, and that's how I felt. The rage in my heart was so strong, it was terrifying, and Linkin Park gave that voice an outlet.

This weekend I walked along the beach listening to song after song. And I waited for that moment, the finding of peace, the song that voiced a turning point. But no, every song is filled with torment, with disappointment, with impending doom.

I am not a follower of celebrity and I had no idea that Chester was abused as a child. I have seen articles describe Chester's life as a classic study of child sexual abuse. 

I rally against this. Chester's life was his own. He made it count, and how. Filling stadiums, selling countless albums, giving the voiceless a voice. I don't know why Chester decided his life was to come to an end. No one does. No one knows if it's as a direct result of the abuse he suffered as a child.

How is my life different to Chester's? How am I different? Is there any point keeping on going with the daily struggle of dealing with the shit left behind by my own childhood experiences. As the evil voice that plagues me from time to time has said over and over this weekend "you should be dead, you can't beat this, if Chester couldn't then you are doomed".

That powerful voice has no place in my head. I've drowned it with music all my life and this weekend was no different.

There is inexplicable joy in my life from so many sources, my family, my beautiful son, from the things around me, the things I create, the love that surrounds me. Yes at times I feel numb, I feel like in the end it doesn't really matter. I long, as Chester sung, for somewhere I belong.

Sometimes I still feel like an outsider, or a little child. But you know what, we all do, regardless of our histories.

Life is a valuable thing, but I can understand when someone decides that they can't do this anymore. Success, family, love, adoration, nothing can save them.

I feel desperately saved that in the end, he couldn't be saved, and can only hope that he has found peace, comfort and somewhere to belong.

And maybe that's the difference. In the end, after all I've done, I don't believe the answer is to erase myself. I believe the love of my family, my friends, of all those who have touched me in my life, is enough. I face this every day, gaining a deeper understanding of myself, a greater self compassion.

I'll miss you Chester. You will never know how much your lyrics and performances meant to me. I am sorry that it wasn't enough. That we weren't enough.

Go in peace, let mercy flow.

Because in the end, you matter. We all do. 

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