Dan Reynolds

Dear Dan,

I know we just met, but I know you. I do.

You probably get that a lot. All these people who think they know you.  But I would argue we do, because we listen to you. We listen to your sounds and you lay it all out there. You lay you out there.

I get it. I do too. Not at your level, but yes, I do.

People know a whole lot about me. They know I have fake hair. They know I want to run away from my children on occasions, they know that I struggle to quit smoking even when I have had two people in my nuclear family battle cancer. They know I have suffered from anxiety. They know all my flaws and most are complete strangers. 

But I only know one way to be. I only know how to live out loud. I share my experiences with the hope that others feel less alone in their own. Or maybe its just to help me. Either way, I can’t keep it in. Seems like you can’t either. 

Maybe we can jam on that one day? One can imagine, right?:)

But while I like to think we have similarities, you have powers I do not.

You heal. You do. You, Wayne, Daniel, and Ben did just that. You helped our family heal. You gave us a theme song. You gave all of us a theme song to deal with what we have experienced. To find a way forward from a horror.

I wonder if our new theme song is your theme song too as you shared your journey with all of us. You stood on that stage and said that mental illness is real and it’s okay to get help. You shared out loud that you suffer from depression and anxiety and that this is not something to be ashamed of. If anything it is something to channel and celebrate.

And I agree! And I stand by you on this topic. I stand tall with you (and of course loud). As for some reason, anxiety and depression is something to be ashamed of. When I first started this blog and I wrote about it, many of my close friends reached out telling me that I shouldn’t publish these things. Why is my son’s cancer okay to talk about, but my other son’s anxiety and my own is not? Something is not okay especially with anxiety being the most prevalent disorder out there, but yet…silence. 

So thank you. Keep that mic at level 11 (inside blog joke…sorry).

I know last night you met with us because of Jacob, but I think our meeting was really for my eldest, Benno.  You may have been looking for them in the audience. It should have been easy to spot the two kids out of the sea of adults, but he was in the back. Don’t get me wrong, he LOVED the show and LOVES your music, but he too suffers from anxiety. Crowds, loud noises, coupled with dark lights is a hard combination for him. But please know he was there and he channeled that energy to stay.

And he heard it all including your mention of your own battles. This will be a memory that Benno will remember. That even someone wired like him can be a rockstar. That anxiety can be overcome and he did. He went to the front. It was only a few minutes but he did it. He did it because you not only told him that it was possible, you showed him. 

And you gave him and all of us a tool to help us in the future, as one thing we learned is in just seven months your entire life can change.  Just POOF. Its scary if you think about it, but that is really about perspective. You gave us a theme song to change our perspective. The song to remind you that there is always tomorrow, and you can deal with anything by saying goodbye to Yes-Ter-Day.

Sometimes you just got to trust that today is THE day.

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