I Started Singing Again / by Brea Persing

Professional Choir in Verona, Italy — 2012. Photographer unknown.

Professional Choir in Verona, Italy — 2012. Photographer unknown.

Do you ever notice that when you are really stressed, or depressed, that you stop doing something that you love? You don’t really notice it at first, but then eventually you realize it?

I have been singing since I came out of the womb. I LOVE it! I sang in all the choirs I could with church, school, college and even a professional choir overseas. I even got to perform, with my college choir, at Carnegie Hall and the Washington National Cathedral in 2004. Talk about an experience! I sing in my car, bedroom, while I’m cooking, you name it. Funny enough, I used to have stage fright when singing in front of people, which I still struggle with a bit (I’m pretty sure that’s because of insecurity), and I don’t sing as much when I’m living, or staying, with other people I as much so I don’t disturb them.

Haha, I even remember when I lived in Italy and I told my neighbor I would be leaving and she said that she would miss hearing me sing through the walls and smelling my cooking. It put a smile on my face. And it me more aware that the walls were thinner than I thought! 

But it was during that time that I noticed that when I was super stressed or depressed that I stopped singing. At first I didn’t realize it, but I distinctly remember a few times that I just could not sing, all I could do was listen to the music. It got so bad at one point that I couldn’t even handle listening to music. That was a super low point for me. 

The past few years have been really stressful for me with a lot of transition, mounted health issues, culture shock, trauma and some toxic relationships. Since moving back to the US my health has improved, I have taken time to work through trauma and get it out of my body, I said goodbye to toxic relationships and my stress is decreasing…in some ways at least. I noticed after these things started happening that I started singing more. 

Sometimes you don’t notice you’ve stopped doing something until you start doing it again. I used to listen to music in the car, but I’ve switched over to listening to audio books while driving. That happened when I was seeing 5-10 specialists a week for a solid 6 or so months and I was in the car driving about 8-10 hours a week. Music got a bit boring. I know…I can’t believe I just said that. Now, I listen to music when I’m getting ready in the morning, while working out, cooking, cleaning, working on photo editing or design projects, and when I’m getting ready for bed. For a while I was in a state that all I could do was listen, but as I began to destress, work through issues and be happier with who God made me to be, I started singing a long more! I also notice I sing more after I watch a show like The Voice or American Idol. :) 

That means a great deal! Even though I’m not in a house by myself, it means that I am less stressed, less depressed, and am happier! It means that I am on they way up the hill from the valley I was in for a bit. I learned a lot from the valley, but it’s refreshing and encouraging to be coming out of it. I mean, I already knew I was coming out of it because I was physically feeling better, my soul was doing better and I was smiling more…but singing was icing on the cake for confirmation.

What is it that you have noticed you’ve stopped doing? What are you doing to work through it to get to the other side?