My Spotify Playlist
Music can be healing. It can make us happy; it can make us sad. Maybe it’s uplifting or perhaps it mirrors our mood.
Through the wonders of Spotify, I have been building a playlist of songs that, in one way or another, have helped me deal with MS. There might not be a lot of what the kids today call “bangers” but these are songs I find solace, comfort and motivation in.
So, pop pickers, let’s start with the first track. Nor ‘arf.
Queen: “The Show Must Go On”
Perhaps a very literal track to start with. The Show Must Go On featured on Queen’s final album before the death of the great Freddie Mercury. The song chronicles the effort of Mercury continuing to perform despite approaching the end of his life, although his diagnosis with HIV/AIDS had not yet been made public despite ongoing media speculation claiming that he was seriously ill.
Many of the lyrics struck me as appropriate as I came to terms with diagnosis. Life had changed and in the initial months, I was all over the place mentally. Things were going to be different but quite how was uncertain. I was looking for strength to carry on and these lines hit me
The show must go on
I’ll face it with a grin
I’m never giving in
On with the show
I would be lying if I said I’ve always faced MS with a grin. Very much the opposite at times. After a few months and gradually coming to terms with things, it became easier to think I’m never giving in.
Although I could gradually face it with a grin, three lines from the chorus summed up how I was feeling privately versus in public
Inside my heart is breaking
My makeup may be flaking
But my smile, still, stays on
The song closes with
I have to find the will to carry on
On with the show
I find myself coming back to those lines any time I am feeling down. Although my general mood is better than in the early days of diagnosis, there are times when it still gets me down. When that happens, I tell myself to find the will to carry on with the show.
Over the two years since diagnosis, I have frequently listened to The Show Must Go On. Just the title alone is defiant, determined. Freddie Mercury, whilst terribly ill, hits one last great vocal performance. It is a song that boosts me, motivates me and maybe give me a kick in the backside to remain positive.