**Because of the note at the bottom of the post I’m putting a warning up for this one as I’m talking about Cancer**
Alternative title: Music … A healer of sorts.
Over the weekend I found out that my dad has a tumour behind one of his eyes, yesterday I found out he also has shadowing on one of his lungs … He is on a 2 week waiting list to find out if either of those is “the big C” (as he can’t bring himself to call it cancer). It feels like a significant part of my world has shifted … A part I don’t want to shift … A shift filled with guttural shrieks of a pain I have never experienced before. A fear I have never experienced before. An anger I have never experienced before. An unknown.
And a need to feel a link to our bond, to ease the hurt of the possibilities … That link for me was Placebo celebrating their 20th Anniversary. That link, for me, was hearing Brian Molko singing “Nancy Boy“. As strange as that may seem.
You see, I was 11 years old when my dad introduced me to Placebo’s music, it started as a shared appreciation much like when he had introduced me to Alice Cooper, Helloween, The Cure, The Clash (the list goes on and on) … Back then I don’t think he realised just how much this band would become a part of my existence, how much of a need I would eventually have for them … A reliance on them. Each song they released reinforced the idea that it was ok to be different … That there wasn’t anything fundamentally wrong with me because I didn’t fit in. Dad went as far as buying the “Every You, Every Me” single CD (that included “Nancy Boy”) because those two are his favourite songs of theirs … That single quickly became mine.
They provided a comfort even in their most melancholy of words, they provided a strength …
It’s been 20 years … It seems so strange to say that. 20 years of hurt, of heartbreak, of happiness, of grief, of joy, of Depression, of love, of Anxiety, of loathing, of growth, of fear, of change … Of acceptance (still working on the self-acceptance mind).
20 years and I still turn to their music on a daily basis … Be it bad work day, a rough therapy session or just generally needing something to soothe the soul.
Standing with other fans celebrating this anniversary in the Manchester Arena belting out the words to “Nancy Boy” allowed a dilution of my current pain through a shared (positive) experience. Eyes still burning from the tears hours before, heart still heavy from the news … Released into the space around me with each word I sang aloud. Voice crackling from the volume, breaking from the acknowledgment of what the song means to me. A desire to just feel the music, to be absorbed by it … To just be there.
20 years and they have remained a constant.
I owe them the world’s biggest ‘thank you’ … They have saved me more times than I dare to count.
Have to admit though – I missed the mosh pit! (Though I once again, forgot my sports bra).
**UPDATE : Turns out it was Cancer and that we didn’t get as long as we hoped we would … My dad passed away on New Years Eve**