I just got back from a short trip to Chicago to attend Riot Fest. For those who aren’t familiar, it’s a music festival. It’s alternative music that consists of many different elements; from metal to 80s pop. It’s a weird cluster of music.
Which brings out a weird cluster of people.
For the many who don’t know, I used to be an emo kid. I wish I could find a picture in all my emo glory. Anyway, alot of kids at this show where dressed as such. There were a bunch of goth kids, punks, leather, fishnets, and a shit ton of black.
I really want to know if these people live this kind of lifestyle on a daily basis because I haven’t seen emo hair in ten fucking years.
It was glorious.
I looked so normal, so out of place. Which I’m not used to. I’m usually the weird one in every social circle I have been a part of. But I have very simple short, brown hair now, and I wore salmon colored shorts with a crotcheted knit top with a bralette. With sandals. And a teale fanny pack.
I looked like an asshole.
This group of people that must live under a rock and only through social media, gathered for their common interest in these bands.
When Nine Inch Nails started to play that night, there was this invisible connection between everyone. They were so focused on the music, and just letting go to be in the moment. There is a sociological term for this called social conscience.
I’m definitely paraphrasing from what I’ve learned in college but it’s a shared feeling people get when experiencing something as a whole.
This phenomenon is what has drived the creation of many different social groups. As I was watching these people, I remembered all the times I saw the seething at church every Sunday.
Now, I grew up in what people call a ‘holy rollers’ church. Every Sunday, someone would ‘feel’ the holy ghost. This would lead to erratic behavior such as running around, jumping, screaming, etc. This sometimes led to people ‘speaking in tongues’ AKA a ‘heavenly message sent to Earth by God in a heavenly language’s AKA gibberish. Seriously, someone would ‘speaking in tongues’ via holy ghost then someone would interpret the message via holy ghost.
It was a spectacle to say the least. But the behavior at church and at the music festival was through this shared experience people had. These people believed so much in the music, they were enraptured. Same thing with church.
‘What the hell does this have to do with mental health?’ you may be asking.
I think it amazes me how people act bases on a shared experience. As an individual, it’s different because no one can justify your behavior. That’s why people can get away with saying a spirit possessed them and made them say gibberish. They has someone to validate their feelings.
So, when people say you can get over it to me, I get frustrated. I can’t get over my depression with it’s a damn light switch.
Don’t you think I would if I could?
But if people experienced depression like I did, there would be validation.
This social gathering experience is beautiful, horrible, and confusing all at once. And I feel like I’ll never be part of that again. Who knows.
What I could hope for is a chance to be around people who struggle with depression/anxiety and share an experience with them. Maybe then will I feel some validation.