Listening to Music and Crying In Public: On Mika and the End of a Major Relationship
After any breakup, there are many stages of rebuilding your spirit. After the misery and depression, there’s usually a period of rebellion with lots of drinking and rebounds. We go from knowing we’re not OK to pretending we’re fine to convincing ourselves we’re fine and then finally, really, being fine.
Of course, this is all different with every guy. It’s a lot worse if he’s “the one” and you’ve just found out he’s not sure if you’re his “one.”
Through all of this, we turn to music. We listen to anthems that make us feel better. We turn on the songs that make us remember and ache. Some songs become triggers; those songs you didn’t realize make you hurt and out of nowhere, it all hurts. Truly beautiful, organic songs about love can go from being optimistic and positive when we’re in love to crushing and painful when we’re hurt.
Back in September, I won a contest to perform on stage with MIKA for two nights at Webster Hall. I wrote about it as the experience changed my life. I was surrounded by such passion and artistry and I had a boy in the audience I thought of during every song.
For his latest album, "The Origin of Love," MIKA took some time to collaborate and really express himself openly and freely for the first time in his career. Every song is rich –- that’s the only way to describe it. I’ve been a big fan forever and this album just seemed to be personal in a way that made me relate to every lyric.
At that time, every lyric was about my recent rekindling of a romance with the love of my life. Every song was specifically about how one night, out of nowhere, he poured his heart out to me, asked me to be with him and promised to never hurt me again. The title track? About him. My favorite song, "Stardust"? Him.
I felt like I was at a concert being thrown to celebrate our great love being rekindled.
At the beginning of April, MIKA came back to New York for two shows on his latest tour in support of "The Origin of Love." The whole tour was smaller and more intimate. The production was stark. Every song was about how two months prior, the love of my life told me the night before Valentine’s Day that he may have made a mistake. Every song was about how two months prior, the love of my life who promised to never break my heart again had just broken it worse than ever before.
Kristin Chenoweth and Dita Von Teese made surprise appearances to perform at the funeral for my heart:
As I left each show this time around, I walked home holding back tears until I was alone and could let the cry out. At one show, I quietly cried as MIKA sang some of my favorite songs. While I have been OK in the months since he broke my heart, music is the one thing that can bring me right back.
In a way, it’s beautiful when music can evoke such emotion from someone. I try to tell myself that, at least. I try to tell myself that while he was “the one,” no one ever said we only get one “the one.” I tell myself that it is better to have loved than to have never loved at all or something really profound like that. I think I believe it.
In the end, with the greatest of loves, comes the greatest of heartaches and confusions and feelings. And it’s OK to not know if you’re OK or just lying to yourself. And it’s perfectly fine to feel whatever you want to feel.
One day, you will wake up and it won’t hurt anymore. You have to believe that. Because without that hope, we have nothing to hold on to when that song comes on and everything hurts. And thank god for great artists like MIKA that make music so raw and real that we can’t help but feel something.
Christ, well, thank God I got that out! In other news, MIKA’s new single with Ariana Grande, "Popular Song," is a positive jam with a WICKED sample.
If this piece left you sad or depressed or feeling bad for me, just listen to this song and know that everything will be okay. And if you’re a cute boy and you just read this piece and think I’m completely damaged, well… One day, I will wake up and I won’t be anymore. Maybe it will be next to you.