Track 1: Verified

Verified was born in a place where I was trying to make my way out of the self-destructive storm of denial. The pain of grief is so heavy that we so easily can send our minds to a place of survival. You know how badly it’s going to hurt, so you unintentionally run in the other direction. There was an underlying fear of not knowing how to “grieve right” or a fear of what road my pain would take me down. 

Then there comes a time when you learn a lesson that you think should be obvious, but one that we keep fighting against: You cannot manipulate your emotions without serious repercussions. For me, the repercussions were anxiety followed by chronic depression. 

So here we have “Verified”, my moment of escape, of letting go and allowing myself to miss my little brother and to feel every part of it. And instead of pushing it back, I chose to bring it with me in a way that could teach me and bring me life.

The funny thing is when people talk about these kinds of steps in grief, like denial; they make it sound like it’s a level in a game, and once you beat it, it’s over. That’s so far from the truth. It’s not that clean. I take myself through this process over and over again. It feels silly, to put it lightly...really, it feels pitiful. But it gets a little easier every time I let myself feel it when I catch myself pushing it away.

The song had to be upbeat and slightly danceable, while the lyrics if read alone could sound really hopeless and desperate; because I wanted to capture that feeling of freedom that comes when you pull yourself out of denial. Even if it’s heartbreaking freedom.