Music as Healing & Wellness


Music is my diary…

I’ve suffered from an eating disorder for almost eleven years of my life. It started when I was 7 years old. I think that a lot of people believe that people who have eating disorders choose to have them. But that’s not true. My eating disorder chose me. Having an eating disorder is hard. I have all these feelings and I don’t know how to read them sometimes. I’ve kept so many secrets, I’ve told so many lies. My eating disorder has consumed me. You may not be able to tell by my physical appearance that I have anorexia nervosa because, over the years, I’ve learned to maintain a healthy weight. But on the inside, I’m so lost.

Music is my diary…

I’ve been playing the piano for almost eleven years. I’ve never really been able to read music very well, but I have a really good ear. When I was younger, I would hear a song on the radio and sit down at my keyboard and play it. I spend hours playing the piano now in my free time. When I play, I can identify my feelings. I can just play my feelings on the piano. When I play, all of my troubles disappear for a moment and Riley shines through. Because of music, I have found myself.

Music is my diary…



Music helped me say NO to peer pressure…

Music gives me a feeling of purpose in this world. I feel like I belong for once in my life. No matter what race or social status you may be, music allows you to feel a sense of unity. When I sing in the choir, or even when I sing solos, I feel as though I am connected to this entirely new world of music beyond anyone’s understanding, beyond any earthly feelings.

I grew up in one of the roughest environments of Dallas. Every night there were either gun shots or people arguing in the streets. This was a struggle for me as a young man knowing that one day that could be me causing all the noise, keeping innocent children awake.

My life before music was to just live for the thrill of trouble. Music saved me from a life of trouble and heartache. I don’t have to worry about going to jail or getting involved in gangs, because I was given an escape through my music. I’ve learned that I can live a life full of joy and prosperity no matter where I live or grew up. Music gives me the confidence to say “no” to peer pressure put on me every day. I can now look at my surroundings as an inspiration to live a better life, not only for me, but for my future children.



No one knows that no matter how long I’ve ignored her, my piano welcomes the prodigal me home.

No one knows that when I am alone, surrounded by a world of others, she is a welcomed companion to my chosen solitude.

No one knows how she consoles me in my unwelcome melancholy and dances with me in my desired merriment.

No one knows how carefully she listens to my fingers and gives them loving voice.

No one knows how she responds with joy when my touch is successful and how sadly morose she becomes when it is not.

No one knows my piano has a life of her own and is my secret, always reliable friend.

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