If you've listened to the album, you'll notice that I've skipped "oceandust." There's a reason for this, and I will be coming back to this song.
So far, the album has been fairly downbeat in terms of what the songs are about. A lot about depression, feeling beaten down, and not knowing where to go. True, each song, except for "A Tale of Outer Suburbia" has resolved positively. But that doesn't change the content of the songs.
That changes the second half of the album. The message is still the same, things still resolve, but it's no longer focused on the darker sides of the mind, but start to focus on improvement.
Often times when we look at our life, we think "if I had more I'd be happy." Whether that be money, a better car, better job, education, a romantic partner, or something else. We often base our happiness on our outside circumstances. But, when we do that, we wind up in the places that are repeated over and over in the first half of this album.
A long time ago I was given some advice that has stuck with me. "Love is a choice." That isn't to discount the feeling and emotion of love, but that it goes so much deeper than just the emotion. Throughout my life, I've tried to apply that same concept to happiness. It's a choice. Regardless of where we are in life, we can choose to be happy.
From a young age, we are taught how to fit in, how to be what the world wants. We are taught to conform, to be a cog in the machine. Which the song conveys in two lines "Our path a prison, bound to walk where countless feet already fell. / But there's a wildness in our hearts, that we've forgotten in our march"
It's at this point in the album where I look at the walk of Mental Illness that things start turning around. No longer giving into the fears that are holding them down, and no longer letting it consume them. The tagline for this blog is "The Past Doesn't Define you." Which I believe this song emulates. "run free, run wild and leave behind what holds you down."
That's not to say to forget the past, and not take it's lessons moving forward. But don't be weighed down by it so much that it stops you from happiness. But instead, take the lessons of your past, learn from them, and move forward. It's not an easy task at all. It's a mindset that is contrary to the one we are taught to believe. It's one of the things we see all the time in movies and aspire to, changing our "fate" and being someone we aren't meant to be.
To me, this song embodies the idea that each one of us can choose who we want to be. It's never too late to go back to school and get that degree, learn a new skill, or just try something new. My dad is a great example of this. After spending 23 years in the navy as a cryptologist, he retired. But, he wasn't ready to be fully retired. He decided to do something completely different, he went into the oil field, and put as much distance between him and anything computer related. He put himself to this new job and learned it. He forged his own happiness and molded himself until he was happy.
Don't be someone you aren't because that's what's expected. Find what makes you happy, make a break for it, and go after it at full speed. Regardless of where you are in life, happiness is your choice, not someone else's.