Four Years Later

Do you remember where you were exactly four years ago? I do.

On January 31st, 2014, I went to see my favorite band. It was meant to be a pre-birthday celebration, watching them play one of my favorite albums with my best friend by my side. However, what should have been a great night ended up being one of the worst. The short story is that I had the most intense panic attack I’ve ever experienced at that show. I began questioning a lot of things, asking why this had to happen to me, why it had to happen that night or that year when I was facing a multitude of other personal challenges. While I may not have the real answer, I have a good guess.

You may have noticed that Lucy Out Loud has faced its ups and downs over the years and in some ways it’s because it has mimicked my personal ups and downs. Experiences change you and my experience four years ago changed me in more ways than one. It led to months of doctors visits, pinpointing what was causing my anxiety, panic attacks, and chronic migraines that became increasingly present. At that time, I found it difficult to find happiness in writing, but I found it even harder to find happiness in music. I began neglecting the site because it reminded me of that and it was something that broke my heart.

Eventually, things started to positively change.

I spent a lot of time realizing that the reason I was going through these struggles was because it was meant to make me stronger. I soon found my voice again and Lucy Out Loud, as well as my other writing contributions, became a way for me to shed light on mental health in a positive way. It’s a topic that is sensitive, but one that deserves to be spoken about frequently. I found solace in sharing my experiences with others and have since used that to motivate individuals to find their voice.

I’ve been extremely open about what happened that night, four years ago. In fact, at the end of 2016 I wrote a piece thanking the band I went to see, detailing that night and the impact that band has had on me. Dealing with that first panic attack, and all other panic attacks I had at shows since then, meant I had to relearn how to experience music. It wasn’t until the end of 2017 that I was able to successfully do that and I’ve found a happiness that I didn’t think existed. Looking back at it, it’s one of the best things that could have ever happened to me and I would not be the person I am today if things went about differently.

I’ve spent these last four years rebuilding myself and now I, along with my incredibly supportive team, are finally confident enough to rebuild Lucy Out Loud. Throughout the month of February, you can find Flashback February posts full of interviews, sessions, and photos we were unable to post within 2017. We’ve had the opportunity to sit down with some incredibly talented individuals and we cannot wait to share those experiences with you soon! Stay tuned and thank you for the continued support!

Dear Yellowcard, Thank You.

Photos by Eric Riley, Zach Foerst, and Jenn Curtis.

There are plenty of possible negative perceptions that can be made when someone admits that they struggle with an anxiety disorder. They are perceived as vulnerable, unusual, unable to live their own lives outside of their own four walls. I myself struggle with an anxiety disorder. I was at my worst almost three years ago, when I had my worst panic attack, in an environment that I had grown up in.

I’ve attended shows since I was 16, spending most of my weekends in high school with friends at a venue close to home (RIP School of Rock), seeing artists like Cash Cash (pre-DJs), Cartel, The Ready Set, Stereo Skyline, The Friday Night Boys, and We Are The In Crowd, among many others. Being surrounded by music was all I’ve known, so when I had an extreme panic attack at almost 21 while seeing Yellowcard (one of my favorite bands) on their Ocean Avenue 10th Anniversary tour, I felt betrayed. I spent most of their acoustic set in the bathroom behind Starland Ballroom’s stage, unsure of what was happening. A security guard walked in to check on me twice to make sure I was okay as I leaned against a wall shaking, nauseous, and barely able to breathe. It was the worst panic attack of my life. As I heard Yellowcard playing through Ocean Avenue, I could barely find the strength to go back into the crowd and catch them perform at least one full song. In fact, I specifically left the bathroom to watch them play “Only One” and couldn’t even make it through the four minute performance without feeling like I was seconds away from passing out. Eventually, I made my way to the entrance of the venue, where two security guards gave me a chair and some water as they talked to my best friend and I, trying to help control my attack. Ultimately, I came to the conclusion that it would just be best to leave, but not before going back to catch at least a small bit of one more song, “Believe.” Since then, attending shows has been nothing but a continuous battle with both my anxiety and myself. However, when you know that all you want in life is to be surrounded by music, you never stop fighting.

Continue reading Dear Yellowcard, Thank You.

Lucy’s Top Songs of 2015

Sometimes it feels like you waste an entire year and once
New Years Eve comes around, you start to question what it is that you actually
accomplished that year. I can proudly say that 2015 was not one of those years
for me. After a difficult 2014, I spent these past twelve months working on my
own happiness and doing what I love without thinking twice about it. 2015 was
the year I graduated college, built up an incredible team for Lucy Out Loud, and
redeemed myself on more than one occasion by overcoming internal fears.

My 2015 playlist is filled with songs of love, loss,
adventure, empowerment and new beginnings. Some songs are just fun-dance tunes
while others tug on my heartstrings and bring back memories, both good and bad.
Ultimately, 2015 was the year that some of my favorite artists made their
redemptions (JoJo, Good Charlotte, Hilary Duff, Busted) just like I made some
of my own.

Here’s to a new year filled with new opportunities and overcoming any/all of the obstacles that may be in your way.

Thank you for supporting us ♥ You can find my playlist below!

1. “Sledgehammer” – Fifth Harmony
2. “English Girls” – The Maine
3. “Tear In My Heart” – twenty one pilots
4. “Run” – COIN
5. “Say Love” – JoJo
6. “What Happened To Your Band” – McBusted
7. “Adventurer” – Redlands
8. “Uma Thurman” – Fall Out Boy
9. “Let’s Not Be Alone Tonight” – R5
10. “Makeshift Love” – Good Charlotte
11. “Sparks” – Hilary Duff
12. “Bitter” – Emily West
13. “I Dare You” – Bea Miller
14. “Stone Cold” – Demi Lovato
15. “Same Air” – The Rocket
Summer
16. “Wildest Dreams” – Ryan Adams
17. “I’m Good” – The Mowgli’s
18. “Take My Love” – The Lone Bellow
19. “Fucked Up” – Young Rising Sons
20. “Meet You There” – Busted

Bonus: “Love Me Like You Do” (Cover) – McBusted