When I began writing songs I knew way in the back of my mind (so deep that I can’t say I actually knew, it was more like a whispered inkling), that someday I’d write a concept record called The Foundling. Creativity is funny that way, it always seems to be one step ahead at all times, and I’m always just trying to catch up.
My life story was aching to come out of the shadows, and my subconscious was guiding me to it, to begin healing and reconciliation with truth, through my work as a songwriter.
See, I was adopted.
I feared losing my family if I asked my origins. I did not dare ask to ask where I came from. This is not an uncommon fear among adoptees, many of us decide wait till our adoptive parents are dead to search for our original families, our original identities. The fear of losing our adoptive family keeps us from searching earlier, from asking hard questions.
But my subconscious was busy trying to help me put the pieces of my fractured past together as best it could. I needed to claim my truth to grow up, to be a whole, integrated person, to become truly real—and let go of the weight of not knowing, walk lighter, and be useful to others.
As hard as it is to explain, I deeply believe in this mysterious impulse for the mind to heal itself. Following it has led me down beautifully twisted roads, led me to the songs I sing, and given me this creative life I love so much.
As hard as it is to believe, the truth of own story was not available to me until I wrote the songs on The Foundling. Writing helped me make sense of things that had haunted me from the day I was born.
It took me a decade as a songwriter before I was able to tackle this project. It took me another two years of focused writing to complete the songs. It was by far the hardest work I’ve ever done as an artist—hard emotionally, physically and spiritually. I had to poke my head under my bed in the dark and come face to face with some damn scary monsters. I had to make myself sit at my desk for 10 to 12 hours at a time, week after week. I had to research trauma, childhood trauma, and adoption trauma, and come face to face with my own denial of the effects of what had happened. But the inner work I was doing in therapy coincided with the work I was doing as an artist, and The Foundling songs crept up and out, cracking the floorboards of my fear, one at a time.
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