[Getting Over a Break Up - A Step by Song Guide - Part 6 - "Firestarter" ]

I went through a devastating break-up a few years ago and wrote my way through it. That album, 3 AM, comes out June 10, 2016. This series is about how I got through that break up and the songs that came out of it. If you’re somewhere in the middle, hope this helps. Chin up.

When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.
— Maya Angelou

That’s hard to do, especially if you tend toward Sister Mary Sunshineness like I do, giving everyone the benefit of the doubt. There’s something to be said for seeing the good in people or the potential in people even when they don’t necessarily see it themselves. But there’s just as much to be said for trusting your gut, drawing healthy boundaries, and recognizing that while something may be shiny and pretty if it’s concurrently really hot and hurty it probably burns BECAUSE IT’S PROBABLY FIRE. Maybe it isn’t 100% pure fire all the time, but fire is one of its comfortable and familiar forms. All shapeshifter-y and shit like some kind of rogue solo wonder twin. 

I shoulda known by the trail of smoke dragging in your wake
You wouldn’t stay

Only thing you’d ever done when love dug in too deep
Was burn it down and walk away

Or maybe, Sister Mary Fucking Sunshine, fire actually is its true nature. Y’all know that fable about the frog and the scorpion? Let’s say, hypothetically, that someone tells you that their past M.O. had always been to burn it all down and start over whenever things got too far out of control. In hindsight, perhaps finding a lit match in your hypothetical lap shouldn’t be as much of a surprise as it was, eh?  

You swore those days were over – you’d laid your matches down
And found the one you’d never leave

So tell me why I’m standing here soaked down to my skin
In tears and kerosene


Once the smoke cleared and I was ready, I decided to have a little burn party of my own. Texted my neighbor who’d gone through a break-up around the same time as me: “Mind if I use your fire pit?” Took the marriage certificate out of the frame – burned it. Wedding pictures: up in flames. All the cards and letters he’d ever given me: reduced to ashes. It was quite cathartic. Even a made up ritual, if done with intention, can have tremendous power.   

There comes a time when you gotta reclaim your shit. Your power. Your strength. Your being. Your ownership of your own badassery. It’s still in there, it just got covered up by feeling “less than” for a while because someone left. Everyone who ever got left has felt unloved or unlovable at some point. But you know what? FUCK. THAT. Just because someone left you, doesn’t mean you’re unlovable. It just meant they didn’t have the courage to stay. They probably did you a favor by leaving. And they probably showed their true colors in doing so. If someone’s true colors aren’t beautiful like a rainbow then sayonara, muchacho! (Holy crap I just mashed a gorgeous Cyndi Lauper lyric and a moment from an SNL sketch together in one sentence. Not sure if I should be punished or win a prize.) 


Be grateful for the fire you’ve had to walk through. Ashes are your cue to rise, and you just may phoenix the fuck out of the whole thing. 


Want to see the music video that all of this created? You're in luck: it premiered today at SoulTracks.com. Click below to watch.