Just Hold On

It’s 3:30am and I’m lost down a YouTube rabbit hole. We’ve all been there. This particular one was One Direction related. I’ve listened to a handful of their songs for a year or so, but my sister and I have recently gotten more into their music and found some new-to-us gems. I was watching interviews and fan edits, and then I saw this interview with Niall. The title mentioned him commenting on “THE Louis interview”. I was curious as to what the infamous interview was so I clicked. After watching I immediately googled the interview; I needed to read this myself.

I was about to experience something I believe is one of the most painful moments I’ve lived through so far. Unbeknownst to me; I thought I was clicking on an article with a little drama maybe. But no. This hit me hard. And I can only make guesses as to why.

As I mentioned I’m a new fan so I don’t have history with them as a band. They were already on “hiatus” when I first listened to them. I don’t have the emotional strings a lot of other people have. But man this article. It hit me near home. I suspect that the reason it hit me so hard was because I could see myself in Louis. All I wanted to do after reading it was go and give him a big long hug.

I cried my way throughout the whole thing, not able to fully cry, but tears leaking out despite. The article mentioned his live performance of his song, “Just Hold On” that he did for X-factor just days after his mother died from leukemia, and I remembered that I’d never watched it. I’d seen it around on twitter of course but I’d never seen it myself, so I looked that up as well. It was…something else. I almost couldn’t watch it because I was so afraid it would break me. I’m glad I did, but I’m not sure it didn’t do just that.

I’d already noticed before reading the article that his twitter bio is the only one that still mentions 1D.

Nothing against the other boys, but it made me wonder how much Louis had wanted them to disband. Then in the interview he confirmed my suspicion. And that broke my heart.

I thought that Just Hold On was incredible, beautiful and meaningful before. I didn’t realize how much more so it would become after reading that interview. Listening to it afterwards it had a whole new meaning. I imagined where it was coming from inside him, and even if I’m wrong it still wrenched me. I thought of the song in a new context, and it brought up old pain inside me that I didn’t know was still accessible.

I felt like someone had grabbed my chest and torn me open. The physical pain I felt in my body was so strong and real it was unbelievable. I’ve only felt pain this deep a few times in my life. I was writhing in my bed, and I’m not being dramatic here. Silent screams came out of my mouth, as my brother and sister were sleeping nearby so I couldn’t fully scream. Finally it settled down into a dull heartache. I finally fell asleep, knowing that whatever I had just experienced was going to be a moment that went down in history.

I woke up feeling much better. The heartache was gone. I went through my email, read some blog posts, and then I saw the tab with the interview was still open. I’d left it open so I could share it with Hannah later. My heart sank into my shoes and the heartache from the night before returned. It’s still here. I have no appetite. It’s actually slightly scary. And from the outside, it looks like an extreme overreaction.

And maybe it is. But I think that I could not only feel how he felt, but since I related to some things he said so much, it dug out my pain and added it on top of his. Obviously we are two VERY different people. But there is something that connects us. A similar struggle, a hurt that binds us together. Not just me and Louis. Everyone.

In Just Hold On, it says,

“It’s not over ’til it’s all been said
It’s not over ’til your dying breath
So what do you want them to say when you’re gone?
That you gave up or that you kept going on?

What do you do when a chapter ends?
Do you close the book and never read it again?
Where do you go when your story’s done?
You can be who you were or who you’ll become.”

To me he’s saying, no matter how life disappoints you, and how many things don’t go to plan, don’t let that hold you back. You have a choice; to be who you were, or who you were meant to become. To give up when the chapter ends, and let that define your life, or to keep going anyway.

Listening to it last night, I imagined a line of people, strangers – people who’ve never met or even conversed – arms across each other’s shoulders, making one long line. Holding on. Making each other stronger. Being who we were meant to become. And opening our books and reading them again. Just Holding On.

(P.S. I’m sorry for coming back from not posting with this random post. I haven’t felt like blogging, but I needed to get this off my chest. And maybe this is what my blog will become. A place to dump my heart out when there is no other place I can do it. Who knows. Hope you guys understand. If you read this, I appreciate you. ❤️ It’s been a long time, so I don’t expect anyone to really read this, but I’m glad it’s out there.)


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