Beginning therapy was one of the best and yet most daunting things I’ve done for myself in a long time. I completely understand that it’s not for everyone, and for others, it may just be unattainable. Even I find myself questioning how feasible it is to pay such a ridiculous amount every single week. It’s sad that I even have to debate that knowing how beneficial it has been in my journey to love myself and find inner peace. But one thing people don’t tell you when you look into starting these types of services is just how exhausting it is. You’re always told that you have to be open and willing to put in the work, but you’re never warned about how tiring it is to revisit past memories that you thought you shelved a long time ago. I find myself sitting in sessions discussing things that happened in my past that hadn’t even crossed my mind. Not because they were trivial, but actually, quite the contrary. They were so impactful and damaging that I never wanted to think about those moments ever again, and yet here I was, paying absurd amounts of money to not only dig up those deeply buried memories but to analyze them with a fucking microscope. It’s not easy to do so, and I wish peace and strength to anyone who may understand this feeling while reading this. Trauma, especially in a world as chaotic and violent and intense as ours, has become so normalized because of the things that we endure on a day-to-day basis, from mass shootings to a global pandemic. As a result, we turn to coping mechanisms like humor to minimize the severity and make it more bearable when in reality, if we have to come face to face with it one day, we realize we have no idea how to handle it. We see rappers do it all the time with their music, especially because of the lack of affordable mental health resources, so they turn to writing to deal with it. In the same way that I write long-form, they write with poetic rhyme schemes, sharing their trauma with the world to help themselves and others internalize it. To honor their strength and resilience, this is a tribute to those who have used Hip-Hop to handle life-altering moments by sharing it with the world.