I Am Free

By on Jul 11, 2017 | 0 comments

I Am Free

When I watch this video, as it is almost a year and a half old now, I find that I have all these critiques about my inability to create the perfect song I had envisioned.


But ya know what? That’s ridiculous.


Yes, I eventually plan on recording my own updated version of the song, having had much more time to work out kinks and let the melodies develop themselves as I feel the lyrics. But, looking back on it, I never imagined I would have been able to complete the task I undertook.

I had been invited to participate in the University of Michigan’s second annual Mental Health Monologues. For those of you who don’t know, I have faced the realities of clinical depression and anxiety since I was diagnosed during my junior year of high school.


Of course, I had struggled with those challenges before the diagnosis, but it wasn’t until someone explained it to me that I needed to face these hurdles head on.


At university, when this Mental Health Monologues opportunity arose, it quickly became an obstacle I felt I wanted to conquer, but more than that, it became my way of working out some of my anxieties and emotions that felt stuck inside of me.

I found this incredible group of students who worked with me to get my feelings and thoughts on paper, and I have come to realize that even if it didn’t turn out perfectly, I was the first student to write a song for their show, and I’d say that completing a song is an accomplishment in and of itself.


I must admit, though, when I first committed to the show, I simply told myself (and the directors) that I would like to sing She Used to Be Mine by Sara Bareilles. I’m pretty confident that Sara has secret information about my life because she finds different ways to sing my emotions with every album she makes – Ha!

But it was quickly brought to my attention that it is pretty difficult — impossible, actually — to share my story with the world, by singing someone else’s lyrics.




There went the easy route.


So, the idea of writing a song was thrown on the table. I laughed at first, thinking the directors were crazy for having that much faith in my abilities.


But really, I was the crazy one for not believing in my own talents and experience.


After three months of workshops with other students — who performed incredible variations of slam poetry, rants, letters, and self-reflections to convey their own stories of facing mental health challenges — I wrote a song.


AN ENTIRE SONG. Like, three verses, three choruses, and even a bridge!!!


If you haven’t seen the video I’ve posted, I welcome you to watch it — not because I think I am amazing and want to be famous on social media, but rather because I want to inspire thoughts of self worth, self confidence, and the belief that we can accomplish our goals with the support of loved ones and a change of mindset.


I look back at this performance and identify what I see as flaws, yet when I really think about it, I realize what a huge accomplishment this was for me.

Not just on the surface level of writing a song, which was in fact very challenging.

This was also an accomplishment in that for the first time, I shared some very important and difficult emotional vulnerabilities with not only friends and family, but also strangers, in hopes that hearing my story and listening to how I persevered, would help someone pull themselves out of the dark.


I just hope that sharing these challenges with the world will open up doors for those who feel trapped or alone.


I have posted the written lyrics of my song below, for anyone who wants a closer read.


Please don’t give up on yourself, because I believe in you and I.


“Set yourself free.”



I Am Free

Lyrics by Rachael Bittick

Accompaniment by Jerry Graham and Lewis Graham


She was only a child,

unaware of the world.

Broken home; broken smile;

broken little girl.

She was lost and afraid,

slipping into the grey clouds

of Mom and Dad’s fights,

Mom’s pills, no lights.

Just a child afraid of

becoming a weight –

afraid to open up

so she bottled up hate.


She was only a child,

thirteen and naive.

Broken heart; broken soul;

broken self esteem.

She was weak and confused

falling quickly for his ruse,

wanting love, not to be used

by a boy who refused to care.

Just a girl, broken hearted

a victim of youth,

as grades equated praise

perfection was her only truth.


She was broken all her life

and knocked down by this fight,

trapped in darkness not light.

She was pushed, she was shoved,

lost and looking for love.

She was frightened for her heart.

She gave into her demons

nothing left to believe in.

Anxiety leaves no relief.

How can she be free?


She is eighteen and grown

feeling lost in a whirl

of broken thoughts; broken mind;

broken, broken, shattered world.

She’s alone and in pain,

trapped inside this refrain called high school.

The word is out, results are in;

depression is winning.

Just a kid losing hope

and drowning in tears,

the sadness sinks deeper

as she tries to face these fears.


She is broken, now aware.

Sunken down by the weight,

of her strength as it breaks.

She screams and she cries,

they will not let her die.

She has love and friends who care

The support of her family

will always be there.

But the sadness inside will not leave.

How can she be free?


Please don’t give in

I know you can win.

Be brave and find your strength

It’s a risk that you’ve gotta take.

Don’t let it break you.

Don’t let it break you.

Don’t let it break…


I’m not broken anymore.

You can try to knock me down,

but I’m stronger that you now.

I’ve been pushed, I’ve been shoved,

lost and looking for love.

I’m not frightened anymore.

Won’t give up without a fight,

won’t stop ‘til I see the light.

Depression will not swallow me.

I’m finally free.

I am free.

Don’t let depression defeat.

Set yourself free.

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