My Inspiration - Part 2 Right about the time I began writing openly about living with bipolar disorder on my blog, Sara Bareilles’ new hit song Brave was released. I felt as if she had written the song specifically for me. The lyrics are so powerful and motivating. I still get chills listening to it and I've heard it probably a hundred times {or more}. For someone living with a secret such as mental illness, you can’t help but feel more open and strong just by listening to it.

The song moved me to tweet to Sara how much I loved her song and how it inspired me to “come out” to the world about living with mental illness. What happened next blew me away.  She re-tweeted me. What a thrill. Not just because she’s a brilliant, famous singer/songwriter, but because she believed in my story enough to share it with her 2.7 million fans. That's what got me.

It was a turning point for me. I knew writing about my story was the right thing to do, but she gave me an extra vote of confidence which provided me with the courage to keep going.

Sara Bareilles helped me find my Brave.

The more I listen to this incredible song, the more I love it. The melody gently yet passionately encourages you to stand up for what you believe in. This beat pulls you in and lifts you up. It truly is a civil rights anthem, as co-writer Jack Antonoff from the band FUN said in the YouTube webinar about the creation of the song:

When I started to think about what I wanted to name my show, I kept coming back to the word brave. There have been many people through this process of opening up with my writing who have called me brave for being so vulnerable.

To me it just feels better to be all of who I am and not hide one part.

And I’d like to bring this level of brave to the mental health community. So that we can show society we're regular people worthy of love and acceptance like everyone else.

I know there are people out there living with mental illness who will be brave and stand up with me. I’ve already recruited a handful of talented people who I know are living successful, inspiring lives despite having a mental illness diagnosis and they've each agreed to audition in February.

They are joining the movement to bring mental health issues into the spotlight. No one should live in the darkness just because they’re fighting a mental illness.

We need to show the world This Is My Brave.

I owe Sara Bareilles a huge Thank You for inspiring me to speak up and to make this show a reality. Your song is my anthem.