A couple weeks ago I heard Bob Goff say “Take away what you're known for, and whatever’s left, is who you are.”
Sometimes I hear things people say things that subtly land in my ears like a feather on my shoulder and sometimes I hear things that hit me like a ton of bricks. These words made me unknowingly gasp and definitely belonged in the “ton of bricks” category. It made me feel multiple things; a combination of comfort, terror, relief, peace, and confidence. A year ago I sat in the doctors office while he told me that I have a rare benign tumor on my facial nerve that could result in hearing loss, facial paralysis, and many other things that took my head for a spin. I remember sitting their in tears and silence. In an obvious emotional state I asked him if it made sense to continue to play music knowing the future possibilities of my health and he said, “I don’t know.” That crushed me. It was the realest form of “Take away what you’re known for, and whatever’s left, is who you are.” And to be honest at that time in my life I was not happy who I was left with. In my head I was no longer the confident somewhat good looking musician dude. I was a frail, confused, sometimes depressed, weird looking, 25-year old lyft driver with blood shot eyes; Wondering how he was ever going to find true happiness and his identity again. This all seems SO dramatic, but it’s just the truth of the places it took me emotionally. The reality of this situation drove me to some real dark places that I thought I would not be able to escape. I made the decision to process through this stuff with my family, good friends, God, and I decided to not immediately send it to the social media sphere. That was a great decision for me. This allowed me to process in a private healthy way at my own pace. This whole process has brought me to a place where I feel like I have great days again (for a long time I didn’t allow myself to label a day as “good” because of my circumstance) regardless of my health, I play music almost everyday without it defining me or carrying the weight of all my worth and happiness, I feel like Kyle Reynolds the ordinary human guy is actually GREAT! Who would've thought!? Even when my physical state is not what I desire, or I write a bad song, or my success in the entertainment industry isn’t worth a post on Billboard over. I feel like all my original goals have been shoplifted and replaced with things so much more valuable. Now I just want to love people really really well, make music in my room that makes me smile or feel something, give to people, and create environments where people feel like they’re great, awesome, and amazing without the thing they’re known for. Today when I hear “Take away what you're known for, and whatever’s left, is who you are.” I feel comfort, peace, relief, God’s love, and a lot like the flowers in the photo!