Growing Pain is an intimate demo mix of 4.5 unmastered songs due to be featured on my first full-length album, Coming of Age (to be released in fall 2018).

As someone who has struggled with mental health issues my entire life, the tracks on this demo mean a lot to me. Of all the different combinations of medication, therapy, disciplined daily living, and mind-body dedication, making music still remains the most powerful and effective means of working through pain for me. Every song on this tape arose directly from a period or moment of intense anxiety or depression, and they each lifted me out of suffering and brought me into the light of meaning. I consider them gifts and loving companions. My greatest hope is that they can do for other listeners what they did for me, and help alleviate some of the pain of feeling alone and insecure. We are all vulnerable creatures longing for love and validation, and we all deserve it.

Vampire bats are the only animals (with the exception of humans) who participate in the behavioral phenomenon known as reciprocal altruism, whereby if one bat is starving, another will willingly sacrifice it's own blood meal to that bat to prevent it from dying without expecting anything in return.

For too long, I thought that punishment and shame were the only ways to gain forgiveness and give altruistically. This EP marked the beginning of a (most likely lifelong) journey to grapple with those feelings and strive for a deeper understanding of what it means to "do (and be) good."

After further study of the Desmodus rotundus (common vampire bat), researchers discovered that the receiving bats were more likely to give back to the initial blood-giver in the future.