It Ruined My Life… Adrian Barnes (Tactus)


So this one is kind of sad, but eleven years later I’m happy and better for it. When I was 18 and finishing high school, I started dating a friend of mine who I’d been totally obsessed with for ages. I had been applying for universities and already had auditions and been accepted at a few places before we started being official, so while I was extremely happy to be seeing her and be falling in love that summer, it was tainted by the impending doom of me possibly having to move away for university. I was torn between studying science at UNB in my hometown and just carrying on with life as it was, and going away to St. FX in Nova Scotia about five hours away. Three weeks out, after having a very deep discussion with one of my older sisters, I decided that I had to take the plunge and follow my passion for music.

The school was amazing, and I learned a tremendous amount and made some life-long friends, but I became severely depressed there very quickly. Being isolated from my girlfriend and my family (and being on my own for the first time) was very difficult for me. It almost ruined our relationship because of the distance and because of how crazy your mind gets when you’re depressed. I will always regret what I put that poor girl through that year, but she loved me and stuck with me (until we split amicably a few years later). I wound up completing the first year, but I stayed home after that next summer because I was just so miserable, and I knew I wouldn’t get better if I went back. I took two years off to work and spend time sort of “figuring myself out”, and then wound up transferring my credits to St. Thomas, where I finished in 2012.

It’s hard to say that I regret going to St. FX because I’m happily married now with a great job and a great band, and if I hadn’t gone through all of that I wouldn’t be where or who I am today. But it’s also tough to look back on that experience and not feel pain and remorse.



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