Sorry To Keep You Waiting: An Interview with Hannah Rad

In a matter of three months, Hannah Rad took several of her most difficult moments in life and turned them into a meaningful journey. Her YouTube series, Sorry To Keep You Waiting, documents a look into her mental health as she embarks on a solo road trip through California.

While the project from start to finish only took three months, the idea had been in the back of her mind for the better part of two years. She was feeling lost; in fact, she still feels lost. But she said something important about the entire series: she’s loving the journey.

“What it really amounted to was just having a breakdown to have a breakthrough, as how my therapist would put it, and I think is a pretty adequate way of saying it,” she said. “I really had to hit, not rock bottom, but just hit a place where I didn’t want to feel like this anymore and let me turn this into something positive. While the series in itself does tackle some heavy issues, it always comes about with a bit of hope, love, light and positivity because I'm showing that there's still room to be able to proceed and move forward and find the good and positivity and optimism in all situations.”

When it came time to film the series, it was as if the universe got together and guided the parts that she hadn’t totally planned out. The first episode, “Sorry to Keep You Waiting, but I’m Lost”, was filmed at Joshua Tree National Park where at one point she physically got lost. “Sorry to Keep You Waiting, but I Got Laid Off” was filmed at Badwater Basin, known as the lowest elevation point below sea level in North America. Getting laid off was the lowest point in her career as a radio host, DJ and content producer, giving the episode a real unique connection. All seven episodes share a uniquely connected moment that shows her vulnerability but absolutely wasn’t planned.

“I'm floored by the way my subconscious takes over,” she said. “Something in the world or the universe is telling me I’m doing something right.”

Some of those stories were harder to tell than others. Episode three, “Sorry to Keep You Waiting, but I Was Raped” exudes raw, powerful emotions that tug at the heartstrings, but episode four, “Sorry to Keep You Waiting, but I Was Mad”, is the one that she found hardest to film. Here she shares her most unprocessed feelings up until that point and to have those feelings resurface was difficult for her to grasp immediately.

The final episode, “Sorry to Keep You Waiting, but I’m Getting Help”, is where she shares how she came to terms with her journey so far and what has worked for her. She finds clarity in the outdoors; nature, water, fitness. She speaks to a therapist. What works for her might not work for someone else, but it’s important to be willing to embrace any option.

At the end of every episode, she does something very important in her healing process. Her story ends, and she says out loud that she’s leaving it there.

“For me, it was important not only to tell stories from a very vulnerable and honest side of myself, but to also do it in a very beautiful location,” she said. “There's beauty in the process and as painful and brutal as things might seem... Yes, it's heavy stories but there's a lot of triumph over tragedy and so for me it was one of the driving forces behind this series. I'm going to attack some really tough shit but I'm going to do it in a really crazily beautiful location. For me, to leave those feelings there is giving myself over to the process, over to the project, and allowing something to whisk me away into more positivity and optimism about my own journey as well. There's so much good and so much beauty in the world; it's hard and it's heavy to focus on the stuff that we might not find so fun all the time.”

Not only has she started to find clarity in her journey so far, she’s spent this project learning a lot about herself. She knows that she can eradicate self-doubt. She knows that if she has full faith in what she’s doing then she can get out there and commit to it. She knows that she’s come this far and nothing can stop her now.

Hannah Rad knew that now was her time to share these stories. She’s sorry to have kept herself waiting, but she’s here now.