Sunday, 25 June 2017

The story. . .

It's true, I was made for you. . . 

All of these lines across my face
Tell you the story of who I am
So many stories of where I've been
And how I got to where I am
But these stories don't mean anything
When you've got no one to tell them to
It's true, I was made for you

Who knows the real stories about you?  People may only know certain chapters, but never really know the complete story that is you.  I don't think it's possible for people to really your complete story, and if they do, it's either because you've been really honest with them, or they care enough about you to pay attention to know everything about you.  Do you have someone to share your stories with?  I think people tell me their stories either because they have nobody to tell them to, or they can't actually tell their real stories to the ones they want to tell them to the most.  How do we get ourselves into those positions?  It can sometimes be hard to be the keeper of stories and figure out what it is that you are meant to do with those stories.  If you have a repository of stories for as long as your can remember, and those same people keep telling you their stories, then you must be doing a pretty good job of it.  Sometimes you become a story keeper rather than a story teller.

I climbed across the mountain tops
Swam across all the ocean blue
I crossed all the lines, and I broke all the rules
But baby, I broke them all for you
Oh because even when I was flat broke
You made me feel like a million bucks
You do
I was made for you
For you

When we say that we do things because we do them for others - we need to be really clear.
Is it really for that other person's good, for their benefit, or we are just deluding ourselves by saying that to ourselves time and time again?  What do we hope to gain by doing things for others?  If you have something to gain, then that is the wrong intention.  We should be doing things for others because it is always right to be able to help and support others, and not think that it is important to do so, because of the expectation of reciprocity.  Sometimes that is the furthest thing from their minds.  So much short term gain with long term pain.  When someone can make you feel truly valued and have a purpose to fulfil, hold onto these people as long as you can.  If you find that you are the one who is being constantly taken from, you need to start questioning how much you want that to continue happening.  Does your self worth diminish because you're giving so much of it away to others?


You see the smile that's on my mouth
It's hiding the words that don't come out
And all of my friends who think that I'm blessed
They don't know my head is a mess
And they don't know what 
I've been through like you do
And I was made for you

Be real with yourself.
People take you at face value for all of the things that you're saying.
But nobody bothers to listen carefully to what you are not.
Is it really all hiding behind your smile?
I think people sometimes are equipped to deal with your dramas or personal problems, because they either don't have the same barriers you might be facing, or are just not experiencing anything worth having dramas about in their own life.  On the flip side, if you are dealing with traumatic issues and still able to take on other people's dramas (let's be honest, drama is in the eyes of the beholder) then you just have a huge capacity to care for others.  Despite your own circumstances.  Good on you.  And if nobody has said anything to you - thanks for being a really good friend.  Even if people don't appreciate what you do for them - as long as you know that you are, that's all that matters.

And all of these lines across my face
Tell you the story of who I am
So many stories of where I've been
And how I got to where I am
But these stories don't mean anything
When you've got no one to tell them to
It's true, I was made for you
It's true that I was made for you. . . 

I hope that when you look back at your life, you will be able to see how much you meant to people.
They might not realise it now, but that's ok.  They won't realise until you're gone and things will have changed without you.  If you're someone who doesn't like to make other people feel bad in your absence, I guess you could spend time trying to get people to understand your stories, that is, if you're willing to share stories with them.  If you have nobody to tell you stories to right now, write them down instead, or be like me, and write your thoughts and feelings in a blog.  Stories can still mean something when there are people to read them.  So even if there is no significant other (or just another) in my life right now, just know that I write these stories for you; it's true that I was made for you. . . 

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Open your eyes. . .

When will they open their eyes?. . . 

Looking back I clearly see
What it is that's killing me
Through the eyes I want to know
See a vision once let go
I had it all

A friend of mine introduced me to this band and it ignited my love of rock music again.  I love this song in both its rock version and with this acoustic rendition that I've included in this blog post.  I like the fact that sometimes when you play song, they can sound equally beautiful both in full bore and in its most restrained.  We have dualities like that too within us.  Both the light and the dark, the heavy and light.  I have listened to this song so many times but as with other blog posts, I wait sometimes for songs to speak to me before I can write about them.  Often I will wait until hearing them enough times can also translate into what is going on around me in my own life.  Do you know what's holding you back in living your best life now?  We sometimes look to our past for inspiration, when we should be taking notice what's around us, right in front of us, right now.

Well constantly it burdens me
How to trust, I can't believe
I lost the faith, I lost the love
But when the day is done

Things happen to us and we can lose faith or lose love quite easily.  I guess part of our learning in this life is to figure out how to navigate our way through it all.  I sometimes think we're like people playing space invader arcade games, trying to avoid being hit, avoid crashing and burning.  Those games only allow us a few more chances before we die for real.  When I've played those arcade games, we might quickly insert more coins as the timer counts down the seconds.  Other times we might grow impatient with the game and press the buttons so fast to speed up the clock that's counting down.  Maybe we might even just watch the timer slowly count down, and choose not to insert more coins to continue playing nor choose to speed it up in frustration while watching the clock.  Which one are you?  Is this what burdens you?  Trying to find yourself out of dire straits every single time?  Opting to quit when things don't go your way?  Accepting what is and letting things go?

Will they open their eyes, and realize we are one
On and on we stand alone until our day is gone
Will they open their eyes and realize we are one

As much as I appreciate difference and uniqueness, there are times when I wish people would see that underneath it all we are the same.  I think this especially when people use differences to divide, rather than to celebrate diversity.  I think the more I am in coming into contact with different people in my life, the more opportunities I have to grow and get to know other like-minded people. it helps to consolidate my beliefs and values.  When you are challenged by things that force you to open your eyes, you get to decide whether you choose to take them on board or not.  What happens if you force others to open their eyes?  How receptive are they to really hearing what you have to say?



I love the way I feel today
And how I know the sun will fade
Darker days seem to be
What will always live in me
But still I run

I think when people think of happiness, maybe they should actually think about it as some Zen state of being where you learn to acknowledge your dark side.  What deep darkness lies within you?  I think it's healthy to acknowledge this darkness, rather than run from it.  Take a good long look at this darkness in the mirror.  Name every aspect of it that you see.  How else are we supposed to know what the light feels like if we don't know what to leave behind when it's time?  We might get annoyed at ourselves and judge ourselves harshly when we make mistakes and do things unintentionally.  We hold ourselves accountable in such a way that we would never hold anyone else accountable.  Could this be the reason for your generosity of spirit?  The face that you would forgive anyone anything and not judge them because you're too busy judging yourself more than you need?

It's hard to walk this path alone
Hard to know which way to go
Will I ever save this day?
Will they ever change?

If a path is hard to walk alone, chances are, you are meant to walk it alone.
I've been enjoying some alone time in recent weeks and I've found that there is no greater source of happiness than celebrating what you are grateful for, as well as acknowledging the other emotions that fit into that spectrum as well - those moments when you are sad and mad.  When we don't know which way to go, we often on someone else to tell us where to go, hence why walking a path alone is hard.  If we waked paths with others, we are more inclined to feel safe and comforted, knowing there is someone else there who can offer support or some much needed respite when you can no longer walk alone.  As for those who choose to torment you on this path, try to ruin you and sabotage your efforts, when will they open their eyes and realize we are one. . . 

Monday, 19 June 2017

Conscious. . .

I'm just being conscious . . . 

I can't stop talking to myself
I keep on looking in the mirror
Something is different about me these days
Or maybe I just woke up
I know I'm breaking through my shell
Because everything is getting clearer
A little light can make a lot of change
Or maybe I just spoke up
Or maybe I'm just finally

To be conscious is to be fully present in the moment you are in, being able to take in all of your surroundings, taking notice of every detail, as much of it as you can absorb with all of your sense combined.  We become too easily distracted these days.  Technology steals our attention when we are with friends because we feel compelled to keep checking what is being said or posted in virtual spaces rather than enjoying deeper connections that can be found in physically, close proximity spaces.  It isn't lost on me either that you're reading this online somewhere in the world - either on a train or a bus somewhere in Europe or in North America, or maybe in an internet cafe somewhere while you're busy browsing other things that take your interest.  Have you broken out of your shell lately?  Sometimes we forget that when we look in the mirror we forget to use it as a tool to be critically self reflective and confront some home truths about ourselves. It is something I constantly think about.

Conscious
Haven't gone crazy I promise
I'm just high up from that honest
Open my mouth 'cos I feel
(Feel, feel, feel)
Conscious
You might say I'm out of pocket
But I got so tired from boxes
Watch me as I keep it real
(Real, real, real)

What type of people do you find yourself surrounded by?  I find it increasingly difficult to be able to hide what I really think these days, and I don't I need to apologise for that anymore.  I think it has a lot to do with not living up to people's assumptions about how I am supposed to be in the world.  I never meet anyone's assumptions.  +Kevin Honeycutt said to me once that I would surprise people - that when I open my mouth, I do not sound like what I look like.  That was something I haven't forgotten since those words came out of his mouth almost five years ago.  It helped give me insight into what some people might think about me.  What state of consciousness do you have?  When you go to open your mouth - do you say things that you are feeling?  People around are becoming more honest about who they are and how they are feeling.  Some of them apologise for their honesty, but I tell them that it's important for them to acknowledge and speak their truth.



There's a new rhythm in my walk
I'm taking every step on purpose
And I see people start to notice
But maybe I just don't care
I know that some will say that I'm lost
I'm eating apples from the serpent
Does my awareness make you nervous?
I'm thankful I'm not still there
I'm thankful that I'm now finally

You can minimise silly mistakes in your life, if you are conscious of every step that you make, that you live not only with purpose and intention, but that each step has purpose and intention.  It is of course, important to have some down time as often as you can to balance the seriousness of a life that you will dedicate to being the best version of yourself.  Whether you need the validation of others to spur you on as motivation, if you need people's approval to allow you to move towards bigger goals - that's totally fine and natural.  I think once you get to a state of consciousness when if your life mission is able to withstand people's perceptions, and escape the scrutiny of critics who could never possibly understand what you are about, why you know what you know.  If you're eating apples from the serpent, you're probably the type of person who is willing to try anything once - to me, this is just one way of getting an informed opinion.  Sometimes being more aware than others in a confined space, doesn't mean that you have limit yourself either.  That I think is probably the most fascinating part of being conscious.  That you don't need to travel far physically to be somewhere completely foreign.  You can just go there in your mind.

Conscious
Haven't gone crazy I promise
I'm just high up from that honest
Open my mouth 'cos I feel
(Feel, feel, feel)
Conscious
You might say I'm out of pocket
But I got so tired of boxes
Watch me as I keep it real
(Real, real, real)

When you are out of pocket, it could be because people ask for so much so you give it away.
When you give so much of yourself away, does this then mean there is room in your pocket for you to put your hands in there while you walk around with those meaningful, purposeful steps?  Even when sad, tragic or hard times come calling, I understand that I meant to experience those things because the mirror I am holding up to myself is telling me that opportunities for growth are present.  If I could count the number of boxes people have tried to put me in there, and I have stepped out and crushed each time - I could start a recycling plant.  I'm like that annoying jack in a box that has a loose latch, so keeps popping out all the time, so hard to keep in a box.  Keeping it real could mean that not only do you not fit into a box, but there is so much about you that people can't quite pin down, so they almost try to chop you up into as many boxes, attempting to break the pieces of you, not knowing you've adapted to knowing yourself in every shape possible.

While you spend time chasing collections
I'll chase a deeper connection
To love more
Live more
Be more

I hope that even when we're done spending time chasing our public collections, conforming to what society would have us do - to be seen to be normal and contributing to the machine that is the rat race of life, that we have a chance to gain deeper connections with others.  I have found that those in the past who I have been connected with, have stumbled in their journeys and lost their way.  When we come to reconnect, they have little understanding about who they are anymore as they've been too busy looking out the window at people living their lives and being their best selves.  I hope that you all love more, live more and be more.  I think once we start to own our thoughts and own our feelings, we can all start to be a little conscious. . . 

The distance. . .

Who's calling your name in the distance?

The sky has lost its color
The sun has turned to grey
At least that's how it feels to me
Whenever you're away

When you are missing what you have with someone, what you had, time is irrelevant.
You might worry about things changing because distance plays tricks on you if you don't pay attention.  Do you take notice of things not being as you wished them to be?  Do you take notice of the change of temperature, sights and sounds around you when you sense the slightest change?  We forget that we must keep our wits about us sometimes.  What are we paying attention to these days that we took for granted in the past?

I crawl up in the corner
As I watch the minutes pass
Each one brings me closer to
The time when you're coming back

I don't know if I can go back to how things used to be.
You can rely on history playing tricks on you (again) and wonder if you keep finding yourself in this space because you keep making the same mistakes, or you have believed in something for so long and now you've come to a rude awakening about the reality you were trying to avoid.  Time apart or time alone seems like a good thing, until you're face to face again with the person you were missing so much, and it isn't quite the same anymore.  When did we realise that we weren't coming back to us anymore?  I think I knew it when I wasn't coming back to a place where you thought you had lead me there in secret, so cleverly, or so you thought, until I understood what you were trying to achieve.

I can't take the distance
I can't take the miles
I can't take the time
Until I next see you smile
I can't take the distance
And I'm not ashamed 
That with every breath I take 
I'm calling your name
But I can't take the distance

Is it my fault if you can't take the distance, the miles or the time?
I guess it's not about the blame game, but more to do with trying to figure ourselves and what we want as individuals.  I think it's absolutely vital that this happens before seeking to be in relationships that make no sense, can never be, or never were.  How totally unsuitable would it all be?  More than an inconvenience?  Has anyone ever called your name when you've walked away?  I've heard my name called a couple of times when I have chosen to walk away.  It was really hard to stay true to who I was and not turn around.  Have you been tempted to go back?  Even if you were to go back, would it still be the same?  People change, circumstances change, people move up, move out, move on, move in, move off, move down.  We may not agree with anything anybody says sometimes, but we do know that people either move or are moved.



I still believe my feelings
But sometimes I feel too much
I make believe you're close to me 
Getting close enough
Not nearly close enough

When you start to feel too much (or not enough) it is always an easy thing to tell.  You can notice things like eyes shifting, people fidgeting, countless sighs that never seem to end.  I've been chatting to friends about things like passive aggressive behaviour, feelings and directions.  It is always refreshing to talk to people who genuinely wonder about things that they keep bottled up inside, because they feel that by not sharing their feelings, that they don't exist.  Why do we have to keep playing make believe?  Have we stopped believing?

I breathe fire and I break free
To be by your side I'd do anything
I can't take the distance

I don't know if I could take or accept all the things that you do for me.
I wouldn't expect you to go out of your way or do things that make me a priority over anything else that you should be putting first.  What would you expect people to do though who want nothing more than to be by your side?  I don't know whether I can take the distance of being away from them or being further away from myself.  What is the reality for you?

I will go the distance
I will go the miles
That's how much you mean to me

I hope that people understand where their life's journey leads them.
We might take a lifetime to really come to grips before we can really begin to know what and who we are prepared to go the distance for.  I sometimes think you can't be fully prepared to go the distance and go the miles for someone else, if you can't do that for yourself.  Before you let anyone else know how much they mean to you, spend time getting to know who you are, far from the world's prying eyes and have the strength of conviction to know how much you mean to you, because that's how much you mean to me. . . 

Monday, 12 June 2017

Just the way you are. . . .

I just want someone that I can talk to . . . 

Don't go changing to try and please me
You never let me down before 
Don't imagine you're too familiar
And I don't see you anymore

I was just over a month old when Billy Joel released the album The Stranger where this track belongs.  I've blogged about so many of his songs, mostly, strangely enough, from this particular album and I'm not sure whether it's because I must've been hearing it a lot during my first few months in this world.  When you think you're too familiar with someone, you try to find new things to talk about because you don't want to feel stale or stagnant, you want to be vibrant and constantly on the move.  But if that isn't naturally how you are, not naturally your way of being, does it become more about what you expect to be, rather than a natural progression to that state?

I would not leave you in times of trouble
We never could have come this far
I took the good times, I'll take the bad times
I'll take you just the way you are

There's something to be said for people that are only with you in the good times, but never stick out for you in your bad times.  I've been having conversations lately with people who have been going through some tough times (when are people not in tough times - just seems to be more of it lately than ever before it seems), but everyone is at different stages of difficulty, struggle and loss in whatever they seem to be facing.  My ears and empathy are always attuned to hear and receive what people are saying with their words, how they say them and whether they are aware of the aches and pains, the anguish that seems to seep into their words that they don't see.

Don't go trying some new fashion 
Don't change the color of your hair
You always have my unspoken passion
Although I might not seem to care 

Is it a bad thing to want to alter your physical appearance?  Cosmetic changes may be something that you feel make you feel good about yourself.  When people aren't willing to show you their passion, but have shown it on so many other occasions - does this mean that they have stopped caring?  Why do we keep testing people to check whether they are suffering without you?  When people don't respond to what you're saying, maybe they don't know how to respond to what you're saying or they have nothing they feel is significant enough to say?  What new fashion are you going to try today?  are always going to be quick to judge you on your physical appearance - it's normal, it's what they see.  I had someone compliment me just tonight on the way to dinner, asking me if I was training because I looked slimmer.  I just said I'm smiling more, so I must look happier.  They didn't buy it.



I don't want clever conversation
I never want to work that hard
I just want someone that I can talk to
I want you just the way you are

Maybe you want clever conversation because you've had other things before and they never mean as much.  When I expect someone to be able to talk to me, it should be effortless to a point, but only because you spent the time getting to know someone so that it eventually does become effortless.  It takes time and energy, really careful listening and a genuine appreciation of people, despite first impressions.  I actually really like clever conversation - but not the intentional clever kind.  I like clever conversation where you bounce off each other and things just fall into place and you discover meaning together.  Like happy coincidences or happy accidents that are serendipitous.  Not the opposite of that, which is like, oh well, shit happens.  We shrug our shoulders, brush it off and move on.

I need to know that you will always be
The same old someone that I knew
What will it take till you believe in me?
The way that I believe in you?

I think when you come to rely on someone to be a certain way for you, it can be natural to think that they will always be like that forever.  When do you realise that they have changed though?  When they exhibit behaviour that deviates from what they have expressed to you in the past, you start to question the change.  When people do change, they might make some big announcements about why they are changing and then hope that they are able to sustain this rate of change.  This mismatch of belief in each other, may not be because of you not having enough faith in someone, but more to do with them not having any faith in themselves.  

I said I love you and that's forever
And this I promise from the heart
I could not love you any better
I love you just the way you are

I hope that you find someone who loves you even better than you think.
We think so little of ourselves and don't remember how amazing we actually are, because we listen too much to the negative voices, to the people who do not care to champion the things we love, the people we want to uplift and wish success for, just as much as we would for ourselves.  If someone wants you to change for them, have a think about it.  Change because you want to, because it makes you happy and you want to try it.  Otherwise just know that you're beautiful just the way you are. . . 

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Sorry seems to be the hardest word. . .

It's getting more and more absurd. . . .

Sometimes it's hard to accept when someone is sorry because you don't understand whether they are being genuine or not.  Think about the different times in your life when someone was sorry for hurting you.  Depending on what they did, was it easy for you to forgive them?  What happens if they do it again, but the second time a lot worse, and say sorry again?  Would you forgive them then?  We would almost feel like we are suckers for punishment and should know better right?

What have I got to do to make you love me?
What have I got to do to make you care?
What do I do when lightning strikes me?
And I wake to find that you're not there?

Romantic films will have you believe that profiling someone and getting to know all of the things that they like and value can win you a place in their hearts. But we all know how unsuccessful this course of action is and before you know it, the guy loses the girl, the girl loses the guy - whoever wanted to gain but ultimately lost in the end, something like this happens.  If we are met with a rebuff from the object of our affections, and we are at a lost to know what to do, it's probably the best thing that you put it all out there, warts and all.  If they don't know what to do with you, then that says more about them than you.

What do I do to make you want me
What have I got to do to be heard
What do I say when it's all over?
And sorry seems to be the hardest word

If someone does not reciprocate or return the love that you so willingly give them, then it's time to cut your losses and think more about yourself.  Recognise that you don't need to do anything to make yourself more desirable - either people want you, or they don't.  If someone needs convincing about all of the cool things that you can do, the type of person that you are - have we become nothing more than checks and balances on a pros and cons list?  If people cannot hear what you are about, cannot hear anything that you are trying to say, then you are right to expect a sorry.  Just know that it isn't one of the easiest words to be able to string into a sentence.


It's sad (so sad) so sad
It's a sad, sad situation
And it's getting more and more absurd
It's sad (so sad) so sad
Why can't we talk it over?
Oh it seems to me
That sorry seems to be the hardest word

This is my 800th blog post on my blog.
I've written a lot over the past few years about love, relationships, about empowering yourself and holding onto hope.  Sometimes though, we need to know when it is time to walk away from situations that no longer serve our purpose, get up and move away from a table when love is no longer being served.  Have you thought about all of the ways in which you have tried talking things over?  The thing about talking is that people need to take turns listening to each other.  If only one person was doing all the talking all the time, I would think you were in church listening to a sermon or in a university classroom receiving a lecture.  Those are probably the only suitable times when all you need to do is listen, while an expert imparts their knowledge to you and to the rest of who is gathered there.

It's sad (so sad) so sad
It's a sad, sad situation
And it's getting more and more absurd
It's sad (so sad) so sad
Why can't we talk it over?
Oh it seems to me
That sorry seems to be the hardest word

Things can quickly become more and more absurd when people lose control of their mental faculties, have no idea about why their actions have lead them to an unwanted situation.  Do things get more and more absurd, when you think you've been through enough of the constant mix of tragedies and comedies that have become your life?  What if you're just so used to drama that you can't even tell the difference anymore?  You must start to figure out why things are starting to pan out the way they are - whether it is because you have caused it or you have inherited problems that have nothing to do with you.

What do I do to make you love me
What have I got to do to be heard
What do I do when lightning strikes me
What have I got to do?
What have I got to do?
When sorry seems to be the hardest word

I hope that you find peace of mind and find all of the answers to these questions.
If you keep asking me what you need to do, you will never be able to make decisions on your own, figure out how to deal with consequences that have everything to do with choices you are making, rather than rely on others to figure it out for you.  I'm all for being a good friend and helping people when they need it the most, but when they keep asking for advice about things that they already know the answer to - but just haven't put it into motion - then no more repeating myself.  Sorry is the easiest word to say for me, but for you, sorry seems to be the hardest word. . . 

Strangers again. . .

How are we strangers again. . .  after all the time we spent. . . .

The way that it stands
I can't hold you
The way that it stands
I don't even know you

You might be holding back more than you held back then.  That's ok.  You can keep your secrets.
You forget how animated your face gets though, so reading your face is like reading a favourite book, where I've memorised lines, anticipated the twists and turns in the story, reading those same passages over and over and feeling exactly the same way in each twist and turn.  It's that weird space of knowing that you can't change anything, even if you could.  You're just feeling the exact, right reaction at this moment in time.  Underneath it all, maybe I don't even know you.  But are we meant to really know anybody anyway?  If we don't really get to know ourselves as much first?

We're strangers again
How does it happen after all the time we spent
Strangers again
Now we're waiting for our time to come again
Strangers again
Facing the sad sunrise
Rising, rising

How do people who know each other so well, suddenly become strangers?
When closeness ends and separation ensues, it is usually because it has to end and new beginnings must start to take shape and form, otherwise we will start to lose ourselves in places we cannot afford to be lost.  We will never be able to pull ourselves back from making poor decisions.  What do we even base our decisions anymore?  When do things become strange again?  Light creeps in and exposes secrets that you think you held tightly, that you thought you had either buried or disposed of away from prying eyes.

Don't let go my hand
Don't try to freeze me
Don't let go my hand
I want you to seize me

Why will people not let go of your hand?  When we try to freeze people out, is it because it is what we really want to do, or what we feel we must do in order for things to be able to move in a meaningful way?  I can't be tasked with helping people see things about themselves that they always seem reluctant to see for themselves.  Are you prepared to hear what you need to hear, instead of what you want to hear?  You should be done with seizing people, taking over their lives or being seen  as someone with all the answers, because these are no concerns of ours anymore.  When someone reaches out for your hand time and time again, politely relinquish their hold over you.  There is no need to hold onto things that we don't need, people we don't need.



We're lovers again
And when it happens I don't want the night to end
Lovers again
Now we're waiting for our time to come again
Lovers again
Facing the sad sunrise
Rising, rising

When you become lovers again, you agree to return to a place that doesn't really exist.
We believe we have entered our new reality - but we might just be lurking in a perceived reality that we can't yet hold up to the light, in the light of day, in public, uncaring of people's opinions or cast aspersions.  We wait patiently for those times to come around again.  What does that make us?  People who are good at waiting.  We almost become like wait staff who do other people's bidding, waiting for tips for jobs well done that we don't understand we aren't being paid to deliver.  How did we learn to wait in this way?  Are these the lessons that life teaches us?  To sacrifice what little we have, to hold onto what little we can?  We compromise our self respect for the crumbs and promises that can never satisfy.  This is what the sad sunrise looks like to me.

Let's spend some time together
Not seeking pain or pleasure
Just killing time together
Tonight

Being able to tell someone that you have no expectations of them, that you are willingly representing someone in their life who doesn't give them any pressure - how do they take that?  They might prioritise you last in their life, because you don't ply them with urgency or lever them with something that prompts them to place you further up in the list.  When you are able to seek neither pain or pleasure - what else is left?  Being able to celebrate physical nearness, just being able to be together doing absolutely nothing - isn't that what everyone wants?  Time well spent is killing time with you.

We're strangers again
And when it all happens all you know I can't pretend
Strangers again
Now we're waiting for our time to come again
Strangers again
Facing the sad sunrise
Rising, rising

I hope that you won't need to face that many sad sunrises.
It's like figuring out that as much as you know about someone, maybe even understand or know them more than any other person in their life, you are not an actual part of their lived reality.  You don't belong in the spaces that they now occupy, which is why they either push you away, or give excuses not to see you, even though they spend time doing other things that are detrimental to their health and wellbeing.  Maybe they can't give you what you haven't been able to articulate because they're just not capable of giving that with their baggage.  They can't give you what you haven't been able to say with their actual choices that maybe did not include you as an option.  But hey, if you're willing to wait for your time to come again, then maybe, just maybe, you might not have to face sad sunrises for much longer, and that before long, you will no longer be strangers again. . . 

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Breathe again. . . (Sara Bareilles). . .

How you feel before you've found that something you were searching for. . . 

Car is parked, bags are packed, but what kind of heart doesn't look back
All the comfortable glow from the porch, the one I will still call yours?
All those words come undone and now I'm not the only one
Facing the ghosts that decide if the fire inside still burns

Do you question what your heart holds?  Especially when you consider how you might think you have run out of love that is meant to live in your heart, enough so that when you find someone that you want to give love to, it should automatically transfer its value across like some paywave transaction that happens when words are spoken or actions demonstrated.  What value do you place on those words becoming undone now?  What ghosts linger in the wake of what is happening?

All I have, all I need, he's the air I would kill to breathe
Holds my love in his hands, still I'm searching for something
Out of breath, I am left hoping someday I'll breathe again
I'll breathe again

You have to wonder if you are out of breath because he is the air and he's withdrawing from you now.  What power does he hold if you have allowed him to become the air that you would kill to breathe?  You should start to realise that his love is not enough and never will be, because it's not meant for you, he can barely love himself as it is, and you will learn to breathe without him in time, as you learn to trust your own breathing again.  This is how you will breathe again.

Open up next to you and my secrets become your truth
And the distance between that was sheltering me comes in full view
Hang my head, break my heart built from all I have torn apart 
And my burden to bear is a love I can't carry anymore

You don't need to question if any of the things you shared were true or not.
They might have been true at the time and they might even have meant something, but like moments in time, they are fleeting, they pass, unless you can record them and watch them over and over again (why would you torture yourself like that) and if you were able to build foundations of something worth having - after that - isn't that what everyone wants?  But I guess people try to keep their options open.  People want escape routes if they can't handle who they become in situations, because they might feel unworthy of such a love and finally start holding that mirror up to themselves and see themselves for who they are rather than gazing out the window and blaming others for their choices.


All I have, all I need, he's the air I would kill to breathe
Holds my love in his hands, still I'm searching for something
Out of breath, I am left hoping someday I'll breathe again
I'll breathe again

When someone holds your love in their hands, you question how they are holding it.
Are they being gentle with your love?  Are they being careful with it?
Are they being rough with your love?  Are they creating bruises that make you worse for wear?
Are they being nonchalant and careless with your love?  Now they have it, they're being reckless with it and wouldn't think twice about dropping it, losing it or abusing it for their own entertainment.
What are you left with after they hold your love in their hands?  Are they hands you can trust?

Oh it hurts to be here 
I only wanted love from you
Yeah, it hurts to be here
What am I gonna do?

Is this what you really wanted?
Sometimes when we think that what we want from people is love, it is actually honesty.
We just want people to be genuine with their intentions and mean what they say.  Do you get sick of reading between the lines?  Why do people make things harder than they need to do?  We question people's intentions because we might still be smarting from bad experiences that we have had with past relationships and we're not sure how we will proceed when people cross our paths and cause a distraction from the daily routine of your life, from the goals and deadlines you have disciplined yourself to follow.

All I have, all I need, he's the air I would kill to breathe
Holds my love in his hands, still I'm searching for something
All I have, all I need, he's the air I would kill to breathe
Holds my love in his hands, still I'm searching for something
Out of breath, I am left hoping someday I'll breathe again
I'll breathe again, I'll breathe again
I'll breathe again, I'll breathe again
I'll breathe again, I'll breathe again

I hope you realise that the things you were searching for all along, have lain inside you.
We can often rely on other people to fix us, to take a look at our issues, problems and discrepancies and make us new again.  Nobody has the power to do that.  As well intentioned as they might as well, this doesn't actually help us in the long run.  You can finally understand that the love you were carrying for this person is a burden that you should not be prepared to carry anymore, not out of some sense of misguided loyalty, nor out of some sense of misguided self sabotage and punishment.  If people can no longer see the amazing worth that is you, or can't handle the brilliance that you are, then they are doing this because you are the air that they need to breathe.  They just don't know how to breathe.  So they must push you away in order to learn how to breathe on their own.  They will breathe again, just without you.  Out of breath, I am left hoping someday I'll breathe again. . . 

Saturday, 3 June 2017

Everybody hurts. . .

When you need to remember that you're not alone. . . 

When your day is long
And the night, the night is yours alone
When you're sure you've had enough of this life
Well hang on
Don't let yourself go
'Cause everybody cries
And everybody hurts sometimes

What kind of life are you living that makes you think it's time to let go?
I have often had conversations with my friends, colleagues and strangers (you know the type, the friend that you only just meet and only expect to have them be your friend for a short period of time, like a taxi driver or a fellow passenger on a plane) about life.  The usual conversations with friends will often be picking up on threads of conversation from the last time you spoke or if you're talking to a stranger it might be about what you do for a living and where you are heading to or just leaving from.  I find that when people stop caring or taking interest in your life, when you start to feel ignored or isolated, it is very easy to feel hurt and neglected.  What do you do when you feel this way?  Do you still people how you really feel?

Sometimes everything is wrong
Now it's time to sing along
When your day is night alone (hold on)
(Hold on) if you feel like getting go (hold on)
If you think you've had too much of this life
Well, hang on

It is easy to feel like letting go of life is the easy solution.  But it isn't.  
Everyone I know has been busy posting messages about the popular Netflix series 13 Reasons Why.  Just as popular has been an American high school deciding to counter the notion of this series by having a series of daily morning radio announcements where students share their story and thank someone at school who has helped them overcome their own fears and obstacles and kept them alive.  They named the project 13 Reasons Why Not? 

'Cause everybody hurts
Take comfort in your friends
Everybody hurts 
Don't throw your hand
Oh no
Don't throw your hand
If you feel like you're alone
No, no, no, you're not alone

Do you have friends that you can find comfort in?
I have had friends in the past who would tell me a lot about the things that they were going through, but never deigned to tell their real friends, the people they grew up with, what they were facing because they had this public persona that they needed to uphold.  Why do we punish ourselves in this way?  Is public image so important that we would be prepared to spend time investing in a facade of a life that shows you are able to keep everything together, or should you lay your vulnerability bare, for everyone to see?



If you're on your own in this life
The days and nights are long
When you think you've had too much of this life
Hang on

I meant to post this draft a long time ago, but I always felt as if this song was a bit more challenging to write about than other songs, only because of the potential heaviness I feel while listening to it, and having to carry that around with me during my day seems more than I am willing to bear.  I've also recently been getting back into my songwriting and had a brainwave a few days ago while writing some Samoan ballads and I had forgotten how sometimes I do think too much of this life, and think there is too much going on in this life.  It doesn't make me think however that I don't want to be a part of it.  There are moments I want to escape it or want to get off the merry go round that I seem to be on because people want me on it and keep spinning it without my permission just to see me react.  Why do people do that?  When others delight in your panic or pain - are these types of people worth having around.

Well everybody hurts sometimes
Everybody cries
And everybody hurts sometimes
And everybody hurts sometimes
So, hold on, hold on
Hold on, hold on
Hold on, hold on
Hold on, hold on

I hope that you know that it's ok to hurt and feel those feelings.  But it's also important to know that those feelings will come to a natural end, that those times when you are hurting will pass.  We just need to remember to foster our sense of resilience and know when to bounce back, to remove ourselves from the hurt and pain and rejoin a direction for life again, a commitment to momentum and pushing through the hurt and pain.  Surround yourself with people who want the best for you.  Surround yourself with things that make you feel good about life, that brings you the joy of living and help keep you fascinated and connected about the beauty that the world has to offer.  Find those people and things and you will only hurt sometimes.  Not all the time.

Everybody hurts but you are not alone. . . 

Monday, 29 May 2017

Talk. . .

Oh, you keep saying what I've heard before. . . 

People talk, people talk
But they don't wanna say what they're really trying to say
Hopes and fears, smoke and mirrors
Save all the thinking, words by themselves they just fade

What kind of talk are you hearing around you?
When people talk and talk and talk, you might easily switch off, like some really smart appliance that knows when to conserve energy and wait for action that can only come from further instructions or from taking initiative where none exists.  It doesn't really matter how much people talk and talk these days, it's more about being selective in your responses, when you feel compelled to say something, to react to what is being said.  Whether you choose to talk straight from your soul or hide it behind smoke and mirrors is totally your choice.  If we spend far too much time having to think carefully about the words we say when we talk, that might be a little bit too much effort on your part to conform to those around you.  Time and place for different levels of talk I guess.

People run, people walk
But they never see past the world that they're in
So if it's talk that you want from me then maybe you should let me in

When we run away from or walk away from our world, it may be because we need a break from a situation, need a change of scenery to give us more purpose and to feel more centred about a direction we are pursuing.  What world are you in right now?  Is it where you want to be?  I often think about how when we talk with others, how much they are prepared to come into your world, or whether the expectation is for you to follow them into theirs, or you both agree to some plateau of a place that allows you both to be in, to meet somewhere in the middle before returning to your roles and responsibilities in reality.  When I have been invited in to certain places, I might take a look around and get to know my surroundings, learn to observe what I'm actually seeing around me and then think about whether I am welcome there, could possibly belong there, or maybe run or walk away just as quickly as I entered the scene.  You must always be mindful of the logistics of a context.  Don't forget that.

Oh, you keep saying you won't let me go
Oh, you keep saying what I've heard before
Talk

Why won't someone let you go?  Is there something you've done, or is it because of who you are to them that they feel that they can't let you go?  Have you cast some sort of spell over them that you haven't been aware that you've cast?  I guess it also depends on the tone in which they say that they won't let you go either.  Said with tenderness and earnestness, it speaks of love.  Said with harshness and bitterness, it speaks of pain.  When we are willing to really tell others how we think and feel, how long before things start moving?  How long before we start to accept what is the consequences of our actions?  Do you believe them when they say they won't let you go?  Do you try and test their resolve by pushing them away?  When someone keeps saying something and we continue to do whatever we like, even though they've been very clear about their intentions, does this mean we no longer care?


Playing with empty hearts, leading words felt like they're just going nowhere now
So if it's talk that you want from me then maybe you should let me in

Have you been accused of leading people on?  You might say things to others because they genuinely ask.  But you might be criticised for trying to incite things in others, when you should be trying to put them against each other in such a way.  Who teaches us to act this way?  Do we like it when people fight over us and crave that kind of attention?  Do we like it when people have to sacrifice things in order to be in a life with us or expect people to be able to read our minds, just like that?  Why are our hearts empty?  Once they were full and overflowing with love, for others, for strangers, for everyone else, except us.  When the self loathing decided to come knocking and start living in our hearts, it quickly made sure that it was empty, not allowing room for anything else positive to stay in there again.  Why do we allow ourselves to be lead nowhere in this regard?  What do you want from me?

Oh, you keep saying you won't let me go
Oh, you keep saying what I've heard before
Oh, you keep saying you won't let me go (talk)

If you're like me, you're not one for repeating yourself.
When people say things because they know that it is the right thing to do, rather than what you neither want nor need to hear - then there is some real talk that needs to take place.  Do you have a good memory?  Are you able to recall all of the things that you've heard before?  If you know people really well, either because they're your people and you value the things that they say, then you will know without a shadow of a doubt, the very things that mean so much, things you don't mind having heard before, or things that hurt so much, things that you couldn't forget hearing, even if you tried.

Keep talking to me bae
Keep talking to me bae
I know all about you
I know all about you

I hope that the only person that needs to be bae - is actually yourself.
We can't be who we need to be for others, if we don't first look after what we need to, take care of business to ensure that we will be productive and achieve what needs to get done.  Know all you can about yourself before you go passing yourself around to others who might mistreat you, take you for granted or never truly appreciate the gift that is you.  We sometimes forget how important or significant we are for ourselves.  Guard yourself, be vigilant, be wary of those who want to dominate your time or seek you out all the time.  It is ok to be free and open as you want to be, but before you start listen to others and listen to everything they have to say, take a moment and listen to yourself, be prepared to listen carefully and hear your own talk. . . .  

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Smallest light. . .

I've got big things to do. . . 

Break my heart
Break my hands
You can take anything but my plans
Ooh ooh I've got big things to do

Have you been inundated with people hell bent on trying to ruin your plans?
I'm not sure whether it's the change of season or you're starting to develop some discernment and seeing people for who they really are, but it's definitely something that has become increasingly apparent in more recent times.  So how do you deal with it?  How do you maintain focus and keep yourself grounded so that you continue to believe in the things that you know you've always done that help others, things that you have always done that stem from the beliefs and values that you hold in a special place in your heart?  People will come in and out of your life, either ready to break your heart and break your hands, meaning that they are here to stop you from realising your brilliance.  I guess the question is - will you let them?  Ain't nobody got time for people like that - so don't make room for them in your life - ok!

You can laugh
Have your fun
I'll be standing right here when you're done
Ooh ooh I've got big things to do

When you are a person of colour, it is easy for people to view you as the expert in your own race, in the group of people that you have been tasked with representing.  But I maintain that there is a distinct difference between yes, knowing your cultural identity and for some people they might choose to know all there is to know about values and protocols to do with their ethnic identity, but my race doesn't also define the skills that I possess either.  Don't get me wrong, it definitely is one of the contributing factors, because if that was the case, then every single Pacific Islander I know would be all the same, like Stepford Wives or robots that are mass produced - no.  We are people who have different skill sets just like everybody else who has the potential to do whatever in all things they set their hearts and minds to achieve.  People will laugh at you and think you won't amount to anything.  But I think we have moved too far beyond all of that to still be stuck in 1950s Aotearoa New Zealand.

Just because you don't see us
Doesn't mean that we don't exist
Sometimes the smallest light
Shines so bright
Yeah, sometimes the smallest light shines so bright

When you are not being seen, and you are physically there, it is because people do not want you there.  I have lost count of the number of times when I've suddenly become invisible.  It makes me smile wryly when you can't exactly hide a woman like me in a confined space.  It's not physically possible.  Not just because I take up a lot of space, but I know how to stay in my space without having to crowd others, yet I sense I might be intimidating to them.  It's a matter of perception I guess.  I think early on in my career it used to bother me, but I don't think you should ever have to apologise for being in a room, especially if you're qualified to be there.


I got heart, it's enough
It's the only thing left that they can't pull apart
And when they try, I'll fly

It is understandable that you guard your heart.  It's the thing about you that helps you understand how you feel, the control room of your centre of emotions and helps you to decide who cares about you or who doesn't.  Who uses you and who doesn't.  Who wants to ruin you and who doesn't.  Have you figured out an escape route yet?  Sometimes we think that we need to subject ourselves to unimaginable pain because we did unfathomable deeds - but you are your own worst enemy.  Trust your heart and know that it deserves love, your own especially.  I wouldn't let anybody rip my heart from my body and stamp all over it and hope to kill any emotions I had.  If I saw somebody try to do that to my friends and family, I wouldn't let them anywhere near to cause any damage.  So why do you do that to yourself?  Why allow someone enough power to try to do that to you?

I can't win, there's a cost
You can't lose what you've already lost
Ooh ooh I've got big things to do

What have you already lost?
When we have nothing left to lose, it is only then that we act with complete recklessness and total abandon because there is nothing left to stop us from noticing any risk anymore.  There are no further repercussions, ramifications or consequences that could possibly deter you from making the choices that you should have made long ago.  When we accept what we have lost or haven't done, then it is time to look at what we want to gain and what we haven't done - and go do that.

Just because you don't see us
Doesn't mean that we don't exist
Sometimes the smallest light
Shines so bright
Yeah, sometimes the smallest light shines so bright

I hope you realise that when people can't see you for who you are, that you can either make them see you, so you go and do things to stand out or just no, accept that they can't see you because their eyes aren't made to see the beauty of you.  People that truly value you, will see you no matter how small your light is.  They will gravitate towards you and want to spend time with you because of not what you can do for them, what you can give them, but because they just enjoy being around you.  There are people who will reach out to you when you least expect them to, being exactly who you need them to be, when you think all hope is gone.  Be open to all of the things and people that come with encouragement when you need it the most.  What message do you want to put across to those who should know you but don't?  Just because you don't see us. . . (we've) only just begun. . . 

Good things come to those who wait. . .

Is it worth the wait?

There's no emergency
No sirens in front of me
There's nothing to stop me from getting my way yeah
I'm not going anywhere
If you tell me, I'll stay right here
I'll be in the same place everyday

You can be forgiven for thinking that everything has to be done at such a quick pace, that life will pass you by if you don't move fast enough to match that frenetic pace.  I often think that we compare ourselves so much to others when we see that they're moving and we're not.  People have often commented to me that I have achieved so much in my life, but I don't think about that much.  Granted yes, lots of qualifications and experiences, but to me those are symbols of things that I have collected along the way.  I enjoyed (or at least attempted to), the process of learning during those times and what I learned back then is still valid today but things never remain static.  What same place are you in everyday? 

Heart stays patient
'Cause I know it's worth it

Is my heart really patient though? Is your heart patient?
We will have times in our lives where we grow increasingly aware that if we aren't careful, that our hearts will eventually become patients in hospital, because it's too weak to pump blood around our bodies and this causes fluid to build up in our lungs hampering our ability to breathe deeply and comfortably as we have been accustomed to doing.  Do you know how to adjust your diet and review the medication to ensure that you can manage whatever else life has to throw at you?

That's why I take my time
Take as long as I got
Won't pretend to be somebody I'm not, no
Good things come to those who wait
I'm not perfect, nobody is
Could fill an ocean of blood sweat and tears
Good things come to those who wait

Why do we spend time pretending to be somebody we're not?
We may choose to try and exhibit some obscene levels of perfection that actually detract from the beautiful imperfections that we have, that everybody has, but struggle so hard to conceal.  I just think we need to be persistent and pursue what is most important to us.  Have you tried to rush things and never got far enough ahead, made as much progress as you were expecting?  Maybe slow and steady does win your own individual races that you are running, in whatever contexts that you are running in because when it comes to achieving the good things we want - there is no concept of time.  If it is our destiny to fulfil, it will come to pass.  


To show all my cards to you
But that's what a fool would do
I prefer to stick when the others would twist

You might start to question whether you can trust people around you because they choose not to show all their cards to you.  Maybe they are being guarded because you invoke something in them that requires them to protect themselves.  Maybe you're the one that's refusing to show all your cards, because you are waiting for things to come right somehow, when the dust settles so that you can see whether you are being taken for a fool or not.  Are you prepared to stick to your guns and be who you are, no matter what, when others will change or twist whatever they want to say for their own advantage or personal gain?

'Cause most people would run and fall
They don't even work at all
There's nothing to prove, just to feel you exist

I guess rather than questioning if we can trust others in our lives, focus first on how much you can trust and believe in yourself.  Nobody can make you do things that you don't want to do, as much as you would like to think so. We make choices that either lead to good or bad outcomes.  When do you realise that you no longer need to be defined by these choices anymore?  When do you realise that you no longer need to prove yourself to anyone?  Depending on your level of visibility and your desire to be seen, then you will just be someone that exists.  

That's why I take my time
Take as long as I got
Won't pretend to be somebody I'm not, no
Good things come to those who wait
I'm not perfect, nobody is
Could fill an ocean of blood sweat and tears
Good things come to those who wait

I hope that you take as much time as you need to get things done, to set your priorities straight and consider what needs to get done.  People will always try to get you doing things that they think are important, mostly because you are the reliable one, and that's what you've always done, so surely you must not mind doing it right?  I sometimes think that just because you're good at something, it doesn't mean that you have to do it.  Don't get me wrong - we can celebrate our strengths and keep doing things that soon become effortless and boring if we let it.  But I would much rather take my time and use it to explore all the possibilities of the things that I don't normally think I can do, or that people don't expect you to do.  I've realised that you don't need to be in a rush to get anywhere, but instead, just stay in your lane and be persistent about what drives you to be where you will never think possible.  Keep your eyes on the prize and just be completely in the moment when you emphatically know that good things come to those who wait. . . 

Saturday, 20 May 2017

The greatest. . .

When you need reminding yes. . . you are the greatest. . . 

Uh oh running out of breath but I
Oh I, I got stamina
Uh oh running now I close my eyes
Well oh I got stamina
And uh oh I see another mountain to climb
But I, I got stamina
Uh oh I need another love be mine
Cause I, I, I got stamina

Do you have stamina?
It requires that you have sustained or prolonged mental or physical effort.  When we are in situations doing what we normally do, are we able to dig deeper and channel even more than we think we have?  Do we have reserve energy left in our tanks to do what needs to get done?  Just when you think you've overcome so many hurdles and obstacles in your time - there are other more significant challenges that come across your path.  Why does this happen?  I guess it has something to do with you being able to not rest on your laurels.  I'm not saying that you don't get to celebrate your achievements - I'm just saying that you should always be preparing for the next great imaginable challenge that takes you to other places you never even dreamed of going.

Don't give up, I won't give up
Don't give up, no no no
Don't give up, I won't give up
Don't give up, no no no

Why would you give up?
There might be people who outwardly say all of the right things and claim to be a friend, but behind closed doors they join the rest of the mob who would love to see you fail, because you have compromised your own journey to conform to other people's low opinions in the past - so why start now?  Never give up what you are locked down to commit your time and energy to.  There might be times where you see no end in sight and you will be your own worst enemy when it comes to self sabotage, but you also might start to believe the naysayers who see nothing positive in their own lives - so they try to ruin yours.  Tell yourself in each waking moment, so that you continue to stay work - don't give up, I won't give up.

I'm free to be the greatest, I'm alive
I'm free to be the greatest here tonight, the greatest
The greatest, the greatest alive
The greatest, the greatest alive

You can be free to be the greatest.
I have had people, not in so many words, but more or less in the way that they look at you and wonder what you're doing in the same room as them - especially if you look as if you don't belong.  I know what that feels like.  That's the story of my life in Western society.  I don't think I do what I do to try to belong either.  I know exactly where I belong.  I may sound like a white person but I don't look like one.  But see, the thing is - I'm not trying to be white.  I'm just set on being the best version of myself - no matter what context I walk into.  There will be no compromise about who I am, what I stand for and who I represent, even why I came into existence.  All of that was decided before I was but a gleam in my father's eye when he first laid eyes on my mother.



Well uh oh running out of breath but I
Oh I, I got stamina
Uh oh, running now I close my eyes
But I, I got stamina
And oh yeah I'm running and I've just enough
And uh oh I got stamina

Even when you are closing your eyes - while everyone has already been fast asleep or awake for that matter, you almost have to have it so that things are always continually moving and working in your favour.  Not because you want to amass any notion of power - far from it.  Having such a high level of stamina to withstand all of the critics and all of the people who never get past your face value, because they never truly stop to look and appreciate the value of your face - that says a lot more about them and their upbringing rather than what you could ever have brought into the room.  Be prepared to run and walk, skip, hop and jump where and as appropriate.  There is no clear indication about what pace we are going, we just need to be sure we're headed in the right direction.  Stamina is all you need in that regard.  Now you know why I've got stamina.

Hey I am the truth
Hey I am the wisdom of the fallen - I'm the youth
Hey, I am the greatest
Hey, this is the proof
Hey I work hard, pray hard, pay dues hey
I transform pressure, I'm hands-on with effort
I fell twice before my bounce back was special
Letdowns will get you, and the critics will test you
But the strong will survive, another scar may bless you, ah

I hope that whatever you are dealing with in your life right now, that you are in control of how you want things to be for yourself.  We cannot control people and I wouldn't want to either.  I'm interested in having healthy debates and arguments about things that matter to all of us.  Granted, I have been frustrated along with way, continually explaining and reasoning with others about why change must happen - but this is because we have never truly mastered the art of listening to one another.

It has taken me a while to write this particular blog post, because there are pressures and efforts that are continually thrust upon me - misunderstandings of events and situations that are no fault of anyone other than bad communication and an unwillingness to listen.  But pushing all of that aside, watching the dust settle and seeing what's directly in front of me, we should be afraid to assess our surroundings and take stock of the actions we take to enjoy our liberties.  Just as I'm rooting for your freedom to be whoever you want to be, I'm free to be the greatest. . . I'm alive. . .