My 2016 Anthem!

Every year I like to pick a theme song or anthem. I connect with music so deeply and I love those songs that get stuck, not just in your ear, but in part of your soul as well. The songs I have picked as my anthems have always been such wonderful reminders to stop… breathe… and let myself get lost in music and lyrics.

I usually like to pick songs that make me want to get up and dance. I hear it and my foot starts tapping and I just want to get up and shake my hips. Listening to a song that makes you want to move is one of the best ways to cheer yourself up on a gloomy day.

My anthem for 2015 was cute and sassy and I still smile whenever I hear it. Secrets by Mary Lambert.

They tell us from the time we’re young
To hide the things that we don’t like about ourselves
Inside ourselves
I know I’m not the only one who spent so long attempting to be someone else
Well I’m over it

2014’s song was I Am Light by India.Arie and that’s one that doesn’t make me want to dance.

I want to close my eyes and put my hands over my heart and let the music soothe those achy parts of my insides.

I am divinity defined
I am the God on the inside
I am a star, a piece of it all
I am light

In 2013, not only did Spotlight by Patrick Stump make me want to cheer for myself and everyone else but the video is pretty awesome too.

You could be your own spotlight
You could be the star, you can shine so bright, 
You could be your own spotlight

In 2012, I’m sure everybody had gotten tired of Firework by Katy Perry but I still absolutely loved it.

You don’t have to feel like a wasted space
You’re original, cannot be replaced
If you only knew what the future holds
After a hurricane comes a rainbow

My first true anthem was Heather Small’s Proud. I remember listening to that song and feeling like I could do absolutely anything.

What have you done today to make you feel proud?
It’s never too late to try
What have you done today to make you feel proud?

You could be so many people
If you make that break for freedom
What have you done today to make you feel proud?

It’s been incredibly hard to choose an anthem for 2016. It’s always something that comes to me and something I don’t even need to really think about. It just happens – that song that I find myself humming under my breath or listening to on my morning walks. This year nothing says PICK ME. My heart has been a bit tender lately – which has a lot to do with why my word for 2016 is “mend” – and when I’m having a really bad day I listen to the spoken word poetry Instructions for a Bad Day by  Shane Koyczan and unfailingly it puts my life into perspective.

I’m letting that be my anthem this year. I’m letting it remind me of all of the things I want to repeat to myself when I’m having a sad moment.

My anthem makes me cry every time, but they are good tears. Healing tears. Mend-my-heart tears.

“There will be bad days.

Be calm. Loosen your grip, opening each palm slowly now. Let go.

Be confident. Know that “now” is only a moment, and that if “today” is as bad as it gets, understand that by tomorrow, “today” will have ended.

Be gracious. Accept each extended hand offered, to pull you back from the “somewhere” you cannot escape.

Be diligent. Scrape the gray sky clean. Realize every dark cloud is a smoke screen meant to blind us from the Truth – and the Truth is, whether we see them or not, the Sun and Moon are still there and always there is Light.

Be forthright. Despite your instinct to say “it’s alright, I’m okay” – be honest.

Say how you feel without fear or guilt, without remorse or complexity.

Be lucid in your explanation, be sterling in your oppose. If you think for one second no one knows what you’ve been going through; be accepting of the fact that you are wrong, that the long drawn and heavy breaths of despair have at times been felt by everyone – that Pain is part of the Human Condition, and that alone makes you a legion.

We hungry underdogs, we risers with dawn, we dissmisser’s of odds, we pressers of on – we will station ourselves to the calm. We will hold ourselves to the steady, be ready player one. Life is going to come at you armed with hard times and tough choices, your voice is your weapon, your thoughts ammunition – there are no free extra men, be aware that as the instant now passes, it exists now as then. So be a mirror reflecting yourself back, and remembering the times when you thought all of this was too hard and you’d never make it through.

Remember the times you could have pressed quit – but you hit continue.

Be forgiving. Living with the burden of anger, is not living. Giving your focus to wrath will leave your entire self absent of what you need. Love and hate are beasts and the one that grows is the one you feed.

Be persistent. Be the weed growing through the cracks in the cement, beautiful – because it doesn’t know it’s not supposed to grow there.

Be resolute. Declare what you accept as true in a way that envisions the resolve with which you accept it. If you are having a good day, be considerate. A simple smile could be the first-aid kit that someone has been looking for.

If you believe with absolute honesty that you are doing everything you can – do more. There will be bad days, Times when the world weighs on you for so long it leaves you looking for an easy way out. There will be moments when the drought of joy seems unending. Instances spent pretending that everything is alright when it clearly is not, check your blind spot. See that love is still there, be patient.

Every nightmare has a beginning, but every bad day has an end.

Ignore what others have called you. I am calling you “friend”. Make us comprehend the urgency of your crisis. Silence left to its own devices, breeds silence. So speak and be heard. One word after the next, express yourself and put your life in the context – if you find that no one is listening, be loud. Make noise. Stand in poise and be open. Hope in these situations is not enough and you will need someone to lean on. In the unlikely event that you have no one, look again.

Everyone is blessed with the ability to Listen. The Deaf will hear you with their Eyes. The Blind will see you with their Hands. Let your Heart fill their news-stands, let them read all about it. Admit to the bad days, the impossible nights. Listen to the insights of those who have been there, but come back. They will tell you; you can stack misery, you can pack disappear you can even wear your sorrow – but come tomorrow you must change your clothes.

Everyone knows Pain. We are not meant to carry it forever. We were never meant to hold it so closely, so be certain in the belief that what pain belongs to now will belong soon to then. That when someone asks you “how was your day”, realize that for some of us, it’s the only way we know how to say “be calm”.

Loosen your grip, opening each palm, slowly now – let go.” Shane Koyczan

What’s your anthem this year?