A: Anthem (Post 1: A-Z of Feminism)

Posted on April 13, 2015

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Between the ages of 26 and 30, I feel like I was in the prime of my personal confidence. I felt like I was someone. I had a worthy voice. I knew who I was and where I was going. Or so I believed. When I look back, I was fearless. I didn’t fear failure. I didn’t fear judgement. I didn’t fear making mistakes. It feels like I am so far from being that person today. I have felt miniscule and irrelevant at several points in my life. The difference is, today I know that only I need to believe that I am relevant. Some days it’s hard to be that voice for myself.

But that’s an old story. I am trying to re-write who I am. I don’t want to chase the same dreams I once had. It’s like trying to reclaim a glory that almost was, but wasn’t quite. I need to dream new dreams. And that’s where this song by India Arie comes into play.

It embodies so much of what I wish I could internalize! I guess I could play it 400 times till I believe it – I AM LIGHT. This song talks about how one is not defined by the choices they or their family has made; one is not defined by distinguishing physical characteristics; one is not defined by all the things they have or have left behind. All one truly is – is a great source of light. It talks of simplifying oneself and aiming to achieve those simpler, but much harder goals – because you’re fighting not only society, but also oneself and one’s conditioning.

This second song, “Girl on Fire” by Alicia Keys reminds me of ME – the one I left behind. It almost enables me to dream while being realistic – “Head in the clouds, feet on the ground”. The word “fire” has been used to depict her (my!) free, blazing spirit and the hurdles she (I) has to cross on a regular basis. When I belt this song out at the top of my lungs, driving at 80 miles/hour, I feel my chest fill up with something familiar, yet new and I know that the day is going to be great!

And these are not simplistic girl power songs! These are songs that reflect my journey, my struggles, my story. What’s your anthem?

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Posted in: introspection