Monday, 26 December 2016

Don't let the sun go down on me. . .

This blog post is a tribute to George Michael

If you were a child of the 80s like me, then chances are you are very familiar with the music of George Michael.  I first came across his music when he was part of Wham! and as a child you don't really take notice of social cues that would later suggest he would come out.  It was never a problem for me when he did reveal his big secret and it hasn't really affected me since.  The media have always liked to sensationalise and report news that celebrities and artists have chosen to keep private for their own reasons.  I was just a fan of his music, his voice and just how fun hearing his music made every occasion.  I'm sure all George Michael fans around the world feel the same way.  You all know where you were when you danced to your favourite track.

I can't light no more of your darkness
All my pictures seem to fade to black and white
I'm growing tired and time stands still before me
Frozen here on the ladder of my life

When people expect you to continually be the source of light for their world, it can of course and quite naturally be a tired time for you, leaving you with little else for yourself.  If you shine constantly for others and the steal all of your light, how will you know when you need to shine for yourself?  An ex boss of mine used to talk all the time about the ladder, particularly rungs of a ladder and how we aren't meant to be on those rungs for long, but to keep advancing higher; that we only stand on those rungs long enough for us to climb somewhat higher.  Do you find yourself frozen on the ladder of your life?

It's much late to save myself from falling
I took a chance and changed your way of life
But you misread my me
aning when I met you
Closed the door and left me blinded by the light

When you meet people, they may set about trying to find labels to place you under so that they understand you.  Surely this must be what "understand" means right?  That's the definition of understanding?  We should be standing under labels that society places us under, or our work colleagues or people that entrust us to do things for them, like family or friends who have done things for us over the years.  Do people often misread how you have changed their way of life?  Do you think they understand what it means once those changes start to happen?  Maybe this is what is meant by the falling that we experience when we help others?  To maintain that balance, when we help others, to lift them somewhat higher, we must sacrifice our position on the ladder to counter the shift.  It's not something that should happen, surely there are other ways around it, around how we can collectively progress together, but this is what society teaches us.  This is how we get blinded by the light.

Don't let the sun go down on me

Although I search myself it's always someone else I see
I just allow a fragment of your life to wander free
But losing everything is like the sun going down on me

Why do you think we see different people when we are searching for ourselves?  Is this because we haven't yet learned to fully focus on ourselves?  We tend to be easily distracted by people who want our attention or wish to be saved by us, or need us to make them feel better.  If you do this often. do you wonder if maybe the people you are helping are not really aware of what has been happening the entire time, and therefore you're not really helping them at all?  I remember a meme floating around about someone called an askhole.  This is somebody who comes to you for advice constantly, doesn't listen, and then does whatever they want anyway.  The right response is to stop giving advice and guidance because they will just go and do what they please.

Ladies and gentleman Mr. Elton John
I can't find
Oh the right romantic line
But see me once and see the way I feel
Don't discard me baby don't
Just because you think I mean you harm
Just because you think I mean you harm no
But these cuts I have, cuts I have
They need love
They need love to help me heal

Are you strong enough to let others heal, even when they have been the cause or the source of your pain?  It might take extra strength and resolve on your part to push aside the ego that threatens to rule over what you know in your heart you must do, but hey, you need to heal too.  I find that when you know people really well, you can usually tell by their facial expressions or body language what thoughts are running through their head, what lies beneath what they see but refuse to disclose.  Why do we do this to ourselves?  If we were completely honest about how we feel, minus the ego, we would be able to move forward and pursue what we needed to do to improve ourselves.  I don't believe there is no line more romantic than one that is honest and deeply rooted in the truth of one's heart.

Don't let the sun go down on me
Although I search myself it's always someone else I see
I just allow a fragment of your life to wander free
But losing everything is like the sun going down on me

What fragments of your life need to wander free?  I guess this is what we can spend our lifetime trying to figure out isn't it?  To try and understand ourselves so well, rather than rely on other people's perceptions of who we are.  Don't get me wrong, I think it's totally acceptable that people can form an  opinion of you based on personal interactions.  I have never been a fan of going along with what other people think about someone just because of their experience with them.  That whole approach is very schoolyard and childish, but sadly, something that I continue to see in adult contexts.  Why do we do this to ourselves?  Sometimes I think we're so scared to wander free for ourselves because we spend too much criticising and making comments about those who aren't scared to wander free.

Don't let the sun go down on me
Although I search myself it's always someone else I see
I just allow a fragment of your life to wander free
But losing everything is like the sun going down on me

I hope that we all at least lose everything at some point in our lives.  I say this because we can't understand what success should feel like for us, if we aren't able to experience what it's like to not have anything of value.  We don't learn how to value what is important until it is no longer there.  What does everything mean to you?  Losing everything would be like being in shadows all the time, being stuck in darkness that keeps us in constant shade when we should be able to feel the sun on our skins and feel the warmth that having everything means.  If you feel yourself starting to lose everything, be aware of why you are losing it.  Maybe it means that you need to lose it all now, so that it can be gained later, or it's not yours to gain right now anyway.

Thanks George Michael for all of your wonderful music.
This beautiful duet with Sir Elton John is just one example of collaboration that the world has had the pleasure of enjoying.  I look forward to writing more blog posts this week honouring your contribution to the realm of popular music.  Even though the world may feel like losing you has felt like the sun going down on us, I am grateful in that we have been able to allow a fragment of your life to wander free. . .