“Us and them
And after all we’re only ordinary men.
Me and you
God only knows it’s not what we would choose to do”.
Lyrics to “Us and Them”, by Songwriters Roger Waters and Rick Wright
November 8, 2016.
Looking back now how would I know how that a single day would impact my life? I was so demoralized after the results of the US Presidential election, that I felt a part of myself had died that day. Everything I had fought for was in jeopardy. All of my beliefs in humanity were lost.
Then came the resistance. The strong will to fight for my beliefs of what I felt was right. Yet over the short course of a couple of months, I went from a global advocate, traveler and world citizen to a hopeless overwhelmed lost soul. I had lost my motivation to fight feeling like everything I believed in was gone.
I am ashamed to say that I became complacent. I gave up. My burning urge to resist was gone. I wasn’t alone. Many of those who had inspired me had also begun to loose steam. Even advocacy groups and non-profits felt like they were always singing the same old song. Each message in my inbox crying for help was deleted. I was just simply too overwhelmed to deal with it.
So what have I done? Nothing. I’ve been sitting on the coach, ignoring the terrible news each day and giving in to complacency.
I felt like a part of me was dying.
As in the soulful voices in this song….
I had somehow lost myself along the way. That bouncing, energetic, “carpe diem” kind of woman had been caught up in the numbness of daily life and all that was happening in the world that I could not control. I had become uncomfortably numb.
I sat doing nothing for months yet it was eating away at me. I felt so guilty. I knew I was denying a big part of who I am and what I stand for. I had promised myself years ago that I would be a fighter, a global humanitarian for global good. I would never stop using my voice to speak up and make a difference. I had traveled too much and to too many places to realize that even little old me had so much more than millions of people. I had to use this gift to make a difference.
Over this summer I began working on a new project. Myself. I began to redefine what was important to me. Slowly I began to come back to myself. I began practicing mindfulness and gratitude, doing daily meditation and working with an extraordinary life coach. Before I realized it, all the missing pieces were coming back together again like a jigsaw puzzle that was dumped on the floor.
Had I not been where I was at this moment in time, I would not have been ready to understand this message that came to me and woke me up. It took a Roger Waters concert to remind me of who I am and what I value.
Us + Them is all about humanity. We are not us or them. We are us and them. We are one. We are all human beings yet we live in such a cruel ugly world filled with so much hate, violence, war, inequity and misunderstanding.
The intense visual message combined with the powerful lyrics and music of Us +Them nearly brought me to my knees.
US +THEM is a protest concert. An extraordinary powerful movement to resist, all brought together by his amazing music, showmanship and brilliant cinematography like never ever seen live before. If I close my eyes, I can still see the powerful visuals and hear the music in my head. I left the concert feeling so insanely emotionally driven to act that I could not sleep.
There was no way I could be there at that moment receiving such an intensely powerful message and do nothing. It is time to get off the porch and do something.
I will not give up. I will not stop fighting. I will keep using my voice for the voiceless and move on. We live in a country where we have the freedom of speech and the right to speak up for our beliefs. That perhaps is one of the greatest gifts of all.
Roger Waters US + THEM 2017 North American Tour