A song for survivors

dedicated to kevin, and all survivors everywhere: male, female and transgendered.

This song was created for Kevin, my soulmate of 1999-2000. He was the first male survivor I ever met, a man who changed my whole world by showing me love was possible from a man again.

I was a prisoner of my own pain denied
There came a day, unexpected blow
my body would no longer allow my mind to ignore
the history of events which led up to the forming
of my personality, my insecurities, my dysfunction
the history of events which led up to the forming
of my struggle, my plight, my healing, my celebration.

It is amazing how far you can push back the truth
False sense of security wrapping you in its
temporary embrace until...
Dive into work, Dive into play, focus on the things you
think you can control, don't let it bring you down,
Why focus on the negative? Why live in the past?
I can't remember, you say, I don't want to remember, you
say, your eyes stare into the distance and then dart back to
the television where you find some more solititude
"I just want to be happy again," you say to me and I nod
with more than knowing as I feel your words, because I have
once felt a pain like yours.

Remember when we used to call ourselves "rock stars?"
We were ready to take over the world,
nothing looming
in the past or the future was strong enough
to hold us down.
I was on top of my shit, I felt good everyday.
I didn't have time to worry
about anyone or anything
except how fucking great I was feeling all the time,
dancing all night long until the sun came up

"First I was afraid I was petrified..kept thinkin' I could
never live without you by my side, but I spent o so
many nights.."
knowing and feeling inside that there was something so deathly wrong
And even though I knew that eventually I would have
to come down, any negative thoughts I had were so
easily chopped up and forgotten.

I wish I could say "take my hand and follow me."
I wish I could say that it was going to be easy
But I know so well
as I have walked that very path not so long ago,
the road ahead is windy
but it is worth every step.

This is something that you have to do on your own
I will be there for you closeby at earshot of your calling
I will see you through your darkest hour if you need me to
but the choice is yours to make,
the work is yours to do
There is a light at the end of this tunnel
but first--!
first, you have
to dig yourself out of a ditch that seems to go down for days,
and when you catch first sight of that glorious light
you will finally understand these words I'm speaking...

There is such a thin line between being a victim and a survivor,
There is a thin line between love and hate, denial and celebration,
recreation and addiction, self help and self destruction
but we have to make the choice
to walk this thin line with grace
until it becomes
a clear wide path that leads
to the arms of the embrace of the sun setting
on a new day,
a new year celebrated with the kiss of someone you love,
a new way of looking at someone you hate,
a new pair of shoes, new car smell,
new friends made and new things learned
all these little and large things making the triumph
so so worth the struggle.

I don't know what happened,
I don't claim to know how you got to where you are now
You're right, I wasn't there but right now--neither are you.
I know how it can hold us prisoner like it is still right in our face,
but I promise those days come to an end if you do the work to see that they do
I am not here to care in the ways that only you know how
The words I am speaking do not have enough power to get you out of bed,
but the words I'm speaking may help to wake you up
and warm you like a mother's hug.
you are not alone, the possibilities
are as infinite as the obstacles,
there is a will and there is a way.

The soul is like a magic wand, it is shining and surviving even
in your darkest hours
Don't let whatever happened cause you to lock it away,
hold it close to your beating heart, wear it on your sleeve,
Own the pain; It made you stronger.
Use it to protect you from the hard times that you can
be sure will come again,
Find the sweetness in your tears that fall, each drop
makes us humble, opens up the heart so the soul
can be healed.
Open up your heart so your soul can be healed

Don't stop enjoying the music, and don't let
anyone or anything get in the way of your dancing time
The lessons will still ring in your head years later like a cheesy disco song,
I-I will survive, oh as long as I know how to love
I know I'll stay alive,
I got all my life to live
and I got all my love to give...