David Gray is a phenomenal artist. The song The Other Side is full and rich and deep and apropos for these times.

This song and a meditation group gathering this week awakened some questions in me. I wanted to share them and whats come so far in the form of “answers”.

What is on the other side of this situation we have found ourselves in?

I have hope that we are waking up. I am not sure if I am a hopeful person in general. I am not practical. More emotional for sure. Sometimes HOPE feels flimsy and yet it’s the word that comes quickly when I picture our world after this collective shoulder-shaking, time-out the universe has given us.

I have hope that we will level the playing field so to speak. That we will see, more clearly than ever, the connection we have with one another. You know how you feel towards people that you love and enjoy being around. You are open to them. Your heart is in it. Well, now we are being asked to have a heart for people we don’t know. People we took for granted; nurses, healthcare workers of all kinds, custodial workers, mail carriers, grocery store workers, pharmacy employees, truck drivers, service industry folks, the list goes on.

Our eyes are opening to ALL the people it takes to run this show. That gives me hope. The playing field will never be level. And yet…somehow I believe, however naïve it seems, that the “little” people are in the spotlight. The neutral “other” that we overlook so easily. They are shining. They are tired as fuck, but they are shining right now.

Whenever something is brought to our attention, it changes us. We cannot unsee it. It makes a dent or a scratch or a mark and we might *think* we move on unaffected, but we don’t. Not deep inside. I cannot see a UPS truck now and not tear up. Those tears used to be reserved for the Armed Services folks. Not anymore.

What do we WANT to make of this time we find ourselves in?

I want to make this time count. I want this time to wake me up. I don’t want to do “nose-blind” to all the people that help me have this great life I live.

What was not okay before?

Hate and separation. That was/is not okay to me. I am guilty of my fair share of judgment. Its going to be hard to not fall into that again. Maybe I can do it a little less. Maybe I can give people a break. The benefit of the doubt. I know it helps when that is given to me.

What did you feel powerless to change before? Why? What held you back? Fear?

I generally feel powerless when it comes to making sweeping changes. Healing divides between groups of people. Making people care about the environment and animals. All of that feels too big for me to tackle.

Who am I to speak up for these beings? I quiver when I talk. I doubt myself. I lose my argument. So I have stayed in the background. Maybe that is my place though. Maybe its okay for me to help people one on one. That is my comfort zone.

What held me back was insecurity and doubt. I was never a good arguer. I am too reactionary. Too emotional. I lose my footing too easily and just want you to come to my side because its so important to me. I am not a good convincer or negotiator. The product of growing up with a critical parent that poked holes in every stance I stood for.

But I am coming out. Enter P!nk’s 2009 song of the same name.

I am starting to venture out into the world of on-line counseling and community building. Who knows how it will go, but I am feeling like stepping out and showing up. Pray for me!

I will stop now. You have heard enough of how this has initially affected me. I am curious what this collective pause, this unplanned inner exploration, this meditation retreat (that you didn’t sign up for) is working for you. What are you hopeful for?  What do you want life to be like after this? What do you want the new normal to be? How will you shift your normal way of being to help create this Brave New World we find ourselves in.

We are not all going to be phoenix’s coming out of the ashes. Some of us are still safe and sound at home. But as a whole, like the WHOLE FREAKING WORLD, we are being called to wake up and come together. How will you show up after this?

David Gray https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OsLcCYf0OLA

Meet me on the other side
Meet me on the other side
I’ll see you on the other side
See you on the other side

Honey now if I’m honest
I still don’t know what love is
Another mirage folds into the haze of time recalled
And now the floodgates cannot hold
All my sorrow, all my rage
A teardrop falls on every page

Meet me on the other side
Meet me on the other side

Maybe I oughta mention
Was never my intention
To harm you or your kin
Are you so scared to look within?
The ghosts are crawling on our skin
We may race and we may run
We’ll not undo what has been done
Or change the moment when it’s gone

Meet me on the other side
Meet me on the other side
I’ll see you on the other side
I’ll see you on the other side

I know it would be outrageous
To come on all courageous
And offer you my hand
To pull you up on to dry land
When all I got is sinking sand
The trick ain’t worth the time it buys
I’m sick of hearing my own lies
And love’s a raven when it flies

Meet me on the other side
Meet me on the other side
I’ll see you on the other side
I’ll see you on the other side

And honey now if I’m honest
I still don’t know what love is

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