A few wise words from Miss Hill
By Geoffrey Kidwell (actor)
Being a person is difficult.
It's a journey that's full of immense challenges, disappointments, regrets, frustrations, but also overwhelming joy, laughter, friendship and love.
It's on/off, up/down, high/low. It's enough to drive a person kind of nuts, right?
I know it definitely gives me a run for my money, and I'm pretty broke so imagine how much I need that money.
I'm going through some tough stuff right now. (Who isn't, Geoffrey? Who isn't.)
Not sure about you, but when I feel like I've disappointed myself or someone else I obsess and go over and over it in my head:
What the fuck is my problem?
How could I have been so wrong?
How do I deal with this anger I'm feeling?
All those feelings are fine. I've learned to let myself feel things without (too much) judgement.
But the last couple days have been hard.
And then Thursday morning, after having woken up feeling pretty lousy, I hop on the subway to head to the gym. Working out always helps. I sit down, put my headphones and set my iPod to shuffle.
Not the point, Kidwell. Not the point.
The point is the song that came on my iPod was Lauryn Hill's, Everything is Everything.
Do you know it?
It happens to come from one of the best albums of all time, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.
Now, as you may know from a previous post, I've had some issues with Miss Hill lately. But I've got to put that aside because her song reminded me that despite the challenges we all face as human beings making our way on the planet, we are all connected. We are all in this together.
I used to love going to this church in Los Angeles when I was in high school and college. They had this great gospel choir and I always felt better when I left.
Each week the service would start with the congregation saying two things:
"God is great. All the time." (That'll get me in trouble with some of my atheist friends.)
"It's already alright."
That's how I felt when Miss Hill started singing to me. I'm going to be okay. In fact, I'm already okay. It was at least a small moment of comfort and happiness in a time that is a bit tough.
So today, I'd like to share the song with you.
Whatever you're going through, artistically, professionally, in your relationships, etc, please remember that everything really is everything.
(Lauryn Hill's Everyhing is Everything)
You are not alone. You are connected to everyone on this planet and if you choose to believe so, to a higher power. I won't pretend to have that one figured out.
I have figured out the truth that we do best when we remember that we are not living on this planet by ourselves. We all come from the same place. As Miss Joni Mitchell might say, "We are stardust."
We all deal with the same basic struggles. We all want to feel better.
I certainly know that I do.
I feel frozen sometimes. I feel scared to get out and do the things I want to do.
I hope that the next time I feel that way, I remember that there are people out in the world, even strangers, who feel just like me and who want the same things as I want.
I'm not alone. You're not alone. We never have been. Ever.
Everything is everything.
AND NOW...THE WEEK IN WHITNEY HOUSTON!!!
I know I've already shared performances of Miss Houston singing, I Have Nothing. This performance of the song from Argentina in 1994 is particularly incredible. But more to the point, it feels appropriate considering the blog post which (I hope) you just read. We really don't have anything if we don't have each other. I'm learning that right now. Hopefully, you have/are too. Enjoy