It was 1986. In the process of a few weeks our lives changed completely, abruptly and brutally. We changed. But we all changed differently. And we never talk about it. My only comfort at the time was a piece of unconditional love far away- and then it was that song; “Don’t give up“, by Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush.
Today I was re-introduced to the song, shown below, this time performed by John Legend, Pink and Herbie Hancock. It all came back to me. How incredibly traumatized we were and how it never showed. How we all pretended this never happened, because we had to be strong, supportive and not worsening the situation. Oh, how wrong we were.
A wound, a lost limb and many other injuries are often so direct and visible that people around can’t avoid to see what is going on, whilst when dealing with a broken heart and soul, it is seldom clear to people what process is taking place. It becomes impossible in these situations to give support.
I was 19 at the time. It was really bad timing to spend 15 months serving my country, away from those closest to me, those involved, those who knew and the only ones whom understood the full picture. The picture that can never be painted to anyone but for those involved. There was no way for me to deal with what happened and today it became so clear to me how this affected me.
We tried to be there and support. What we had was our love, admiration, loyalty and respect. We tried, but we couldn’t reach the inner of that hurt soul. “You can fall back on us” never got through. We weren’t able to be change what happened. To convince the wounded of the opposite of what was experienced. I felt locked out and I have since. I still suffer from the inability to feel valuable and as I have written before, feeling valuable is maybe one of the strongest motivators we have. Maybe whatever drive I have, comes from this urge to finally feel valuable.
My only means to engaging became what still is one of my strongest characteristics and if I ever try not to use it when expressing my current state of mind, I just fail. This song was the only way I could touch my own emotions for many years. I used it to bring myself to myself. For this, Peter Gabriel “I owe you.
I was taught to fight, taught to win
I never thought I could fail
No fight left or so it seems
I am a man whose dreams have all deserted
The words echo in my mind. You fought. You won. You didn’t fail. A pretty determined bunch carries your dreams forward. I so wish for you to see this, just once. And feel joy. Just once. Even now 17 years later. I wish your heart would open up the gates to your soul, so you actually felt this.
There is no end to how much I love and admire you.