Something happened this year. I realized my voice is bigger than me. I saw that it has a life beyond me. It’s more than my lips and vocal cords making the sounds. It contains more than my breath. It’s not really mine at all.
Something opened up and let the wind in. It pours in like a mountain stream through my chest. It rushes through my throat and bursts out uncontrolled. It’s a message.
This just happened recently. Growing up, I kept quiet and choked back words. But I also learned to sing. As the years went by, I stayed small and runty, but my voice got bigger and wider.
I first witnessed this voice power last summer when a friend was singing. I saw his voice coming out, and it had a force and a shape of its own. I was amazed. I’m beginning to understand.
This voice of mine compels me to say things that need to be said, whatever the consequences. Because this voice is bigger than me and it won’t back down. It won’t let me back down. I have to deliver the message regardless of the cost or trouble.
Even if I wanted to stop, the voice won’t let me. There’s a physical force pushing me. I can feel it between my shoulder blades. I hear it saying that I’m here to bear witness and say what needs to be said. That’s the promise I made.
So my voice makes me a target. I feel that heat, but I welcome it. It means I’m doing my job. The voice was heard. And I’m grounded like a lightning rod. Every attack on me is an attack deflected from someone who might be more vulnerable. Not that I’m super-sturdy all the time, but the good loving people around keep me rooted and upright.
Knowing my friends, and being with all of you, is a huge burst of positive energy. When we come together for a common purpose, we’re a force of nature. Our voices converge like a mighty river. Thank you for bearing witness.
2 Responses to Outside Voice
Good article in a difficult time for BC..
Nicely worded. Without the love of the activist community I’d be a mess at all times. We need to hold each other up!