I’m forced to fake a smile, a laugh
Everyday of my life
My heart can’t possibly break
When it wasn’t even whole to start with
I recently rediscovered Kelly Clarkson and I have to say that her voice and songs totally blow me away. Who would have ever expected an American Idol alumnus to make good and become a Grammy award winner, beating veterans along the way?
“Because of You” stood out, in particular. Apparently written when Clarkson was merely 16, it describes the emotional baggage that weighs and prevents everyone for loving and trusting again. The MTV left me in tears because the loneliness and helplessness echoing the lyrics and video resonated deeply.
I was so young
You should have known better than to lean on me
I do not come from a privileged family. When I was a child, I barely saw my mother as she worked long hours in order to bring up her two girls. As a result, I was forced to be alone and independent from a very young age.
I could still hear the sounds of children playing in the playground below my flat as I stared out of the windows, caged in because my mother was not at home and I wasn’t allowed to go out on my own during the holidays. I could still see the sympathy in the A&W cashier’s eyes as he allowed me to buy a $1.10 drink for ten-cents less because my mother had only given me a dollar and was standing a good distance away, having been thrown into an angry tizzy because of my badgering requests to buy a soft drink.
When my form teacher in primary school started picking on me everyday for no apparent reason, I would cry alone at home but did not tell anyone. That was one of the most painful and lonely period of my life. For two whole years, I endured her verbal abuse, her taunts and her cruel jibes in class in silence. There were times when I contemplated suicide because I was so lost, so confused and so humiliated by the public lashings. I had nobody to turn to because my family was never there. When I finally graduated, I turned my back on the school with my head held high.
Because of you
I find it hard to trust
Not only me, but everyone around me
But the combined damage was done. Everything adds up and in the end. I believed that I was inadequate and flawed in many ways. And that was made worse by secondary schoolmates who messed around with my head and told me I was an emotionally burdened and insecure individual.
For years, I carried those memories with me. I did not dare to trust fully in people, not even my closest friends. Many times, I was driven by jealousy and possessiveness because I rarely had anything and I did not want to lose anything or anyone dear to me.
I’ve learned the hard way
To never let it get that far
It’s only recently that I began to grow and be my own person. I gained the confidence that I never had, and believed in myself and my talents. Taking a good look around, I rediscovered who my true friends are, those who did not need me to buy their love and affection. I changed and become a better daughter, friend and partner.
I will not make the same mistakes that you did
And I will not let myself cause my heart so much misery
It took a long time but I finally saw my true reflection in the mirror. I saw myself and chose to be who I am, rather than what I have to be. There may have people who made me the way I am but I want to break out of that mould.
I can’t carry on blaming them for who I am today.
Kelly Clarkson – Because of You