“You got me and I got you and we got us tonight.
As long as we stay who we are, we’ll be alright.”
— From “We Got Us”, by Brandin Jay
Yes, this is a yoga blog, but bear with me for a few paragraphs…I promise everything here in this post will tie in to yoga. Do you trust me? I hope so!
Have any of you out there in Blog Land seen the new show on NBC called Songland that started right after Memorial Day? I absolutely am in love with this show! The basic premise is this: Each episode features a famous musician who is looking for a new song to record. Four aspiring songwriters perform a song in front of the artist and three very famous producers in the music industry, and the artist picks three of them to go off and work one-on-one with one of the producers to incorporate the feedback. Then, they come back and perform again, and the artist chooses THE ONE that will be his or her next big hit.
I’ve loved every moment of it…music is such a huge part of my life! I’m always singing something in my head, and I probably spend WAY too much time putting together my playlists for the yoga and cycle classes that I teach. Music has a way of making me feel all the feels, you know what I mean? When I need to sit with a certain emotion, I find a song that will help me FEEL that emotion, because it’s not always easy to sit with the emotions that you need to sit with.
Last week’s episode featured Meghan Trainor, who was looking for her next big hit. I totally love the one she picked, called “Hurt Me” (which was written by a super talented songwriter named Kole). But the song that I can NOT get out of my head is the one written by Brandin Jay, called “We Got Us”.
First of all, as soon as Brandin walked out on the stage, he exuded happiness. He had this BIG smile on his face, and just seemed like nothing could get him down. He’s a barista in Atlanta, and says he’s pretty much always broke…the original title for his song was “No Money Alright”. But after hearing his song and getting feedback from everyone, Brandin was paired with producer Ester Dean, who helped him rewrite the narrative to something Meghan might be more inclined to pick for her repertoire of hits.
When he came back out and performed the new “We Got Us” version (here’s the Spotify link), I was be-bopping along, humming the melody, and smiling the whole time. He was just So. Damn. Happy! And you know what? I was, too. He was simply infectious, and ever since, I’ve got the song on my Spotify playlist, on repeat. It puts me in SUCH a good mood!
Part of it is the beat. It’s a super happy beat that you can’t help moving your body to. But the other part is the lyrics.
Currently, whenever I turn on the news or check out social media, I see constant name calling and arguing between people. And it brings me down. I know I’m not the only one. I’ve talked to so many who say that they’ve had to take “time out” from various forms of media because it is so toxic. But when I listen to the lyrics of “We Got Us”, it helps me remember that there are people who choose to build each other up. Check out just a few of the lyrics and tell me you don’t agree:
Here’s to the kids, I’m talking to everybody
We ain’t got no favorites, we like everybody
You got me and I got you and we got us tonight
As long as we stay who we are, we’ll be alright
Just the thought of knowing that someone has my back makes me happy. You know why? Because it means that I matter. And I do matter. And so do you. We all matter, all the time.
Yoga has been a big part of helping me develop this mindset. When I first came to yoga, I had ZERO self-esteem. I was going through a divorce from my first husband, who literally had not touched me in any physical way for an entire year before he finally said he didn’t think he wanted to be married anymore. And he couldn’t tell me why. Over the months that followed his announcement, I got a variety of answers from him to this question, and to this day, I still don’t know the real answer. So when I first stepped on my yoga mat in a live class full of people, I did so as a mentally broken person. I had no confidence in myself and immediately started comparing myself to the other students, telling myself I didn’t belong. Telling myself I was not good enough.
Thankfully, that class was taught by a teacher who constantly reminded all of us that we were beautiful just as we are, and that we were doing something wonderful for ourselves just by taking this time for ourselves. She made me feel like, even though I didn’t look like the Gumby lady next to me in my poses, I was just as important as anyone else there. And when I tried poses that had me faltering (both physically and mentally), she was there to let me know she had my back. I hope I told her what an impact she made in my life.
Of course, I have had occasions in my life since then where I’ve slipped back into the negative self-talk, as many of you know if you’ve been reading my blog for a good amount of time. But I’m never there for TOO long anymore, as I’ve been able to more easily get myself back into right mindset with practice. In fact, I was even inspired to come up with my own quote a few months ago that speaks to this topic:
I think I’ve been able to convey this message to my yoga students over the years. If I do one thing with the students who step onto their mats with me, I hope it’s that I make them feel special. Because they are. Each and every one of them.
Maybe, just maybe, I bring a bit of happiness to my students in the same way “We Got Us” is doing it for me right now. It’d be the best thing ever to know that someone has left my class, be-bopping to the tune of happiness in their heads, knowing I’ve got their back when they need me.