Earlier this week I made a play list on Spotify, I called it the 12in12 Run List and it is songs I like to listen to get me going I the gym etc. Now, while I do like to listen to things when I am running, it is usually a podcast (because I get lonely)… often comedy, often true crime… sometimes paranormal (but recently I discovered that I am not as brave as I had started to think I was, so, yeah that had to go) So, as I was running today, and listening to the tale of the life and crimes of Aileen Wuornos I realized that maybe, as I jumped at every car that went past me, I should get some music on the go. Like I say, I usually save music for the gym or on the bike, but I needed some pep. Excuse me please, this next bit is going to sound braggy (because it is). I think I have created my best play list of all time. THE. BEST.
The reason being two-fold. Firstly, it’s a play list that is all my favorite “go” songs. In the case of track two, this is literally true (don’t believe me? I’ve peaked your interest? Go check it out) and secondly because it’s a play list that hasn’t been created from a broken heart, or a boy, or wanting to impress a boy, or because a boy upset me… yep, pining and making mix tapes were fairly closely linked in my teenage years. (obvs, using the term mix tape ironically here, I am way too young to have done that).
Anyway, getting back to the best mixtape ever and the point of this post. As I was running along, getting into it and being impressed with not only how good I was feeling, happy much my pace had been picking up, I also began to feel a bit emotional. Music does this to us doesn’t it? Especially if we are going through an emotional time as it is; stress, lack of sleep, hormones, grief, upset, a boy/girl etc. etc. the list really goes on. It doesn’t matter what you listen to, I think music just has that affect. Sometimes we can read anything into anything we listen to just because somehow those words relate to you. You are going through a break up? Every love song screams into your soul. You are falling in love? Every song is about that person. (This isn’t 100% full proof I should add as I maintain that the majority of people who are listening to Dua Lipa’s “IDGAF” on loop absolutely do “GAF”).
So, as I was running along, buzzing on the lyrics and the words - taking them literally - I got to Track 4 on the 12in12 Run List, Kate Bush, “Runn
ing Up That Hill (A Deal With God)”.
Yep, I mean for the running play list any relevance you hear is pretty clear cut isn’t it?
And if I only could
I'd make a deal with God
And I'd get him to swap our places
Be running up that road
Be running up that hill
Be running up that building
See if I only could, oh
Now I have done zero research into what this song is about, but we are allowed to hear what we want in music… so yeah, there are the lines there that directly relate to running. But the thing that gets me with this song is the line “I’d get Him to swap our places”. And this is what gave me a lump in my throat today.
Last night I was catching up with the Great British Bake Off Stand Up to Cancer, Episode Two. They showed the story of Eve, who in 2015 was diagnosed with Stage 4 Ewings Sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer. She passed away last Summer (2017) aged only 11. Her family spoke about Eve and what an amazing girl she was, and also about the unbearable pain that she was in. The type of pain that you would literally do anything to take away from someone you love. Watching that short film my heart absolutely broke. A feeling I am certain we all know. The powerless feeling when we see someone we love going through pain, physical or mental.
We all know people who have suffered and prayed/hoped/wished, that you could take it all on board yourself. We can’t do this, but we can do anything that will make that person feel better, or if it’s too hard to face that (because sometimes it is) anything that will in some way make anyone feel better; ease their burden, give them a shoulder to cry on, buy them a coffee, say something kind, just be kind. That’s something that all of us can do, in the face of being helpless and able to do nothing, we can always be kind. Or we can act in an indirect way, we can run marathons or hold quizzes or bake cakes or climb mountains. We can help the helpers, and we can accept help when it if offered… I guess this is where the idea of “I can’t but we can” comes in. No one should go through hardships alone. I have spoken at length already about why I started the 12, and this is exactly it. We can’t take things away, but we can always help we can offer some form of respite and can always be kind.