Lessons Learned from Gloria Gaynor

If you don’t know Gloria Gaynor, she’s the artist behind the classic, “I Will Survive” (Here’s the link to the music video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBR2G-iI3-I). If you’re a fan, she just announced that she will be performing on a cruise that leaves from Fort Lauderdale in February 2019; you may find me there singing this song as well.

Recently, she wrote a book about how this song not only got her through many hard times in her own life, but also others. The book includes several stories of how impactful this song was on the lives of many who grew up listening to it. Therefore, I felt called to add just a few areas in my life this song has empowered me to push through to get to new finish lines. Below I have discussed them in chronological order. Please comment if you relate, I’d love to read more on how this song has changed others’ lives, especially since I’m convinced it’s one of the best songs to have ever been written, not because it’s my favorite or anything…

 

… But because “I Will Survive” got me through times in my life-

 

-When I Lost Friendships

            I still remember the first significant friendship I lost. It was in the sixth grade and I cried non-stop for a solid week. My friendships mean the world to me, because I truly believe being a good friend to others is one of my callings in life. Whenever I have realized those I called a friend, turned out to be someone I was wrong about, I listened to this song to remind me I’d get through. A few lines that helped me to overcome these lost relationships are, “I used to cry, but now I hold my head up high. And you see me, somebody new. I’m not that chained-up little person still in love with you…weren’t you the one who tried to hurt me with goodbye, did you think I’d crumble, did you think I’d lay down and die… Well, now I'm saving all my lovin' for someone who's loving me” It still gives me chills to hear since it takes me back to that moment and how much I’ve grown from each point. It taught me to respect myself enough to know, “as long as I know how to love, I know I'll stay alive,” to have the happy life I’ve always dreamt of for myself.

 

-Had Health Issues

            I had several health issues when I was a young girl. As I grew up, I realized how serious the condition I was in could be, luckily I outgrew it. Nonetheless, I don’t think it’s any accident that this song stuck with me for these reasons too. The line I related this health issue in my life to was, “Go on now go, walk out the door, just turn around now, ‘cause you’re not welcome anymore…” I get emotional thinking about how blessed I am to no longer be in that condition and feel even more empowered now to jam out to this song in celebration of that.

 

-Received Rejection

            As I grew up, I had to face rejection many times. Even to this day, I still face plenty of “no’s.” It’s part of life, and it only makes you stronger if you choose to take the higher road. I never let times like these make me feel I’m a failure. Instead I learn from them, and look for the next better opportunity. Nevertheless, I will initially feel down from the rejections I get. I always give myself enough time to get through it so I can realize it’s more their loss than mine if I stay strong. Therefore, I relate to the line, “At first I was afraid, I was petrified. Kept thinking I could never live without you by my side. But then I spent so many nights thinking how you did me wrong, and I grew strong, and I learned how to get along…” The funny thing about rejection, is sometimes the opportunities that originally told you “no,” come back around “from outer space,” as Gloria also states in her lyrics. So stop stressing, and just focus on you until the right opportunity comes around. Sometimes a “no” right now, doesn’t even mean it will be a “no” later. Timing is everything, and we don’t always know when the best time for ourselves is to have or do certain things. So have faith in the universe, and keep doing the right things for you until then.

 

-Was Disrespected

            In life, not everyone is going to like you. In fact, they may even disrespect you. Whenever I have been disrespected I would listen to this song. The line that states, “It took all the strength I had not to fall apart. Kept trying hard to mend the pieces of my broken heart. And I spent oh-so many nights just feeling sorry for myself,” explains exactly how I feel whenever I am disrespected. However, I’ll listen to the rest of the song to remind me of all the reasons why “I Will Survive,” and keep on to show these “haters” who the real joke is now.

 

-Suffered Heartbreak

            I’ve gone through some serious broken-hearted days in my life, and I’m only 23, so know there will be more to come. Regardless the line that says, “I've got all my life to live And I've got all my love to give and I'll survive,” is truly what gives me the biggest motivator to continue when I feel heartbroken. Whether it’s from harder times in relationships, or lost faith in humanity when seeing horrible events on the news, I remember I still have a long life to live and can make great impact to change the lives of others for the better. That’s what makes life worth living- leaving the world just a little better than it was before you came into it.

 

So, thank you Gloria, because of you, I still believe that “as long as I know how to love… I Will Survive.”