Break. Every. Chain.


Today, Tasha Cobbs' rendition of Break Every Chain has a different ring to it. It has a powerful, more influential, meaning. A soothing soundtrack. A romanticized revelation. Every word makes sense that it never had before. 

Today, as I recollect my childhood and how it shaped me – in good ways and bad – I have an intentional focus when listening to this song. A focus that suggests that this song is more than its catchy melody and striking vocals, but that with its power the chains, that I now recognize, will be broken. Chains that I didn't realize were chains but were part of who I was. 

The chains of "good behavior" I held onto on field trips and visits with family. Behavior that I understood to mean the suppression of self. Behavior that I now realize, 20+ years later, was the source of me locking up who I was in a file cabinet every time I met someone new. Every time I went somewhere different. Every time I was urged to 'behave'. 

I'm not sure when or how I calculated misbehavior to mean self expression, but regardless I left all the pieces of me hiding behind professionalism and tact. I wrapped up my weird jokes, opinions I'm most passionate about, and quirky habits and secured them in a locker, at the expense of 'good behavior' in this, now, adult world. But as I come into more of myself, I realize how much that thought process – suggesting that good behavior is the denial of who I am to appease those I'm around – has become bondage that has been making my wrists sore and my screams, muffled. Those thoughts have been the reason I have become less of myself and more well-behaved – whatever I attribute that to be. 

Today, as I listen to this song, I hear the chains falling, each being a part of the self-restriction that's being lifted. I hear them crashing against the concrete, as my most authentic self begins to emerge. Noise echoing from the same basement I left my 'self' in as I exited the house each day. I feel the shackles of my self-inflicted bondage easing off my ankles as I walk toward the sun that's now beaming in, providing the light I've always had but never let shine. And as all of this happens, I'm reminded that this won't be the only time it occurs. It won't be the only time I'll have to pick locks with bobby pins. It won't be the only time I'll realize how much I've been weighed down – by the burden of "good behavior" and the shackles of self-defeating thoughts. And it certainly won't be the only time I come out. 

Today I'm reminded, as this song sings a different tune to my soul, that this is merely one part of the process. A process I fought hard to begin, and one I intend to see through to completion.  

I will continue to break chains. Until all of me is out, and all that's out is shining. 

  • Share:

You Might Also Like