Two years ago, I was mindlessly listening to Pandora. A kick ass bass line to a familiar song began to play. The song kicked into overdrive as the bridge flowed into the chorus. Suddenly, I found myself singing along subconsciously:
"And I want to say thank you cuz
Makes me that much stronger, makes me work a little bit harder,
Makes me that much wiser, thanks for making me a fighter.
Made me learn a little bit faster, made my skin a little bit thicker,
Makes that much smarter, so thanks for making me a fighter."
Something about those words gave me indescribable strength at that moment. The song, written by Christina Aguilera and Scott Storch, was an ode to her bumpy childhood. Fighter accomplishes more than the average "f the haters" anthem. Instead it acknowledges those who wronged her because it makes her who she is. Through taunts, lies, and jealousy, she came out a stronger person.
While I cannot say that I am a Christina Aguilera fan per se, I can say that this song's message speaks to my heart. Using negative energy from relationships gone wrong, romantic or otherwise, to propel you in a positive and productive manner is priceless. Letting go of the past allows you to open up new doors, leading you down paths that you might not have ever known were in existence. Having the knowledge that the very person who hurt you lit a fire inside of you, that you would have left dormant, is gratifying. It's what some would call poetic justice.
A more subtle message within the song is about self-reflection. In order to achieve greatness from a not-so-great situation, one must analyze the role they played in it then apply that newly acquired knowledge going forward. My father said it best, "it's not about the mistake or problem, but the lesson you took away from it." The very reason I started this blog was because of negative experiences I had in the dating world. I've managed to turn my "dating dramedy" into a successful website that receives traffic from around the globe. Meanwhile, I'm still working on applying those lessons learned in everyday life.
One word of caution, her use of the word "make" seems to be more for artistic expression than anything else. Others don't make you or determine your value. You do.