There’s no doubt that Alicia Keys is an accomplished artist who stands out in sea of wannabes. But although her songs can reach deep into our souls Alicia herself seemed like an enigma. I considered her a distant diva, because she certainly never wore her life on her sleeve. I wasn’t sure whether she was shy or standoffish. Neither turns out to be true. In the new issue of Blender Keys reveals that the walls she put up to protect herself as a child started to become a prison that she couldn’t break free from. Soon she wasn’t able to let her guard down around anyone (even her family and friends) and that caused her to take drastic action and drop out of scene for a while.
I think most of us can relate with Keys’ desire to protect herself. We all want and need some kind of boundaries to avoid being taken advantage of both emotionally and physically. However, we don’t often thing about what happens when we take things to either extreme. On one hand, we end up shutting everyone out and on the other we let everyone (even those we are undeserving) in. Each of us has to find their own comfort zone and it isn’t always easy. After you’ve had walls up for so long, you feel more vulnerable when they come down. Conversely, it takes some getting used to when are surrounded by people who routinely cross the line. In that case, you need to stand strong and set new ground rules for yourself and others.
And as we all struggle to find the perfect balance we should think of Keys’ example, because even a diva can lose herself if she isn’t careful.
(Note: I do know about the gangsta rap conspiracy comment but that’s a whole different story.)