How a man on the Spectrum learns to live

-Jason Mraz

“Music is the weapon in the war against unhappiness”-Jason Mraz

You know something? When I can’t find the right words to express how I feel, I just look in my library of music and I usually find what I need.  The music of Jason Mraz has helped me on more than one occasion and his song “Be Honest” is no exception.  Truth be told, the last time I was in a relationship I was thrust into an environment that was discouraging to my being authentic.  I ignored the warning signs and began lying to others and even worse: lying to my girlfriend and myself.

I was in and among people who wouldn’t allow me to curse, rage, disagree, or even voice a differing opinion if it was my own!  Looking back on it now, I was guilty of giving away my power.  After two years, the last conversation between my ex-girlfriend and myself turned into a back-and-forth purging of pent-up pain and frustration that ended with our break-up.  I know that I based that relationship on deceit and half-truths borne out of a strong desire to be loved by one woman no matter what.  I realized that I need to be authentic at all times to have a strong relationship; that’s why “Be Honest” really strikes a chord with me.

With a resonant blend of acoustic guitar and vibraphone, the song begins with intimacy and emotion.  “Ok go, go hang your heart on any tree.  You can make yourself available to anybody, ’cause every livin’ person knows you are a prize!  Whichever way you go I’ll be easy to find, I don’t ask for much, just be honest with me.  I don’t ask for much: Be Honest…”  Here, Jason is saying to his girl that she needs to put her heart into whatever she does in life.  She’s special in some way to everybody that she meets and he knows that his time with her is not exclusive.  The feeling is accentuated by the simple request of honesty that is asked.  I feel like this is the early stages of the relationship where boundaries and agreements are made; only time will tell if they will be honored, but I know I’d do my best to honor those agreements and learn from the experience; it’s in my nature.

With the second verse, I feel that a bond of trust is being built.  “Think of this song as a promise you can do what you want.  If you decide you wanna move into a new stage, deleting me from pages in your mission statement…my love is unconditional, make no mistake.  I don’t ask for much, just be honest with me.  I don’t ask for much, just be honest with me”.  Basically I would be saying “Honey, I don’t want to hold you back from life.  If you really want to keep certain things to yourself that’s all right with me.  Just remember…I love you, and I’ll always be here for you.  All I ask is that you not be afraid to come to me when you need to.  I know you’d do the same for me; I believe in us.”  I long for the day when I can say that to a woman; real love is more than physical attraction.  Knowing how to bring out the best in your partner is what I believe keeps it alive.

When Jason gets to the bridge, he harmonizes with a woman named Inara George.  I can hear two lovers singing in perfect harmony about what true, fulfilling love does to their souls.  They enjoy each other’s company and hold each other up with shared kindness.  It’s a feeling I hope to share someday with a special woman.  “Who we are, when love is what it wants to be, we are free, and we are, having the best day ever by far.  Being treated to the light, like a superstar”.

In the final verse before the ending, it says that I’m willing to give her the space to figure out what role I play in her life.  I’m not asking her to give up her inner self because I love her just the way she is and I feel connected to her when we’re both open and honest.  When we start out a relationship that way, it starts with friendship.  If it becomes more romantic, then we’ll have fallen in love with our best friends.  That is something I know I’ll be eternally grateful for when it happens.  “I can hold space while you see what your heart has to say about me.  There’s no dotted line to sign away your freedom, I’ll acknowledge you for what you do to keep strong.  I’ll always stand beside you, don’t get me wrong, I don’t ask for much, just be honest with me.  I don’t ask for much, just be honest with me.  I don’t ask for much, just be honest with me”.

The ending line is a moment of bliss and contentment shared by me and her.  We’ve found ourselves in each other’s company and couldn’t be more thankful for being alive.  “Who we are when love is what it wants to be, we are free, and we are having the best day ever by far.  Yes we are…”

“Be Honest” is a song that has kept my hope and dream of love alive and inspiring.  I don’t know when I’ll meet the woman who fulfills me and lifts me up, but I’m grateful for music that gives a voice to my desires.  As long I have music, I have hope.  As long as I have hope, I will do my best to live fully and authentically, and that’s the honest truth!

Listen to it here:


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