This is Me

I love movie soundtracks. They are one of my favorite music genres. If a film captures my heart, then the musical score accompanying that movie has the power to instantly transport me back into the story. For that reason, I have a tendency to play a soundtrack over…and over…and over, just as I watch a compelling movie multiple times.

Often there is a song within that soundtrack that arrests me for reasons of its own. Beyond taking me back into the film, it usually has a powerful message that resonates with me or cracks open my heart. That song, within the amazing The Greatest Showman soundtrack, is This is Me.

Written by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, this song is performed by Keala Settle, who portrays Lettie Lutz in the movie. Lettie is considered an oddity by her family and work colleagues. She has a full, luxurious beard. The term “bearded lady” doesn’t cut it at all in describing this amazing woman. She has an incredible voice, and she uses it for more than singing. Lettie becomes the spokesperson for P.T. Barnum’s group of unique performers. She is nurturing. She is brave. She is beautiful. In the course of this film, she comes into her power and glory, fully.

The lyrics to This is Me reflect Lettie’s journey.

This is Me

[Verse 1]

I am not a stranger to the dark

Hide away, they say

‘Cause we don’t want your broken parts.

I’ve learned to be ashamed of all my scars.

Run away, they say

No one’ll love you as you are.

[Pre-Chorus]

But I won’t let them break me down to dust.

I know that there’s a place for us.

For we are glorious.

[Chorus]

When the sharpest words wanna cut me down. I’m gonna send a flood, gonna drown them out.

I am brave, I am bruised

I am who I’m meant to be, this is me.

Look out ’cause here I come.

And I’m marching on to the beat I drum.

I’m not scared to be seen

I make no apologies, this is me.

[Verse 2]

Another round of bullets hits my skin.

Well, fire away ’cause today, I won’t let the shame sink in.

We are bursting through the barricades.

And reaching for the sun (we are warriors)

Yeah, that’s what we’ve become.

[Pre-Chorus]

Won’t let them break me down to dust.

I know that there’s a place for us.

For we are glorious.

[Chorus]

When the sharpest words wanna cut me down. Gonna send a flood, gonna drown them out.

I am brave, I am bruised

I am who I’m meant to be, this is me.

Look out ’cause here I come.

And I’m marching on to the beat I drum.

I’m not scared to be seen

I make no apologies, this is me.

[Bridge]

And I know that I deserve your love.

There’s nothing I’m not worthy of.

When the sharpest words wanna cut me down. I’m gonna send a flood, gonna drown them out.

This is brave, this is proof

This is who I’m meant to be, this is me.

[Chorus]

Look out ’cause here I come (look out ’cause here I come).

And I’m marching on to the beat I drum. (marching on, marching, marching on)

I’m not scared to be seen

I make no apologies, this is me.

Lettie’s song is the song we all long to sing. None of us are strangers to the dark. We’ve all hidden who we really are, because we fear ridicule or misunderstanding or not being accepted and loved. Even the most perfect, seemingly, among us has something about themselves that they dislike, some flaw that is glaring to them.

And some of us are so unique, so different, in appearance or thought or ability, that those differences are all that are seen. We feel shame. We feel outcast. We feel bruised.

How beautiful is this song’s reminder that differences are to be appreciated and celebrated. We can be exactly who we are and be seen, be glorious, be loved. Lettie’s journey is the journey we are all on, becoming real, becoming who we are, allowing others to do the same.

I have already listened to this song many times. It is currently my heart’s cry. Please take a moment, and listen to This is Me HERE.

What if we all celebrated our own uniqueness and each other’s too? What if we refused to hide, to be afraid, to fear others? What if this song began in our hearts and became our voice and our battle cry and our anthem, uniting us in our glorious differences?

Sing it with me…

“And I’m marching on to the beat I drum.

I’m not scared to be seen

I make no apologies, this is me.”

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