I have been playing “Hold On Be Strong” on a loop for several days. The song makes me sad, yet give me so much hope. Despite everything he had to overcome, while he was alive, Tupac managed to remain positive. A lot of what Tupac says in this song stirs memories, and his wish in the chorus moves me. His emotion is audible; the pain and the passion are difficult to ignore. Tupac manages to move past his experience in order to attempt to guide someone else through their own everyday struggle.
Although I feel hope when I listen to “Hold on Be Strong,” I also don’t fully believe his attempts at reassurance. I realize that everything was not alright for Tupac; thus, how can everything be alright for me? Even though he kept holding on and moving on, Tupac, at 25, was killed before “Hold on Be Strong” was even released. That’s a common trend around here— the holding on and rolling on makes very little difference to those who are just surviving. Life is harsh; some people are encouraged to continue an everyday struggle for survival, while others are allowed to live. Even though I know that I could be living, I am surviving. I understand that I do not have to be where I am. I know that I no longer belong were I belonged. I feel confused as I ponder my reasoning for still wanting to belong in this space. My place in society is shifting, but the ground beneath my feet remains the same.