Day 119 – 26 Candles Pt. 1

On July 31st, Tuesday, 11:17am, 26 years ago, I let out my first cry.

On Sunday when the Sun rose above my patch of the world to start the day, it marked my 26th Birthday.

26 years. Damn.

I’ll be real, I wasn’t smiling going into my birthday, I was down. I reflected on the past 365 that I had gone through and thought to myself ‘not again’, I know I need better.

I had a choice the night before to go to sleep before midnight or stay up and feel July 31st as soon as it started, I chose the latter. Then I was asked what songs I would use to welcome this new birth year. I jumped at the chance but wanted to make sure the music was right for how I felt about my life going forward.

I started with J. Cole’s Intro from 2014 Forest Hills Drive.

I said do you wanna, do you wanna be happy
I said do you wanna, do you wanna be, free
Free from pain, free from scars

It makes me think that I’m going through that right now, and it’s just a part of the journey that’s making me into the man I am.

Then I moved added Daye Jack’s Die Today to my playlist. The hook reads out like this (I highly recommend listening to it):

Oh I ain’t going to die today oh
Oh I ain’t going to die today oh

I laid back and reminded myself that I am tired of surviving. I won’t let this consume me.

These songs may have come from a dark place, but they bring you onto the path with light in the end to me, Kanye West’s perfect Ultralight Beam was my next choice. Does it really need an explanation? One of the most powerful songs I’ve heard in a long time. Yes, yes, yes.

On Day 62, I talked about one of my favourite ever songs, Reflection Eternal by Nujabes. I wanted to be brought to a place that felt familiar to me. A sense that felt familiar for me. That relaxation.

Up next was everyone’s favourite July troll, Frank Ocean. Enough has been said about him lately. It’s July 365th right now if you ask me! Channel Orange sounds just as good today as it did 4 years ago, and that’s why we’re so eager. One of my favourite songs is Forrest Gump. The way Frank conveyed his emotion in this the track always impresses me. Plus, it’s also about my favourite film, good memories all around.

The final one I chose to usher myself into 26 was Tom Misch’s Watch Me Dance.

Watch me dance with this memory
Just as real, just as heavenly
Watch me dance in my reverie
The lights that came to glow for me

It’s such a sing a long song and put a much needed smile on my face. My song selections started dark with shimmers of hope and then I eventually got here, where I could dance and sing in my own space with a smile on my face.

That’s all I wanted from my Birthday, I wanted to smile.

Part 2 tomorrow.