When people grow up, it’s kind of like the rings on a tree. Every year you add a layer, but you’re still the same person you were before. At 20 years old, I am still the same 12-year-old girl going through her very long awkward phase and trying to figure out who she really is. Though my music taste has expanded, I’m grateful for what it used to be. I get to have an entire library of songs to help me through this phase of life (and to help me dance-it-out when adulthood gets a little too stressful), , just like they helped me through my teenage years.
My self-proclaimed “emo” phase was a really integral time in my life, despite the questionable hair and makeup choices I made. As an impressionable 12-year-old, dealing with the beginnings of teen angst, music felt like the only thing I had in the whole world. Of course, that wasn’t true, but I didn’t know that at the time. It was something that I relied on to navigate my teenage years.
The kind of songs I listened to represented the kind of girl I wanted to be; fearless, a little bit badass, and free to be whoever I was. I didn’t know what I was yet, but I knew that this was what I wanted as the soundtrack of my life as I figured it out. For the record, I still want to be that kind of girl.
As I was making this, I felt all the nostalgia of my teenage years, as well as the struggle picking the songs I wanted and in what order. I realized that I was trying to find a way to tell my story the way I wanted to tell it; if you had told 12 year old me that all the music she listened to and probably ruined her eardrums with would be a part of her and helping tell her story, it would have meant the world to her. I still don’t know what my story is going to be yet, but I’ll still gladly have this playlist as my soundtrack.
I’m glad I’ve still got that 12-year-old girl inside me. She has great taste.