Dear Taylor taylorswift
If you’re reading this (if you are I’m freaking out because I can’t believe it), you don’t know me, but my name is India (but I prefer being called Indie), and I’m 15 from the UK. Now that we’re friends, I wanted to tell you something.
So, when I was three years old my party dress caught on fire from the gas fire in our living room. Very luckily I survived after three months in hospital, but I was left with 40% burns and scarring all over my body. The scarring means I’ve always looked a bit different, and have always stood out from everyone else. I can’t count the number of times people would just stare at me in the street or make a mean comment or ask questions about it. But it’s something I’ve mostly gotten used to. When I was younger, I got it more often because the scars looked worse and redder, but it didn’t seem to bother me much up until I joined senior school (or high school). Everyone started to care about popularity, appearance seems to be everything and damn did it knock my confidence. I’d hear questions like “what’s wrong with your face?”, and I would think “there’s nothing wrong with me, just I don’t fit your idea of ‘normal’”. I feel like deep down we all want to be accepted, and I felt like I wasn’t by them. I’m a bit of an extrovert, I’m very loud and chatty when I meet someone, because all I want is for them to see through the scars and see my personality. I have nothing against my scars, because I think you should never spend your time hating something you can’t change, I just wish everyone else would accept them as well. I never ever want them to be a barrier to me living as normal a life as possible.
Anyway, so even though I’ve been listening and loving your music since I was eight (teardrops on my guitar was my favourite ever song for years and I’d be singing it all the time), I’ve only become a proper Swiftie pretty recently. My best friend, Anna (hey-its-taylor-swift) has been a big fan of you ever since you released your first album. She told me all about you, showed me more of your music (I’d only really listened to about 15 or so of your songs, excluding all your super famous ones like Love Story). I started to get really into your music, it was a source of confidence for me. Because I saw this amazing girl, who just didn’t care about bringing a banjo onstage at the Grammys, or despite being constantly bashed by the press kept doing what she was doing. I thought, she looks so confident and happy, because she’s doing what she loves and she doesn’t stop to pity herself. You set an example for me, and you are a big reason as to why my confidence has built up again. I’m back to that careless kid I was when I was little.
Unfortunately, scars don’t grow like normal skin, so they end up getting tight as I grow and it gets hard to move. So I need operations occasionally to fix them. Recently, I had one on my left arm because it was getting so tight that my fingers couldn’t straighten and I couldn’t straighten my arm. I wanted to put it off, but it was so uncomfortable after a while and the doctors said it would damage my muscle growth if I didn’t do anything about it soon. So they used artificial skin and took skin from my left leg to do it. It was pretty major, and I was having certain procedures done that I hadn’t had done since the original burns accident. I was quite nervous going in, because I knew after the operation, I’d have new skin grafts and they’re very obvious. As my scars have improved and look better and less red than they used to, people stare less but I knew this little was going to affect my confidence again, because it was going to mean brand new scars which are very obvious. Also, this year I started to learn guitar. Like you, I’ll play four hours a day, or as long as I can until my fingers can’t take anymore (I want to be a musician too someday) It’s such a source of happiness for me. This meant I wouldn’t be able to play guitar for a month, which for me had become the thing that gave me all this happiness, and I couldn’t do it anymore.
The whole process of the operation was difficult, and I spent most nights for the first week in hospital lying awake. I could never sleep because the moment the pain faded enough for me to be able to sleep the nurses would come in to do more checkups on me. The whole time I lay awake at night I’d just listen to your music on repeat. It got me through all those sleepless nights, and it kept me going through that pain. One of the nights, I actually managed to sleep a little, and dreamt that you came in to visit me with homemade cookies and that you brought your guitar and we sang songs together (that was an amazing dream, and I thought I’d just share it with you for some reason).
Once I was out of hospital, despite not being able to play guitar, I wasn’t going to not play music, and the first thing I did when I got home was play Wildest Dreams one handed on the piano (I could still use my right hand). In fact, you became mostly all I played. Dear John, Back to December, Clean, Innocent, Invisible, Red, State Of Grace, Out Of The Woods, Untouchable, White Horse, The Moment I Knew. I even played All Too Well on this virtual guitar app (I used to love playing it on guitar before my operation) and played it right after my first operation in hospital (I had to sing quietly though because the rooms in hospital aren’t very soundproof!). My favourite one to play though, once my fingers on my left hand had healed so I could use both hands, was forever and always. I’d play that one over and over, and I still love to.
Then, a week after my second operation to take out the staples and stitches, I found out that even though the operation had worked on my fingers, on my arm the skin grafts had been rejected by my body and had failed. So I had to redo everything again. This was the second time we’d tried to fix my left arm (we’d done a different procedure two years ago), and to find out it hadn’t worked, it made me want to break down crying. All that pain for nothing. That was when you helped me the most Taylor, Your music, it helped me so much. You’d just put me in a good mood. You do this thing when you’re singing happy songs which I love, which is when I can hear the smile in your voice as you sing them. I remember loving that when I first listened to you when I was little and it’s something I still love about hearing you sing now. And even though I couldn’t see your smile, I could hear it, and it was contagious to me. I also made it a ritual to listen to Fearless before each surgery, because it made me feel just that. You made me feel fearless.
Then, as I was recovering, whenever I felt well enough I’d go back to playing your music on the piano, or when I felt too weak to do that and wasn’t asleep, I’d watch interviews with you or your music videos, because I knew no matter how bad I was feeling that day, you could make me feel better.
I know I have a lot of major operations to come, especially in my gap year where I have some pretty big ones lined up, which is in 3 years, but I’m not worried for it anymore. Because I know you’ll get me through, just like you did this one. You’ll be there through your music. And it’s so comforting knowing that.
If I never get to say it to you in person, thank you for being there for me when I needed it most.
Lots of love, forever and always,
(Btw that’s a photo of me and my fellow Swiftie and one of my best friends, Anna, I’m the one on the left)
PLEASE FELLOW SWIFTIES HELP ME OUT BY REBLOGGING THIS AND TAG TAYLOR IT WOULD MEAN THE WORLD TO ME IF SHE SAW THIS 💕