TODAY IS FIVE YEARS OF RED AKA FIVE YEARS OF MY FAVORITE SONG. i really wanted to put in words how important everything has changed, as well as the red album, is to me, and i thought there was no better day than today to do so.
@taylorswift i want to preface this by saying that without you, i would have had none of the hope i needed, nor the joy i feel now. without you, i would have never met my best friends. i would never had this song that means so much to me. there are not words to thank you, because these things to me are absolutely everything.
i remember hearing everything has changed for the first time. i remember sitting on the floor in my living room. it immediately struck a chord within me. at the time, i was only eleven, but i continued to find myself coming back to that song. it was so happy, and so joyful. and it had my name in it!
when middle school rolled around, i had no friends. i was incessantly bullied and harassed by girls that were my ‘friends.’ my parents had always told me that their teenage years were the best of their lives, and it made me mad - i was suffering when everybody else was having fun. it wasn’t fair. why did i have to take the brunt of the name-calling and the laughing and the jokes?
it happened daily. some days, it was so bad my mom would come and pick me up from school, and i’d stay at home and cry. every morning, i’d wake up afraid. school was hell and hell was here on earth.
and every day, there was one thing that kept me going. there was one thing that said “you’re going to get through this.” and it was everything has changed. taylor and ed had been where i was then, they had been bullied. they had been laughed at and made fun of, but they came out on the other side. they made it through. i listened to this song, about everything changing, about being cared for and loved and being happy, and i promised myself that one day, i would feel like that. one day i would have a friend like taylor had in ed. that friend would stand up for me like ed did in interviews. that friend would want to spend time with me. they would never laugh at me, they would cherish me and have only good things to say of me. and until i found friends like that, my two friends were my mother, and that song.
and then, one day in april of 2014, by a sheer stroke of luck, i stumbled upon what i know today as my dearest friends. we met through our love of taylor swift. they listened to me. they asked me how i was. they cared for me and cherished me. when i had bad days, they would listen to me, and tell me that they were on my side. they were my safety and my home. where i belonged was wherever they were. even if they didn’t go to my school, even if they lived thousands of miles away, that was okay. i had friends now, and that was all that matter.
luckily, a few months later, i was fortunate enough to go and visit two of these friends in florida during the week 1989 came out. it was without a doubt, the happiest week of my life. after being so consistently sad, to have a week of bliss was the greatest joy i’d ever experienced.
one night, we were walking down a street as we went trick-or-treating. my shoe had come untied, and as one does, i bent down to tie it. and do you know what? she stopped for me. she waited for me. she didn’t yell at me to hurry up, she didn’t laugh at me, she didn’t leave me behind. it was such a small thing, and it meant so much. it was my own equivalent of “all i know is you held the door.” it nearly brought me to tears.
now, i lead a much different life. i no longer go to the school that caused me so much pain. i wake up every morning thinking about how glad i am to be as happy as i am now. i am a part of so many wonderful things. i have friends i love that love me in return. and whenever i hear that song now, it’s my anthem. it doesn’t have to give me hope anymore, because what i waited for has come true. i have friends who love me, who care for me, who stand up for me. my life did a complete 180º for the better.
everything has changed.