A song you like hearing live.
Wowza, that's tough. There are so many things that could fit into this category. BUT. Keeping it simple, I saw this song live last week, and it was the shit. There's no video for it, but that link will give you direct access. Go listen to it. And only read through the rest of this post if you have some serious time to kill.
I'm gonna get real honest about some less-than-happy subject matter right now, and not because I'm asking for your pity or because I think my feelings make me a special, unique snowflake. On the contrary, I get the sense that a lot of twentysomethings are dealing with varying degrees of this situation, and when a friend or two or three reminded me that I wasn't alone, I felt less like shit. So if you're feeling like shit, maybe this will help you, too.
There are some days that I wake up and just. hate. myself. My self-confidence stash is at E, and my flaws weigh more heavily on me than the scarves, boots and coats I'll soon have to don in the coming months. And that's not because I wake up feeling like a bad person; it's because I wake up feeling overwhelmed, exhausted and powerless to push my life in the direction I want. I'm a rag doll being dragged through each day, barely keeping up with the pace. And when that happens day after day, week after week, I forget who "me" even is.
Taken straight from an email I just wrote to a very close friend:
"The nights I can come home and work on anything non-job-related are few and far between, and if there's no time to do my own thing, how will I ever grow/eventually move upward? This mentality, plus some serious self-doubt after meeting so many experienced, intelligent and (this is my own term for them) real music industry people has led to a pretty rough past few weeks. I was standing in the middle of a very excited, very sweaty crowd at a release party on Tuesday night when it hit me that I don't even know what music I like. One of my co-workers is always trying to get me to describe what my "sound" is. And I've never been able to give him a straight answer. I can tell him the bands that I once loved because I grew up listening to them, laughable as they are now (picture me as a 12-year-old downloading Guster, Dispatch and, later, every artist from the Garden State soundtrack), and what I'm listening to on a day-to-day basis (a lot of Delicate Steve, some Soul Coughing for nostalgia and a handful of other things), but in reality, I have no fucking clue how to even describe what "my" taste is. And that made me so indescribably sad.
"Suddenly, nothing sounded good to me. No music sounded appealing, none of my favorite foods sounded appealing (there was FREE ICE CREAM being given away at this show), not even a good pumpkin beer sounded appealing."
I'm serious about this, you guys. I worked hard, made amazing connections, graduated from college early and landed my dream job where I get to do a bunch of awesome things, but even so, life isn't all concerts and butterflies.
"I got up the next morning with zero confidence in my ability to do anything but brush my teeth and maybe get dressed. Who had hired me to talk about music, and why? And how could I ever progress from here if the rest of my skills--design, web-building, whatever--are disappointingly subpar from lack of practice/real creativity? I felt destined to forever hold an office job under someone else's watch, to be tied to a desk and to be forever tired, confused, utterly mediocre and tasteless."
But the story gets better! Because here's the important part: This happens to everyone sometimes. And if you are a human being trying to better your life in some way, it will undoubtedly happen to you. No matter what you're doing--trying to pass a class, searching for jobs or just making an effort to survive the one you have--you WILL experience days in which you wake up, look in the mirror and want to do nothing but crawl back into bed. You WILL suffer severe bouts of self-doubt and question your own judgments. It happens.
But it WILL pass, too. You've got, got, got to remember that you're not stupid, you're not unqualified and you're not alone. See the response I received to that email to emphasize this point:
This friend ^^ was right.
Oh, and on where I am at this point? Though I'm still trying to find my footing on what makes me love or hate a band, and I'm still trying to push past mediocrity when it comes to non-work projects, I know I'm out of that awful low phase because my appetite is back. This girl came over last night to catch up, bake a red wine chocolate cake with me and talk about life.
More than half of that cake is gone by now.