Sunday, September 25, 2011

I refuse to believe it's been 20 years

There is simply no way that it has been.

Nope.

Not going to believe it.

I don't care how many radio tributes are running this weekend, how many specials are on VH1 and MTV.  It just can't be possible that Nirvana released Nevermind 20 years ago.

Back then, I was a 14 year old girl.  Angry and troubled in my own life, more than a bit lost at the time.  I wasn't sure who I was anymore.  I'd fallen into too many bad habits for an adult, let alone a child.  I was partying hard, drinking way too much, dating guys much older than me, and hating every single minute of it.  The music running in the background of my life at the time, all heavy metal and hair bands.

Then one day, I heard Smells Like Teen Spirit.  The simple guitar riffs, the plain bass line, the barely distinguishable lyrics hummed by a guy who's hair was so long and dirty that you couldn't see his face.  It seemed like that song was written just for me.

I begged for the album, convinced my parents to let me have the uncensored version.  It was the first CD I ever owned.  I must have played it a million times.

The songs were raw.  They were dark.  They were about the terrible things that people do to each other.  They spoke to my soul.

I was, as the saying goes, mad as hell and not gonna take it anymore.

It may sound silly to say that an album can have a profound effect on someones life, but in my case it did.  I stopped drinking.  I started caring about school again.  I thought about the choices I was making and the path where they would lead me.

I realized that I could rebel from everything I refused to be, without destroying who I was.

I didn't have to be the stoner behind school just to make the point that I wasn't a cheerleader either anymore.

I embraced who I was.  I started the long journey of forgiving myself for the things I had done.  I tried to make amends to those that I hurt.

I cared again.

Now, I'm not claiming that this music saved my life or anything.  I want to believe that I would have pulled my head out of my ass eventually regardless.  It could have just been great timing.

Whether it was just a coincidence, or some cosmic intervention, this album will always be a part of my personal history.  It will always be a part of me.

It allowed me to say this phrase, then move on with what was really important.

Oh well, whatever, nevermind.

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