April 12, 2011

"I'll be right here waiting for something more"

I should know better by now than to post some kind of deep entry at 2:30 in the morning; that's how I end up saying more than I ever meant to say in a public place, but I'll say it anyway. After all, my intention with this blog has always been to document the phenomenon of becoming a Hanson fan--how it started, where it has taken me, and all of the little changes along the way. I suppose this is part of the process for me, and you're in no way obligated to read this late night rambling.

I love Hanson...that much goes without saying and is hardly necessary for me to reiterate at this point. I respect them and their seemingly infinite talents--those voices, all of the instruments in their small collective arsenal (seriously, is there anything they don't play?), their ability to compose a song and write good lyrics, etc. And yet somehow, I still feel silly being able to be boiled down to a few lyrics in a Hanson song. As much love and respect as I have for these guys and their talents, I hate that a single Hanson song can sum me up in a good bridge and a verse or two, and yet they've done it again.

Up until a few months ago, I had never felt that feeling before. I had read countless fan testimonies about how Hanson songs brought people through periods of depression, got them through everything from simple angsty teenage years to the death of a loved one. I've read about these experiences, and yet every time I read them, I always acknowledged in the back of my mind that I had never felt that way before. Yeah, I could connect on the surface level; I "got" the lyrics and the meaning, but the connection always ended there.

And then I went through a time where I had to make a tough decision about what direction my life should take. I got myself into a career that instantly felt wrong, and for the first time in my life, I wasn't sure about everything (no, this is not the point where I tell you I felt a deep connection to "Sure About It"). One night, I was trying to get through my work without giving myself enough time to stop and think about how miserable I was. I liked Hanson music, right? It made me happy. So I turned on my iTunes in the background as I worked and tried to block out all of the things building up inside of me. And then "Breaktown" came on and it was all over. That numb wall I had built? Gone. Every single lyric in the song seemed to fit my situation perfectly. Next came "Strong Enough to Break", and then "These Walls". So I sat there sobbing and feeling sheepish that a few Hanson songs I had already heard a hundred times each were somehow capable of turning me into a blubbery mess when I had done such a good job of locking out all of those feelings that Taylor was crooning back at me. I can't say the music "got me through" that hard time; in fact, I'm not sure it did anything at all other than depress me more and make me face the feelings I was trying to ignore. But for the first time, I felt something stronger than an aesthetic appreciation for the music. I didn't just "get" the lyrics; they "got" me.

Within days, I had my own strong enough to break moment. I won't credit Hanson for the decision, but that choice is a necessary part of this story.

Fast forward to now. I know I made the right decision; that career path wasn't the one for me. But now what? I have faith that everything will work out. I know I can't see the map that I'm following, but I trust that I am in fact headed somewhere worth going, even if I can't see the big picture yet. I can rest assured that the choices I've made so far are the right ones, but what comes next? I have no idea. And as I'm voicing all of this to my friends and one makes an analogy about looking into the future being like looking around a corner--something good is coming, we just can't see it yet--Blue Sky inexplicably enters my mind, and I'm having one of those moments again. It's not life-altering and I hardly expect Blue Sky to somehow solve all of my doubts and worries, but once again I feel like dear Taylor and Isaac are narrating my life with the help of a choir of African school children. I probably shouldn't be surprised since this isn't the first time now, but it's a little unsettling to have a song I never really thought twice about before suddenly sneak up and know what I'm feeling better than I know it myself. Now if only the next song I connect with could be a little more upbeat and happy. If anyone's taking requests, I could settle for "Give a Little" or "Musical Ride," please and thanks :)