The Breakup Playlist Revisited

One thing I’ve realized from having a blog is that posting can be extremely cathartic in a lot of ways. Talking about the progress of my art on such a public forum has made me much more confident in presenting and promoting my art in other arenas. This has actually benefited me a lot in recent weeks, and it makes me really excited for the future of my career as an artist. Similarly, talking so candidly about how I’m dealing with a breakup has helped me to better deal with it. It might seem cliche, but the process of researching girl power anthems, and then the incessant playing of said anthems has done wonders for my self esteem and overall personal well being. And it’s interesting how documenting the whole thing and putting myself in a very vulnerable position has made coping that much easier.

So, I’m going to do my friends a huge favor, because I’m certain that by now they’re sick of hearing about how fine I am with everything, and get it all out here. I’m also going to do something very 8th grade of myself and express my current state based on corresponding song lyrics. Take it or leave it. Like I said, this is really benefitting me, so if you opt out here, it’s no skin off my back.

The particular lyrics I have in mind come from what is less a song and better described as an interlude. It’s called The Suburbs (Continued) by Arcade fire, which is absolutely my favorite track from their album of the same name, and I’ve found myself thinking about it a lot lately. The whole thing goes:

“If I could have it back, all the time that we wasted –  I’d only waste it again / If I could have it back, you know I would love to waste it again / Waste it again and again and again / Sometimes I can’t believe it / I’m moving past the feeling … ”  

It’s simple and very short, but it’s also really beautiful and conveys a lot of emotion in just one minute and twenty-eight seconds. (Listen here). And to me, it very elegantly expresses exactly what I’m feeling right now. So if you’ll indulge me here for a moment…

For whatever reason, my relationship ended. Three years is a long time to completely devote yourself to another person, only to experience, what often feels like a death, a complete break. And I won’t lie and say I haven’t felt any anger or spite or even regret. But somewhere inside me I know this is exactly what needed to happen, however hard it feels at times. And overall the feelings of bitterness really aren’t there. “If I could have it back, all the time that we wasted I’d only waste it again.” Like I said, three years is a long time. But if I had the chance to take it all back, I wouldn’t. Knowing what I know now, that it wouldn’t last, given the opportunity I would do it all again. Because what I had with Alex was real, and for a while there it was really great.

This is not to say that at any given moment I’d be ready to resume the relationship. Quite the opposite. But I don’t regret it.

Without the lyrics, the song itself is very melancholy. It also inspires nostalgia (which could really be said about the whole album). It’s a sad song about embracing the past while also moving on. Things end, and that is very sad and at times impossible. But to let go of that sadness allows one to take away all that was good, and then move on, “I’m moving past the feeling” (Am I getting too analytical? I’m beginning to feel a little pretentious. Very 8th grade of me).

I am fine. Truly. And I think a huge piece of that is that I don’t regret anything about the past three years. Not one single thing. If I could do it all over, I would. But in that same spirit, I’m moving on. It’s all ok. I’m going to be OK.

I’ve always found this song (interlude?) really lovely. And it’s certainly not hard to relate to. Those few lines mean quite a lot to me, and I’ll probably have them tattooed on my body at some point (sorry, mom). If you’ve made it this far, I really appreciate you. Sincerely.

Of course there’s a flip side to this whole thing…

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