For Everyone Who’s Going Through It... | Aimee Han
Updated: Jan 18
Without a doubt, it’s been a tough year. There have been lots of ups and downs, unprecedented times, and instances where people referred to the blur of historical events that happened this past year as “unprecedented.” I see the look on everyone’s faces, and we are all, without question, exhausted. Personally speaking, I feel burnt out. But part of what has maintained my sanity recently is music, specifically songs with slow build-ups and choruses with lyrics you can scream to on the freeway late at night with the windows down. So for everyone who’s going through it, here are some song recommendations to undergo some catharsis (deep emotional purging) and release some of that inner tension.
1. “Ribs” by Lorde:
I mean, what else is there to say? “Ribs” by Lorde is the perfect song to cry to. The moment I hear the lyrics, “This dream isn't feeling sweet, we're reeling through the midnight streets, And I've never felt more alone, feels so scary getting old,” my voice cracks in attempt to hit the notes like Lorde can, while instantaneously the tears begin gliding down my cheeks. Every time I hear this song come on, all I am reminded of is how in the near future my best friends will no longer be just my best friends, but they will be considered “hometown” friends. And because of this, all I do is sit in my car and sob. But hey, at least I get all the emotions out because sometimes, all we need is a darn good cry.
2. “Happier Than Ever” by Billie Eilish:
This song is specifically meant for driving by the coast. Every time I drive by the beach solo, I queue this song perfectly timed so that I can scream the chorus while I accelerate on a downwards hill without any interruption from the stoplight or pedestrians. Whenever I am reminded of someone’s existence that I hold some form of lingering resentment for, I simply just turn up the volume and scream. Because sometimes, all we need is to scream at the top of our lungs and tune out the white noise.
3. “Motion Sickness” by Phoebe Bridgers:
To be completely honest, this song is in almost every single one of my recent playlists that I have made. I can’t let go of it. I can’t ever dare skip this song when it comes on because when it begins to play in my car, it is meant to be. To be even more frank, I definitely can listen to this song on the treadmill because running to sad music releases a different type of pain. The lyrics, “I hate you for what you did, and I miss you like a little kid,” simply jabs at the heart for a little bit. Because sometimes, all we need is to evoke our childlike needs and grieve over how times used to be.
4. “Liquor Store on Mars” by Kelsy Karter:
This song is absolutely perfect for driving under the stars. Whenever I hear the opening lyrics in my car, my excitement is unmatched. The buildup to the chorus is preceded by a refreshing scream, followed by a perfect opportunity to yearn to escape the presence of someone who has only caused us pain. Because sometimes all we need is to validate our feelings towards another human being that isn’t the right match and just hope that one day, they all go away.
5. “Shampoo Bottles” by Peach Pit:
I remember the first time I felt like I really heard this song. I was in the car, with four of my good friends, on the way to get a warm dinner in Convoy after a quick beach trip on a foggy, summer day. It was this particular lyric, “I’ve been leaving you in radio silence” that particularly resonated with me because I admittedly have had the occasional habit to leave people in “radio silence,” if I’m putting it nicely. Yet hearing this not only reminded me of the cycle I needed to break, but heightened my awareness of how I most likely partake in the cycle because I am afraid of putting myself out there and not feeling accepted (which is a horrible cliché). Because sometimes, all we need is to scream and remind ourselves of how far we’ve come in getting to know ourselves and how far we have yet to go.
So, I sincerely hope that this rough patch passes by with a little more ease for you. Whoever you are, you deserve a little moment to yourself to fully purge yourself of any negative tension that is ruining your aura. With that being said, this is for everyone going through it because sometimes, all we need is to acknowledge how we’ve managed to make it this far.