My relationship with Taylor Swift began with yoga, coffee and a break up.
I met Brooke at a yoga class in June. She approached me after I taught and bubbled over with enthusiasm and encouragement. Later, I asked a mutual friend why she seemed so familiar.
Right. Because she’s on TV and we had exchanged a half-dozen work-related emails over the years.
Brooke and I met for coffee weeks later, and our friendship quickly moved from yoga to heart issues when she asked how I prepared for teaching.
“Well, my boyfriend of three years broke up with me two days prior to the class you took,” I said. “When I planned that session, I focused on maintaining an open hear even after heartbreak.”
Brooke teared up. Her best friend had recently called off their relationship, she said, and Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood” became her anthem in the aftermath.
We shed tears in that suburban coffee shop and declared our friendship cemented. And Brooke insisted I buy Taylor’s “1989” as soon as possible.
By that afternoon, I asked a coworker to take a coffee break with me because the one-two punch of “Wildest Dreams” and “How You Get the Girl” bad me welling up at the office. After we returned from that coffee run, I looked up the 1989 tour. I needed to be there.
My therapist OK’ed a bit of retail therapy in the wake of that break up. She said I was doing well, but it was fine to brighten my day with purchases within reason. I took that to heart, refreshing my makeup routine and subscribing to a flower CSA. On that June afternoon, I didn’t think twice about dropping $118 to see Taylor Swift, alone, in Atlanta.
It’s been nearly five months, and “1989” is an album that I return to repeatedly. I suspect fame has increased Taylor’s maturity, and there’s much I relate to as a result. The album creates a safe place to process the often-heavy emotions that accompany life and loss. In fact, the dichotomy of Taylor’s upbeat pop and the more nuanced lyrics is exactly why I (think I) prefer her version to Ryan Adams’ beautiful, mournful cover album (and I’m an RA fan girl).
Tonight I’ve donned my red-lip classic look and set out for the Georgia Dome. It’s a pilgrimage second only to seeing Paul McCartney years ago, another show that carried such emotional importance that I didn’t beauty to go it alone. Tonight I’ll sing, dance and cry in a dome filled with thousands of other people who have been moved by this music. Tonight I’m going to party like it’s 1989.