PLAYLIST | Being Eighteen

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By Maddy Siiter

Last March, I posted a piece on being seventeen with a playlist of songs that encapsulated my month. It was the first month of my seventeenth year I felt was accurate to the romanticization young adult novels and movies often do with the number.

I opened for Bad Bad Hats — one of my favorite bands, felt the prickings of a crush, wrote a lot of songs and thought my heart was absolutely broken. Reading the piece, I’m almost embarrassed at how young I sound just a year later.

If anything, I more so feel that freeway, faces-illuminated-by-streetlights-freedom this year than last. My relationships have gotten more intentional; I’m the closest to the friends I have now than any I’ve had in the past. I’ve learned to put myself first and take responsibility for my mental health. I definitely wasn’t as heartbroken as I believed I was at the time (it worked out better in the end). The number of school days left until graduation are approaching single digits. I’m at a place in my life where things are rapidly changing and weeks are passing like minutes.

This is a time I really feel the most alive.

At the beginning of the school year, I started making monthly playlists on Spotify, mostly to remember the cluster of random songs I stumble across, but also as a bit of a scrapbook to place certain memories. I’m notorious for latching onto a specific song or album and putting my own time stamp on it. (Last year I listened to The 1975’s I like it when you sleep for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it the whole month of February. For the longest time, I couldn’t listen to it without being pulled back into the exact feelings I was experiencing at the time: boy confusion, self empowerment and hurt feelings.) But by making playlists of a variety of songs and not just clinging onto one thing the entire month, there is room for the bright and beautiful too.

So in the anniversary month of last year’s piece, I feel it’s only fitting to share this March’s playlist. Here are the songs that played while I drove to Minneapolis, journaled in the dark, danced around to in my pajamas, heard in movies while I cuddled up with my best friends or just plain announced as a freaking bop.


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