Waking up in my apartment on a Saturday morning, alone, in one of the busiest cities in the world, is an incredibly strange feeling. The whole day is ahead of me and endless possibilities fill my head with what I could do… But sometimes a feeling of loneliness settles in. There’s the kind of loneliness we feel when walking down a deserted street at night and then there’s the—I’m in one little apartment among thousands in New York, with all kinds of people going out and about their business—kind of alone, like standing still in a densely crowded room. It’s overwhelming.
Well, I’ve found a rather effective way to combat the bubble of sadness that pops up inside my chest on those mornings. I play music. Not just any type of music. Music that before I would have been embarrassed to admit I listen to.
This is coming from someone who listens to their fair share of Justin Bieber and boy bands and who openly admits to adoring Taylor Swift. So, nope, not those kinds of embarrassing. I’m talking about country music. Before you protest, I know, country is literally the most popular genre of music right now, but it wasn’t until one such morning, that I gave it an (accidental) chance.
So there I was, looking for something to perk me up, get me going. I played an “If you like Taylor Swift…” radio station (yes, I know) on my phone and what I got was actually not Taylor at all, but the most delicious country songs… Lee Brice, Kacey Musgraves, Danielle Bradbery. I had been MISSING OUT, y’all. Those names I just listed? They’re now some of my favorites. I play Danielle and Kacey’s albums on the regular on Spotify. Just adore. (Feel free to recommend other country greats – I’m always looking for new favorites!)
Just recently I decided to change it up. I went for the Frozen (like the Disney movie) radio station and my apartment filled with lovely, classic Disney songs that I hadn’t listened to in AGES. It was comforting, even entertaining, to listen to the lyrics (they sound different at 27 than they do at 7) and belt out the choruses of “A Whole New World,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and “Part of Your World” to an empty apartment. (My poor neighbors.) Like country music, I haven’t explored much in the way of Disney (since I was tiny). I’m not one to go see every new animated film – although I did see Brave and Frozen (DUH) – yet these arguably silly, but fun songs still have a positive effect on me today.
So now when I need a pick-me-up, I know what to do: play a little Luke Bryan or “The Bare Necessities.” I make myself a nice breakfast, do laundry, catch up on Girls and later, when I’m ready to face the world (after a rousing rendition of “Colors of the Wind,” of course), I’ll head out into the fray of chatter, people and excitement that’s NYC.
What about you - what do you do when you’re feeling lonely? Read a book? Call a friend? Call your mom? Whatever your go-to mood booster is, the important part is having one. And knowing that you’re not the only one who feels lonely sometimes.