The morning was my time for coffee, a cigarette and a song. My time of paradise before my first class, but only with the sun on my face. When it’s warm, it’s ecstasy. But even during the harshest winter mornings, I couldn’t help feeling sublime when I saw more of my breath than smoke as the sun turned the snow into a layer of white glitter or the grass simply remained frozen with dew. But it was always the song that set off the morning right.
Music helps me create an image for the life I want to see for myself. I enjoy Ella Fitzgerald when I’m laying down for an afternoon nap, Animal Collective when I’m feeling nostalgic and Lana Del Rey’s “Video Games” when I’m in need of balancing out my chaos. When the sound of a trumpet hits my ear all I see in front of me is a 1930s bar, and who wouldn’t want to feel like Humphrey Bogart for the night? Robert Plant playing the guitar makes your heart race and it feels rather good to be able to feel like you’re running a marathon, while in reality you’re just another person on a bench with headphones in, acting like you’re not currently undergoing something greater.
Music can provide an air of adversity, but it’s also a constant work in progress. Most of my music library consists of songs that once served as small anthems to my life, but today they serve as reminders for the period of my life that has come and gone. Back at home it’s always my girlfriend that brings me new music, always eerily beautiful and comforting, but here I continue to listen to my senior year of high school on repeat. Thoughts come up of the times, the people, the energy, and it wasn’t until recently when I decided I had moved past the point of wanting to feel like I’m preparing for high school graduation.
For the past six weeks I’ve vowed to live without headphones for the sake of needing to fill my ears with the sound of something new. Music always filled the gaps to and from where I was going, and now I know what it feels like to walk and listen to the sounds of nature, spring and people. I don’t find myself frustrated when I can’t find a song to listen to, and in my dorm I can explore what new music has to offer me. But in the early morning I miss the rhythm of taking a sip and a puff to a song that marked a new day.
Music marks my life just as much as the seasons, but as with anything we must learn to grow from and past it. In a few years time I’ll put on shuffle and be reminded of my premiere year of college and I’ll remember what it had to offer me. And in all reality I know of little else that can do that besides the smell of the cherry blossoms that will remind me I was here, and despite setbacks and stresses I enjoyed every moment.
Garrett Lemery is a freshman studying journalism at Ohio University and a columnist for The Post. What does music do for you? Email Garrett at email@example.com.