Why I’m SO Happy for Olivia Rodrigo
If you know me at all, you know 99.9% of what I listen to is country music, mostly classic country. So if I’m listening to a pop-rock album, you KNOW it’s that good. Olivia R, YOU GO GIRL!!! Who else makes music on that level when they’re still in high school???
First off- I’m so happy she was blessed by the Lord with great vocals (because not all of us are so lucky) but that’s not nearly the reason I’m ecstatic for her. Before I explain that, I have to explain something else to make this all make sense…my own very, very, untraditional high school experience.
So! In the span of one summer, right before my 17th birthday, I went from being a ditzy high schooler to a girl who didn’t recognize her life anymore. That summer changed my life forever, and it started with a diagnosis that left me bed-ridden for months. I was so sick, I literally thought I going to die- wrote up my funeral plans and everything. I finally got better, but the two months I was sick left me with severe anxiety. At the same time, my parents were on the brink of a divorce (but then again, when were they not) and I made the choice to move out of their home at 16. I soon got a job, became the most financially independent teenager I knew, and went from being a kid one day to a practical adult the next.
I was grappling with losing my religion, my relationship with my parents, my health, and my naive, child-like innocence towards the world. I struggled with the inability to communicate this to anyone, therapy failed me, and my anxiety kept getting worse. Not a great time.
I went back to high school in the fall feeling extremely out of place and out of body. All my friends could talk about was boys, football, strict teachers, and homecoming. All I could think about was how I was going to survive was I was going through. I literally couldn’t concentrate on petty high school things anymore, and I couldn’t relate to the people I called my best friends. We were living in two different worlds- one where teenagers couldn’t wait to grow up, and one where a teenager wished she didn’t have to. It was not a happy period or a nice place to be.
Growing up too fast does a number on you- for me, it left me with anger and resentment. I felt so sorry for myself every day, and I was constantly mourning the life I once had, the life of a normal teenage girl before her world came crumbling down. When you’re dealing with a fresh trauma wound, it’s hard to focus on anything besides what you’re going through. I faked more smiles my junior year than I ever have before. All around me were people doing normal high school things that I couldn’t even fathom enjoying anymore. So anyhoo, what does all of this have to do with Olivia Rodrigo? Keep reading!
Sharing my story is my roundabout way of explaining why I’m so happy for Olivia, who got the normal high school experience that I missed out on. Yes, she was a child actress and lived a life of privilege, but she still got to experience a lot of normal high school things like the joys of learning to drive, falling in love (and also the inevitable teenage heartbreak), prom royalty, worrying about petty high school drama, the whole nine yards- you get the idea.
As someone who didn’t get to experience in full most of those things, I’m happy, truly happy she got that chance, even if resulted in such a brutal heartbreak she ended up writing a killer album about it. Ouch. Hope she knows it gets soooo much better!
I’ve definitely moved on with my life since high school, but that doesn’t mean I’m not sad about how things went. It’s really pointless wishing things were different, but it always makes me feel better knowing my story is more rare than not. Listening to Olivia’s album and hearing her perspective on high school just makes me so happy knowing she got to have the high school experience I didn’t. She got to focus on the things like boys, falling in love, and ice-cream runs across town because her world wasn’t falling apart at 16. And I’m so glad she did, because that’s the way it should be.
And while her high school story ended up in heartbreak- I still believe it’s better to have loved and lost than not to have loved at all. I hope she believes that too. And I hope she’s just as happy for herself and doesn’t take it for granted that she got the high school experience all teenagers deserve.