We were some of the lucky ones who got tickets to see Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour concert the normal way.
You know, sign up ahead of time to maybe be selected to maybe get a chance to maybe buy tickets. Then, get emailed that sweet access code. Then wait. All day. Staring at the computer, watching for the loading bar to inch just the slightest bit further. And it barely moves. For hours.
So you finally decide to get in the shower, but obviously take the computer into the bathroom and place it on the counter so you can peek out and check that unmoving queue bar. Only to realize once you’re fully soaked with suds in your hair that you’re about to be let out of the waiting room and get your chance to maybe purchase. So you grab a towel and in the steam of the bathroom it happens – tickets.
We were lucky.
We got tickets the normal way. Or at least not on the wildly expensive secondary markets.
And now, several months after the concert, and as the Eras tour takes over the movie theaters, I’m still thinking about it.
I’m still thinking about what I hoped my sweet girl soaked in from it.
Because no doubt I loved that show. Yes! What a show! But as a mom, to be honest I couldn’t take my eyes off my own girl as she danced and sang along in that stadium.
And so I’ve got a few notes to my daughter, 13 to be exact, about what I hope she takes with her from seeing the biggest pop star in the world perform live on stage.
13 life lessons our teens can learn from Taylor Swift
1. You are an artist.
Part of that energy that moves through you about Taylor and this show is the sheer artistry. We’re drawn to it because it whispers to our own artist. Know that there is creativity swirling within you too. In your heart, in your soul, just like Taylor, there is an artist that longs to create. Sure, maybe it’s songwriting and singing, but maybe it’s so many other things – photography, writing, dance, painting, sculpting, music making, sketching, crafting, theater, who knows maybe it’s whittling – just promise me you know that right now within you, within all of us, there is an artist. Imagine. Dream. Create. Find your outlet and feed your soul.
2. Hard work is invaluable.
It’s easy to look at the polished WOW of Taylor’s show and maybe think it’s all owed to her natural talent or good fortune. But we’d be so wrong. What we don’t see on the stage, is the relentless hard work and disciplined determination she has absolutely put in for every layer. This was a 3 hour show of non-stop singing and dance—and she never even breathed hard! I struggle to do the track at the Y while chatting with a friend at the same time. I promise whatever she did to get to that level of function was HARD WORK. Or let’s think for a minute about the hours upon hours that must have gone into rehearsals. The meticulous adjustments. Every detail of that production came with great effort. Get after it my girl! Whatever you’re going for, know what it takes and put in the work to get there.
3. Be a friend.
This was maybe one of the dearest takeaways for me. Maybe in part because I’ve watched what your generation has gone through socially because of Covid. It touched me deeply to see a stadium FULL of girls, many of whom are in that stage of life that can be rife with mean girl angst, come together in the sweetest way. I would be willing to bet that every single mom there, has spent time consoling her daughter through some tough peer related emotional hurts. But Taylor masterfully engineered a way to elevate her crowd beyond all that. Friendship bracelets upon friendship bracelets. Literally armed with bands of bracelets, girls were greeting one another, engaging in conversation while trading, complimenting outfits, singing favorite songs together, and sharing excitement. Gone was the divide, and in its place was connection. Wherever you go, remember the power of trading friendship bracelets – you know, even when you don’t have an actual bracelet.
4. Your family will always be there.
Okay, this was another touchy-feely one for me. Because c’mon! How great were her parents?! Walking out and waving to the crowd, so proud of their kid, right there beside her, supporting her, showing up for her again and again. I know you saw it. Yes, I know you saw, but I hope you know that’s what you’ve got too, my love. Don’t forget it for a minute.
I know it was super annoying when the show ended, and the huge crowd meant that cell networks were overloaded, and we couldn’t get service for our map apps to work and download directions to drive home…. But during the show, I loved that you all didn’t have service. Yes, you had your phones out taking pictures and trying to capture video that you’ve watched a thousand times since, but you were right where you were. You weren’t connected to social media. You weren’t texting. You were there. Your undivided attention was right there. And it was awesome. Remember how good it is to be in the moment you’re living while you’re living it.
6. Be resilient—because life will knock you down.
Taylor has been through some things. My goodness, she’s grown up on a huge stage, with a worldwide audience through her own teen years. She’s had periods when she’s been America’s sweetheart and times when she’s been knocked down.
Because of that, she’s had to demonstrate a tremendous amount of resilience, not only to survive being a teen star but to thrive and grow into a true superstar. And we know from her song lyrics that she has continued to move forward, one foot and then another, stronger with each step. As you go through ups and downs, I hope you too remember the resilience that exists within you and keep on keeping on my girl.
7. You are not alone.
It was amazing to look around and see every single girl singing along to every single lyric. Hold onto that memory. And the next time you’re feeling alone in your heartache, or disappointment, or insecurity, or friend upset – remember that ENTIRE-packed stadium on their feet for over three hours singing along. Taylor’s words are her stories, her emotions, and yet every girl there felt like those lyrics were written for her. Because we all go through it, we all go through the mud sometimes. You’re not alone in those moments; always remember that stadium full of girls who know just how you’re feeling.
8. Savor the joyful moments.
One of the things I’ll remember most about that concert is the joy she emanated from the stage. The smiles that felt so genuine, the light in her eyes, and the energy she gave to every part of the performance all communicated this connection of sincere happiness. We felt it. I mean, you were even hoping it would rain during our show because she somehow managed to make a downpour seem like a joyful gift to sing and dance right through. And while I hope that Taylor feels like she is very much living her hard-earned dream, I would imagine that even big stage performances can begin to feel like a grind as she moves from city to city and show after show. Yet, maybe with the same determination she’s given to so many other areas of her career, she enters and communicates a total state of euphoria for her audience. It’s contagious. Whatever you choose to do in this life, whenever and as often as you are able, do it with joy, and I think you may find it more joyful.
9. Reinvent yourself.
There’s a reason this show is called the Eras Tour. Each album has its own unique style, its own distinct era. She hasn’t been afraid to step into another lane. She’s allowed herself to grow and reinvent. She hasn’t let one genre define her. In your own life, don’t be afraid to reinvent. Of course, always stay true to the you at heart, but do so knowing that you are constantly growing – embrace the growth.
10. Feel the magic.
Gosh, from the set designs to the choreography, to the gorgeous costumes, to the lighting, to the music playing, to the song singing, to the fans fanning with screams of excitement, to the end of the show fireworks, it all felt magical. I’m so glad the show has now been released in movie form because it makes the experience so much more available. Hopefully, everyone that wants to is soaking in this bit of magic. Because I think this tour, this concert, this show, is a piece now of your generation’s story. And I’m glad for some magic for the memories.
11. Live a life of gratitude.
Taylor has seemingly worked hard to put together a solid and positive circle of people that helped to make all the details of this tour happen. And I pray you took note of each time she sincerely recognized them, called them out, held up their talents, and thanked them. Choose your own circle carefully, and then be generous with your gratitude.
12. Don’t be a doormat.
We know that Taylor was famously denied the opportunity to buy her own masters. And we know what she did next. She has found a way to step out on top. More hard work, more determination, and her fans are eagerly awaiting each release of every ‘Taylor’s version’ record. There may be some on your path, too, that would try to block your way. Remember your own strength of mind and heart, and boldly step around them.
13. Never forget the getaway car.
The concert was great. But you know what else was great? Hopping in the car with you, singing while we drove, getting all dressed up at the hotel, meeting up with besties that we don’t get to see often enough, and having time together. It was such a good reminder of how good it is for the soul to jump in that getaway car, and just spend time smiling with your people. I loved being with you. Let’s keep making time for that.
Are you looking to build up your tween or teen’s confidence?
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