It’s funny how the way songs make you feel can change based on where your heart is. When you’re in the midst of heartbreak, a sad song is almost unbearable. It’s so real, it was written for you. It was written about you. Except it wasn’t. It’s infuriating. No one has felt this before. How do they know this pain? How can they possibly imagine that they know what my heartbreak feels like? No one has felt this before. It’s impossibly painful. It’s brand new like fresh blood turning bright red when it hits air. You might laugh, exhausted from loneliness.
When your heart is recovering, a sad song is a comfort. It shows that you aren’t alone. Someone else has been where you are, where you were. You start to believe it. Someone is there right now. Someone is behind you and in front of you and there is a different state of being somewhere in the future. You aren’t alone. The song makes the pain less sharp. You might laugh, considering the relative insignificance of your experience.
When your heart has moved on, a sad song feels far away and nostalgic. It’s still a comfort, like for the healing heart, but a different sort of comfort. It’s a reminder of growth and an appreciation for the dips in life that seem to make the highs reach such great heights. You might laugh, surprised as you remember the rich feeling of all the pain of heartbreak.
There is something whole in it, despite everything.