Twenty One Pilots “Stressed Out”

“Wish we could turn back time, to the good ol’ days,
When our momma sang us to sleep but now we’re stressed out.”

My life was simple when I was a child: carefree and innocent. Not responsible for paying daily expenses such as car fuel, food, clothes, and the like. Mother cooking me meals, washing my clothes, buying my clothes (and choosing what wear to school), etc. My mother tucked me into bed, kissed me, and wish me “good night” and I didn’t have to worry about supporting myself. Hakuna matata.Now, as an adult, I have to think about how to pay my student loan debt, car note, groceries, fuel, clothes, and everything else that adulthood brings. No wonder Tom Hanks’ character in Big wished to be a kid again, after learning what adulthood entails.

The song “Stressed Out” pop duo Twenty One Pilots sings addresses transition from childhood to adulthood and the childhood nostalgia Tyler Joseph and Josh Dun crave. As the verse above indicate, they yearn for the “good ol’ days” when their mother sang them to sleep. As adults, they’re overwhelmed with adult responsibilities.

 “I was told when I get older all my fears would shrink,
But now I’m insecure and I care what people think.
My name’s ‘Blurryface’ and I care what you think.”

The last line resonates with me the most for I did care what others thought of me, growing up as a preteen. I sought friendships from both boys and girls because I wanted to be admired and be part of my peers. Sometimes, I faced rejection when denied lasting friendships. Whenever a girl (especially one I liked) rejected me, it resulted in my eyes soaking with tears for I believed something was wrong was me. My name’s Blurryface and I care what you think.

“We used to play pretend, give each other different names,
We would build a rocket ship and then we’d fly it far away,
Used to dream of outer space but now they’re laughing at our face,
Saying, “wake up, you need to make money.”

Though I never dreamed of flying into outer space, I did imagine myself of growing up to be someone important: a firefighter. This verse refers to the desire for childhood as both members  imagined themselves traveling to outer space. As children, their parents supported whatever ambition their child held (although it may be unrealistic, depending on the dream). Now, they hear, “You need to make money.” I receive a similar message from my parents, particularly my mother: “You’re an adult. You can make your own decisions.”




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