Behind the Song: 21 

I read somewhere once that it takes 21 days to make or break a habit. They say if you are able to do anything for just 21 days straight, you will have formed a habit that you can now easily maintain. Oftentimes we create habits unintentionally, whether good or bad, and these habits becomes both comfortable and familiar. A song that I adore by one of my favorite artists, Ben Platt, called "Bad Habit" speaks about a love interest as a bad habit. Something, or someone, so hard to shake because you've made a habit of spending time with, getting to know, and loving them, even if it isn't good for you. How do you let go of this habit (person) you've grown so fond of? 

I thought about the process of moving on from someone that you care deeply about. Maybe things were healthy, but you wanted different things. Maybe you thought you'd be married to them one day, and now you sleep alone in your bed every night while they've already found someone new. Maybe they were someone that you'd known since childhood, thought they would always be in your life, and you wake up one day and they're no where to be seen. Maybe this person wronged you so deeply, and you can't help but love them anyways.

So you sit there, and you miss them, and you wonder just how long it will take to move on and stop missing them. You ask the questions, "How long will it be until I feel whole by myself? How long will it be before I stop reaching for my phone to text them about the fact that the grocery store I'm at has their favorite cereal, or that our song came on on the radio, or that I thought I saw them walking their dog down the street last night? How long until they no longer occupy every corner of my mind? How long?"

Now, back to 21 days. What would happen if you focused on yourself for 21 days? Form habits of self love and self care for 21 days. Maybe after 21 days, losing this habit won't hurt quite as bad as it did before. Let's say you decide to give this a shot. 

21 days go by, and not much has changed internally. You've started forming better habits, habits that make you feel good inside, and yet something still feels missing. Because when a person is a habit, all logic goes out the window, and it takes far longer than 21 days to let go and move on. I think that love would mean a lot less if everyone was actually able to move on from a heartbreak in 21 days. But 21 days will soon turn into another 21, and another, and another, until you wake up one day and it hurts a little bit less. And after so many little sections of 21 days, you start to find yourself again. Then finally you wake up and realize that even though this person is no longer with you, there is so much more to life than waiting up for someone that just isn't right for you. There is a glimmer of hope in the fact that no matter what, you will be okay. 

This is the overarching premise of my song "21". The journey to growth and healing after a loss is full of nuance and is never easy, but there is oftentimes beauty in the chapters that come after. 

I released my debut single "21 (Acoustic)", a day before my 21st birthday. Over the last two years, this song has grown to hold so much meaning for me. Little did I know that I wrote myself a song that I would very much need nearly 8 months later. I have found power and strength in the number 21, and in myself over the last two years. This song has been re-recorded and touched up two years later with a little more growth and knowledge under my belt, and will be featured in my upcoming EP to be released in 2023. I hope you love this song as much as I do. 

If you enjoyed hearing a bit behind the inspiration for my song "21" please be sure to subscribe to the mailing list for early access to my "Behind the Song Series", as well as so many other fun surprises! I'm so glad you've found your way here, and I hope you choose to stay. 


Gabrielle Elise

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