This is not Adam’s song.

When I was a senior in High school (1999/2000), one of my classmates committed suicide. I did not know him nor did I really know the circumstances surrounding his suicide. As a matter of fact, the day when everyone came to school saying, “Omg did you hear about Adam? He committed suicide!,” the only response that I could muster was “Who is Adam?” When I went to Newspaper that day, the first thing I did was grab an old yearbook that was in the classroom and turn to his picture.  In my four years of high school, I never had one single class with him and it seemed that we survived in two different worlds – he with the jocks and me with the freaks. Even though I did not know him, I heard the stories surrounding his suicide.  While I had no personal connection to him, the next few days felt like a scene in a movie, so melancholy where everything was moving in slow motion.  I always wondered if my disconnect from the situation came from the fact that I did not know him in any way but I felt no emotions about what had happened to one of my classmates.  That is until I heard that Adam’s song was requested to be played in memory of him. I never thought I’d die alone. I laughed the loudest who’d have known?

I love Blink 182 and I have always been a fan of the bands that have been created by former members of Blink 182. Adam’s song is a beautiful song.  Like many bands in that genre, they often write lyrics about the seemingly infinite sadness that is being a teenager.  Being a teenager is no walk in the park.  I imagine that even the “popular kids” or the “smart kids” or the kids who seem to have everything together suffer some sort of depression throughout their teen years.  Frankly, I think we should just skip middle school.  We are all going through puberty, or wishing we were going through puberty.  Trying to figure out periods and wet dreams and crushes and bras and make-up and whether to shave and who we are and who we are attracted to and who we want to be and it is such a melee of emotion that throwing all of those kids together in middle school is a prison riot we have to visit 30 hours a week.  But I digress, the point is being a teenager is hard.  You’re not quite an adult but you’re forced into making adult decisions and become responsible for yourself and all you want is for it to be over.  I’m too depressed to go on, you’ll be sorry when I’m gone. 

Most of the articles regarding Blink 182, Adam’s Song, and Suicide revolve around the jock who lived through Columbine and took his own life while playing Adam’s song on repeat. I am sure the song resonated with him. The song resonates with anyone who has felt that infinite sadness.  There are also stories about the song being written because they had fun on tour and then when the tour was over some of them went home to families while the other went home alone. The tour was over we’d survived, I couldn’t wait til I got home to pass the time in my room alone. There is another story about the song being written by a guy named Adam who wrote a suicide note.   But the one thing that has always been consistent is that Adam’s song is an ANTI-SUICIDE song.

As the song goes on, the music changes the tone and strikes a more positive chord and the lyrics to the depressive “it’s over” chorus change to an “I will survive” context.

I never conquered, rarely came. Tomorrow holds such better days. Days when I can still feel alive, When I can’t wait to get outside. The world is wide, the time goes by. The tour is over, I’ve survived. I can’t wait till I get home to pass the time in my room alone. 

Suddenly, we are no longer dreading the future because 16 just held such better days, but instead, we are realizing that there is a whole world out there and we have survived so far and we’ll continue to survive because there will always still be better days ahead, just wait until tomorrow.

Even though I did not really know Adam, who committed suicide in our senior year of high school, shortly before the Christmas break in 1999, nor did I know what he was going through or what he was feeling when he decided to take his own life, I have always remembered how this song became an anthem to him and his suicide.  It has always pained me because the song was not about giving up and not about giving into to that infinite sadness that you were feeling inside but finding the strength to go on and finding a better place on the other side of the pain.  Another 6 months I’ll be unknown…. I didn’t know you, Adam,, but 17 years later when I hear that song I still think of you and I still wish that you had realized that this song was not an anthem for you to take your own life but to know that there would be better days ahead and I wish you would have given yourself the opportunity to experience those days.

I also just wish I could enjoy the song again because this song was never Adam’s song.

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