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September 18th, 2021, was undoubtedly the best day of my entire life. I don’t even think my wedding day can top this one (though I really hope it does).

Here’s how things went down:

Back in November of 2019, Harry Styles announced his second world tour, and I scrambled to open my computer to see when tickets would go on sale. I expected shows to sell out almost instantly, so I begged to participate in one of the exclusive pre-sales, using someone’s gold-plated credit cards.

Thankfully, it worked! 

I purchased my tickets in the middle of a school day and practically sweated through my shirt with anticipation. Once Ticketmaster sent me the confirmation email with a cute little picture of Harry at the top, I knew life could only go up from there.

In a way, I was right, but when the COVID-19 pandemic dawned less than four months later, I realized I was actually entirely wrong. People began dying by the thousands every day, hospitals and their ICUs filled up, and toilet paper started disappearing from every shelf possible. My senior year was over within a matter of days, and I remember crying my eyes out as I watched my state’s governor announce that schools would be closed for the remainder of the school year.

No final goodbyes to my beloved high school teachers. No prom. No graduation. But at least I had a Harry Styles concert to look forward to, right?

Wrong again!

My June 28th concert was postponed to September 18th, 2021, a few weeks before it was supposed to happen, and like the drama queen I am, I spent that night crying to the songs I would’ve heard at the concert. It was a rough time in my life, honestly. I’d had barely any reconciliation with the fact that I did not get to experience a traditional end to my high school career, and I was stuck at home with my family all day. My only escape at the time was to drive around blasting music, primarily songs by Harry Styles.

When I started college in the fall and moved 8 hours away, the dormant fear of being away from home grew into an uncontrollable beast. To sum it up in a few words, that first semester was rough. But I survived, and when I completed my first year of college, I felt more accomplished than ever. I still felt like September 18th was eons away, so I wasn’t as excited because it felt like it would never happen.

Now, as I write this article after attending the concert, I can confirm that time flew by at lightning speed.

Harry opened the show with “Golden,” arguably one of the best songs in his discography, filled with airy background vocals and hypnotizing guitar strumming. I was up and down, jumping the entire time; I was thankful I brought my Crocs as a backup because jumping in my cheap little heels wouldn’t have gone well.

For the next hour and a half, I was transported to a place that I’d only visited in my dreams. Harry was there, in the flesh, performing songs that had helped me through some of the hardest points in my life. Seeing his smile in person, projected onto a humongous screen in front of my eyes, made my heart flutter just like it did when I saw similar pictures online. But things were different; after everything that had happened in my life and in the world, I was finally in the place I wanted to be. 

Happy, healthy, and with Harry Styles.

Emilie Ivy

Xavier '24

Em Ivy is an undergraduate student studying Public Relations and Communication Studies. In her free time, she enjoys reading, writing stories, consuming copious amounts of caffeine, and thrifting.
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