Let's flashback to 12 years ago when I first heard "Tim McGraw" on the radio, I wasn't sure who was singing the song but I knew from that moment that whoever was singing it was talented. I asked who was singing that song to the people in the car and they said "That's Taylor Swift". I had no clue who Taylor Swift was but I immediately went online to see who this girl was and I saw that she had an album out and I had to go pick up the CD at the store so I could listen to the whole thing. After I listened to her first whole album I couldn't wait until her next album was released.
Now let's jump forward to 2018. My friend and I had bought tickets for us and my sister to the reputation Stadium tour in Minneapolis in December of 2017 and had to keep the concert a secret from my sister, Alison, because we were going to surprise her the day of the concert with the tickets. A long 9 months went by waiting for the concert to come around and the week of the concert finally approached us and we were so excited. That whole week leading up to the concert was filled with so many good luck signs and we had such a weird gut feeling about going to the show. We had all of our outfits planned out and ready to go and we had to make sure we had stuff for my sister to wear because she had no idea she was even going. We chose to wear camouflage and an old Taylor concert shirt.
The day of the show show finally rolled around and I got to surprise my sister with the tickets that Saturday morning and she was so excited to go, the first thing she said was "when is it?" Lucky for her it was that night and she didn't have to wait 9 months to go to it!
One thing that I still remember to this day is what my mom said to me before we left our house was, "If you meet Taylor you need to be nice to your sister and let her enjoy that moment too." And I immediately said back, "Mom, I doubt it will happen, there's a 1% chance that we will even see Mama Swift and meet Taylor."
So, we packed up into my parents car and headed to my friend Abby's house to get ready for the concert with a few other friends we met on Twitter who were going to the show with us. Multiple tubes of glitter later and all our "13's" written on our hands, we were finally ready to head to U.S. Bank Stadium and get in line to get into the concert.
(LTR: Abby, Me, Julia, Alison, Kaitlyn and Adia) Getting ready to leave Abby's house to go to the stadium.
We got to the stadium about twenty minutes before the gates opened so we waited in line for that time and took some pictures and talked about what we were excited to see that night. Time flew by and they opened up the gates and it was time for the moment we have been waiting for for 9 long months. This was the first time I had been to the new stadium and it was so gorgeous and it's so hard to explain its beauty in words.
Before we went to our seats we had to go pick up our floor wristbands from a certain section on the concourse so we were able to get to our seats and after we all picked up our floor seats we went in and there it was. The stage. It was so big. I had only ever seen pictures online of what the stage looked like but seeing it in person was breath taking.
We got to our seats finally and our seats were in the perfect spot. We had no seats behind us, we had end seats and we had a big open space to dance our little hearts out. I couldn't believe that this was all happening in the moment.
Abby and I up against the stage barricade by our seats.
Our friend Kaitlyn, who had bought a ticket last minute and came from Chicago to go to the show with us didn't have a ticket by us but had a floor seat. She didn't want to go back to her seat yet and be alone so she stayed with us during the opening acts. Taylor's opening acts are phenomenal. Charli XCX put on one hell of a show and got the crowd pumped up for Camila Cabello. Camila is just a little darling, she's so cute and little that everything she does I want to cry.
After Camila, Taylor was next. Kaitlyn was ready to go back to her seat but before she left she said to us, "Not to say anything is going to happen or get your hopes up or anything but there were people from Taylor Nation watching you guys during both of the opening acts." My heart just stopped and I couldn't believe what she told us. Abby, Alison and I told ourselves to not think about that during Taylor's set because we didn't want to get our hopes up.
I DON'T GIVE A DAMN ABOUT MY BAD REPUTATION... it was finally time. Joan Jett blasted over the stadiums speakers and we all knew. Taylor was coming on stage after this song was done. We were dripping sweat, our glitter was everywhere and our hair was a mess but we didn't care. We were so ready for Taylor to come on stage.
The lights dimmed, the light up bracelets sparkled, screams echoing in the stadium and "Baby let the game begin," was heard over the speakers. Alison, Abby and I had already lost our voices but we were screaming so much when we heard those five words and finally she finally arose from under the stage in a black sparkle onesie and over-the-knee boots that just looked so stunning in the stage lights. ...Ready For It? got the crowd going crazy and we were in tears because we couldn't believe Taylor was right in front of us.
Four songs in her set went by and by this time Abby, Alison and I were so tired and sweating so much but we kept going because we were having so much fun and didn't want to miss any memories to be made. End Game was the next song in Taylor's set and one of my top three favorites on the album. This was the song I was most excited to see live because it's my favorite and I heard that she performed End Game so cool at the show. It was about halfway through the song and I was taking a Snapchat video of my singing "Big reputation, big reputation," and I didn't hear Abby say this to me but she yelled "Mama Swift showed up!" Since I didn't hear that (I later then heard it in my video weeks later when I was watching it) I could hear my sister talking to someone and I thought to myself how does my sister know someone here well enough to be talking to them and I turned around and it was Andrea Swift, Taylor's mom.
After I turned and saw Andrea, I tapped Abby on the shoulder and she turned around and we all screamed "Hi!!" She said to us "Have I seen you guys before? You guys look really familiar." We were like "No no no no!" and then she proceeded to say "Are you girls sure I've never seen you before?" and at this point we were crying because we knew that the next few questions that were coming were the ones we've were waiting for all night. "And you would never tell a lie to me, right?" and we all yelled in tears "NO!!!" and she then said "How does meeting Taylor in rep room after the show tonight sound?" and we yelled in her face "YES" and she gave us a big group hug and left and one of the members from Taylor Nation stayed to give us the rep room slip and our meet and greet wristbands. I've always seen videos and posts online about this happening to other people but never in a million years would I think this would happen to US.
A real, raw picture immediately after we got rep room.
After we got our paper and wristbands we all called our family to tell them we were meeting Taylor after the show and the service in the stadium was spotty so we couldn't hear much of what they were saying to us over the phone but I all I remember saying was "I can't hear anything you guys are saying but we're meeting Taylor after the show okay bye!"
King Of My Heart was the song after End Game and that song I honestly don't remember at all, I was to in shock with what just happened and I couldn't physically focus on what was going on stage and before I knew it she was standing on our side of the stage doing her speech before she sang Delicate. She was so close to us and Abby and I just looked at each other and said "We're meeting her tonight, we get to hug her tonight." Taylor got on her little glitter ball that flew her across the stadium over to her first b-stage where she sang Tied Together With A Smile. We couldn't see any of the b-stages but we sang and danced our little hearts out that whole time.
When Taylor made her way back to the main stage it was the end of the show and all I can remember from that was the water fountain coming on stage and Taylor singing This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things, taking her final bow of the night and going under the stage. It was chaos after the show, people grabbing confetti, taking pictures and trying to find their way out of the stadium, but us on the other hand had to quickly make our way across the stadium to another section to meet Taylor Nation and the other people who were given rep room passes that night. We made our way to the section and saw everyone else in the section and we finally realized that this was actually happening and we were going to meet Taylor.
We filled out a few things on an iPad and once everyone was done filling things out, a Taylor Nation team member went over the rules for us before hand that way we had more time in the room to take pictures and socialize with everyone. They then brought us all backstage and we had to leave all our stuff on a table outside of rep room before we could go in and the moment we've all been waiting for all night was right there in front of us.
We walked into the room and it was so beautiful. There was so many things in there that I couldn't believe were in there. The throne from the Look What You Made Me Do video was there, the infamous Delicate dress, the rainbow dress from the End Game music video, the red throne dress and the black body suit with rep in silver sparkles from the LWYMMD video were in there as well. The walls were made of just fabric hanging down in gold and black, one wall was actually the wall from the outside scene from the Delicate video. We were given Instax polaroid cameras and film to be able to take pictures since we could't have our phones with us. I got to take many photos and having them as polaroids makes them so much more special, living the moment over again is so easy with those.
Polaroids from rep room
After about 45 minutes hanging out, eating food and socializing with other people in the room, Taylor Nation told us it was time to line up to get ready to meet Taylor because she was back in a curtained off room waiting for us to meet her. We all got lined up and were waiting for the moment to finally happen and as we were all standing there Taylor peeked her head out of the curtain, doing her head swoop and said "hey guys!"and I couldn't believe she was standing right there in front of us and I yelled quietly "you're fake!" and my friend Kejana, who also got rep room, heard me but didn't tell me until later. Taylor then proceeded to say "I can't wait to meet you all and my mom is here and she's going to come hang out with you guys before you come back here and meet me! See you guys back here." In this moment I couldn't believe this this was actually happening in minutes.
Andrea came out of the curtain after Taylor peeked her head out and started talking to the group ahead of us before they went in to meet Taylor. A few minutes went by and we were next, Andrea came and talked to us and the feeling of talking to Taylor's mom was so unreal. She was so genuine and cared about us as people, she asked us where we went to school, what our names were and how old we were. The time with Andrea went by so fast and we were up next to meet Taylor, the moment I had dreamed about for 13 years was finally happening.
Abby, Alison and I with Andrea Swift (Taylor's mom) 9/1/18Taylor Nation
The curtains opened and Taylor looked at us and said "hey guys!" and we said "Taylor, you look so good!" and her response to us was "No, you guys look so good! All your glitter is so cute." We then all hugged her and afterwards Abby had her moment with Taylor to tell her the things she wanted to tell her. During Abby's time with Taylor I noticed a piece of hair stuck on Taylor's sweatshirt, the OCD in me kicked in and I grabbed it off of her shirt and she looks at me and says "Oh my gosh, thank you so much." and I looked at her and said "I gotchu girl, no worries." After Abby's moment, it was my turn to talk to Taylor so, I said "Taylor can I tell you two things?!" and she said "Yes! Of course" and I said "For one, we just told my sister about the concert this morning and we've had the tickets since December. We kept it a secret for so long" and she goes "What! No way that is insane" and proceeded to look at my sister and said "that's so awesome!" My sister told Taylor "I've been going to your concerts since I was 5," and Taylor's response was to give my sister a high five and to tell her "You go girl that is so cool."
The second thing that I wanted to ask Taylor was something about her cats, Meredith and Olivia. I asked her "how are your cats doing?!" and she told me that they are doing so good and are as fluffy as ever! I then asked her if they were there in the stadium with her that night and she said "Yes. Of course, they are always with me and are usually just chilling in the dressing room." The inner child inside of me just exploded of happiness because I have loved those cats my whole life and always wanted the chance to ask Taylor about them or meet them in general.
After that I told her that I attended the Rascal Flatts concert in 2008 when she opened for them and was the first time Taylor performed in Minnesota as an artist and her eyes lit up and was so happy. She said to me "That was so long ago, you've been here a long time. I'm so sorry it took so long to meet you, I love you." and in that moment, her eyes never losing contact with mine, I knew she loved me and I knew she felt the connection with me. We then continued to talk about my shirt that I was wearing, because it was a concert shirt from the Fearless Tour which took place in 2009-2010 and I turned around and said "Taylor do these stops and date ring a bell?" and I couldn't see the look on her face but Abby told me when I turned around her eyes lit up and she was so happy to see that shirt and be reminded of that tour. During the time when I turned around I showed her my shorts I made for the show, with rhinestones and glitter and how it all came off and she said "but they're still so cute. I love them!"
The conversation between us started to die down and Abby asked her if she would write down stuff for us so we can get it tattooed and she hesitated at first because she isn't supposed to personalize anything but the security guy handed her the sharpie and paper and she wrote down lyrics from Holy Ground for my friend (I won't say which ones just to keep that special to Abby) and wrote down "I love you." for me. I couldn't think of lyrics at the top of my head when she asked me what I wanted her to write down and I knew the I love you from her would help me through a lot of things I go through in life. As she wrote these things down for us we kept asking her for things and she said while laughing "you guys! I can't write all this down" and continued to giggle. She was so sweet and so kind to us.
When she finished writing things down for us she said "you guys ready to take a picture?" and we were so excited for this moment and we asked her what pose she thinks we should do and she said to my sister to go in front of her because she's tall and my sister wouldn't cover her and after that she grabbed me and Abby so tight and pulled us in for a bear hug. I felt her head tilt onto mine and I lost it. I was so happy and content with life in that moment. The flash went off and that was it. I asked her for one more hug before we left and she said to me "of course babe!" and we left the room. 10 minutes of my life have never gone that fast before.
We walked outside where security brought our other friends to wait for us to come out and as we walked out the doors they all were screaming up and down and hugging us and asking how it was. We were still all in shock and we told them all the most memorable parts and showed them the things Taylor wrote down for us. We hung outside for a little bit afterwards to see other people come outside after meeting Taylor and everyone was so happy and that was everything to me.
Me after meeting Taylor
Writing this was emotionally hard for me to process all over again. It took me almost two months to be able to put it all into words. I am so thankful for this moment I had meeting Taylor with my sister and best friend. Something I dreamed of for countless years. Even though this story is over 3,000 words, the words still don't do justice to what happened that night.
All I can say is, I was enchanted to meet you Taylor.