The end of an era Dejamz


I wanted my last article for The DePaulia to represent what’s most important to me: the DeJamz. This time, I had to beg Lilly but she finally budged and allowed me to write my final DeJamz for The DePaulia. Since it’s my last, I’m going to pick a song that sums up each year I’ve been at DePaul. It’s been an interesting turn of events these past five years in Chicago and I’m not sure 18-year-old and 23-year-old Amber would be friends or even like each other, but I think my younger self would be proud we didn’t quit. 

Freshman year – “When You Were Young” by The Killers

Let me set the scene: it’s fall of 2018. I enlisted in the Army Reserves on top of joining ROTC and I moved to Chicago for my freshman year. My year consisted of 5 a.m. runs and late night conversations in the common areas of Munroe hall. I was naive but determined and had no idea what my future in Chicago would be like. I used to be really big into ‘90s rock, and would always blast The Killers in my little dorm room (sorry Emma). “When You Were Young” felt exactly how I romanticized my freshman year life.  

Sophomore year pandemic – “Hard Times” by Paramore

I honestly don’t know how she did it, but 19-year-old Amber was living a very full life: ROTC (which took up most of my life), sorority life, a community service job, working out two times a day and getting straight A’s in school (rip my GPA now). We are going to call this pre-Covid-19 Amber, or maybe just manic. This song was one of my top songs in 2019. I remember walking back late at night to my apartment in fall quarter and blasting this song feeling like this was going to be the hardest time in my life. Poor kid.  

Junior year – “Just a girl” by No doubt 

Okay Amber, we get it. You have internal rage from how men in the military treated you, and now it’s difficult for you to create meaningful relationships with men as a result. Well here’s another song that emulates exactly how I felt after years of my male counterparts demeaning every instruction I put out and making my life a living hell during my time in the military, just for them to hit me up after I left. Not that your comprehension skills are up to par, but if you are reading this, I hope you feel stupid. 

Senior year – “Time Moves Slow” by BADBADNOTGOOD

This was the easiest song to choose because this was my top song for 2021 and perfectly exemplifies what I thought was my final year. It was chaotic, hopping between bar jobs, working at the DePaulia, trying to leave the military and catch up after struggling in school. But at the same time, it felt painfully slow, all of the nights I was extremely exhausted hoping to be close to the finish line. It felt like time was moving so quickly and yet took forever at the same time. 

Grad School – “Psycho” by Jenny Lewis

This year I think has been the most impactful for my growth. I have never felt more supported and sure in my life of where I need to be and what matters the most to me. I don’t think I ever expected to stay for graduate school, especially because I can’t afford it but after three years of “unprecedented times,” I’m glad I stayed to finish what I started.