Growing Up with BTS

Hello! My name is Cloudin and I’m here to share my story of how I discovered BTS with you!

I discovered BTS in September of the year 2015. I was going through one of the most painful stages of my life, which I found out later on was how most ARMY came to know about BTS too.

I am from Egypt but I had lived most of my life in Kuwait with my parents and younger sister. During August 2015, I had been waiting for my results from Cambridge and unfortunately, I had done very badly, barely passing in 2 very important subjects. Before that, I had lived my whole life being the “smart” student, so this for me was devastating and it meant that I could have possibly ruined everything that I had worked for because then I wouldn’t be able to get into the good college that I wanted, which was Dental school. I remember I spent the whole day crying when I found out and decided to kind of punish myself by not going out or doing anything that I liked and to focus only on studying. I decided to work even harder. The very next day I had already started preparing for my re-sits (you can take the exam for the same subject again during another session to try to get a better grade in the Cambridge system) and one of the subjects I was retaking was Maths so on some days I’d listen to music while working on it.

Sometime during September, I had started becoming discouraged and couldn’t continue studying anymore. Then one day, I was going through Facebook and came across a short video of BTS’s performance of Let Me Know from the Red Bullet Tour. I was absolutely mesmerized by the song and Jimin’s highnote (Now let me, now let me, now let me iiiiiin) so I became a fan immediately!! I decided I’d look up the full song then I looked for more of their songs and came across songs like Dope and Boy In Luv.

This was not my first time discovering Kpop since I had friends who had told me about groups like Shinee, Big Bang, etc. and while I did enjoy some of their songs, I hadn’t felt like I wanted to see or know more until I found BTS. I was very impressed by so many things like how synchronized they were while dancing and how they could actually sing and rap so well while dancing to such a hard choreography. After that, I decided to actually look more into the lyrics and find out what they actually were saying in their songs. Gosh, I’ll never forget the feeling when I was watching the lyric video for the song Tomorrow, it was like a hit right in the face. How could a song in a language that I don’t understand say exactly every single thing I felt and yet encourage me to go on and keep going?? Every single word felt like it was written for me and I’ll never forget the line that said “It is darkest before the sun rises“.

Since then, I started listening to their songs while practicing maths equations. Then later in November when HYYH Pt. 2 dropped, I got to enjoy songs like Butterfly and Baepsae which I could also relate to.

I had finished my re-sits in November and I was only a few months away from highschool graduation and at some point, I felt like I wasn’t sure of who I am or who am I going to be or what will life be like beyond high-school without my childhood friends, and there was still the fear of what if I didn’t do well in my re-sits, what will I do then? I basically felt scared and I just had so many questions. Butterfly resonated with me because of that.

Even Baepsae resonated with me because at that time whenever I’d complain from something, I’d get responses like “Oh you have it easy now, back in my day we would have to do this and that” and how my generation is just “lazy” which is not true at all and was frustrating to me! It was just insane how BTS kept releasing songs that I could dance to and at the same time relate to. It only made me love them more.

Ever since then, it has felt like I have been growing up with BTS. With every comeback, it would somehow fit so well with my current situation in life (I was born in 1998 so I guess maybe I related so much cause I was going through similar stages as the boys?). The Young Forever album release right after my highschool graduation and got accepted into the Dental school that I wanted to go to! Wings albums when I had just started college and was living on my own back in Egypt. You Never Walk Alone with Spring Day when I started facing some problems at college. Even going through the DNA phase when I had liked someone then the Fake Love phase when I was going through another rough patch in my life because of the people I was surrounded with at college; I had changed into a version of me that didn’t feel like me anymore and I hated it. Then came the Answer album and the Epiphany that I should love myself just as I am. After that, came MOTS Persona and MOTS 7 that I could also relate to in many of the songs like Intro: Persona, UGH, Inner Child, Zero O’Clock and got to enjoy the other songs too and cry as an ARMY in We are Bulletproof: The Eternal. Then came the pandemic and Dynamite and BE which helped me survive what would have been a very dark time without BTS. And finally, Butter and Permission to Dance are how I got to end my final year of Dental school and graduate (currently still waiting for the results, it will probably be out by the time BTS hopefully get to see this)!

These past 6 years, I have really felt like I was growing up with BTS as if I’m a living part of their story. I am so thankful to God that he let these 7 boys be a part of my life. I really don’t know how I would have survived all those things without them. Thank you BTS for everything! I love you and I hope my story will help remind you just how much positive impact you’ve had on many people in this world. Keep going and I’ll always be cheering for you! Fighting!

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