Juliette Recommends: “Part of Your World” by Jodi Benson

Image via Disney Wiki — Fandom

“Betcha on land
They understand,
Bet they don’t reprimand their daughters…
Bright young women,
Sick o’ swimmin’,
Ready to stand….”

I never had much of a rebellious teenage phase, but I did go through the requisite “nobody understands me” era. Coincidentally enough, thanks to the age difference between me and my little sister (and my own love for Disney films & soundtracks), “Part of Your World” became a key soundtrack to my teenage angst — and a necessary contrast to Luke Bryan and Panic! at the Disco.

Was I a mermaid desperate to walk on land with a handsome prince? Well, no. Though I wouldn’t have turned down a handsome prince.

But like every other preteen to ever live, I felt like nobody really understood me. I’d always been mature for my age, which contrasted with being treated like a kid by default — I was sick o’ swimmin’. I wanted to experience all life had to offer and I couldn’t do that from my little rural small-town pond.

With The Little Mermaid all over the news and social media lately (for the record, I hadn’t heard of Halle Bailey before this casting but, from what I’ve seen, she’s a wonderful fit!), this song has been on my mind a lot. By extension, I’ve been thinking about that sense of not belonging, of being misunderstood.

And, quite frankly, I’m not sure I ever did grow out of it. Is that feeling of otherness and isolation a symptom of being human? I don’t know. But at least we’ve got “Part of Your World” to play in the background.

(Song recommendation by Juliette Sebock)