Fangirling during quarantine, is it possible? YES! Yes, it is!
I’ll admit that that last week of the South American tour was stressful for me as a fan. I saw Brian get quarantined with Swine flu 10 years ago. I was worried about all the love the South American fans pour out on the Boys. And when they postponed their last concert, I just wanted to know they were home.
But I knew it was all going to be okay. How? Because I’ve been through difficult times before.
Back in November of 2018, I lost everything in the Camp Fire in Northern California. I evacuated with my kids, my mom and our dogs and very little else. Through all that, the Backstreet Boys were my constant companion. Video playlists, CDs in my car. And on top of it, there was a tour! A tour I likely wasn’t going to see. I had to make sure everything was in place for my family before I could even worry about myself. I didn’t buy my ticket until April when Baylee, Brian’s son, announced he was opening for the Backstreet Boys. And even as I had my countdown to something I could look forward to, there was still a ton to take care of before then. Who would watch my kids? Would I get the time off work? Where am I going to stay?
And when I finally thought I had it all figured out, I was telling a co-worker about how Baylee had meet and greets available and the price was reasonable. He convinced me, the week before the show, to buy it, telling me that when would I get this chance again?
August 1, 2019, came. The day of my show. My anxiety was high. It was almost constant since the fire. I got lost on the way to my hotel. I got to the arena and found that almost everyone was there for the Backstreet Boys. I worried that I would get left out. But thankfully, they pulled us Baylee fans first. There were four of us. I worried that I would freak out meeting him. I’d been following him since he was a wee one. His dad was my favorite Boy. His mom was my favorite Wife. I paced waiting outside his dressing room. And when we were led inside to his “lounge” something strange happened. An eerie calm fell over me. Even when he surprised us from behind me, I didn’t jump. It was the most calm I had felt since before the fire.
And even now, when my anxiety rears its ugly head, I only have to put on his song “If You Won’t” and I calm down. So you can bet he’s been on quite a bit since I started worrying about this virus, COVID-19. See, I’ve got a lot to worry about. My mom and daughter are in the high-risk category. I’ve been in quarantine since the 16th of March. And even that weekend before we were starting to take precautions.
So, being stuck at home, how do I fangirl? Easy! Follow them on social media! They are all posting right now. And they’re sending us text messages asking of us to sing their songs! They miss us as much as we miss them. The fact that they haven’t canceled the rest of their tour dates when other artists have, proves that! I also surround myself with other fans who understand. I do that through Facebook Groups and blogs (like this one!). When the news gets to be too much and fills up my timeline, I click into my Backstreet Boys groups and look at pics, read stories, and play games with other fans.
The other fangirl thing I do is write fanfic. Assuming my brain isn’t consumed with worry, or I’m not helping my kids with schoolwork, I’m off in fantasyland with my Boys. Believe me, the distraction of being in a fantasy helps right now. Sure, some of it may not be good fic, but at least my brain isn’t stuck on what’s happening outside my window.
Oh, and when Baylee does a Live Q & A, be there with bells on! It was like THE thing I was looking forward to ALL week! I’ve rewatched it a couple of times now! I was so giddy over his Live (and the possibility of him doing a “Live concert”) that I accidentally responded to a serious work email a little too excitedly. Yeah, I got a “Stay Home” order from work right at the end of Baylee’s Live broadcast and I responded with exclamation points! Oops! Sorry boss!
So yes, you may be stuck in your house for any number of reasons right now, but you can still fangirl over the Boys. Believe me, the little things, like Nick’s live breakfasts, AJ finally posting again, Kevin building a snowman, Howie growing his scruff out, and Brian and Baylee wandering around in full animal costumes, are all amazing reminders of how much they love us and how much we love them.
Bec has been a fan for over 20 years. She’s seen the Boys numerous times but never met them. She lives in California with her mom, two kids, and two dogs.