It’s hard to believe it’s been 20 years — yes, two DECADES — since Britney Spears first came into our lives. Over the years, she’s risen to mega superstardom, snagged a coveted Las Vegas residency, and even developed her own lifestyle brand. But we’ll never forget the one thing that sparked her career: “…Baby One More Time.” And neither will she.

Taking a walk down memory lane with The Guardian, the 36-year-old reminisced about the single, which was released way back in October 1998. She thinks the song likely resonated with fans because it’s “about that stress that we all go through as teens.” She had no idea just how much it would change her life, though. “I knew it was a great song. It was different and I loved it, [but] I don’t think you can anticipate how a song is going to be received,” Spears told the paper.

Originally penned for TLC by producer Max Martin, the track was offered to Swedish songstress Robyn after the trio rejected it. Simon Cowell then reportedly tried to snag it for his newest boy band, the UK’s Five, but it eventually landed in the hands of a 16-year-old Spears. She flew to Sweden to record it and, as she told the outlet, could hardly believe the experience.

“I remember being so in awe of Stockholm,” she said. “I was out there for, like, 10 days, but we were so busy in the studio I didn’t have time to go out and explore on that first trip.”

The rest is, well, history. “…Baby One More Time” sold an unbelievable 500,000 copies on the very day it was released and soon hit the number-one spot on charts around the world. Two decades later, it remains a classic teen anthem. “Wow, that went quick!” Spears gushed. “It was such a fun and crazy time, it was a bit of a blur.”

What’s your favorite Britney Spears song? Tweet us @BritandCo.

(photo via Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)