Dear Mr. Barna
I still remember the day I auditioned for band in 8th grade. I remember you scared the crap out of me with your larger than life personality. I remember being scared as all hell about my audition and you calmed me down. I remember the first day of high school figuring out that your class was going to be my favorite and you telling me that being third clarinet wasn’t a punishment, but a challenge because you saw potential in me that no one else did. I remember that lesson you gave me about breath control that I still think of every time I sing. I remember all the times hanging out in your classroom after school how you would tease me about boys and my shyness. I remember the day you challenged me to try out for the musical, and how satisfied you looked when I told you you were right. I remember junior year when I was freaked out about college applications and majors, you put the idea into my head about working in the music industry. I remember you encouraging me to look into music schools, because even though I didn’t know it at the time, you saw that spark in my eye and knew that my passion for music went beyond the clarinet. I remember during NYSSMA how much hell you gave me for not practicing and how annoyingly tedious those practice sessions were. I remember senior year when I asked you to write my recommendation letters how many jokes you came up with for how bad of a student was, but still wrote me a glowing letter. I remember during my breakdown right before graduation how you told me I could do anything I set my mind to. I remember how you said I was your most annoying student. I remember thinking how much I was going to miss you after graduation. I remember the last time I saw you two years ago. It was right when I was debating whether to apply to grad schools. In your usual joking manner you said I was wasting my time staying at home and stalking my high school band teacher. Then you told me that life needs a little risk once in awhile to keep things interesting. And then you looked me in the eye and told me that there was nothing holding me back from fulfilling the potential you saw in me, except me.
There are some people that make such an impact on your life, that it’s heartbreaking to know they won’t be around anymore to have that affect on others.
Thank you for always believing in me and for always making me laugh. I hope you know how many people you impacted during your life. I hope you know how much you will be missed.
There won’t be a day where I’ll forget how much of an influence you were on the person I am today. These are not just tears of sadness, but also tears of joy for having known you.
Goodbye, and thank you.
RIP Mr. Barna
Let the birthday curse continue! So my birthday this year consisted of my bosses forgetting my birthday which resulted in me getting sent on a 90 minute trip uptown to deliver concert tickets, dinner with my parents, and then drinks with my roommates who did it a little out of pity since all my friends basically ditched me. I have one awesome friend who keeps trying. Asking me if I was doing anything, but I felt bad making him come all the way to Brooklyn just to hang with me and my roommates. And then he tried again tonight, but I was in such a self pitying mood since after suggesting drinks with friends yesterday, they all forgot today. Yea, I guess I’m being melodramatic. I know people are busy, I know people are tired, but I’m like that too and I still drop everything when a friend asks me too. I guess they wouldn’t do that for me. And it’s disheartening. It makes me wonder if these friends are lifers or ones that are just gonna stick around until graduation. Don’t ditch my bday for something stupid and then the next day start telling me what you want to do for your birthday and expect me to be super happy. Don’t forget to tell me happy birthday all fucking day, even though you saw me at midnight and everyone told you it was my birthday, and then text me on my birthday asking me to do you a favor. And then do it again the next morning, and casually say so how was your birthday. It was fan-fucking-tastic. Thanks for wishing me a happy birthday, asshole. Don’t ignore me for 2 years, then spend all day on facebook on my birthday and casually remember to wish me a happy birthday the day after. We were best friends for 14 years, I deserve more than that. I over exaggerate everything. I should have been more clear about what I wanted to do for my birthday. I should have cleared it with people’s schedules 2 weeks in advance instead of one. I should have been more vocal. But that’s not who I am. I’m reserved and shy, and my friends know that. I had told people for two weeks I wanted to do something the night of my birthday and then lo and behold, when I made plans… oh really its your birthday? I never would have known! Really were my conversations about where I wanted to go for my birthday really that subtle?? Gah I need to calm down and get over this. I got 364 days to try again. Or find better friends.
T Minus 3 to D-Day
It’s something we have to deal with every year. Either you embrace it or you hide from it. One way or another it happens. There’s no stopping the clock. Yep, my birthday is on Friday. I was really excited. It was finally on a Friday, I have a great group of friends, I had no more homework after tonight, I’m finally in a happy place. But my birthday curse has struck again. I mean, yea everyone says their birthday sucks, but how many can say they have spent 7 out of their 8 last birthdays crying. Not like OMG I’m drunk let me cry about nothing. No, more like well this birthday sucks so bad, excuse me so I can go cry in the bathroom alone. Take for example, the year my own dad forgot my birthday and spent it in Puerto Rico, while my mom and I went to go to see a Chorus Line and she left for a bit to cry in the bathroom. My parents separation was a super fun time. I won’t go into my greatest hits of the Monica mix of It’s My Party So I’ll Cry If I Want To. I had high hopes for this year, but right away getting my hopes up was a surefire way of making sure they got dashed. People already forgot. All I wanted was to go get drinks, but I’m getting turned down left and right. Not even for other plans, more like 2 night of drinking in a row?- no thank you, or I don’t feel like doing anything Friday night, can we just meet up another time? I’ve never been one to shout from the rooftops that my birthday is coming up. I’ve always hated people like that. I think that’s just my personality. I’m subdued, and shy. But its the one time of the year where the world can revolve around me and I just wish for one year I wouldn’t get forgotten for the pre-holiday rush. I mean even my best friend forgot and I’ve known her for 13 years. I know her birthday, I can recite to you her high school locker combo, but she has never remembered my birthday. The last time she remembered was my sweet 16 when I mailed out invitations to a party, ok and maybe my 24th, but that was because I was home and it was just a bummer time and she wanted to party. Not that that birthday turned out any better. If I recall correctly, my plan got cancelled after we had already made it to the city and I spent it crying in the backseat of a car while we turned around and drove home. I hate being one of those people who bitches around her birthday, but I’ve been an emotional wreck all day. Was one decent birthday too much to ask for? I guess so. Well, I know it’ll come around again next year so… I guess I’ll wait till then.
Becoming a writer
So I promised my friend I would help her with a book she’s publishing by submitting an entry about things they didn’t teach me in school, along with a letter to my younger self. Its basically like ripping a page from my journals and throwing it out into the world. A little scary but I made a promise. I mean there’s a lot I could write about because truth be told- I really got thrown head first into life after high school. I was a total newb. Sheltered kid, never had a boyfriend, chubby and shy, you could say college was going to eat me alive. Somehow I survived, but it wasn’t due to anything my parents taught me or anything I learned in school. I had to learn from my mistakes. Trust me, I made a lot of mistakes. I’m still shy and insecure, but I know how to reign it in. I definitely don’t look how I used to, but thats something I’ve struggled with since I was in 6th grade when all the other dancers stayed slim and prima ballerina-esque and I got all curvy and very much not what Julliard was looking for in a dancer. I’ve embraced how I look, and while every now and then I do judge myself for the extra cookie I eat, I know the right person will not care that I’m not a perfect zero and that a size 6 is just as sexy. I now know that dating is a tricky game. The right guy might not be around at the right time, and the guy with good timing may not always be the right guy. That one I have had to learn, over and over… Ok so maybe I haven’t always learned from my mistakes, because this is a mistake I keep making. But I’ve also accepted that I’m still young, and I’m allowed to make this mistake. I’ve learned that my family is stronger than they appear. We have hit many unforeseeable bumps and while I’ve had to cry many time due to them, we work it out in the end. And we’re stronger because of it. I guess I have a lot to draw from for this submission, but I don’t know how to reign in all the emotions I have when I write about these things. I guess I’ll do some free form and see what happens.
Friends don’t let friends disappear
So I guess the moral story is I’ve been a bad friend. I had a good long talk with one of my best friends today and I went into this being really scared. I knew that our friendship kind of been broken for awhile and and part was my fault and then,at least, the summer was her fault but there’s part of me that was just scared of the fact that she wasn’t going to be in my future. There’s certain people you see beside yourself when you get married and she’s definitely one of those people. After the talk I realized, yeah She really hurt my feelings for the summer -to the point that I really didn’t want to talk to her and every time I thought about talking her that I wanted to cry - but that this stemmed back to some things that I done from when I started this school year started. I came from a place where my two best friends were the only people I really talk to for almost 2 1/2 years to having at least a good 30 people entering my life, that I see on a daily basis, I talk to almost on a daily basis and pretty much they’re my new social circle. It’s hard to transition from this especially when I’m so used to having just a small circle of friends. In undergrad I had five really close friends that pretty much were my undergraduate experience and having a huge new group was just something I wasn’t used to. I didn’t handle it well. I had one bad run in trying to merge my home friends and my school friends and I just didn’t believe that this one friend would get along with these new people. We were in different places in our lives and I didn’t think they would have much in common. I just let this assumption judge how I handled the situation. I never give my best friend the benefit of the doubt. I guess I got the idea that keeping my lives separate was the best way to handle things. I valued one life over the other and truthfully that’s not to change. As much as I love my home friends, they’re my past and living in the city is where I am right now - where I want to be and I know that’s not what they want, but the thing I needed to realize even if my worlds don’t exactly mesh well together, I need to give it a chance because, yeah my home with my past, but I want these people in my future and nothing is worth risking that over. I got to stop assuming things. These people they know me before I changed and yeah I’ve changed there’s that’s not something I ever to be a will to change back from. I hope they accept that I’m not the same person I was a year ago. I’m happy I’m not the same person I was a year ago. I’ve opened myself up to all these new things that I just wouldn’t change for anything, but then I got too narrow minded and too focused on what I was doing that I just didn’t see everything else that I was sacrificing. Unfortunately, my two best friends were something I sacrificed and after not being able to talk to one of them for a summer I realized, yeah I’ve changed I’m happy about that change - just not completely happy about the path I took to get there. I can’t change my decisions, but after apologizing and moving forward, I really hope that I learned from my mistakes and try to be a better friend because that’s all I can really do is try. I guess I now see what I have to lose and just don’t want to ever lose it again.
Let up with the let downs
My dad’s let down my mom, I have let down my parents, my friends and boys have let me down, I’ve myself down. Truthfully, I’ve had more let downs in my life than I’d care to point out. Each time it feel truly crappy. A whole new level of crappy that I’ve actually felt before, but I tell myself at the time that it’s the worse I’ve ever felt. Whether it was seeing my dad bail on my mom numerous times while they were separated, friends bailing on me at last minute without even the slightest explanations, boys bailing on me with the its not you it’s me speech. It’s never fun, and it really shouldn’t be shocking at this point. The one thing I never mastered was letting it go. I let the let downs stay with me and bum me out until the last possible moment. I cry, I over think, I let it take over my thoughts. I just wish there was a way to get out of my head sometimes. I saw my mom all those times my dad let her down. She’d cry all night and the next day she’d put on a brave face for me and live her life. It’s a quality I wish I could have. Be able to put it all in a box and forget it. There are still some let downs I carry with me. Some hidden resentment of my dad, apprehension around my friends because really making plans with them always ends with me on my own, skepticism about guys because getting ditched one too many times makes you start questioning every detail about yourself. I wish I could just store all these issues away and move on with my life, but that’s just not who I am. I freak out, I think too much, I over analyze every move I make, I doubt myself. I guess I’ve come to terms with that. Each step I take now I look three steps ahead and think of the possible outcomes: it goes my way, it doesn’t go my way and I’m cool, it doesn’t go my way and I hold onto that. And at the end of the day I decide that the outcomes are worth it, then I take that step. It’s not the easiest way to handle things, but until I figure out how to leave things behind me it’s all I got. I try to work my moms strength into me, but I’m just not there yet. I may be someday, but I’m still at that point where I’m pondering way too much as to why a certain guy let me down and then just magically reappeared in my life. The one thing I will say about let downs is that I’ve accepted that they’re a part of life. If everything went my way all the time, I wouldn’t grow. The let downs I faced in my teens shaped who I am in my 20s. Thankfully those let downs I’ve finally let go.
Call Me Maybe
So my friend keeps trying to drill into my brain the idea that when one door closes another one opens. And while I normally believe that to be true- it seems lately when one door closes I go running straight into a closed glass door. A fun optical illusion. Its less that I’m left with all these closed doors- its more that to get that other door to open I gotta put in extra effort. I relish the challenge, but sometimes I wish it was easier. I lose an internship opportunity and now I gotta fight for another one. I get dissed by a guy I really like and now I have another one kinda endlessly circling but not getting any closer. Granted in both situations I really wanted the door that closed, but I guess it is what it is. Damn I hate that phrase. There’s gotta be another way for me to express that idea without using that phrase. It ain’t gonna change. Tough Shit. It happened move on. Fuck it. Yea I like that. Fuck it. TIme to pick up and start over.
And if you couldn’t tell this was obviously a post about a boy. Typical.
Give me a sign. Can’t wait all day. You’re turning my world all shades of gray.
Theres a point every girl reaches when she has to decide if all this work is really worth it. There’s only so much one can say before you get so frustrated you give up. I’m not normally a quitter. But I’m also not one to play a one sided game. So I’ve reached my breaking point. I’m not going to tackle a guy and force him to talk to me. I’m not going to keep reading between the lines if the space in between remains blank. I’m not going to keep falling if there’s going to be no one there to catch me. I thought I had been pretty straightforward about how I felt. I guess either it was lost in translation or just ignored. So I’ve reached it. This week is my breaking point. By this time next week I’ll have a clearer picture if this is going anywhere, or I’ll be ready to take the next step in embracing my singledom. I really hope its the former. So all I guess there’s left to say is COWBOY UP.