And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.
Remember my entry about how some timing in my life occurs as if planned? When I decided that I would make my last post on the day before school starts- being a big day and turning point- I didn't know the school schedule yet, I had no idea that my last post would be taking place on my birthday, which fits perfectly.
Where to start? There's a lot I've been thinking of saying, maybe being too ceremonious about it all, but like I said, this LiveJournal has been a huge part of my life and the best record of the past three years or so of it, so it is kind of a big deal.
The past three years? Most notably they've been my college years. And I've kind of always wrestled with the idea that I did not like my college experience, mostly because I didn't have one! I lived on campus and hated it, I wasn't very social, I didn't get to "go away" to college and experience that, and I passed up quite a few "hang out" times to do my homework. Recently I've been coming to terms with this- basically I'd been focused on the "college life" I didn't have, instead of appreciating the one I did have (a silly trap to get into).
I didn't "go away" because of my bands and the music I was pursuing, sometimes I seemed to tell myself it was some sort of reflection on me. While I'll never know what would have happened had I gone to school away, I am proud of what I did with music while I stuck around. Additionally, my choices have left me in a position now with no loans to pay back. And while I didn't experience the TV version of college, I did well. I made and kept a wide variety of friends who I adore, and had a ton of amazing experiences in the stead. And while I wasn't pimpin' out to drunk girls at frat parties, I've had some very good (and long) relationships with beautiful girls who've been very important to me, which, despite how they may have ended up, I am very lucky to have had, and I wouldn't dare have it the other way around. As for grades; how many people do you know have had their college grades projected up 10 feet high on a wall so they could be applauded by big wigs at IBM and had the CEO ask if those really were their grades? Well, me for one. I've had a lot of fun, unusual experiences in my life. Things to tell stories about (I'm almost Edward Bloom from Big Fish)... like having Lisa Loeb serve me pizza along with Pee Wee Herman, Matt Groening, and Larry Flynt at the Zappa house or having my favorite band tell me that I am their favorite and plead for me be in their video. Becky says there's something subtle about me that attracts unusual experiences, I guess that's true, cause there are a few such instances- those were just two.
THIS YEAR has been one of very definite extremes. I remember mentioning in a post very early in the year how I kept hearing that 2004 would be a very big year, and it really has been.
Things are insanely different now as compared to at the start of the year. The first couple months were extremely social. I experienced a very secure independence, getting out and seeing people and doing things I normally wouldn't- using the time to force myself out of my comfort zone while also remaining committed and optimistic about the relationship I was in. The relationship did however end in confusion, misunderstandings, and frustration. At the same time I was doing my student teaching and really doing well while also reconnecting with some important people I hadn't seen in a while. So for a month or two, life was this really strange mix of being emotionally stripped- hearing such sweet kind things from people while also feeling very weak, foolish, and fumbling to grasp at strings. I regret getting that low, but at the same time I'm confident that while I may not have been holding the best pose at certain points, I acted in ways that were true to who I am and what I believe in. I didn't lie, mislead, or play games. I meant the things I said and I acted pure to myself, which is a virtue even if it could be ungraceful at times.
All these ups and downs have had a strange affect on me- making me reflect on who I am, what I stand for, how I interact with people, and further, questioning the things that make me who I am. I was tossing around all these questions of values- why be good or nice when you don't get treated like it? Why work so hard at school if you're missing out on other things? Why take pride in providing for myself and struggling while other people can just get money from their parents? Other people don't do those things and seem to enjoy rewards and be more carefree seemingly without problems in how they or other people viewed them. But at the same time, that's just who I am. People can count on me, I'm reliable, and honest. Sometimes it's hard to see that those are good things when difficult times come. It's a depressing place to be in emotionally when you have to talk yourself into accepting it.
A lot of this stuff has come to rest recently though. I've evaluated and discussed them with friends, but mostly it's because I've realized that now is the pay off.
For as long as I can remember, I've had the same two dreams for myself that I've always been working for and dedicated to- to be a musician and to be a teacher.
I'm 23... I've accomplished both.
With my music, I've fronted two bands I'm very proud of. My biggest accomplishment was completing a cross country tour with one of my bands by 21. Not only did we do a tour, which most bands never do, but our first one was a full month all across the country during which we made money playing music we wrote along side bands and people I adore. I've played to an audience of hundreds of people numerous times, and had a bunch of them sing along. I've even signed autographs. Our music has been played on some of the biggest college and independent radio stations across the country without any money backing the recordings. I've been recognized by strangers who told me they liked my bands. Recently, one of my bands landed a residency at the Knitting Factory, and if Friday's show was any indication, things are still in a good place.
As for teaching- I've started my ideal career not having to make any compromises or settling for anything. My hard work has garnered me a teaching position at a great school with great people where I can be myself and have the freedom and support to do what I want. On top of that, I'm earning a really good paycheck and have complete healthcare for no charge. I'm not going to have to worry about money for quite a while or have it be an issue in a relationship. I've earned this, and it is really ideal for me. I'm working a job that is not only fun (which is rare enough) but something I'm proud of and believe in. It's an awesome place to be.
So here I am. Just turning 24 and having achieved my biggest goals in big ways. That makes me feel good about myself and the choices I've made. So now what? Well, besides continue to improve upon those which I've already met, here's some new goals off the top of my head (aided by not having LJ posts to work on):
1)Write my screenplay of Whitman's Leaves of Grass
2)Write my children's book Fish in Flannel
3)type letters to people
4)and of course- youngest Teacher of the Year in Burbank ;)
I feel like I'm in the right place in so many ways and have come to appreciate things I didn't before, I feel like I've improved myself. So it's a good time to make my last post here, I wont rehash the reasons why, but its time to move on from some things to appreciate and pursue more.
Thanks to the people who've been reading, commenting, and friendly with me in this little venue through the years, my goal is to keep up with as many of you as I can without the LJ middleman. A few months ago I did create a "secret" LJ name I didn't really use and I may post there occasionally. The screen name is not hard to find, but I'm not sure how much I'll use that if at all. You can keep in touch via email firstname.lastname@example.org or AIM: socialboot. Or send me postal mail even! PO Box 902 Burbank CA 91503. How I love postal mail!
This all sounded kind of grandiose (and featured my classic long-windedness), but that's OK once in a while isn't it? I just have been feeling like I've actually accomplished things. I'm really happy with where I am- starting a job at a place where I really feel like I belong, enjoying the single life, enjoying a whole bunch of great friends- and proud of the things I've done and accomplished. I'm happy, and ready to start the new chapter. Thanks for your friendship.
Failing to fetch me at first keep encouraged,
Missing me one place search another,
I stop somewhere waiting for you.