Q: So um… If I could have you start by describing yourself physically and emotionally.
A: Ok. I have big brown eyes. I have a really small mouth. I’m really pale despite my heritage and ethnicity. I’m tall. I’m left handed.
Emotionally, I’m a very apologetic person, very eccentric, very outgoing. I am also very sad sometimes. I talk a lot and I listen a lot and everything more or less, hurts, but a lot of the time it hurts in a good way.
Q: What is the background for you being an apologetic person?
A: I don’t know. A lot of the time I feel like I am very comfortable with myself… more or less… I want to say I’m 75% comfortable with myself, but that other 25% is just… I don’t know…
I want to say that who I am, me apologizing for who I am started in high school with my drama teacher. She was very mean but at the time I felt that it was good, like her being mean to me was helping me as a person, her being verbally abusive to us or favoring some people over others, me, was the way that it was. She made me feel that everything I did was a mistake, even some of the things that I did correctly, whether it was for acting specifically or how you should behave as an audience member, she would say,
“_________ what you did was very unprofessional, you existing as a person is just so unprofessional, you wanna leave [Name of state] to pursue acting, you wanna pursue acting? I don’t know about that __________. You should take that video of yourself off of Facebook, your singing in that video is just terrible.”
things like that, she would say things like that. And I would come home and I wouldn’t tell my mom anything that she said but my mom would just notice that I was just shrinking into myself a lot more than… I wasn’t growing, I wasn’t growing at all as a person but I was becoming more or less, as awful as it sounds, obedient to a lot of the things. I wouldn’t say things that I do now or things that I see people doing now are like a trigger, and I mean trigger not to set off anxiety or anything like that because I’m way over that, but I see things like that and I think, “huh, if I were her I’d be apologizing right now, if I were him I’d be apologizing right now. SHIT, I wanna go over there and make sure that they don’t feel like they need to apologize.
But I feel like a lot of the time I’m too much, aside from all of that I feel like I’m a lot some times. I feel like sometimes I’m a burden especially with me having anxiety, me dealing with whatever is going on up there. I don’t really like to talk to people about it unless I feel like they’re comfortable and I feel like they are genuinely interested and want me to better my health. Like for you, I feel like I can talk to you about anything, I feel comfortable with you. I feel like you actually care about me as a human being, but I just don’t feel comfortable letting just anyone in anymore. I don’t know. Maybe something I have to work on, whatever. Yeah, I’m working on that.
Q: What’s your earliest memory?
A: My earliest memory is being in the living room of my childhood home, which is still my home. Growing up I always felt like this was a dream but then I saw a home video of it so I know it really happened which is mind-blowing because I had just learned how to walk. So I must have been about a little over or under two years old. But I remember being in a hula skirt and having a little pink cross strap thing on and I remember having little earrings on and I remember bouncing, just bouncing, and I remember I heard the sound of my laughter, again I felt like this was a dream and I feel like I’ve dreamt about it, I must have otherwise it wouldn’t be so vivid. And then my grandma was on the couch and she was clapping. And I had my little Barney tape recorder and tape player or whatever with the microphone attached to it, sitting next to me, it was knocked over. And my mom had a camera in her hand. I don’t know, I just remember bouncing. That’s my earliest memory.
Q: What’s one thing that you’ve done in your life that you’re really proud of.
A: One thing I’ve done in my life that I’m really proud of is…
I’m a [Specific Scholarship Winner] I’m one of the lucky kids to have received the scholarship. But I was actually never going to submit it. I think the deadline was somewhere in [Name of month], I want to say [Specific day in Name of month] and I was kind of just struggling, I just figured I would get by on loans in college, I wanted to go but I just didn’t have any money. And I was freaking out and… I wasn’t freaking out as much as I should have been, but at the same time I wasn’t ignoring the fact.
My mom suffers from bipolar disorder and… y’know she’s medicated and she’s getting a lot better but my final semester in high school my mom just went through a lot of rough patches. And one day, this is… I’m pretty sure it was the day before [Specific Scholarship] was due. And I had started it but I hadn’t finished it, I was just like, “Fuck, I’m not gonna get this, why try?” And I was hanging out with my mom, she was drinking with a couple of friends and she was getting ugly, she was obviously drunk and when she’s drunk it’s just not… it’s just not great, it’s not fun. So she began to go off on me, and I think I said something that set her off, which was my mistake. She basically kicked me out of my house.
And I was feeling awful, I was feeling sad, I was feeling pathetic, I was feeling angry I wanted to get hit by a car. I was running down the street I wanted a car to just hit me. I wanted to die. But I went to my uncle’s house and I brought my computer, I don’t even remember bringing my computer but it was like 8 o’clock at night, I couldn’t sleep. Y’know I was really sad so I went to sleep at like 6. Woke up, everyone was still doing stuff, and I just sat at my computer and I thought,
“What if I did finish this?”
And I started reading it and it was actually really good, it wasn’t that bad. But I finished it. I typed it and I finished it and I submitted it at 11:53 p.m.
And the next day I went back home and my mom and I hashed stuff out and a month and a half later I got a phone call from ___________ telling me that I got the scholarship. I felt a lot of things. I was super excited but I kind of didn’t want to tell my mom because I didn’t want her to read it. The piece that I did was about positive social change, the poem I wrote was specifically about looking at things at the surface but not really knowing what is going on, not really taking the time to know what’s… y’know? And I wrote a little section about my mom out of anger.
and I’m really proud of that Scholarship and that poem.
my mom read it eventually. We were in a [Name of fast food restaurant drive through] when I read it to her. It was a couple of weeks before I left for [name of town], and she was like, “hey, read me your poem.” and so I did and she started crying. and that was the last time I’ve ever had any sort of… every time I would think about my mom and drinking and stuff it would kind of just get me all… like if I’d see alcohol I’d think about my mom and I’d be like, “oh God, oh God.” it was ridiculous. but ever since that, reading her that poem and basically letting out over ten years worth of fear and really intense feelings. I felt two things at that moment: fear and love. I just loved her so much and I was so afraid of her, now I can just love her because of that poem. Not only did that poem pay for my schooling but it let me shut down a part of my life where I was afraid.
Q: What does love look like to you?
A: What does it look like? I don’t know…
I don’t know what love looks like. I don’t see it. I love my family so much, but even when I associate love with them I can’t really come up with a visual, I’ve thought about this before. With people that, I’ve only been in love twice, and I can only literally associate a visual with them physically… um… unfortunately… but I don’t know… I feel like I kind of don’t want to tell you what it feels like because I feel like people tell you that a lot, people give you that… people say, “oh, lemme tell you what love feels like, I don’t know what it looks like.” I think love is… [sighs] love for me, to give you a good idea, mustard yellow and teal are my favorite colors. Love for me looks like mustard yellow and teal just being like, buhm buhm, I don’t know, my heart just changing to those colors for just a second, y’know?
Q: If you could say anything to a large group of people, anonymously, what would you say?
A: um… Some people… someone told me this once: “Some people have fucked up so bad to the point where they’re in jail, and that’s not you, no matter how badly you’ve fucked up right now.” I don’t know I feel a little off to that specifically because I personally have a [family member] who’s in prison right now and I don’t think [they’re] fucked up enough to be where [they are].
No matter what you’ve done, no matter what kind of person you are, no matter what you’ve done whether it be a mistake, something good, that does not define who you are. You are the best parts of yourself and you’re not the bad. No matter what you’ve done, and that person is going to be me if I ever meet you. If you’ve been saying, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry.” not only to whoever you may have hurt but to yourself as well, I’m not going to say there’s no need to apologize because that’s not going to do anything for you, but let me be the one to accept your apology on whoever’s behalf, because I do the same thing every day, I am always sorry for the shitty things that I’ve done, I’ve done some really bad stuff and the thing is: people hear that you’ve done bad stuff and they think you’ve done it intentionally, almost always. But I for one know for a fact that that shit can happen on accident. You don’t always intentionally plan to hurt someone or hurt something. So I accept your apology, and I’m sorry, I hope you can accept mine, and I love you so much. You are loved so much and another thing. Because of that mistake, if you feel that you don’t deserve happiness, you don’t deserve things that nice people do, that’s bullshit because you are an amazing person in your own way. And the best part of that is that you can still grow, you are still growing, you are a totally different person than you were last week, the week before, a month, a year. Like really, give yourself credit, and just… it’s okay, we’re not perfect.