Influential People In My Life Whom I’ve Actually Met

To be blunt, I have been feeling crappy the past few days. I honestly started this blog because I needed to get some experience in managing a website before I could take a job with my aunt. That business venture never turned out, yet here I am still typing up my personal feelings on an ominous blank document. I loathed my blog in its early days. I couldn’t express my feelings at all through writing so I resorted to hating everything I wrote. Over time, however, it’s like I’ve grown attached to everything I write here. So here I am, with the movie Super 8 paused on Netflix and green tea in which to drown my sorrows. I have been planning on creating a list of “influential people” in my life, so here goes. Most of these are random and you probably will wonder why I give a damn about these people. Well, I’m a teenager with teenager issues so I hope that explains it for you.

1.       Renae

She is my best friend. Not a fake one that I met over the internet. We fight a lot and that’s why I love her. We can get in a quarrel and five minutes later we are on the floor laughing about it because it wasn’t worth our friendship. She is headstrong and articulate, if you were to make me describe her in two words. She’s one of those “real” people. She gets mad, she hates some people, and she doesn’t care what others think of it. We might be polar opposites on occasion, but that doesn’t keep us from sticking together no matter what.

2.        The Cute Old Guy on 24th Street

Before you think I’m a total creep, allow me to explain. So, there’s this man (about late 70s) who I usually see when I’m riding my bike home from school. There’s a cheerful and caring nature about him. He just sits on a bench along the sidewalk and doesn’t move. (I’d like to imagine he’s reflecting on his long and fulfilled life.) When he spots me, he waves. No greeting is needed. Sometimes he smiles, other times his expression remains blank. The one thing he never fails to do, though, is wave. He always makes my day better, even though I have no idea who he is. I wonder if he knows that. Whoever he is, I would like to thank him for his kindness to strangers.

3.       Conner

He was the first guy I went out with, it should be no big deal. But I still think of him every now and then. I was a freshman and a boyfriend was a big deal. He asked me out before school one day, adding how amazing I was.  I remember how he had rode his longboard to school early that day just to ask me. As the bell for first hour rang, he held his longboard in one hand and my hand in the other. It may have been the closest to love a person like me can get. Let’s just say this relationship didn’t last long. Guys will be guys. Even though I didn’t tell him this when I should have, I feel bad for cussing him out and I wish he knew that I don’t hate him. I was angry at him for the longest time. He made me realize that I wasn’t living 100%. I could be better. I have been going to the gym 5 days a week, have lost 5 pounds, and have been volunteering at an organization I love ever since.

4.       Gavin

We just broke up recently. I don’t exactly approve of the manner in which he dumped me, but I know I’m not living that 100% if I hold a grudge. So I will try to describe only the positive. This kid underestimates himself and his grip on the world. For someone who barely speaks a word, his poetry makes up for what he doesn’t say. I really think he will get his poems published someday. If that’s what he wants, then good for him. And for the record, I’m not mundane in the least.

5.       Zach Lopez

This guy is lead singer for the band Middle Class Rut. (I tried not to include celebrities in this list, but I couldn’t help it.) I was lucky enough to meet him at a small venue in Scottsdale. His band’s music means more than the world to me. I was basically acting like a fan girl when I met him, because I simply couldn’t contain my excitement. He seemed confused, like I was supposed to be like the rest of the people there who didn’t have a clue who the band was. But this awesome guy put up with me and even gave me a hug, which made my whole year! I love this band to pieces and I’d be lost without their music.

6.       Aunt Jo

Yeah, I know it’s generic to put a family member in a list of influential people in your life. But there’s just so much she’s done for my I couldn’t not put her on here. Imagine the nicest person you know and multiply this by 10. Behold, you have my Aunt Jo. Not only does she know exactly what I like and how to cheer me up, she’s also so appreciative of the little things. Even just sending her a card is something that she’ll cherish forever. She knows what to say to make you feel better when you’re down. She has that magical power that only certain people have. I wish her good luck on her search for a man that will love her as much she deserves to be loved.

7.        Mr. Mitchell

He was my eighth grade English teacher. No, he was way more than just your everyday teacher. He could be considered a philosopher actually. He loved each and every one of his student unconditionally. He once told us that the closest he was to suicide was when he was in eighth grade. After he told us this story, it changed my life in some unexplainable way. I was having a difficult time throughout eighth grade year, not knowing who was (and I’m still not certain who I am). I feel that Mr. Mitchell knew this, but he believed in me that I could get through it. And I did. I recall how every day at the beginning of class he would have us journal about a quote. I still read through my old journal and gasp at how much I’ve grown since then. With Mr. Mitchell’s encouragement, I’ve been able to see the glass half full, as he would put it.

8.       Riley

This kid is a friend that I couldn’t bear losing. He’s one of the few guys I know who is sincerely nice and would never do anything to hurt anyone. He’s pretty quirky and incredibly sweet. He’s one of those people you expect to be wealthy one day. I often think that he too underestimates what he’s capable of. His adorableness and love of Converse shoes are truly unmatched by anyone.

9.       Random Guy at a Matt & Kim Concert

I was attending a concert by the amazing Matt & Kim a couple of months ago when this guy I didn’t even known told me that I was “the most beautiful redhead” he had ever seen. This one person changed the way I thought about myself. I felt pretty and though I was worth something to someone. I don’t know who this young man was, but I want to thank him for kindness. That one compliment meant more to me than he could ever imagine.

Note: I left out last names to protect the privacy of people who do not want to be mentioned on my blog. 🙂



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