Every single person on this planet has at least one secret that could break your heart. If we could just remember that, there would be a lot more compassion and tolerance in the world

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Auld Lang Syne

2010 is almost over. I recall writing a new years blog last year and saying something like... 2009 has been the hardest year of my life. And I am tempted to say that again, but I am going to keep myself from having that kind of look on my year. Yeah a lot of bad things happened in 2010 but I don't want to look back on this year as the year of difficult decisions, lonliness, suicide, and confusion. I want to look back on 2010 as the year I learned how to be myself. The year I let go of my secrets. The year I started LIVING.

A wise man once told me that guilt is a useless emotion. I feel the same way about regret. So my new year goals are going to be my attempt at moving my regret and guilt in a positive directioin. Instead of saying "I wish I hadn't" in 2010, I am going to say "I can't wait to" in 2011.

I can't wait to:

Have so much self confidence that I don't feel worthless when someone doesn't like me.

Release the need to be in a relationship and live.

Kick my face.

Have a six pack because I want it. Not to please everyone else.

       One of my more serious goals has developed out of something I heard a lot this year from family and friends. When I hear about people describing me the first thing (and occasionally the only thing) they say is "he is really talented." Maybe its hard for people to understand.. but that hurts a lot. There is so much more to me than my singing voice. My profession needs to be what I do not who I am. So my goal for 2011 is to have people's first thought of me be something different. I want to be thought of as kind, friendly, open minded, and approachable. So I have to start learing how to be those things!! "This is my friend Jaron, he is really sweet.... oh and he's a pretty good singer too."

      I have started a new book. Its called EAT PRAY LOVE. I know I am sooo lame becase I didn't start reading it until I saw the movie but I'm obsessed with it. So obsessed in fact, that I am basing one of my new years resolutions on it. At one point in the book the main character is living in italy and has made it a goal to figure out what her WORD is. Her first instinct is to say her word is "writer", but her friend tells her that WRITER is what she does not who she is. And as I thought about it I realized that if someone asked me what my "word" was I would probably say PERFORMER. But like I said before I don't want my profession to define who I am inside. So this year I will find my word.

The classic new years tune "Auld Lang Syne" is translated in english to mean "long long ago." When I think Long Long Ago on new years past I remember striving to make big changes in my life and beating myself up when I failed to finish them. So this year my resolutions are not just for 2011, they are for forever. So hoepfully many years from now when I think back, long long ago, I will remeber 2011 as the year I began my quest to becoming the exact person I want to be.

Monday, December 13, 2010

One semester down... who knows how many left to go.

This past semester here at the U has possibly been the hardest yet best few months of my life. I have learned so much about myself in so little time, I'm almost nervous to see what life has in store for me for the next few months. I have made new friends, obsessions, sleeping habbits, taken risks, spent a night in the hospital, spilled my secrets, let my trues self shine, slept in a grave yard, made friends with homless people, helped friends, laughed my ass off, practiced until my fleet nearly bled, learned what it means to really be an actor, figured out how to be more down to earth, realized I'm more messed up than I thought, and most importantly learned to love myself INCLUDING my flaws. So here is what I have taken away from one semester at the U.

-SECRETS are always destructive. I have been amazed by what being open with people has done for me. I have never felt so comfortable in my own skin, and I know its because I have FINALLY after 19 years let people know who I really am. I don't live in fear that someone will discover my secrets anymore... because I don't have any anymore.

-You can NEVER have too many best friends. I have never in my life had so many people that care about me. TRULY care. I have met the most amazing people here in Salt Lake. Plus I still get to keep the most amazing provo/davis county friends I already had :) I'm so blessed to be surrounded by people that truly love me. I can honestly say that I would not be alive today were it not for the friends that I have. There have been so many times when my life seemed worthless... but then I get a text from Jessa, or a funny picture from karli or alex, or a voicemail from michael that says i miss you, or a pictre of david bowie from taryn and everything is ok. I have a huge group of beautiful loving people in my life and I am so grateful for that.

-People are always watching. People notice when you screw up... but sometimes getting yourself back up on your feet after you fall is even more admiralbe than being perfect.

-when i pull up my passe' higher i can get a tripple on my right side :)

- "openness to failure breeds the possiblilty of success" -Sarah Shippabothom

-post secret is the most beautiful collection of art I have ever seen

-There is nothing that can cure depression better than a wine glass full of 1% milk and a few episodes of Sex in the City.

- "art is everywhere" -Olivia Vessel

- I perform because I love it. Not because I'm good at it.

- Its so easy to alter yourself to please other people. And you can make people care about you very quickly that way. But it will never bring you the fullfillment that comes from being loved for who you truly are.

- Heartbreak is nessisary. Without it I would have never realized that I didn't have self worth.

-Self worth is something I will search for my entire life. But it is the process of searching for it that makes life beautifl and exciting.

-I hold grudges. I gotta fix that.

-I prefer hot chocolate to coffee even though its not as sophistocated.

-Blizzards are great times for walking through graveyards.

-My mental illness doesn't restrict me. It makes my life more meaningful. Feeling things strongly doesn't make me a freak. It makes me an artist.

-I don't need anyones approval to be happy. I MATTER. The best decisions I have ever made are the ones where people thought I was stupid for taking a risk.

- I will learn to love myself. It might take my entire life. But I am patient.

Monday, December 6, 2010


This week is the theatre departments finals week, and today I had a final for my acting class. I was terrified but excited to show everyone what I had learned so far this semester. A lot of upper classman were there, and I was ready to show these people that I have become a much stronger actor than I have ever been before. I was really happy with my performances, and there are very few things that I would have done differently. But after the whole final was over I felt very empty. Hollow. It was like I was reaching for something but there was nothing there. And the emptiness later turned into pretty solid depression.

I watched the upperclassman perform their peices and, as always, was in awe of their brilliance. Afterwards I was telling some of my friends how great they did...... and thats when I realized what was wrong. I had absolutely no REAL satisfaction with my performance because I didn't feel validated. No one had come up to me and told me I was brillinat, or that they were surprised by my performance, or even that I had potential. All I got was "good job" or "good work" in passing from a few people which we all know is always just something nice people say. Which is FINE... I mean i shouldn't need that validation.....but why did it hurt so much?? I had all these expectations for myself. I expected that everyone would be shocked that the nerdy skinny boy would be able to act. I expected people to cry because I gave a performance that was very near and dear to my heart. I expected people to be moved. And as far as I'm aware none of those things happened.

As I was walking to my car from the Performing Arts Building I started thinking about how sad it is that I need validation so badly that it affects my self worth. I felt genuinly awful and almost abandoned. WHY? I mean, after all,  have come so far in this short semester. I have learned so many things and I know that I did the best I possibly could. Why do those things matter more when someone else is saying it? And then I started thinking about all the other ways I look for validation in life. The way I dress, the way I act, the way I make sure I'm friends with everyone, and the way I do EVERYTHING I do to please my audience and my professors. The way I tell people I'm fine when I'm not. The way I write my blog so everyone thinks I'm wise. The way I make sure I have lots of pictures on facebook so that everyone will think that I have an amazing social life. The way I die inside everytime I hear people tell me that they are dissapointed in me for leaving BYU. The way my heart drops when my blog has "0 comments" written on the bottom of a post I've had up for a week. The way my day is ruined when I have "0 text messages" at the end of a long day of school. And the way I feel abandoned when I have "0 notifications" on my facebook page. ITS GROSS!!!

Why is it that the only thing that makes me feel ok is when someone validates me? When somone tells me I look great. When someone says they like my jacket. When someone tells me they are proud of me. When someone says I'm cute, talented, funny, kind, a good friend. When someone writes on my facebook wall. When someone texts me just for fun. When someone reads my blog and leaves a comment. WHY does that instantly make my life better... and worth living?

The most amazing choices I have made are ones that everyone else thought was crazy. First of all choosing performing as a career. And most recently leaving BYU for the U. Those decisions have made me happier than any kind of approval every could. I realized while walking back to my car that having other people validate me is only a temporary high. Doing things for myself is what has changed my life. I have truly never had the independence and sense of stability that I have now. I amazing friends, I love school, I love the work I'm doing, I love the people I have met, and I love the skills I have aquired. So who cares about all the bull shit compliments inbetween??

Today a girl name Olivia gave a beautifiul reading of Robert Frosts, "The road not taken." I know everyone knows it, but its still one of my favorite poems. I realized while thinking back on that poem today that I myself have quite often taken the road less travled. And the experiences that I have had WITHOUT validation are always the ones that have "made all the difference."

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair

And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
two roads diverged in a wood, and I --
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

- Robert Frost