These days, there isn’t a lot of time to sit down and reflect on my past, what with my two presents and futures running around the house shrieking any time they think it is too quiet- but every now and then, when I get a free few moments, I like to follow along the path of how I got to where I am today. How exactly DID I get here, in this house, with this husband and these two kids; why does my mind work the way it does, and why in the hell did I choose the career path I did? What exactly made me, me? I know it wasn’t ALL my parents doing- considering a lot of my childhood experiences were things I was strictly instructed NOT to do- so then what? Was there a pivotal moment that changed everything? One hinge to which my life used to change directions?
I don’t know about all that- I don’t know if I had one single defining moment- but I think we as humans, without even realizing it, deal with something in our past that we think is insignificant as we grow older. Just something we did or liked or said “way back when”- that actually significantly influences the people we are today. Maybe it was weird or embarrassing or something we tried to hide at the time. Maybe it was short-lived but impacted our futures without doing anything at all. Perhaps a favorite pair of pants that were out of style but you wore them anyway (and no, they didn’t have to be traveling pants), or doodles in a notebook, or a broken pair of glasses- all of these seem so insignificant that they could never change a life- but they CAN. We may never even realize it if we don’t take advantage of these few fleeting moments to sit down and really think about it.
This moment came for me the other day when I received an email in my inbox that said: “Don’t miss Hanson!”– and when I opened it, had a tour date of theirs (yes, they are still around, still playing music)- and immediately I posted it to my facebook wall, tagging the two friends from school that loved them right along with me- and attended a concert of theirs last year with me. Back then, we had gone because we all NEEDED to get together again- and why not reminisce on the good old days before we had kids and wrinkles and bills and responsibilities? But this time- did we really want to go again? Did I? I’m not 14 anymore- I’m not buttcrazy in love with them like I was at that age. And then I thought about that age. My dreams then. Who I was then. What I wanted out of life- and it hit me: Hanson profoundly changed my life.
Yes, Hanson. I KNOW! I know. I couldn’t believe it either- but the more I thought about it- the more so many of my life choices could be traced back to my buttcrazy obsession with them- even if it was just a silly obsession that faded as I realized how buttcrazy I was. I’m surprised my mom didn’t stage an intervention.
There is nothing I can say positively came out of plastering their faces all over my walls so that NONE of the deep blue I had begged my mother for for years could be seen, or insisting that I would one day meet and marry Taylor Hanson and NO ONE could convince me otherwise- but their influence on me wasn’t just because I thought they were hot with a few catchy songs. It actually didn’t have much to do with that at all.
Follow down the rabbit hole with me here, because we’re about to take a trip to the way my insane boy obsessed 14 year old mind worked:
Before Hanson, there had never really been anyone my age who was out there writing their own songs, playing their own instruments. I had always wanted to be a “famous rockstar” – I had been writing songs for years- but I only played piano.
If not for Hanson- I never would have picked up a guitar. I picked it up not only because I wanted to play it, but because I had a book of music, couldn’t quite figure out the piano, and figured guitar was the next best bet. Had I never picked up a guitar, I never would have started writing songs on it, or recording albums. Maybe I never would have moved to California or gone on tour (where I played MMMBop as a warm up.) I wouldn’t have any of the tour experiences as the acoustic female musician that I did- because who knows what may have happened had I continued plunking away on the piano when, to be honest, I wasn’t very good. Would I have continued down the musician path? Would I have moved to California to pursue a dream that they helped to inspire? Who knows. I definitely wouldn’t have the crude, dirty pirate-hooker mouth and lack of filter that I have now.
But my mind didn’t stop thinking there- it ALL hit me. And this is something I don’t think I have ever told anyone, because it didn’t even occur to me until I went digging for it:
Without Hanson, Taylor specifically, saying in some random interview that his favorite book was “The Catcher in the Rye”- I never would have picked it up to read it. It never would have then became my favorite book- and my son would never be named Holden. And without my son being named Holden after Holden Caulfield in “The Catcher in the Rye”- this blog would not be named Holdin’ Holden. Would there even be a blog?
Without Hanson- I likely would never have been teased, and then perhaps I would never know what it’s like to not give a shit what people say- which is a HUGE part of who I am now. My crazy fangirl obsession with them taught me never to be ashamed of how I felt, and to laugh at myself because good LORD did I get made fun of. And I didn’t care. What I loved was what I loved and no one could depreciate that in my eyes.
I made lifelong friends through my love of Hanson- ones I never would have met otherwise. One of which I got into a minor car accident going to visit, another I flew halfway across the country to see, and I even started one band and joined another because of mutual Hanson-y love.
Who would I be without the influence of Hanson? I honestly have no idea- and I had no idea to the extent they had influenced me.
While my obsession, admittedly now that I am a grown-ass woman, was completely ridiculous and maybe even kind of creepy- it makes up a HUGE part of who I am. I never actually thought that could happen without following through on the promise I made to marry one of them.
So here I am, in my
late twenties- accepting my previous fangirldom for everything that it was, and everything I had no idea it could be. I sure am glad I didn’t listen to a damn soul who told me to stop being so obsessed, to stop listening to their music, to grow up and get real- because I kinda like where I ended up.
So take a look down your rabbit hole, and look closely- what one RANDOM part of your childhood influenced the person you are today more than you thought? Was it those ugly pants? Backstreet Boys??? Falling on your face in the middle of the cafeteria?? I’m so curious to find out, and I bet you’ll be just as surprised as I was!
I'm either "I HAVE 3 FRIES LEFT DON'T TOUCH MY PLATE!" or "Please take this so I can't eat any more of it!" There is no in-between.
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Hard pass from me pic.twitter.com/VayvW1eopK
I've gotten to the point where I'd let my kids summon a demon with a Ouija board before I'd let them play Monopoly together again.