NOTE: Please press play before reading post. To feel maximum meaning of this post watch scene then let music start and begin reading.
What I'm Wearing:
Shirt: Star Wars Collection for Disney Store, Vest: Mark Anthony, Joggers: Dockers, Flannel Shirt: Adam Levine Collection, Boots: Apt 9
"A New Hope, Is What We Crave"
A Tribute to 40 years of Star Wars
& a dedication to the lives lost in the Manchester bombing.
May you rest in peace, and may the force always be with you.
I'm at loss for words with the news of the recent bombing attack at the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester U.K. I originally had other things I wanted to talk about with you, but I somehow feel the 2 topics can relate to each other. So I'm gonna keep writing this letter as planned but expand upon what I want to say. Reading about the deaths of innocent children, teens, and young adults has truly broken my heart and shaken me to my core. As a musician who performs live, the thought of my supporters getting hurt or dying at a show of mine, is gut wrenching. I don't want to know what that feels like, I don't want to be in the shoes of Ms. Grande. I can't imagine, the feelings she must be going through. I can't imagine the feelings of the families and friends who lost loved ones from such a tragic event. A concert is supposed to be a place to escape and see your heroes/people you look up to, and get inspired and feel the emotions of everyone around you in the venue, and be there in that moment. When you go to a concert or any event you shouldn't have to go inside and think, it's time to start getting scared, cause I may not make it out alive. In times like this I think of Hope. Star Wars is literally based off of hope. In the films there is the endless battles between the dark and light side. It may be a movie set in space and different planets, but it totally counteracts what we are going through in this world. We here on Earth are fighting an endless battle between the dark and the light. Although it may seem the dark just won, the light will always find a way to prevail and we will always have a new hope in our heart.
How do we hold on to hope? We have to keep moving forward and that's exactly what I'm going to do with page 7. I love Star Wars, I'm not exactly a shy nerd. I am open about my love for all things geek. I am blessed to have been able to grow up around Disney Fairytales, Marvel Superheroes, and seeing how the world around me works within the light and dark side via Star Wars. When I saw this shirt from the new 40th anniversary collection from the Disney Store, I knew I had to pick it up and showcase it in honor of one of the best films in cinematic history. I loved the stars surrounding one of the best quotes from the films, "May The Force Be With You". There is something so powerful within that statement. I always compared Star Wars and religion for some reason. Growing up in church Father would always say, peace be with you, and we would reply, and also with you. When someone says may the force be with you, i reply, and also with you. I look at the jedis as god and the saints we look to for hope, and the sith as the evil demons trying to take us down and bring darkness upon our world. There is such a beautiful poetic contrast between these films and our actual reality. With the events that happened in Manchester, I couldn't help but think of Star Wars, and how all these horrible things in the world remind us of how the sith/ dark side tried to take the jedi down. Sure, it may seem like they won at times, but the jedi, rebellion and the light always came out on top. The reason why they came out on top is because they never lost hope. HOPE is one of the most powerful words in the world. If you keep the faith, have hope, and share the love, then no matter what the bad things life may bring our way, we'll be unstoppable. Star Wars may seem like it's over the top sometimes, but it honestly is so grounded. Thats why I chose to make this a streetwear outfit, instead of something over the top. I paired the tee with joggers from dockers. The color of the joggers represents the grand dessert we all know called Tatooine. The flannel from the Adam Levine collection is to represent Anakin's blue lightsaber. The vest is to represent one of the layers of black Kylo Ren has apart of his outfit. And lastly, the boots are to represent the biggest bad of them all, Lord Vader. You may wonder why I did nods to the dark side, I did this for a reason. Just because someone does something bad, doesn't mean they can't be redeemed. Evil is not born, it is made. And things that are made can be broken. So never give up hope that dark side won't crossover to the light. In this crazy world, anything is possible with a little hope.
Looking back at the 40 years this amazing franchise has graced this Earth, I can't help but get a little sentimental. Seeing kids like my nephew get to learn who these characters are, seeing the legacy and learning the impact they have made on this world, will never get old. I look to the daring badasses that we know as Han Solo, Poe Dameron, Cassian Andor and say I want to have the guts like they do. I want to take that leap of faith like them. Seeing the spiritual influences that we know as Obi Wan, Yoda, and Luke Skywalker and learning that we truly can balance the dark and the light that we have within our souls, is comforting as we see their journey play out and counteract our journey. Seeing powerful woman such as Jyn, Rey, and our dearly beloved Princess Leia show young woman, that they can stand up and make a change, not only that, they can be the change, we can all be the change. Sure people can say Star Wars is for geeks and nerds. But if they actually watched the films and studied them, they will learn that there is valuable lessons within each film. And no matter how old I get, and even when I leave this Earth, those lessons are gonna "live forever in me".
Thank you for being here.
Please stay safe and let the ones you love know you love them.
There is no time for regrets.
God bless you all.
And may the force be with you.
Photographer: Joanna Wheeler
Book 2: Chapter 1