Meet Alyssa!: In the Spotlight
Love Through A Child's Heart Files
"Children show me in their playful smiles the divine in everyone. This simple goodness shines straight from their hearts. This has so much to teach."
-From the poem "Children," Dancing the Dream, by Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson knew at a very early age what it takes many of us a lifetime to learn: children can teach us so much. Michael loved all the children of the world. And to carry on Michael's legacy of Love for the children, I think it is very important to look for ways that will inspire the youth of today to become positive role models of tomorrow. So, my desire is that you will be enlightened by these stories from our younger generation. Periodically, we will shine the spotlight on one of our youth. Some stories will include volunteers, community leaders, those with special needs or talents in art/music/poetry/drama and members inspired by Michael to become a better person. Whatever the case may be, Michael Jackson had an impact on all of these young people and here are their stories. Enjoy!
Meet MJForever1995! | Dot Number: 271091
Hi, I am Alyssa. I am 15 years old, from Canada, and a HUGE fan of Michael Jackson. June 25, 2009, truly changed my life forever. Studying for finals in my living room with my father nearby, the 6 o'clock news came on TV. I will never forget that day's top story headline, "Michael Jackson, the King of Pop, dies at 50."
The next few weeks were the turning points in my love for MJ. I had to stay with my grandma and grandpa for the first week of summer holidays. I was on their computer for most of my week there. I went on YouTube just to hear his hits, and even ended up reading his entire Wikipedia page (which took me a couple of hours!). I watched a Michael Jackson documentary, hoping to clarify the facts. At this time, my life existed around him. My sister often said, "You are going to be obsessed with him." Even after I repeatedly said no, she was right. At the end of the week, I bought Thriller, the start of my collection.
I frequently followed all the newspapers and newscasts about him. This is when my love for Michael really started. When his memorial was televised, I knew I had to watch it. I still didn't think I was a fan; I was becoming one without realizing it. All I wanted to do was learn about him, not knowing anything until then and being confused with everything going on really took its toll on me. Even my family, who was starting to get annoyed by my obsessiveness, watched it with me. I stayed strong, trying to not show my emotion, especially since I had only just learned about the man. But as soon as Paris spoke at the end of the service, I ran to my room and cried. I never thought a person I had never met would impact me in such a way. I cried when Michael's songs reminded me of his death or memorial, or when the lyrics were just plain beautiful.
I have trained professionally since the age of 4 in dance: tap, ballet, jazz, and Musical Theatre. Once I saw the video of Michael's Motown 25 performance, I knew who my favorite dancer and mentor would be. I dedicate so much to my dance classes, even breaking my two front teeth during practice once (it's all good - 2 fake teeth and 11 stitches)! Being a dancer, I understand the amount of blood, sweat, and tears it takes to become great.
Once school began again in the fall, I went to school every morning with a Michael Jackson song stuck in my head. I was writing down his lyrics all over my papers, sometimes subliminally. Although my friends don't share my love for MJ and don't understand why I love him, they support me. They never make fun, and even give me Michael Jackson gifts. It's hard to talk to people about my love for Michael, so I have turned to MJ fan websites and his official website for more support. My family doesn't hate Michael, but they don't like him that much either. I have taught my 3 younger siblings everything I have learned about him, and my one little sister agrees on how great Mike is. They all get annoyed because I can associate so much with the topic of Michael Jackson.
It's now been over two years. My love for Mike has grown immensely during this time. I have the CDs from Off the Wall to Dangerous, and am really hoping to get the rest for future gifts! I have bought every DVD I have seen about him at Wal-mart from Live in Bucharest: The Dangerous World Tour to documentaries like Michael Jackson: Life of a Superstar. I have his Wii game, which I absolutely love. I love the tutorials of his steps, and being a dancer makes me appreciate it even more.
In art class this year, we did an "inspiration project." We were told to do three projects, all of different things using different materials. I chose my inspiration as music/dance. Of course, my final project, the one I worked so hard on, was an oil painting of MJ. It is now hanging proudly on my wall, with an MJ calendar, his face posted along beside it. My iPod has hundreds of his songs, and 15 movies/videos. I have also taken over 600 pictures to use as wallpapers. I have caught up on many important TV specials from the 80s and 90s on YouTube, and wish I could have lived during his rise to fame.
I have learned a lot from Michael. I know it may seem weird, being that I only knew of the man after he passed, but it has made my life that much greater. My journal is full of messages to him, stating how I wish I could have loved him while he was still here. I realize that everything happens for a reason, and that learning about him when I did was good for me. I cry often about a man I never knew, and I never cry about anything unless I am hurt. I have dedicated the past two years of my life to my idol, somebody I had never heard of before his passing.
Miss you Michael! -Alyssa, Canada
"To live is to be musical, starting with the blood dancing in your veins. Everything living has a rhythm. Do you feel your music?"
Many teens can relate to Alyssa's story; that they did not become fans until after Michael's passing. Alyssa shows that even though she was not a fan before, Michael is still touching lives. My favorite saying is, "You can never turn back time on your regrets." This is so true. The flame of love has now been passed to our generation, from those who have gone before us. Keeping Michael's legacy alive will help children to see that love does exist and life is good in this ever-changing world. We can all learn from Michael's examples and know that Michael still lives on in our hearts. We have now become his legacy and will one day hand that same flame of love, to the next generation.
Thank you, Alyssa, for sharing your love for Michael, dance and music with us. Hopefully other teens will follow you and look inside their own hearts, become inspired, and make that change. -Heather
I would like to leave you with an excerpt from Alyssa's favorite MJ song~ "Man In the Mirror."
I'm starting with the man in the mirror
I'm asking him to change his ways
And no message could have been any clearer
If you wanna make the world a better place
Take a look at yourself and then make a change
We encourage each of you to leave messages for Alyssa in the comment box below. You may also visit her profile by clicking on this link MJForever1995.
Finding Love Through A Child's Heart,
- Heather, Director of Children's Awareness
Please visit our other "In the Spotlight" Dot Members:
© Heather Nutt, 2011, 2012 Revised. All Rights Reserved. No Reproduction without Permission from Author(s).
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