thank you David Bowie. you saved my life.

I'm a relatively young fan, only 16, but I've spent nearly 2/3 of my life hopelessly in love with David Bowie. When I was four I first saw him, on my television as Jareth the Goblin King in Labyrinth. My mom tells me that the first time he appeared on screen, I pointed to him and told her "Mommy, I love him." My childhood crush grew as my father fed me albums. He and I would sit by the record player for hours just listening to an album, first side, second side, first side again, and so forth. Bowie was the only thing that could get me to calm down, and just sit, so we listened frequently. I don't think my father minded, he was just glad to see me take an interest in something. Hunky Dory was my favorite. By the time I was 7, I could sing along to nearly every song and by 9 I knew how to work the turntable and I put on the albums and danced by myself after school while waiting for my family to get home from work. Around 10, my chilcdhood crush changed from "I want to marry him" to "He's a wonderful human being and I want to meet him." And from there I looked up everything I could about him, found every outfit he wore in concert, every beautiful quote. From 10 those were my "golden years," but in 8th grade, depression hit. I was bullied at school, my friends turned on me, and I was unsure in my sexuality. I felt totally alone, and I "forgot" Bowie briefly. tried to commit suicide with a bottle of sleeping pills. But I survived, and the first thing I saw when I woke in the hospital was a Bowie shirt that a girl from school had sent, rather than flowers. She and I never really hit it off and became friends, but I'm thankful to her still because with that one shirt, she reminded me of the man I admired throughout my childhood. After I got out of the hospital, I began listening to Bowie again. I reidentified who I was through his music. I found new friends, and eventually a girlfriend. If I hadn't seen that shirt, or been reminded of him, I would have tried again, and maybe successful in taken my own life. When school started pestering us about careers, I was lost. Until I looked to Bowie, and he gave me answers. I decided that costume design woild be perfect, since I was always inspired and in awe of his on stage costumes. So that's where I set my goals. I browsed colleges, and I decided Tisch School of the Arts in New York City would be perfect. It became my dream college. It was even more perfect, especially when I found out that Bowie's New York apartment was extremely close to the college. (I swear that's not the main reason I picked it!) About 6 months ago, I was so excited, if I went there, maybe I'd run into him one day on the streets! How exciting! My grades shot through the roof, I simply had to go to that college! Then, tragedy. I was at school, waiting in the rotunda for school to start. My best friend came over crying, she hugged me and started crying on my shoulder. I comforted her, thinking she had problems at home, or was just depressed. Then she asked why I was so happy, then she said what broke my heart. "You don't know do you?.... Last night, David Bowie died." First, I looked at her, expecting it to be a joke, but another friend confirmed it. I screamed in terror. Literally, screamed. I collapsed, and that day was entirely a blur, except for the faint memories of crying for hours in the guidance office and in random classes. My mind wasn't on school at all. And I felt like I was dying too. Part of me wanted to die. For the next week anything and everything made me sob, such as the fact that wile my phone was charging, the electric bolt that showed that my phone was charging made me cry because it looked like the lighting bolt on Aladdin Sane. Yeah. I was that bad. I still cry occasionally at random times. But my dreams and goals are still the same. And I'll go forth with him in my heart.

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