October 8, 1998 – Thursday – 2:02 p.m.

I went to court on Monday, so my speeding ticket is all taken care of.  There were some other Regent students there, so there is definitely a speed trap right next to campus.

Tuesday night, Anna and I wen to Barnes and Noble to study.  I’ve never been in one before.  I felt like some sort of preppie hippie walking into that place.

Last night’s drama meeting went well.  The Christmas show is going to be the same time as final exams.  Lord help me.

I pitched a script idea titled “Eyebrows” this past Friday.  Over thirty scripts were pitched, and four were selected to see a full draft.  From those four only two would be selected to be given a budget and turned into a 25-minute film to be shot in July and August of 1999.

I was one of the four semifinalists!  Pretty cool!

Emily and I had a great talk on Tuesday night.  We laughed the whole night.  Mom, Henry, and Nate are staying down there during Christmas.  I’m going to fly down and see both Emily and my family.  This will be our third meeting.

God is good.

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September 29, 1998 – Tuesday – 11:41 p.m.

Sunday after church I went to Portsmouth to my Professor’s house for a New Student Party.  It was great getting to know the people here a bit better.  There are so many new names I have yet to write down in here.

On Monday I was stopped by three or four students who thought my film pitch was the best and most original and hoped it was chosen to be made.  I hope so too!

Please God!

Nevertheless, I’m pitching another one this Friday.

Today was a perfect day.  God showed up and moved in the Divinity Chapel.  God is so good.  It’s hard to explain all that is happening, but I’m going to let God teach me how to make movies, not the world.

You know, I think sometimes I forget that He created me and he knows truths about me that I don’t even know.

I’m getting to know the youth at church with each passing day.  So many stories are occurring between all of us.  I belong in this new place as well as my previous place.  What an amazing gift!

I go now to sleep in the peace of Jesus.

September 25, 1998 – Friday – 5:10 p.m.

September is slipping out from under me.  Can it already be so late in the year, and so late in the millennium?

I had a film shoot earlier in the week and met a woman who had spent some time out in LA.  Our conversation about how the business really works intimidated me a bit, and I felt God question me on how bad I wanted to work in the film industry.  Most of the students here don’t really want to work in Hollywood, they just love the craft and home to use it somehow as a career.  If I’m honest, I want to live a quiet life, not a life in the spotlight.  But I also know I’m supposed to study this right now, and it won’t last very long, for it is already almost October.

Three months until Christmas.

I head for Charlotte, NC tonight after youth group.

Laura and I have been emailing each other.  I miss her beauty.

1999.

That’s impossible.

Last Christmas I promised I would never spend another Christmas with my dad’s side of the family.  I’m tempted to ask Sharon if I can stay with them over the Holidays and just hide from the world.  Even Laura’s emails look beautiful and pure.

Where suddenly have I gone?

I pitched a short film script today.  I’m not sure how it was received, but I got a lot of laughs.  It is a comedy, so that’s good.

I also got called back for both short films I auditioned for.

Why is all of this making perfect sense God?  Yet, why am I also so confused?  Why do I miss things I’ve never had?  Why do I dream of things I do not want?

Please slow this down God.

Please speed it up.

Is all of this just to make you smile…

…or to make me smile?

September 20, 1998 – Sunday – 8:28 p.m.

My life has gone on a crazy ride recently.  To begin, my Communication Theory class blew my mind.  God is definitely using this class to deal with the way I think and see the world.  Perhaps I’ll go into detail with that later.

I worked Wednesday afternoon and that night we had drama practice.  It went okay, but these kids really have no idea of how to do this thing, but I guess it’s my job to teach them.  Nevertheless, we all had fun.

Sometimes at Regent I feel like I just don’t fit in.  There is a Law School and a Theology School and I feel like some of those students in their suits walk by and judge me and my duck-taped sandals.

I worked all day Friday, it was a bit rough.  I just wasn’t happy with all that was around me.  But once I got off work, all that changed.

Dawn, a coworker, needed a ride home.  She’s insanely beautiful and a lot of fun, she actually reminds me Emily.  Well, I was taking her home and she wanted to stop and get some pepperoni rolls at a nearby bakery, so we did.  We ate there together and talked and it was just simple fun.  I shared a meal with an insanely beautiful girl and sometimes that is all a man needs to make it through the week.  We drove to her house, and I was just being me, you know the one that often feels like he doesn’t fit in at Regent, and she was just cracking up a storm, telling me I was the funniest thing in the world.

Thank you Dawn!  You saved my life that day.

Then, I went back to Regent to watch some of the student films that were being screened.  I saw three and they were all pretty good.  Then I left to go watch One True Thing at the Regal Cinemas.  That movie changed my whole perspective.

One day, my own mom is going to start dying.  I love her so much and that day is many years away, but still, we will all die one day.  And the movie taught me that I have so much here in Virginia Beach to love and care about.

I haven’t been doing that well enough.

I cried the entire way home from the movie.  I just a big baby in the car.  I didn’t like who I was and I wanted to change.  I asked God to forgive me.

I arrived home, slept, and got up early yesterday morning and left with some members of the youth group to go to King’s Dominion.  I spent most of the day with our leaders Tammy and Jose, as well as Kimberly and Lauren.  Kim is 15 and Laura is 13 and we eventually split off and it was just Kimberly and Lauren and me.  And I had the best day with those two.

I just loved whatever was around me.  Kim and Lauren and I talked the entire day.  I was a 22-year-old graduate student who got to feel 14 again.  God was giving me a gift and I was reminded of who I was and what I’m called to.  God knows me better than I know myself.

Kimberley reminded me a lot of Ryan, my first crush, and Kimberley said I make everything so much fun that she wants to do everything with me now, even shopping.  Lauren was an absolute sweetheart and I now have two dear new friends.

What a lovely thing that is, a friend.

One True Thing revealed to me how I had needlessly complicated my life.  I’d forgotten about the simple sounds, simply joys, simple tastes, and simple smiles of the good life.

On Saturday, September 19, 1998, I became young again.

September 13, 1998 – Sunday – 8:39 a.m.

Today is my mother’s birthday.  She turns 45.  I just called her.  She has a job working for the city, and Henry is going to class and working part-time at the local Wal-Mart.  I’m sure this would make no sense to the world.  Henry had a great job as a detective at UNC and now he is pushing carts.  But they are not of this world and he is where God wants him to be.

Nate is now in 8th grade.  I switched schools in 6th grade and that was rough, I’m sure switching in 8th grade is even more difficult.

Mom says they will stay down there for Thanksgiving.  She wants us to come down, but I’ve already made plans, so I can’t.

Yesterday after work I auditioned for a sci-fi film being produced independently by some Regent students.  It is something they hope to sell and turn into a series.  Call backs are next Wednesday; we’ll see.  The audition was so much fun.  I do love this stuff.

Yesterday I saw two movies, Rounders and Simon Birch.  They were both fantastic!  Sitting behind me in the theater was a huge group of guy friends and it made me miss Vince, Dan, Allen, Curtis, Justin, Charlie, and Josh so much.  I just miss laughing with them and letting the world fade away.

 

September 2, 1998 – Wednesday – 11:56 p.m.

Another September 2nd has come and gone again.  Already September.  Ten days until the six year anniversary of that night in the balcony with Ryan and the others watching Jason perform two roles in Camelot.

Such good days.

Monday classes were fun.  I have definitely found my place and can that God destined me to attend this school here and now so long ago.  Tuesday afternoon I went to see Saving Private Ryan again, only this time with two girls I met at the swing club, Chris and Nicole.  Nicole is 24 and Chris is 22.  After class on Monday, Nicole and I walked back to the Regent Apartments together.  It is long trail through the woods and we had a nice chat.  And after the movie yesterday, we hung out together in Nicole’s apartment for a while, just talking about movies.

I got an email from Sarah.  She says she went to Banner Elk Christian Fellowship on Sunday and plans to continue.  That is a good thing.  She seems to be doing okay, but her email had an echo of loneliness in it.

I sent Doc an email, just thanking her for Lees-McRae and telling her what was going on. She sent a lovely poem back to me and said she posted that email for all to read.

I purchased the widescreen version of Titanic yesterday and watched it last night with Matt.

I couldn’t help but think of my days with Sarah.

I miss the sound of her voice.

August 21, 1998 – Friday – 11:30 a.m.

Yesterday after work I watched a movie I had rented, and then I went to the mall to buy some straight pins and maps for my walls.  I put the maps up and put in pins representing all the places I had been on this planet.

I enjoyed that time immensely.

David came over last night.  I cooked some burgers and we had more than enough left over.  We watched That Thing You Do!.

I got a speeding ticket the day before.  Fifty in a 30; yuck!

Oh well.  This style of living, this apartment, this place and the way it works, this twenty somethings style of life, it is so different from what I’m used to.  I’m thankful for my job and I’m so thankful for Parkway Temple, but all of this is very new to me.  I’m finding my way though.  I have a place where I shop for groceries.  I have a beach I visit.  I have a mall where I shop, a membership at a video store, and a favorite movie theater where I go to dream.  I know a decent place to get a haircut.

And I have this apartment with maps reminding me of all the places I am from.