When I was a teenager, Justin Timberlake was Tearin’ Up My Heart.
I was a huge N ’Sync fan, and to me, Justin was the cutest of them all. My love for JT has changed over the years, but when I think back to the late 90s and early thousands, I can’t help but think of my obsession with Timberlake.
My room had posters on the back of my door and on my wall. My school notebooks had scribbles of my name with his, and my discman continuously played one of their albums. Back in the day, I was known for my love of the boy band. Friends mentioned Justin when signing my year book, I got memorabilia-type gifts for my birthday and Christmas, and everyone knew that gossiping about him and Britney would always be welcome.
A hobby of mine was to draw, and I have a bunch of sketches of Justin. As weird as it sounds, I always enjoyed drawing his nose. He’s got a good honker.
On my 16th birthday I went to a concert wearing a baby blue tank top (Justin’s favorite color) and a handmade poster that read “It’s my birthday & my wish is to meet Justin!” My wish didn’t come true - but I made it on the jumbo-tron.
I was pretty dedicated to making that wish come true. In fact, I entered a contest at the mall 486 times - even forging my Moms signature because I was under 18. No dice there either.
Then there was the time my parents asked me if I wanted to go to Disney World but I passed knowing that I could have the house to myself for a few days. Low and behold, N ‘Sync was at one of the theme parks that week taping segments for a concert special. When my Mom called and told me that I could have been there when Justin was there, I cried.
At some point, I gave up on the dream of actually meeting him. Until I went to Vegas with my friend the same week of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. This is one of the many children charities that Justin is a part of, and the website said he would be there opening day. I bought two tickets, and paid $300 for a cab ride to the course and back only to find out that Justin was there THE DAY BEFORE! It was in that moment that I said “I’m too old for this sh*t.” And my friend agreed.
When I got home from my trip, I put my wish to rest, packed up my concert photos and donated the plethora of trinkets and treasures I had collected over the years. As I’ve gotten older, I still have a soft spot for Justin, but it’s nothing like it was when I was a teen. Now, he’s like a friend that I’ve grown up with. I feel like I know him, and that he can always be counted on for a smile. There’s nothing like the croon cry he does that can bring a sparkle to my eye. Don’t believe me, listen to God Must Have Spent A Little More Time On You.
Today, he’s a Dad, and I’m a Mom…and sadly not to the same child. Ha! Think about it though, he’s been a celebrity for 20 or so years; more than half my life. I’ve seen him grow, and become the superstar he is, and deserves to be. I always knew he was special and destined for greatness. So, on his birthday, I wish him all the best and want to thank him for the many teenage memories that he was a part of.