Well where do I begin? Unfortunately I had up to the most recent typed up on the old LPU site...so starting fresh again. I'm sorry but this is a LONG story! (But a goodie!)
I first heard Linkin Park through an ex boyfriend in the One Step Closer days. I wasn't big on it until we broke up then I asked for him to copy the cds for me and I loved it.
In 2002, at age 17, I was diagnosed with Acute Myelotic Leukemia. I underwent 8 months of chemotherapy and came out the other side in remission and a different person. Throughout my treatment I had a variety of complications. I had bowel problems that forced me to not eat for weeks at a time until it was better, I had seizures and ended up in intensive care for a few weeks, and I also had an eye problem that put me in the dark (literally) for about 5 days. Those 5 days I survived on music and music alone. The TV was too bright, I had garbage bags on the windows and nurses had to knock before opening my door because the light was so painful. I put my laptop on shuffle and nearly shut it and listened for 5 days. Linkin Park was a frequent on my playlist, as you may guess.
I found out I got to participate in Make A Wish because I was under 18 years of age (when diagnosed) and had a life threatening disease. When I got to pick my wish, I chose to meet Linkin Park. Immediately things were set and I was going to fly to California to meet them on a Christmas Tour bonanza with tons of other bands. That ended up falling through because the band felt they wouldn't have enough personal time with us due to the complicatedness of that show. We rebooked for January in Toronto when they were on their Meteora tour.
My best friend, my mom and I arrived in Toronto and were spoiled. We went over to the ACC and went back stage to meet the guys! I was so excited! We went into the platinum lounge and were to wait for the guys. They were going to be given triple platinum awards for Meteora and Live in Texas that night by surprise. The guys finally came in and got shown the awards. They took pictures of the awards and included us in a photo. We then watched the guys get interviewed and then finally went to their dressing room to hang out.
They had a huge package of stuff for me, shirts, posters, an LP, signed cds, etc. They signed my poster and I gave them their lifesavers candy. I explained how they were lifesavers and helped me get through some of the roughest times of my treatment. We left our stuff in the dressing room and went to enjoy the show. We came back after the show and got to hang out with the guys even longer. Chester was finding random things in his locker to give us because he just wanted to keep giving :) Finally it was time to go, Brad walked us out. He told me he had one more thing for me and pointed to a box on the floor. I knew what it was right away but asked anyway. He told me to open it and when I did I was looking at his triple platinum award for Meteora. I told him it was his award and he deserved it. He told me I would appreciate it more and insisted I kept it. I clung to it like a life line haha.
And that ends my first 'best night ever'.
A friend and I went to Toronto for the second Project Revolution tour. I got a meet n greet pass through the LPU and went backstage to meet the guys again. I wore a shirt that said "LP's first make a wish kid", they explained to me the first time I met them that I was their first make a wish kid. I wrote the guys letters because I knew how quick the meet and greets went. Midway down when I was at Brad and Chester, Brad asked me how I was and I knew that was asking about the cancer. I explained that in a few months I would be 5 years in remission which meant I was cured (my chances of leukemia are now as great as anyone else's). I started to tear up and cry a little, it's a sensitive subject and I'm a sensitive person. Chester immediately leaned over the table and gave me a huge hug. I cried more. haha They gave me a can of Monster energy drink off their table and I went back to enjoy the show.
Second best night ever.
My final year of college Linkin Park announced their Minutes to Midnight tour. They were coming to London Ontario, my home town!!! I was sooo excited! I went out an bought a large canadian flag to bring to the concert and purchased general admission tickets this time so I could experience LP on the floor for once. I went around London and posted pictures to promote the concert and in turn received a meet and greet through the LP Street Team. We lined up at 9am because I wanted to be sure I was in the front row! I wasn't first though, Angela, a future friend of mine was there at 6am! Let's keep in mind this was Ontario in February! We camped out all day and had people in line sign the Canadian flag that was going to make it on stage later that day. We got our front row spot, front and center! I gave the meet and greet to my friend, who's been an LP fan as long as I can remember, and decided to stay at the front of the pit. The show was awesome! I threw the flag on stage and the crowd cheered when it unravelled. Then they brought it out for the encore on Mike's keyboard. Chester came around the front of the pit during In the End and Crawling and I took a picture of us although I clipped off half of my face :( After that show I was hooked on the front of the pit!
I got my first Linkin Park tattoo shortly after that in April. It's the LP symbol that's usually seen on older posters with 3 other symbols. I added to it a few years later, adding lyrics from Easier to Run, one of the most important LP songs to me.
I heard LP was going to tour again this year and was ecstatic. I was now living in Calgary and was fully prepared to fly home for a concert since they don't tour Canada besides Ontario/Quebec (usually). I bought floor tickets, a hotel room in Toronto and my flights home. We road tripped it to Toronto and got in line around noon for the concert. We were about 6th in line behind a group of friends. We took turns warming up in the train station, LP needs to reconsider their February Canada tours!!! haha I had a meet and greet again (WOO!) through LPU and wasn't sure if I would be using it yet. I was going to camp outside all day then leave my spot in the front of the pit not knowing if I could get back??? Hmmm this was a wager.
After finally getting and getting front right of the stage (next time I'm buying VIP since all those people were in before us and didn't wait outside all day) I decided what the hell, I need to meet these guys again!! I had already written letters and had my 'lp's first make a wish kid' shirt on. I got to the meet and greet and gave the guys their letters. I explained I had a canadian flag (again) and I was going to throw it on stage. Mike told me to give it to the stage guy so I did. He posted it on the front left of the stage shortly after. I was so excited I was shaking and when I finished going down the line I went back into the group of people to wait for our group photo. Rob came over right away and said he had just read the start of the letter but thanked me several times. I didnt' know what to say and just said 'okay' haha I was nervous! We were leaving the room and I could see Chester behind the backdrop reading my letter. I hollered out to him "thanks for reading my letter, Chester!!" he smiled and waved. I nearly died inside.
I had made a friend and we were going to use our backstage passes to try and push our way to the front of the pit again. We managed to get quite far at which point I had to go the opposite way of him and we broke apart. I made it pretty far then called my friend at the front. I said I'm waving frantically can you see me?? Suddenly one of our guy friend's arm busts through the crowd and pulls me to the front. I was on cloud nine!! The guys read my letters and I made it to the front again!!
Part of the letter near the bottom, on each of theirs', said something like this. "Although what I went through (treatment) was rough and painful, I would do it all again to meet you guys again. You guys were my silver lining, my pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, etc. " And I thanked them several times for being so kind hearted and nice when it comes to fans.
I had so much fun at the front of the pit. At one point Mike did a double take when he recognized me. Then it happened...three minutes into Irridescent, during the bridge Chester said "This one's for Chelsey". At first, I thought...no I didn't just hear that...he said Chester or something. My friend turned to me and said 'did you hear that?!?!?' and I flipped. I was crying at the front of the pit, I'm sure the people around me thought I was crazy haha. During bleed it out I recognized the guy doing photos/video of the guys, Mark, I had met him back in 2004 the first time around. I yelled mark and pointed to my shirt (LP's first make a wish kid). It clicked and he was like oh ya great to see you, asked how I was, etc. I asked to take a picture with him and when we did Chester noticed. He realized it was me and blew me a huge kiss.
New best day ever.
On the way home I really listened to the lyrics of Irridescent. You were standing at the wake of devastation, you were waiting on the edge of the unknown. With the cataclysm raining down, insides crying save me now, you were there impossibly alone.
I can really relate that to my treatment. My diagnosis, would be lyrically described as that. Then there's the one big line before he says this is for Chelsey. Remember all the sadness and frustration and let it go.
I do need to let it go, to some extent. I'm still frustrated and mad about my disease. Why did I get cancer? I'll never know. Why did I survive and not the friends I made in the hospital? I'll never know. I'm still mad about my friends who aren't here anymore due to the disease.
So I'm going to let it go. I tattooed let it go on my right wrist to always remind me to. That's my third LP tattoo.
Well that's it for my story until the next tour. I hope there is another one. I'm still floating on cloud nine from this experience. Having the recording of the concert is amazing. If I'm down I listen to the song and it reminds me to let it go and also makes me feel so special that Chester dedicated that song to me.
You can watch a video of the song here, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O_JkH1-8k1k
it's about 3minutes into the video when he says it.
Thanks for reading my ever-long LP biography haha