If you’ve stumbled upon this blog you’re either one of the countless fans who voted for James Maslow and Peta Murgatroyd this season, one of the 48 THOUSAND people who followed their support twitter (@Team_Jeta), or maybe you’re just scrolling threw the Dancing With The Stars tag. Either way, welcome to my blog, a sort of send off to a season of DWTS that has meant more to me than any before it.
Maybe you knew me prior to this partnership, yes it’s true in 2011 I was responsible for the twitter page that rallied votes for Chelsea Kane and Mark Ballas, so Team Jeta was not my first time at the rodeo of DWTS fan sits, it will however be my last. Team Jeta has been such an incredible personal journey for me that has led me to such incredible people, opportunities and more importantly the chance to make a difference no matter how small. So I guess you could say I’m retiring from “fan twitters” because, I just don’t think my experience could ever get any better than this.
2014 started off as one of the hardest years of my entire life January slapped me in the face as I was faced with the challenge that my beloved cat and best friend of 2 years wouldn’t be with me long. January 15th my darling Quinn was diagnosed with FIP an incurable disease that should have killed her 2 months prior, after weeks of not sleeping and forcing her to take meds in an effort to prolong her life, she passed away, on January 22nd the sweetest little creature that I’ve ever met in my life died in my arms. You might be wondering what ay of this has to do with James or Peta, I promise I’m getting there.
The great loss turned in to a dark time, I didn’t want to be around people, I didn’t want to pursue career ambitions, I wasn’t even sure I still believed in dreams anymore. But as it often does, life wasn’t quite done testing me, february 13th my mom entered the hospital, and after hours of waiting she was rushed off to surgery for a perforated ulcer, she went in to surgery at 11pm, the doctors estimated without the surgery she had approximately 4 hours to live. There I sat in an empty hospital waiting room, alone, and terrified.
After these ordeals I found myself in a state of such depression that I felt like I wasn’t really living anymore, and I wasn’t sure I ever would. Then it happened, March 4th, 2014 the dancing with the stars cast announcement. Having been a fan of Peta’s since her very first season as a troupe member (fun fact I ran a twitter called @MakePetaAPro she was made a pro the following season) I had always been hungry to do something big for her, as it were she never had a partner that I felt so passionate about that I wanted to just reach out and make a difference and then it happened. James and Peta were announced as partners and within hours I took to twitter to start gathering a fan base for them.
Within the first few days James and Peta’s support twitter namely Team_Jeta had gathered a following of over 8000 supporters and one of them was Peta herself, soon after James followed and the 2 began expressing their gratitude with tweets and retweets, each one meant more to me than either of them ever could have known. As the weeks went by and the premiere grew closer I got to know all these wonderful James Maslow fans, many of whom had never watched DWTS and had no idea who Peta was. Each one was unique and came with such compelling stories of how James had inspired them, how he had somehow without even knowing changed their life and I thought to myself this time I had chosen the absolute best group of people to be a part of.
The premiere saw James face a lot of online critics but Team Jeta prevailed voting him threw week after week, they showed every nay sayer out there that James had a fan base, a grateful one at that. Week 2 I was approached by a group of young people attempting to get this beautifully inspiring human being named Hannah a prom date, it could be none other than James Maslow. I instantly felt compelled to share her story, I hoped that James would be able to attend, more so I hopped James would be willing to oblige. I sent out tweets, DM’s, anything you could think of and day by day I watched Team Jeta followers joining in. I thought to myself, in a world full of so much “ugly” James Maslow has truly found himself a group of fans who are shining lights in the world. As you know James couldn’t attend the prom but he pulled out all the stops to make Hannah’s dream come true, they spent an entire weekend together, one that I know will not soon be forgotten by Hannah.
I would like to take a moment to thank Hannah’s mom Hollie for being the person she is and letting her daughter know that no matter how big your dreams are they are not impossible. Hannah should serve as an example to each and every one of you reading this blog that it’s okay to be fearless, that you should be fearless, jump in with both feet and never let anyone tell you that you cant. You CAN and if you have the determination you WILL. In the off chance that you’re reading this Hollie, I think you should be nominated for mother of the year because I don’t know too many single moms, with special needs children willing to go all those extra miles to make things happen. You inspire me, Hannah inspires me, and I think James for bringing you both in my life.
As the weeks went on we saw many eliminations, each week James and Peta came bad harder and stronger, they wanted to win the competition, they couldn’t do it without us. So I started thinking, what could I do to make this more fun, I felt like I was part of something, somehow I was part of James and Peta’s team. Sure I wasn’t out there on the floor dancing with them but every time they danced I could escape the pain I was feeling at the time. I could escape by engaging with all of you on twitter, and I could escape if someone I could make them win. Of course, I couldn’t do this on my own and of course it wouldn’t be easy. I started staying up all night voting, taking the day off and voting and then I started thinking about how I could get all of YOU to do that same. So I started giving things away, a few of my followers were lucky enough to meet James and Peta, and more so they were kind enough to have them sign photos which they mailed to me.
In the final weeks James and Peta became more involved, they were so receptive to giving back to YOU, by following back, signing photos for top voters etc, they were giving back. I cant tell all of you how much it means to me to see someone giving back on such a large scale, it truly gives me goosebumps to know that they care about YOU as much as you care about THEM.
Last night James and Peta were eliminated, did my heart break? Yes, but at the same time I had this overwhelming feeling of composure, I knew they had done all they could, that I had done all I could, that we had done all we could and they made it to the final week of the show. If you’re a dancing with the stars regular you would know, that is no small feat. I would like to take a moment now to address James, Peta, and all of you directly so I hope you’ll keep reading (if you’re even reading anymore).
To The Fans (Followers of Team Jeta): You are some of the coolest, most dedicated people I’ve ever had the opportunity to engage with online, or in life and I want to thank you so much for supporting a little twitter, with a lot of heart. So many of you shared your stories with me and I cherish every single one of them, I cherish every single one of you. I know that many of you are fighting battles that are so hard I can’t possibly begin to understand but I want you to know it gets better. I also want to say thank you so much for embracing Peta who is a BEAUTIFUL person inside and out. Finally, I want to let you know that in James you have found a worthy idol, I can’t wait to see how you all support him going forward in his career.
Peta: I’ve been a fan from the beginning and that is something that will NEVER chance. I want you to know that I so appreciate your love and dedication to the art of dance. I admire your confidence, the way you carry yourself says so much for what kind of person you are. No matter what anyone has to say you will always be someone that I will admire beyond what I can express, your choreography has been so calming for me this season, with every dance you brought me out of the dark place I was in and back in to the light, in to a world where I can be fearless again, where I can dream again. I can finally breathe, and I owe so much of that to you, I don’t feel like you get enough recognition for all the lives you’ve touched and will continue to touch going forward. Thank you for touching my life, it wouldn’t be such a stretch to say in part you saved it. I know you have dreams of acting one day, as an aspiring actress myself I hope that one day the two of us can work together. It would surely mean the world to me to be able to meet you one day so I’m going to hold out hope that it might just happen. Thank you for your beauty and your grace and your amazingly kind heart. You will have my vote and my support EVERY season of dancing with the stars that you compete on and that’s a promise. Thank you for simply being YOU.
James: I’ve touched on this before, everybody is always going crazy over you good looks, not to discredit them but your heart is so much more attractive then your physical being will ever be. To be an “idol” to so many is not an easy thing to do, I’m so thankful that all the young people who have chosen you as their idol have someone who is so worthy of being idolized. You have a heart of gold my friend and I think we’re all left wondering how you can even stand with something so heavy beating in your chest. Your work ethic this season has impressed to astronomical degrees and left me so inspired and so hungry to succeed. Like I said to Peta you’ve touched my life, you’ve changed me forever and I’m so proud to have been on this journey with you. You’ve proven to millions that nothing is impossible and though I knew that already, I really did need the reminder. You’ve acted as a single shining star in a sky that for me was just full of darkness. Thank you for showing me that everything is going to be alright, alright ;). I’m going to miss watching you dance, but I can’t wait to watch you evolve as a performer and a human being. I hope I’m so blessed to meet you one day, that would be nothing short of life changing but even if I’m not know that even when the odds are stacked against you I’ll always be in your corner. (I think I might be your #1 fan now)
With all that said thank you so much to everyone for putting up with all my tweets, for being on this journey with me. I’m a better more determined person because of Peta and James but I’m a kinder and more caring person because of all of YOU.
Of course you know I couldn’t let James and Peta leave the show without a mirrorball, it was obvious from day 1 that to me and to all of you they had already won. The mirrorballs pictured above were hand made and sent to James and Peta on behalf of ALL of you. For changing so many lives, they’ve won so much more than any dance competition could ever award them.
TEAM JETA FOREVER
Love and Sparkles