Summer Foley

Singer Dancer Actor Model Advocate

Not a teen, but not fully legal= "The inbetween"

When I was younger, I would anticipate my birthday for months. Once July rolled around, I was full birthday mode for the entire month. Nothing could have brought me down from this birthday high! It was a holiday I thought everyone knew about and something that I thought could not be looked over or forgotten. I used to throw large get togethers in my old house's massive back yard where my friends and I would swing from vines over the creek, hooting and hollering and my older sisters would attend with their cool, older friends there to supervise. 

I'm not sure when this began, but each year my birthday became less and less enchanting. I did not truly notice until this year. I had a sick feeling in my stomach the day before my birthday. I was on a run and I reminded myself that I may be in a feature film this fall, which was my goal at the beginning of this year (yay). I thought about who I would be excited to tell once I get the confirmation email and everything was set in stone. I started to make a list in my head: the couple of friends I have from school, my coaches and teachers, pageant friends, and I thought my family, of course!But then... I began to cry. Not a normal cry, but a really hard cry, one I think I hadn't really had the chance to access since Jaimie passed. I found myself on my hands and knees on this sidewalk, with a mixture of sweat and tears coating my face. I'm sure it was quite the sight but I wasn't too mindful of my surroundings in that moment. Jaimie, my sister was my biggest fan. For the past two years, Jaimie and I did not play phone tag, text or run up to each other in celebration when I was home from school, but she was still the sister that said how proud she was of me, even when I would be livid with her for something that means nothing to me now. What I wanted for my birthday this year was to hug Jaimie, tell her I did it! I wanted to tell her how sorry I am... the list continues to go on. 

To those of you who read this, I'm sorry if I'm a downer or if my life seems depressing. My life is actually really exciting, and I'm about to do some big things. I have a boyfriend that went above and beyond to ensure I had a wonderful birthday, and a family that showered me with love and celebrated me from afar. This next year will be a test for me, to see how I handle the beginning of my professional career, my emotional burdens and other responsibilities. I look forward to sharing my sister's story, and with a possible feature in an upcoming film, I'll have more gusto behind my name in regards to creating a dialogue around not only Jaimie's story, but so many other's.  I want to do something in my hometown. I'm not very fond of the place I come from, and I attribute the people's behavior there to my sister's downfall, but I can't hold what happened to Jaimie against anyone. I could, actually, but I won't. Instead, in this next year of my life, I'm going to educate those, who may have bullied her, or created life-shattering nicknames for her, on the detriments of their actions. I'm going to hope these people don't teach their ways to their children, and that I can reach them through the EW Foundation and other organizations that I am proud to stand behind in regards to character building. 

No longer a teen, but not fully legal. I'm already making the most out of this in between.