Wednesday, June 6, 2007

When Maria Shriver speaks...

As a teenager, I was obsessed with Camelot...oddly, for once, I'm not talking about a Broadway musical, but of the Kennedy family. The wall by my desk was decorated with picture of them...mainly Jackie and John, Jr. When his plane went down, only two months after my dad's death, I mourned like I had lost an old friend. The pain from losing my dad was still quite fresh, and I was in quite a "life stinks' period.

There was also another Kennedy relatives I had grown to adore and idolize: Maria Shriver. She was pretty and seemed to have a stable family life with her movie-star husband. (Even though I wouldn't want to marry Arnold...my movie star of choice to marry would be Matt Damon.) I would watch First Person With Maria Shriver and imagine the day when I would be a top television journalist. (That would briefly become a reality when I was an anchor for my campus newsprogram, HawkTV. A big hearty wave to my old Monmouth pals!!!!)

One afternoon, I went on a job interview. (Which really wasn't different from any other afternoon, of coruse.) After it was done, I walked past a familiar store...Barnes and Noble...and saw a sign. Maria Shriver would be there signing her new book, One More Thing Before You Go.

I noticed the date. Why, it was today! I noticed the time. Why, it was right now! I dug out a paystub out of my purse so I could use my employee discount and bought two copies for Maria to sign...one for myself, and one for my good friend , Lori...who had a well-paying job, but was as confused and lost as I was.

When it was my turn, Maria smiled at me and asked me my name. I told her, "Diana. And I don't know what I'm doing, Maria Shriver! I've been out of college for a year and I just don't know what I am doing with my life and I am freaking out!"

Maria finished signing my books and looked up at me and said, "Oh, Diana, don't freak out! What you are feeling is perfectly normal! Everything is going to be okay!" I then complimented her hair. She was wearing it curly that day.

I carried those words with me for a very long time. Maria Shriver told me that everything was going to be okay. Maria Shriver would never lie to me.

Diana Rissetto

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