One day, I woke up really early, it was 7 a.m. and I only needed to go to school at 8 a.m. I wasn’t sleepy enough to go back to bed so, I showered, got dressed and, by the time I was downstairs to eat breakfast it was, already, 7:45 a.m. As usual, Carl wasn’t speaking to me and my “sister”, Ashley, was gossiping a new boy from school. Thank God she wasn’t from my school! I ate as quickly as I could and went to school.
When I arrived, my best friend, Natalie, was waiting for me by the lockers. How I loved that girl, she was the only person that really knew and understood me she was also the only person that helped me through the hardest time of my life: my family’s death.
“Hi!”- said Nat, excitedly
“So, how are you?”
“I’m fine, babe, thanks! How about you?”- I asked
“Same! So tomorrow’s your birthday! What’re you gonna do to your 16th birthday?”
“Honestly? I don’t know! I would take you to my place for us to spend some time together but my house sucks, as you know!”- I explained
“Yeah… well let’s go to the movies or something!”- Suggested Nat
“Okay, okay!! But there’s something I gotta do first! You know what I’m talking about, right?!”
“Wohhhooo!!! You’re gonna write a letter to Sambora!”- Nat teased
“Stop okay? you know I really need to do this Nat…”
“I know sweetie, I know! And I’m sure he’s gonna answer you!”
“Yeah… doubt that but okay… Well let’s go! French, right?”- I asked
“Yup babe, French!”
The French class passed as quickly as it came and in the end of all the classes Nat’s boyfriend, James, asked for her to talk to him for a bit, so she excused herself and told me that she would call later.
I went home with my mind always focused on the letter that I was about to write to my idol. What do you tell to the person that you most admire in the whole world? What do you ask? When I got home, I already had my mind settled, I was gonna tell him everything! After all he was my idol, and I owed him that, so I jumped to bed with a paper and a pen, and started writing:
Dear Richie, April 10th 2001
I’m not writing to say “I Love You” because I know you hear that a lot.
I’m sorry if I am bothering you, I know that you’re probably busy and you’ll never read/answer this, but that’s okay.
I’m not doing this for fun or just to pass time, I’m doing this because, tomorrow is my 16th birthday and I need someone to talk to (besides my best friend, that is) and I need you to know a couple of things.
When I was 10, me, my mom and my brother (only the 3 of us because my dad left us when I was only 2 years old), we were coming from the best night of my life, it had been my 1st concert ever, a Bon Jovi concert, when suddenly we had a car crush. I was the only survivor. Since then, I’ve been “jumping” from foster-families to foster-families and it’s been a hell. I don’t fit in here. Nobody understands my situation, my dreams and my mind.
Please don’t feel sorry for me, because of all this.
Maybe you’ll think that’s stupid from me to say all this to you, but understand that I needed to do this.
You’ve been my idol since I can remember. I love the band and your solo work. But mostly I admire your capacity of sharing your money and your fame, your sadness and your happiness with us, your fans.
Please understand that I mean no disrespect to you, your family or the band, but to me you are more than a musician, more than a guitar-player and more than a philanthropist. To me, you are the father I never had. My role-model. My hero.