“Mom and Maddie” is the first episode of the Taylor Effin Cleveland narrative. It is intended to provide some contextual background for the experimental project. The cinematic vlog piece acts as a love letter to the “artist’s” mother and sister.  The short video collages together personal captured moments, a voice over, and shots of how the video is being produced to create a sentimental peek into Taylor Effin Cleveland’s backstory.

 

Hey guys,

I just wanted to tell you how much I love you – with everything I am. I’d be nothing if it weren’t for the two of you. I know this is random but I just felt like I needed to get this out.

I don’t see you guys very much anymore, physically at least, but you’re both on my mind constantly. I miss the days when it was just us three, growing and learning, and experiencing life together. Life was such a journey and everything was so mysterious, and I guess as life moved on, we learned more. More about our selves, our surroundings, and what we really wanted from life.

For so long we were on the same page about everything, and in a way we still are, but it’s definitely not the same – and its not bad, its not good, its just not the same… but i guess that’s life. constantly changing and growing.

I just really miss you guys, and that feeling of home.

I never had a dad, well, I guess you were Dad, Mom. I don’t know how you did it. 15 years old, and you had me, then Dad died – a car wreck, three days before my first birthday. I can’t imagine how that must have felt, losing your child’s father, no support from your family, no support from anyone really.. it was just me and you. Two little kids; two little kids against the world.

I’m so lucky I wasn’t abandoned. You could have put me up for adoption, left me somewhere, you could have aborted me. So many kids aren’t ready to give birth and just have abortions without second guessing it, and that could have been me, just another dead fetus in a dumpster somewhere. But now look, 20 years old fighting for a dream. I’d say things worked out pretty well in my favor.

Not only did you have me, but three years later out came Maddie. Eighteen years old with two kids and a single parent once again at twenty one. Literally, all alone except for me and Maddie. If I had two kids right now I’d be so lost and miserable, I wouldn’t have a clue what to do. Mom you have no idea how much you mean to me. You taught me love, hard work, inspiration, and the trait of never giving up.. ever. You are always there when I need you even when no one is there for you.

And its been so hard to watch people ignore your pleas no matter how much you help them out. You’re perfect, an angel, seriously, and I’m not just saying that because you’re my mom. You are genuinely a great person, and people run over you like you are too good of a person or something.. It makes me mad but what can you do right? You just have to keep up the hard work and roll with the punches.

That’s what I’ve got from everything at least – I owe that to you. And you know one day all this hard work is going to pay off, I swear. We’re going to get to that point where you don’t have to work so hard anymore, and I want you to see everything this beautiful life has to offer. Just like you were able to show me. And thats a big part of this dream I’m fighting for.

And Maddie, God I love you. You are the best little sister in the world. You keep me sane and level headed through all the crazy stuff we had to go through. You may not understand it now, and I may not either, but I know that being your big brother is an honor.

Its definitely been a task, and we have had our bad moments, but I couldn’t have asked for a better position in life. I learned so many things from you. As a big brother I had to be a teacher, I had to show you that everything was always going to be okay, even when they weren’t. I had to be there for you when Mom couldn’t be. I had to show you that you can’t be scared of life, or anything, and that’s when I learned courage.

I had to make sure that you saw me as the strongest, most fearless, coolest, person in the world – I still do. I taught you how to ride a bike, how to swim; I had to save you a couple of times from growing because I guess I didn’t teach you good enough. [Sorry about that] You taught me how to teach, how to be a leader, and I wouldn’t be as strong as I am if it weren’t for you. I can’t imagine watching you grow up into the strong, beautiful woman I know you’re going to become. I’m so lucky I get to be a part of your life, and I promise to be there with you every step of the way.

If things go according to plan, all this stupid shit we’ve had to put up with is going to be well worth the wait. I really hope I can get that.

You guys mean so much to me, I owe everything about myself to you. I miss you so much, and I love and cherish every moment we have and will have. I promise to be with you guys every step of the way. That’s what family is all about. Mom, Maddie, I love you two with everything I am, and I look forward to all the journeys that are soon to come our way.

You’re the best family in the world.

Love,

Taylor