Casey: Erica Did Me a Favor

Casey looks back on how she handled her discomfort with Erica at Chanel's Shabbat dinner.

Embrace who you are…

I’m thankful for all my experiences because the good and the bad have shaped me into the person I am today. I hope I have encouraged everyone to think about their decisions, recognizing that they have greater impacts than one might think. No one is perfect, but if you mess up, OWN it.

My mom was 29 when she got divorced and almost 31 years old when she picked up and left my father. THANK YOU, MOM. You have taught me to respect myself and in turn others respect you. My mom is my rock and my everything because she encourages me to be a better person and taught me the importance of bravery. I’m 28 years old -- couldn’t imagine being married with a one-year-old daughter, having my husband (my father) cheat on me, and not knowing if I was making the right decision. Well, Mom, you did. You are so special! You should be incredibly proud of your strength, and I am even more proud to be your daughter. I felt it was important to open my emotion vault so you have a better understanding of why I might be guarded and not trust easily. It’s unfortunate that I had to go through so much pain at such a young age with my parents' divorce and my heartache, but I turned all this pain I endured into a positive using my art as an outlet. Even though I don't speak to my dad now, I hope in the future we can figure out our relationship. I think I’m still so angry and hurt about his actions that all of this “stuff” takes time to sink in, absorb, and get over. Openly talking about my father and my ex-boyfriend from high school (whose name I never mention because it wasn't about the boyfriend) was one of the hardest things I’ve ever gone through. It’s all about taking ownership for your actions. Every decision you make can affect someone else. It's important to think before you act. I thought there was something wrong with me when I was 15. I was so depressed. It was so embarrassing because everyone in school knew -- the teachers, my friends, the students a year older and younger, parents. Even people were talking outside of school because Erica didn’t go to my high school. She would come and visit my ex-boyfriend and I would bottle everything up being I had to put on a brave face that everything was OK. It’s even more ironic that I’m even talking about this 10 years later when I really could care less about this guy. It takes two to tango, but she persisently went after him because that’s what "she wanted." At least wait until we break up. It’s not funny, stop laughing, you look like a fool, and this is why I don’t want to be your friend. You aren’t friend material!This isn't the first time she's done this either. Joey mentions she slept with her boyfriend and doesn't want to bring it up further because she wants to be friends and not ruin the flow of their friendship. Who in her right mind wants to be friends with someone that "sleeps with their boyfriend in the past and present!" That's not a friend, that's someone that has no respect for themselves, others, and attains satisfaction from being sexually promiscuous.

I’m sure you can imagine how hard it was for me to be in the house in the Hamptons. I wanted to be there for Chanel and get to know the other girls (because they are all awesome), and the last thing I wanted was to embarrass myself and make the situation completely public at Shabbat. Erica kept offering me wine and trying to talk to me, and all I wanted to do was focus on the other girls and talk to her after dinner. I know myself so well, and it was really unfortunate that I got so mad. After she made no sense, made fun of Chanel over paying for a healer, and said she hates the name Justin and all of her other 900 ex-boyfriend names, I totally lost it. I apologized at the table, but again to all the girls, I’M SORRY for the way I handled that situation because I wish I could have just spoken to her after dinner and not made the dinner uncomfortable.

I feel bad for Erica. She has no regard for Chanel, no regard for me, no regard for any other people she's done this to. She should try and figure out why this is. It's important to respect others so they can respect you.

On a positive note, she did me a favor. She opened my eyes to how people can be and that I shouldn't have been with a guy that didn't ultimately want to be with me. I want a best friend that's loyal and that I can't live without, even if someone goes after him he knows that he can't live without me.My artwork! So grateful I got to share that with everyone. I've been drawing since I was two, and it's a relationship that will never leave me. Being an artist is the greatest gift. I used whatever shit, both positive and negative, in my work. I went to NYU for both my undergrad degree in Studio Art and NYU grad school for my Masters in Art Education. I want to make sure Art Education is always a focus in schools. I don't know where I would be without art. I have been fortunate to pursue my art career while I’ve been working at night as a cocktail waitress. I've worked for the same hospitality company since I was 19: The Butter Group. No, it's not that I have three jobs (saw that in a blog) -- Butter, 1Oak and the Darby are three of their venues. Working as a waitress has allowed me to have my days free to pursue my Masters, audition, take classes, and educate myself in the art world. I love the people I work for and with and couldn’t have asked for a better second family. Thank you for being there for me through everything and encouraging me to be me.

“We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.”-Kanji Miyazawa… and I will.

Thank you for all of your support! I would love to hear from you and feel free to reach out on Twitter & Instagram: @CaseyLCohen.

XO,

CC

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