Dreams do come true; Chronicle editor meets her idol

What if the world ends tomorrow? All of the recent tragedies have me thinking, “What haven’t I done yet? Is there anything I regret?” There are still a lot of things I want to do. The only regret I have is not to have done them yet.

I am a rational person. I don’t do anything without thinking about the consequences. Yet, sometimes we just need to follow our hearts. In Brazil, where I am from, we have the expression, “Don’t leave for tomorrow what you can do today,” because we never know what tomorrow will bring.

A few weeks ago, I found out that Demi Lovato was coming to Plano to release her new collection of athletic clothing with Fabletics. For those who live in a cave, Lovato is a Dallas native who started her career at age 10 acting on the children’s television show, “Barney & Friends.”

Today at age 25, Lovato is a successful singer, songwriter and actress with a suitcase full of awards and a Grammy Award nomination. In addition to her beautiful and strong vocals, Lovato is known for her support of various causes including LGBTQ rights and mental health.

I have a lot of personal reasons to admire Lovato. It has been a dream of mine to meet her in person. I’ve been to three concerts and never thought I would get the chance to meet her. I have tried before. I stayed outside of her hotel for hours. I even went to an event where she was a guest just for the chance to see her.

I finally had my chance. I kept vacillating, going back and forth about whether I should go or not. At first, I thought there would be a lot of people and I was going to be disappointed. Then on second thought, I figured, “You will never know if you don’t try.”

More than 400 people wait for the chance to meet Demi Lovato on Sept. 10 in Plano.

More than 400 people wait for the chance to meet Demi Lovato on Sept. 10 in Plano.

The event started at 1 p.m. I expected quite a few people, so I went earlier. Since driving is not an option for me, I left my house around 9 a.m. It was a long trip to Plano by public transportation. One bus, one train, one 30-minute ride with Lyft and almost two hours later, I finally got into Legacy West in Plano.

The event was well organized. Lines formed quickly and the first 400 people received a numbered wristband. Doors opened at 1 p.m. and, for security reasons, only 80 people were allowed inside the store at a time.

It cost $50 to meet Lovato and take a picture with her and you had to spend $50 on Fabletics products.  At first, I thought that was a bit too much for my budget. Then I thought that I might not have another chance.

I was tense the entire time I spent waiting in line. They told me Lovato would stop taking pictures at 3 p.m. It would be easy to spend $50 on fitness clothing since normally they are overpriced. To my surprise, the prices at Fabletics were fair and cheaper than I expected.

As soon as I entered the store, there she was. Lovato was just a few steps away. The store was small.  Inside, it was chaotic. I didn’t want to lose time shopping and I confess that I stopped for a minute to watch her talk and take pictures with others.  I was trying to convince myself it was real.

The only thing customers were allowed to bring inside the store was a wallet; no purse, no cellphones.

My only chance to have a picture taken with her was by spending the money, but I was happy to learn that 100 percent of the proceeds would be donated to the American Red Cross to benefit Hurricane Harvey relief and the Girl Up Campaign.

My meeting with Lovato was brief, but absolutely amazing. Only true fans will understand how surreal it is to meet your idol.  There are no words to describe how I felt afterwards. I blanked out the second the meeting was over.

I ended my day $50 poorer but I got a new pair of shorts, a bottle of water and a hairband, plus an exclusive T-shirt, a photo and an autograph from Lovato, and an experience that will live with me forever!

The lesson here is that sometimes you have to lose something to gain something else. Believe in yourself. Believe in your dreams and don’t be afraid to take a chance.