I Am The Echelon….and Proud

Two years ago on this date I made a dream of mine come true.
I met Jared Leto and Thirty Seconds To Mars.

I don’t think much can compare to the experience of that whole day that started with watching Artifact, followed by a Q&A with Jared then meeting him, then making my way to the concert venue to meet the band and then watch one of the best concerts I’ve ever had the pleasure to be a part of.
It was magical, real, honest, genuine and most of all, it was having a place to belong.
This experience and talking to others the world over prompted my being asked to contribute to a blog and share my story of what being a part of this bands family (The Echelon) means.
So in celebration of my Thirty Seconds To Mars-aversary 🙂 I’m going to post my contrbution here.
I hope you enjoy….

Posted May 18 2014

Over the years I’ve had the pleasure and sometimes unfortunate displeasure of being a part of different fan bases music wise as my taste in music spans many genres. One thing though has stood out to me over the years and that is The Echelon. There is nothing like it.

So what sets The Echelon apart?

Is it the sense of family and community and having a place to belong?
Is it that we are all dreamers and believers and support each other?
Is it that we have this amazing platform at VyRT.com where we come together to celebrate this sense of constant connection and have a dialogue directly with the band where our voices can be heard?
Or is it because we’re all just a little bit inappropriate and pervy? I mean who doesn’t love a bit of Hurricane uncensored ;o)
I believe we, The Echelon, are all that and more. We can appreciate that we are all different and unique and that’s what makes us one. We come to this with no judgment and we celebrate each other. We celebrate our achievements, our moments with Thirty Seconds To Mars and our belief that this is more than just a band. We live loud, we make mistakes and sometimes we fail, but we pick ourselves up and reach for whatever is our personal success.

The best example I can give as to why I am The Echelon and proud is the reaction a friend of mine had when I took her with me to a Meet & Greet and show. She wasn’t a Thirty Seconds To Mars fan before this and didn’t know any song so was going into the experience blind. She looked at me at one point and said “I’ve never seen anything like this. It’s like a religious experience.” Part of me giggled because we all know ‘This is a cult’ but part of me also stood there and thought, this is what sets us apart. The core of it all is that my friend felt welcomed. There was no cattiness, no jealousy and no person taking away from any others experience during the Q&A and Meet & Greet because it was about all of us. We all mattered. This value stems directly from Jared, Shannon and Tomo and this is why I think we come together as one.

We connect the world over. One of the sweetest people I’ve met lives on the other side of the world in Russia but what brought us together was Thirty Seconds To Mars. And I’m grateful. I’ve met and had comments on my posts on different social media from creative and positive people and the messages are always sent with love.

So thank you Echelon.
Thank you for 12 years of a place to belong.
Thank you for 12 years of positivity.
Thank you for 12 years of making something that is set apart from the rest.

Jared put it best when he said “We have something special. It’s not for everyone. Not everybody will understand it and that’s fine with us. It’s just for the people that do.”

I am the Echelon and proud.

Original post found here

xoxo Natalie

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