Wednesday, August 27, 2014

If it wasn't for Her

There are certain days when I just want to let go. Just disconnect, not care, not worry about what'll happen tomorrow. Days that merit drinking, cursing, hurting myself, so I won't hurt others. Days where everything I've worked for, and everything I've obtained... seems so small, so insignificant, so irrelevant.

There are simpler days, when I need family, friends, the occasional flirtation, to make it through. These are NOT those days. On these I need absolute detachment, solitude, the sense that I'm battling my demons on my own, the sense of control that finds its way to perdition and kills everything it finds.

But as soon as I see her face, everything changes. All my worries, all my discourage, all these wrinkles and gray hair that all of a sudden invade me... Turn to nothing.

As soon as I see her smile, I remember why I have to do this. I remember why I get up every morning and put up with people. And bring home hard earned money, and try to give her the most comfortable, safe and happy life I can. As soon as I see her eyes, I remember why I live.

I always thought parents exaggerated when they said stuff like "They're my everything", or "They're my reason to live". I had come to think humans were so self-involved and utterly selfish that one could not live for another more than for oneself, at least a tiny bit. I had never been more wrong in my entire life. And she's the reason I understand. If it wasn't for her, I wouldn't have a reason to understand where I'm going, why I'm living and who I'm living for.

People have asked me why I've never posted anything about my daughter. The answer is quite simple. Nothing I ever write will do justice on how this child has changed my life. Everything I write seems so unworthy, so basic, so non elaborate.

So up until this point I had never tried. But don't be fooled: with this post, I will be content, because it's something she'll be able to read one day, and maybe I'll cheer her up somehow. But in no way, shape or form will I ever think this even remotely close to fitting, or even enough to describe what she has done for me.

And I'll continue to post about simple things to describe, of course. But going forward what is inspired by her, will only be directed to her. It's up to her if she wants to share. I know writing will be a part of our communication, and I'm very much looking forward to that.

So, Janielle, when you read this, know that Mami loves you more than words could ever so much as try to describe. I love you like the Earth loves the Sun, like our favorite foods love salt, and like we, as humans, could never fully understand. You're my all, my exception, my everything. My strength and my weakness, all at once.

I will love you through the worst. Through misunderstandings, fights, heartbreak and other more alarming failures. Through anything you may consider as the world falling on you, because I will try to feel it the same.

I will love you when you hate me. Because at some point it's inevitable. But more importantly, because you have made me want to be the best I could ever be. No matter what, I will continue to live with you, at least in my spirit, and for you, at least in my mind. You're the best thing that ever happened to me, and I plan on proving it to you.

And... Maybe someday, I'll inspire you a mere tenth of what you have inspired me.

... I still can't believe you started Kindergarten today.


Saturday, July 26, 2014


About two weeks ago I had a conversation that has put in perspective how I feel about my personality in more than one way. I was told I'm dramatic. Not in the usual "You're Dominican, so it's expected" way, but that I create drama, spread it, that it follows me, and that I can't get away from it... That I blow things out of proportion in very negative ways, and that this particular person had heard many things from me that he couldn't fathom me saying.

I'm laying here thinking about it still, because no, I'm not a robot, and unfortunately I tend to hold on to what a (I'm going to use a super heavy word for this person, so excuse me while I brace myself) friend will tell me, for usually one of two reasons: 1) that it's so shocking, I can't believe those words were directed toward me, and 2) that I've spent a considerable amount of time thinking, "Yeah, things are iffy, but not because of anything relevant or worth finding out about. Let's just all get along."

This time it's both. Because I had never heard those words being thrown specifically at me, and because the reasoning for them has apparently been going on for eight long months.

Some people have the ability to deliver words with such an impact that they reach your subconscious and mutilate it so bad you're left wondering what the heck just happened. And the words hurt with such a force, that for a period of time (in my case, sixteen days later) they keep coming back to you, kicking your ass a little harder, because apparently the initial beat up wasn't enough.

And I cringe at the thought of the aftermath. The fact that there are still so many unanswered questions. To which, honestly, half of me doesn't want answers. Half of me just doesn't want to know more. I just wanna go to work, and do my job, which I happen to be good at (mainly because I've been there forever, but you know what I mean); get my paycheck and keep things strictly professional. And for sixteen days I've managed to do that.

The other half of me is broken. It's tired and beat, and it wants to be frozen up for a while so she doesn't feel anything.  I want to know why this has been going on for eight months. Why was I not approached about this when it happened, or at least right after it happened; why the silence, the exclusion, the avoidance, the anti-bandage-ripping attitude that made me wonder so many nights what on Earth I did wrong. Does someone really deserve to live a lie for eight months, when she has proven to be open minded enough that you can tell her anything, because her skin is so ridiculously thick that, through it all, she will be OK?

I've said some rude things, I won't lie. But at the time, with the utmost honesty, I didn't realize they were rude. This is who I am, I push the envelope, I empower people to think big, to get their truths to their face and embrace who they are. To simply grow a pair, and to be able to take criticism. This world was made for the ready, for heaven's sake, not for the weak. And the people I'm with most of my time should already have figured out that I'm harmless. Yes, I may shock you with what I have to say, but it's only because I want you to be better, I KNOW you can be better. And it's none of my business, I was told. Guess what? If I consider you my friend, it is my business. I want nothing more than the best for you, and if I know you can be better for yourself and inspire those around you, and be as strong and beautiful as you can, I will find a way to tell you.

But apparently everything I've said around a specific clique has been taken in the worst way possible. My words and actions have been turned and I have been seen in a very unflattering light. I've been portrayed as manipulative, conniving, plotting, you name it, that was me. I feel like nothing I can do at this point can fix this. All I can do is apologize, hope that the wall they have probably formulated in their minds has at least a small window in it that I can at least leave my side of the story bundled up beside, waiting to be heard and believed.

When I discuss the issue with friends that know the matter, I'm inevitably told the same thing. "Let that rubbish go, you don't need to prove yourself to anyone. You have your friends that know who you are, and if these people have a preconceived notion of who you are, nothing that you say will change that". "They're not worse, but they're not better than you, either. They've probably said things about us, too, and they're most likely not stressing out about this in the least."

But I'm not one to just not care. I believe in the power of clarity, of closure and of acceptance. If I can as much as show at least one of these people, which I happen to respect for who they are, that above all else I never meant to make this personal or make to make them feel excluded afterward, or even so much as that my intentions have never had an ulterior motive, that'll be enough for me. And who knows, maybe they'll get and keep something positive from it too.

I know I'll never get answers to questions that have lingered for so long, and I'll figure out a way to make my peace with it. But it hurts. It hurts with an intensity, that I can't help but believe I must have been a VERY bad person in my previous life, and I'm paying for it harshly in this one. I've tried to confront, and to clear things up, and have had the opportunity denied to me like a door shut in my face on so many occasions. If this has been going on for eight months because of a series of misunderstandings, it would crush me. But I'll never know.

Eight months... Unbelievable. In the end, I assure you, I'd rather be called a drama-queen, than a coward. "This too shall pass.", they say. I'm sure it's correct. I just hope that by the time it does, no one's left wondering if what they did was right. Or wondering if they just threw away one of the greatest friendships they could ever have, all because they decided to keep quiet.


Saturday, July 19, 2014

Pesky, Little Bubble

One of my newest friends, who happens to live in a very far away land, taught me something last week. Most of my so called friends live "stuck in a bubble". They can't see past their own problems, happenings, and overall lives.

The only reason my new friend can be so sure about this, given he doesn't know the rest of my friends, is that it's unfortunately way too common these days. The monster that is egotistical social media, along with everyday undeserved praise, making everything "about me", and that newfound courage you inevitably get when you hit a certain age and all of a sudden you feel like you can take over the world in a second, can really take its toll on an otherwise super interesing personality.

We are, by virtue or defect, living in the era where Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other hazardous chemicals have made it its focal point to legitimately have their users perform those virtual screams of "Look at me!", "Read my status!", "Listen to the point I have to make!", or even "I don't really have a point, or something good to say at the moment,  or really anything positive to contribute to society, but look at the annoying shape I can make with my mouth while I'm taking a selfie! That takes talent!".

Now, don't think I'm up on a condescending horse here, for I too have experienced being virtually egocentric. You're looking at the proof. This blog used to have a good two hundred followers, and it used to be the center of my life. The fact that people moved on to Facebook and all the other aforementioned ventures, doesn't make me immune to the fact I was once wrapped up in a bubble that was far less than noticeable by me at the time. People went from wanting to read, to wanting to be read, and that's very much OK.

So why am I bringing it up? Why state the obvious when it seems like it's only getting worse, and why even bother to write these words, if my followers are no longer there?

It's simple, and twofold: first, I didn't start blogging with the hopes of becoming a "blogstar". It soothed me, relaxed me and it still does. Second, I do have strong hopes that my friends who do take a second to exit their pesky, little bubbles, and enter this passive-aggressive situation I'm describing, do it in a way that makes them understand that at some point we need to think big.

There are wars going on in the world. There are people dying every day, for reasons we wouldn't even be able to BEGIN to understand, because we're just so stuck in what's happening a mere mile around us. You can call me uptight, you can call me "Debbie-Downer", and you can keep saying I'm "getting way too serious" for you, but the same way life is too short to worry about the (apparently) inevitable, life is too short not to. There's a time to have fun, and to make it all about me, but there's also a time to learn, to become aware, to know what's happening in this home we were given.

Egoism is strong, but not necessarily powerful. Not when we're accomplishing nothing. Maybe you'll read this, raise an eyebrow, like me a little less and close this window, because after all, you don't need anyone to tell you what you're doing wrong, because let's face it, you can do no wrong. Can you?

But maybe, just maybe, you'll start to realize it's not all about you, it's time to think big, and if you can't physically give anything back, at least give it your thoughts. After all, the world put them there. And that's what's truly powerful.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need go find a nice, thick needle. Time to pop this sucker into oblivion and live just a little harder.


Sunday, January 19, 2014

This Old Knot

Stress is such a waste of time. I mean, seriously, what's the point? If it has a solution, why worry about the issue? And on the other hand, if it has no solution, once again, why worry?

It's like we're programmed to lose our hair (or have it  turn gray) over everything. Lack of money, lack of space, lack of privacy, lack of sex. There's a worry for each one of us, and it's bound to occupy our minds whether we like it or not. And no, gutter-heads, I don't have that last one!

I had this teacher in college, Professor Luis Santana, that would say he was actually able to decide what he was going to worry about, and when. If he had to have a nasty conversation on Monday morning, he wouldn't worry about it until that Monday morning. If he had a tedious ordeal to handle on Thursday afternoon, he didn't prep for it until Thursday morning.

I found it exquisitely amazing. And have always wanted to be able to do that. It's the epiphany of using logic. Not letting emotions take over you, not paying mind to the things that simply don't deserve it, not going insane over something that will resolve itself with time.

To have control over my thoughts, group them up and put them where they won't bother anyone, and decide when to ponder about them... is such a beautiful dream. A dream that someday I want to turn into reality.

Someday I want to get rid of this knot in my throat that's just so darned tight. I wanna be able to accept problems and decide if they're worth my sleep, my hunger and my above all, my tranquility. I want to show my brain that it doesn't rule me, that it's the other way around. That positivity can actually exist within me, and that I can portray it in my actions. I wanna be able to laugh at problems, challenges and issues, just like I have no problem laughing at myself.

This is beginning to sound like a sappy mantra. Sorry about that! Back to basics. One of my biggest flaws has always been worrying about people that are  perfectly fine. In other words, don't need me to worry about them. And in even better words, haven't the slightest interest or consideration in the fact that I worry about them. And in the latest establishment on the issue, have been rude responding to my worry. It hurts, but in the grand scheme of things, what really can I do but stop worrying and hope for the best? What can I do but know about them drinking into oblivion, put their life in the hands of God, and hope that some day they realize that all I ever wanted was their happiness?

At what point do I just back off and realize that I'm no one important in this person's life? At least not important enough that there would be some sort of two way street when it comes to basic communication? Why invest my worry in someone that clearly doesn't deserve it?

So many questions I'll probably never have the answers to. But so little I can do about it. I need to know what the absence of worry is about, really embrace it, detach myself from a senseless friendship. Let go of someone who just plain doesn't need me anymore. And deal with the stress as best as I can.

This is something I think I've never done before. At least, not with a friendship that got to possess so much intensity. Maybe I'll write about it again. Maybe my reaction will make things change. All I know is I'll never feel this way again. And I shouldn't. No one should have to stress about something as beautiful as friendship. I've already lost too much time.

Yani DLC

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Poisonous Silence

It stings. It feels like I have seven hundred bees injecting their poison into each one of my veins, repeatedly. Like if a Mack truck decided to run over my knees, over and over again. It hurts like nothing I've experienced in a very long time.

It burns. It feels like I'm slowly walking along the hallways of a burning house, feeling the flames piercing my skin, excruciatingly tearing off my face. Feeling my lungs get inundated with that deadly smoke. Feels like it won't stop.

It insists. Just when I think it'll get a little better, it makes me remember, and it hits me harder than before. It reminds me that it can be stronger than me. It convinces me that it's bigger than me. That I can't possibly get rid of it. That it'll do with me whatever it wants.

It is here. It will not go away any time soon. It will make its house in the edge of one of my ribs, and just tighten, and strain, and break me, and be as painful as it can be. It will have no mercy of me. It'll laugh straight at my face whenever I think I can forget it.

It's trapped. It has found a home in my soul and taken over. And it will last forever. Not with the same strength always, but it will frequently show up to flaunt its power. It'll never really leave. It's a part of me now. And I will never know another pain comparable to this, ever.

It will make me stronger. Just like everything else. Yet I will be weak for a long time. Because I became a slave to this twisted dream. But it was my dream. It will never be a nightmare, because it's too beautiful to be called that.

It makes me weak. And it'll make me strong. It changed me, and I will never be the same. It passed the test of time, but not the test of circumstance. It is mine, but I'll never have it. It's what I'm made of, but I'll never embrace it. It's what I want, but not what I need.

It will not be resolved, because it's not a problem. It will not be measured, because I could never show it in full effect. It will never spread its wings... Because it never learned to fly.

It hurts, but it's mine, right? I can't die of this, correct? A body in pain can still live, can't it? A burned soul will still find it's place in this sick world, won't it?

This sweet, gentle poison of seven hundred bees traveling through me... It can't possibly kill me...

... Can it?

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Overthinking It

In a conversation, supposedly when you keep quiet, you let the other person assume whatever they want to. If you want the other person to go totally insane, go ahead and ignore their comment, or make vague comments in return, or simply, just smile. It's the oldest trick in the conversation book, and after all these centuries, still the most effectively annoying.

If I had a dollar for every time one of my friends yacked away regarding how their relationship is falling apart, or how so and so dressed like a total slut today, or even how they can't figure out how to handle an issue at work, and I made it a point to let them figure it out on their own, and in turn they overthought about it and assumed I don't give a damn... well, I'd be out of debt.

When did silence become an insult? When did we stop hoping for the best? At what point did we stop assuming our listening friend has enough to worry about and just backed off? Have we become so egotistical that we can't see past what we perceive as the other person's thought, and it's so blindly that we may never get to truly gaze upon their actual concern?

I know what your must be thinking: her new year's resolution is to stop over thinking. But come on, like I (or anyone with friends that are so hard to read) could ever pull that off. This is more the usual rant about how we should really go the extra mile and simply communicate better!

If you know someone over thinks things, why in God's green Earth would you help them? If the second you turn your head they're biting off all their finger nails, shedding out more hair than usual or just not making eye contact... or making too much eye contact! Pick it up, be a pal, offer answers. And if you don't wanna ask what's wrong, at least make the effort to let your friend know you're there for them.

Help them stay off the premises of your business, by being very clear that there really is no business to be concerned with at all. Stop ignoring and start communicating. Words are definitely underrated. When was the last time you left voicemail for someone? No, ya didn't, cause it's too annoying, too time consuming to get through it. Send an impersonal, tactless text message instead. When did we replace feelings and tones with LOLs and emoticons?

God, this post is about as messy and as all over the place as I've been lately. I'm beginning to hate getting old. But if it makes you feel any better, that's it, that's my rant. On to bigger, better things. A completely new year awaits and is almost here. Time to shape up this old body now that I've lost the necessary pounds (now, there's a cliché of a resolution!). Time to offer a better face to these days of uncertainty. Time to stop over thinking so much, bring back asking, and doing everything I can to avoid being ignored.

Get ready world. Operation "Just talk it out" is in full force. Gosh... that is one lame name for an operation... Maybe I can pull something cool off, like the Ninja Report, lol... Ok, here goes... Operation Samurai is ready to be launched!

Hey, I promised less over thinking, not more awesomeness ;-)

Happy 2014, my great ones.


Friday, December 20, 2013

ReconnEXing with an Old Friend

I always make fun of Yvette this time of the year, because she has this ex-boyfriend that always "checks in" with her around the holidays. I give her a "wicked" hard time because the sucker always hits her up around Christmas. "What, does he, get cold??" I always ask. It's a good running joke.

All kidding aside though, reconnecting with someone is definitely underrated. Be it something tricky, like an ex-boyfriend, or something obvious, like a family member, sometimes it's just so much worth exploring. The rush you get when someone that had been a crucial part of your life years before, and for whatever reason had to exit it, all of a sudden reappears in your life, may very well be like the perfect Christmas gift. It truly is priceless.

Specifically with an ex, a million questions, even if only subconsciously, cross your mind. What are they up to now? How far are they from me, in both presence and in thought? What has changed? Dear God, what has not!?! Will it ever be as intense as before, or will it be calm and caring, and collected and super mild? Did they go through the same thing I did? Did they miss me as much (or as little) as I did? And there's one question that at some point one inevitably asks themself: What would have happened?

What if this person wouldn't have exited my life? Would they still be around? Would we have had a strong relationship? And most importantly, would that relationship have survived all the tests that would come with time, and would we still be together?

I've always said an ex is like an ex job. Whatever went wrong the first time, goes ten times worse the second. So run like it's the apocalypse! But I'm not a fan of generalizing, so I won't. What if the, uh... job is so good, you need it? What if the, uh... satisfaction you used to get gave you such a high, that you never really recovered from it, and once in a while you still have withdrawals?

Be it the feel of their touch, the beauty of their face, the rhythm of the conversations you had with them, the way they gave you their restless, undivided attention, or simply the way they looked at you and you felt like you owned the world... You missed that. You find yourself feeling so strange... ly awesome! And it's goofy, and maybe even inappropriate at times. But it's there, you can't help it. Your feelings weren't dead. They were merely frozen. It doesn't necessarily mean you're still in love with them. God, no. But the ego boost is nevertheless exhilarating.

And the balancing act of not letting this "melting work" get in the way of your everyday... Boy, that can get exhausting. The care with which you explain and review with your loved ones that this will not interfere with your life, or mean anything more than that, reconnecting. If you even go there! Because how many people actually explain something like this to their significant other? Is that something they would even understand or... encourage? Nah, most of it stays in seclusion, a pseudo-complicated secret, or a vague white lie. Because it really doesn't go anywhere, so it's ok.

... Or does it? For others, it can get so twisted. Reconnecting with an ex can put in jeopardy everything they've worked for that makes up their current situation. Old flames spark, some limiting themselves to flirting, others leading to simple (or not so simple) infidelity. If never revealed, the most intense chapters of people's lives get written. If otherwise, relationships, good, durable, meaningful relationships can get sawed in half never to be put back together again.

I have a great relationship with all my exes. We do NOT regularly keep in touch. It's more of a check-in, make sure all is well, talk to ya next year, kinda deal. Super platonic. Rarely ever does it go farther than a few Facebook messages. Cause that's the other thing. Our egos are so ridiculously large, that we have to have them around in our social media. To remind us of the fact that we were once important to them, that the new significant other could never be as hot as us, or simply that... we won!!

So, my dear friends, the next time an ex knocks at your door, don't ignore them. Especially now, it is the holidays, after all. It can be a beautiful thing to rediscover the awesome you that you put in a box and smashed into pieces, with that entire relationship. And it doesn't hurt to keep the peace with the person who may hold a few secrets over your head. Just... also please keep your pants on.

Everyone deserves a hug. This is all virtual, of course, like in the form of a tweet, or a Facebook message. If they actually show up at your door... once again, run like it's the apocalypse!

Happy Holidays, my darlings.