What a year it's been. I quit my job. I moved 1000 miles across country to my new home. I started a new job. I refused to compromise my beliefs and lost a friend because of it. I traveled so far. I fell so hard in love. Then I lost that love. I found out what it's really like to hate your job. I lost 50 pounds. I decided to actively pursue my dreams. I endured more surgeries. Friends died. I finally rose up against my sister. I was lost. I quit my job again. Family died. I bonded with my brother. I took up yoga. And spinning. I actually celebrated a birthday. I found two jobs, both in things I adore. I moved, again. I discovered I was pregnant. I gained an understanding of true love. I miscarried. I let go of the past. I learned about the person I am. I realized the kind of person I will always be. I reconnected with an old friend. She reunited me with a piece of myself I lost years ago. I grew.

2013 taught me so much. about me. about the people I choose to keep close. about the world around me. about life. It was an emotional roller-coaster. But I have truly grown....mentally and spiritually. I've found myself. I see things so much clearer. Operation Three Ten was born this year. Based off of 1 Peter 3:10 - "Whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit." December 2013 - 31 days, 10 things a day. 10 times, you discover what you are grateful for. By today, the 31st day, 310 things will exist in your memory. 310 things to take into 2014, to remind you why it's all worth it. I'm very much looking forward to 2014. So for December 31st, I'm grateful for -

1) liberation
2) emotions
3) every day
4) intelligence
5) imagination
6) creativity
7) discovery
8) love in all forms
9) freedom of expression
10) my life....me



i'm grateful for....

1) my legacy
2) my future children
3) my past children
4) belief in reincarnation
5) the Bible
6) Faith
7) being loved
8) meditation
9) reputation
10) character
11) destiny
12) motherhood

13) hypocritical humility
14) honest arrogance
15) friends i've lost
16) friends i've made
17) chances
18) my friend becoming a mom
19) being a part of something much bigger than me
20) being so non-judgmental



i'm grateful for...

1) red-heads
2) Bluetooth ear pieces
3) resolve
4) GPS
5) New Years plans!
6) goals for 2014
7) canvas posters
8) having someone to share experiences with
9) being 28
10) living
11) rediscovering my spirituality
12) embracing my sexuality
13) being different
14) serenity
15) retail
16) great customer service
17) clutches
18) accordion wallets
19) listen to your heart by Alicia Keys

20) the climb by Miley Cyrus



i'm grateful for...

1) kindred spirits
2) learning to walk away
3) reconnecting
4) healthy living
5) Josue
6) regret
7) being admired
8) making others happy
9) moving forward
10) ramen noodles
11) encouragement
12) standards
13) being understood
14) SNF/MNF theme songs
15) sarcasm
16) compassion
17) a part time job with flex hours
18) well-maintained facial hair
19) kingdom hearts
20) scarves



I'm grateful for....

1) scrapbooks and scrapbooking
2) green truck pub
3) my personal
4) Papilotte
5) Hartsfield/JFK airports
6) strangers
7) photo albums
8) fanboys

9) suicide hotlines 
10) being perfectly imperfect
11) watching the sheriff ghost past me
12) the presence of justice
13) to have seen a black president
14) domino, the game
15) working late hours
16) the game have you ever
17) friends that know my allergies
18) friends who care about my well being
19) home videos
20) childhood



I am grateful for....
1) these visions I keep having of my future husband - I don't know who he is but damned if he doesn't make me smile every time
2) my lungs - my blood may not always work in tandem to get me the oxygen, but they are one body part that functions properly
3) Shane - he got a lot of things for me when my parents couldn't and never asked for any kind of repayment. now I pay it forward the same way
4) kindness - of strangers and familiars. when I needed it most, the right people just stepped in and gave of themselves
5) censors - without them censoring every other word....my brain wouldn't even register that some songs need 'censorship'
6) my scars - the little reminders
7) cruise control - for those leg cramps on long trips
8) stars - the sky is beautiful
9) jennifer - I think her words might have just found me and saved me
10) being able to see the growth of friends - i love that we can grow together
11) inspiration - strikes at the oddest times
12) kimye and bey-z both having girls - that means they can't grow up fall in love and have some super baby that makes me kill. everyone. -_-
13) Bill Goldberg - me & my dad were able to bond over that man
14) Batista - ...he's so pretty
15) Brock Lesnar - he's a BEAST
16) Big E - ...all the big guys. LOVE them. want to see them fight each other in some reckless 4 way elimination match
17) no traffic - i love getting home in 15 mins when it normally takes 40
18) movie nights - the simple stuff makes me so happy

19) snail mail - these notes I will treasure forever
20) new journeys - who likes doing the same thing day in and day out every single week?



I am grateful for....

1) my fellow medical workers - they saved my brother's life today
2) my nieces - they're a blessing for me and for him
3) bisexuality - although I'm no longer sure that I'm bisexual as much as...I can unbiasedly fall in love with anyone, as long as they have a good heart
4) people - the degree (it's not even a level anymore) of stupidity we've succumbed to is often downright hilarious.
5) rediscovering an old love - there's truly nothing like it in the world...
6) Xmas dinner with family - friends & family make the holidays a little nicer
7) my jack hat - it's a conversation starter, it's sexy on me, and it keeps my bald head warm. win-win-win
8) "good morning/night" texts - someone is thinking of me
9) Tristan - so many games I never would have seen, so much of life I never would have lived
10) Rose gold - I hate yellow gold. rose gold goes so much better with silver or white gold
11) my angel necklace - the sweetest way to remember Austin, given in gift form
12) an early paycheck - one of the best ways to welcome the holidays
13) gift cards - a quick, easy, and highly useful gift
14) fulfilling a promise - it makes me feel good to know I can keep my word
15) Darren - made sure I kept my cool around my sister today, even when she pushed those buttons
16) pasta - I'm a fat Italian at heart. it has to be in the genes somewhere
17) red velvet cake - ....it's red velvet cake
18) safe travels - as much driving as we do, I'm glad we get everywhere in one piece
19) wine - great when alone...better with company
20) comic-con - it's like the best of the world all wrapped up in one place



i'm grateful for...

1) my football knowledge - i can enjoy the game even when my teams aren't winning
2) being mostly fearless - I'm not limited by banal things
3) pre-Xmas dinner with friends - today was a great day
4) getting out of work early - always good, especially on christmas eve
5) Shaun T 5-min workouts - no excuse to skip a workout
6) my grandpapas - although I didn't have them in my life, I feel they watch over me
7) my grandmamas - i did have them both in my life, and they spoiled baby Jax
8) my nana - she didn't spoil me; she taught me how to care
9) Uncle Archie/Uncle Lefty - i looked forward to seeing them every single time. i hate u tobacco
10) salads - sometimes I just really want some spinach & arugula
11) my imperfections - they make me unique
12) my insecurities - they keep me grounded
13) military personnel - they keep me safe
14) thunderstorms - they scare me sometimes, but that's why I keep my friends so close

15) knowing my worth - who else will
16) having an upstairs apartment - f3ck clothes. i can be naked all day in my house. walk in and strip
17) southern hospitality - these people....the level of genuine niceness is incredible. I can't help but smile every day
18) the men I get to work with every day - that eye candy though
19) the kids I get to see every day - that playful innocence warms every inch of me

20) firefighters - for two reasons. yes.



i'm grateful for...

1) being fought for - it's nice to have a reminder of that outside support
2) compliments - i love confidence boosters
3) being told I'm beautiful - because I forget sometimes
4) my freckles - they're a part of me, my mom, my lineage
5) awkward moments - lead to new doors being opened
6) quality time - one of the foundations of good relationships
7) long conversations - the other foundation of good relationships
8) a Capella singing groups - the talent of a capellas...astounding
9) my memories - subtle good (or bad) reminders of things long since passed
10) "just because" gifts - just because
11 & 12) Revelations - the Bible book, and the actual occurrences in real life
13) almond milk - for the lactose and soy intolerant, we can still have cereal
14) Christmas songs - sometimes they just lighten that mood
15) karma - bad or good....you get what you deserve
16) serendipity - made me rethink my stance on a few things this year. don't know how I ever looked at it any other way
17) my god parents - all that crazy kept me out of trouble
18) the rain - perfect for dancing
19) kisses - the way to express love
20) intimate moments - can turn a terrible day around real fast.



I am grateful for...

1) diesel - these shoes are epically comfortable
2) fossil - every single one of my watches. ...stylish
3) random white baby - when he reached out and grabbed my hand that cold fall day, I knew my destiny was in raising children
4) opportunity - it comes at the right time
5) forgiveness - it takes a lot of weight off of my shoulders
6) happiness - sometimes it is a choice, and I'd rather be happy than wallow in perpetual sadness
7) my barber - i like having someone I can trust to make my head pretty
8) sleeping in - there are days when it's just so necessary
9) communication - i hate being in the dark
10) personal growth - i'm proud of me
11) my zune - f3ck a ipad. my zune has done me no wrong ever.
12) consistent people - daddy taught me early that consistency is key to longstanding things
13) being able to swim - i love the water
14) my dreams - they make me face everything i'm in denial about
15) winter - makes for good nights of cuddling
16) summer - i need the sun, and with the summer sun comes SWIMMING
17) the rain - i don't know why, but it makes me think of fresh starts...washing away the old
18) the will to travel - i feel bad for those that limit themselves to their own four walls
19) daydreams - escapes from my reality are great for the psyche
20) great models of what true love looks like - so i'll know it when I get to experience it one day



I am grateful for...

1) cuddling - ...i like being close to people
2) Duke Crocker - if I have to choose between Duke & Nathan, it'll be me on Duke every. night.
3) massages - my body just needs it sometimes
4) squats - this ass though...
5) Key & Peele - Dan Smith is everything
6) popcorners - my favorite little snack. fuck pringles. I can never have just one of those
7) my eyes - not everyone can see those sunsets that I love
8) my ears - not everyone can hear the music that makes me smile
9) my nose - not everyone can smell the flowers, or bread baking. or the signs of danger like something burning
10) my heart - as much as it hurts to love, i'm glad it has such a great capacity for love. and pain.
11) adventurers - when you put down the smart phone, the video games, and the tablet....you'd be surprised what you get into
12) Dominican College - seriously one of the best times of my life
13) hotel living - how many students/people can say they lived in a hotel for a year? daily housekeeping, room service and ALL
14) Six Flags 2012 - riding Kingda Ka in an empty theme park while Hurricane Sandy roamed a few hundred miles off that jersey shore...we were kings
15) South Beach 2003 - we bonded. RFK & Naz came together and it worked
16) my sexuality - I like guys. I like girls. ...I just like people
17) day planners - my life got ridiculously busy this year. 2014 is going to own me
18) 2013 - this year taught me a lot about growing up. really growing up. not the shit half of my generation tries to pass off as being grown
19) my common sense - seriously, it has saved me from so much bullshit. and laughed in my face when I outright ignored it
20) The Simpsons - a cartoon almost as old as me. a cartoon so old and so ahead of it's time that big business can't even put a muzzle on it. talk about creative freedom.

today, it got easy again. 1/3 of the way there!



I'm grateful for...

1) my free round trip ticket - when i'm ready, i can go home
2) clock out time - i get to run home and dive into my bed
3) macys - ma makes that friends and family go FAR
4) cruises - who isn't grateful for a fantastic voyage
5) sunrises - i'm just a fan of the sun....I wish I could live under the sun. talk about a mood elevator
6) open-road driving - gives me time under the sun, and with my own thoughts
7) RFK - I actually ended up making most of my long-term connections during those years
8) Theo - he actually taught me to appreciate myself and love me
9) Arbor Mist - on those nights (or mornings) when I really need a drink
10) Spongebob Squarepants - he's got seth mcfarlane humor wrapped up in a pretty children's package
11) Netflix - saves lives
12) Vistaprint - keeps me stocked in writing supplies
13) Molecular gastronomy - nerd stuff and I LOVE IT
14) Treehouse hotels - I can experience nature without being thrown into the camping side
15) fondue - it's sophisticated, but not too sophisticated for me and my friends to go
16) "bucket" lists - they force people out of their comfort zones
17) waffles - with bananas, I will have breakfast
18) Keurigs - the most amazing invention....apple cider, hot chocolate, TEA
19) my soul mate - the possibility of one day starting our journey together gives me hope on lonely days
20) my enemies - they make me want to be better. better than me, and better than them

it's getting a little harder to pull out 20...



1) Luke - for helping me out of a pretty dark place
2) living alone - I wanted to live with someone. I understand the many benefits of living with someone. but to be on my own, it's been nice
3) Doctor Who - and David Tennant...great damn show. more sci-fi wonder
4) Supernatural - I think because it makes people look the other way at religion. so much myopia
5) cigarettes - in times of extreme duress, they've saved me
6) ice - what has actually become (as a side effect of pica) a healthier? replacement for cigarettes
7) Benadryl - for those sleepless nights
8) my primary birthmark - it makes me unique, and for some reason makes my patients happy when they 'play' with it
9) number block - they don't have to know you've blocked them and you never have to be bothered by their calls or rude texts
10) wellstar wellness - it's never been so easy for me to find good for me foods....and then gym it out afterwards
11) wellstar family - they welcomed me with open arms. I feel like I've been with them forever
12) chicken soup for the teenage soul - made my pre-teen & HS years slightly less awkward
13) the driver on 75 - hit those breaks, saved us BOTH a date with the sheriff
14) this and my curvy LJ - they've allowed me to see the endless loop I've been running all these years
15) false/short-term friends - they remind me to appreciate the ones who stand by relentlessly
16) pomegranate cranberry scented scrubs - i smell good, i feel good
17) Neil Gaiman - this dude...just writes for me
18) Amazon - just about everything I have ever needed, has come to my house in an Amazon 2-day shipping box
19) Alecia Moore - she's the Neil Gaiman of music for me....
20) Carrot/Carrot2 - the best damn apps I've downloaded. ever. period.

...almost halfway there



what am I grateful for?

1) Austin - who knew you could love a little person so much without ever meeting them?
2) my pillows - honestly, if I had to choose, I'd go without a bed before I went without pillows
3) NCW - as hellacious as it was working under such disorganized management, I wouldn't trade the time I spent with my staff or my patients for anything.
4) John - a friend after the fact. I can't imagine where I'd be without some of his insight
5) iron - I'm seriously almost sure is die without it. or at least look that way to everyone. fuck anemia
6) social media - facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, Sony, Instagram...they've all shown me exactly the person I don't want to be. not now, not ever again
7) days off - I can sit by the water and just...be
8) nude beaches - yes
9) family - through watching them, I know what I will and won't do to and for my children. because I know what happens when you make the wrong choice
10) my smile - it may hide a lot of pain, but it brings so much joy to the people that see it.
11) my spirit - she's been here before, and she's nothing if not a fighter
12) religion - as much as it irks me, it's one of the few things left that actually manages to bring people together
13) my brothers - they didn't pick on me. they stepped in to help curtail the abuse from my sister
14) fight club - taught me that the real world isn't rosy. it's gritty and dark and scary
15) Steven J - showed me early in life what real love is. now I know it when I see it every day
16) Steven A - showed me what it is to be truly selfless and to care so genuinely about helping other people succeed. ...there honestly won't ever be another
17) lilies - I absolutely hate flowers... but it's just something about their simplistic beauty that just warms me
18) Jack & Sally - because that's how love should be
19) my new-found confidence - or maybe it's my attitude. whatever had me wake up one day, cut off ALL my hair and make this look good
20) my evolution - I can honestly say that despite every hangup, every snag every issue...I've managed to grow as a person. and it's made me better. and given me so much clarity

 I can't believe i've actually managed 60 of these already...its like a workout for the soul



I'm grateful for...

1) cheese - the second greatest comfort food
2) semi-classic disney movies - 90s disney was my everything
3) my job - it's not quite what I want, but it's close. it let's me help people
4) music - what would life be like without it
5) full moons - i can make wishes on them
6) wishes - they save lives
7) my strength - it's wavered a lot in the the past 8 years but it has never failed me
8) these fibroids - i have an extra appreciation for the health I do have because I know when they want, they can make my life pure hell
9) my journals - they allow me to express my deepest fears, concerns, and feelings without judgment. I'm also able to look back on the past because of them
10) my car - i love to drive. she lets me get out and see whole new things every time i hit the road
11) my heritage - being spanish, irish, native american, and african-american is the coolest thing. I find it hard to be biased in relationships
12) postsecret - i relate to so many of those postcards. It's hard to feel lonely.
13) my imagination - i love to dream and fantasize
14) children - the one consistent theme throughout my life has been my love for kids and the need to help them in any way I can
15) Karina - the closest person to me. I don't know where I would be without her
16) yoga - talk about centering the mind
17) CM Punk - whether it's the character or Phil is actually that lyrically gifted, I love to hear him talk. SO often he says what others won't say, can't say. pushing those boundaries. I. love it.
18) my tattoos - "tattoos are like wearing your heart on your sleeve. It's about showing who you are on the inside by showing it on the outside" - CM Punk
19) poetry - sometimes other people put into words what I'm unable to, and it's amazing
20) naps - i'm just so sleepy all of the time

Operation Three Ten

I inquired of a couple friends the story behind this "Operation Three Ten" that infected my facebook timeline before I cut everything off. Interestingly enough, it's got a religious back story. Of course, yea, I don't subscribe to the whole system of religion but as always...my curiosity is my lead.The story goes, that for each day in December, you record 10 things that you're grateful for. By month's end, you've got 310 things to culminate the year with. The religion behind it? 1 Peter 3:10 - whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit.

I can dig it. But since I'm half a month late, I think I'll double up for a spell. 20 a day (so far) has been tough as shit. But...it's forcing me to look at my life, and take note every day, of the things i'm grateful for, big and small. The universe is working overtime to keep me writing..."the writing's on the wall" after all. Talk about irony...



What am I grateful for....

1) for Brooklyn, NY - my first home
2) for Stockbridge - my new home
3) my mother - as dumb as some of my decisions have been, she's been relentlessly supportive
4) my father - as un-smart as he is, he taught me early on how to fight
5) my curiosity - it keeps me interested in new things
6) my education - i see the world differently because of it
7) my twin nephews - it's amazing how different two literal peas in a pod can be, and how much they influence me
8) Haven - my new TV obsession
9) Syfy - Although they kill all my shows after 5 seasons, they brought me Warehouse 13, Haven, and Eureka....so missed
10) Shadow - the loyalty of this cat is incredible. He always knows when to curl up with me and keep me company
11) Cartoons - they are the only connection I think I have left to my childhood, although the cartoons I watch now aren't child-friendly
12) BOOKS - a consistent escape from reality
13) football - the Sundays, Mondays and Thursdays between September and February are just. magical.
14) my god-parents - She balances out his crazy so well
15) my phone - I wouldn't be able to keep in contact with my parents...or maybe it's the other way around
16) Aunt Cheryl - I'll be damned if I didn't pick up a part of her spirit when she died
17) lavender - it's one of the few scents that just perk me up
18) past relationships - good and bad, they've had a part in the person I am today
19) chocolate - the BEST comfort food
20) for being me...just for being me

Here's to forever

I can remember eons ago. we talked. for hours on end. I miss that. I miss who you were. I miss who we were. But I guess that's gone now. Life has taken that away. I suppose I need to accept reality. I need to stop clinging to the past, because it's not coming back. We'll always have our younger days right?

Death to social media or death of human interaction?

I really didn't want to write this entry. then, I reeeeally didn't want to post this entry. but sometimes posts aren't for the writer. sometimes words really just need to be said. I've been harboring this little bubble of frustration for a couple days and I just can't take it anymore.

I was told to unplug for 48 hours as one of my 28s. That means no calls, no texts, no social fucking media. I thought it would be hard at first. But I've found that the number of people who talk to me consistently enough to notice a 48 hour absence, is a very small number. on top of that, not being so attached to that world allowed me to get out and explore my own. honestly, I unplug randomly for days at a time now and literally TWO people notice.

but this whole thing made me think. I started thinking back to school. all the things I learned from actual against-the-grain professors. and I'm actually appalled. the more I unplug, the less I find myself needing or even wanting to plug back in. I like going out. I like exploring the world. I like trying new things. I DONT like worry about what the next person is doing. I DONT like being afraid I've missed something that isn't even all that important. I DONT like being a slave to social fucking media.

honestly...my generation. and many that will come behind us. are screwed. we as a group of people are more disconnected than ever. we would sooner text, iChat, facebook, tweet, or some other crap before we pick up a phone, write a letter, or even venture out of the house. I shudder to think of what writing will even be like in the future since NO ONE WRITES ANYMORE. it's all typing. all of it. everything. computers. I've come to understand why I gravitate towards these 'adventurous' people. it's not because they're adventurous. it's because they'd rather turn the electronics off and actually engage in human interaction. I didn't realize how much I missed that. I say fuck it. I'm over facebook. I'm over twitter. I'm over Instagram. I refuse to live my life one 'like' at a time. I'm casting off the shackles of social media. I'm turning off the computer and all of the all-too-accessible
apps. I'm getting back to real life.

One of my professors said something along these lines once - "the more connected we are, the more distant we become". what will be our endgame?


Busy bee

Today I learned something about me. I am not a homebody. At least not when I can help it. Luke came by and made a day of our lunch date. I finally got out and explored the neighborhood. I didn't realize how much was really so close to me. I could walk to half of the places I frequent! There's so much we can do that we could have been doing for weeks now. It always takes the right person to push you that extra bit. Ugh...now I feel like work is getting in the way of life. There are so many parks and diners and trails and lounges for me to get out and explore. Today, lunch. Tomorrow, football mania. Next week, botanical gardens. ....I didn't even know there was a botanical gardens here!

Tonight though....he learns about Haven and Doctor Who. No one is immune!


Such a disappointment, when people don't live up to expectations.

Sometimes all you can do is....end it.


Generation lost

Behold, a generation lost to narcissism. A populace who believes that no experience is worth having unless it has been uploaded, and received it's fair share of hits.



I can see why people pitched such a fit over Varsity Blues. Back when it came out the reception was nothing short of unabashed horror. Who can blame the public? A movie depiciting the most racially stereotypical example of white people of that time. And then to set it in Texas? The nerve. But while everyone (of a particular group) was so wrapped up in the surface of the movie, they completely missed the symbolism of the whole thing. The overtly oppressive ruler who everyone is afraid to stand up to..and individual who they go as far as explaining away the wretched behavior of. And it takes the demise of more than one individual on the receiving end to get one person to lead the charge and rise up against the oppressor.

If those athletes are nota reference for....any number of troubled groups of people anywhere in the world. And that ridiculous man of a coach who did nothing but use them to further his own needs. How did people not see this when they flocked to the movies? Why do we rarely bother to look beyond the surface of things? The world would be a little grittier but so much more enriching.



Find a moment to look yourself in the mirror and start asking yourself those uncomfortable questions:

Am I maximizing my life to its full potential?

Am I being kind to all or most people that I come in contact with?

Am I waking up every day with good intentions towards others?

When I apologize is it sincere?

Do I only show up for people or things if I'm getting something out of it?

What is my DNA make-up?

If I were to leave this earth tomorrow what would they say about me?

Sometimes you have to look yourself in the mirror and ask those hard questions. And if you don't like the answers, it's time for a change



While I was home, I decided to tell my mother about the miscarriage. I don't really have anyone in my circle that I can relate it to, and as far as I can tell support groups are hard to come by. She wasn't pleased. She gave me the usual rhetoric about stability and family and having a foundation before doing all that - which I understand - and I've taken it to heart. But she also told me what I needed to hear. She sat with me and asked how I was feeling, physically and mentally. She told me how to take care of myself, because the physical healing is slow. She listened when I told her how excited I was, and all the dreams I had. She hugged me tight when I started to cry. She even told me the full story about my two brothers that she lost before luck gave her me. I've never heard her talk about them. Only once in passing did she even mention Walter, the one just before me.

I understand her a little more now, a little better. And I feel better. My behavior, my reactions, my feelings are entirely normal. I needed the affirmation.


Weekend in review

Holy cow. I went home for my family's annual Christmas party. I was literally home for 72 hours. Roughly 18 of those were spent in some semblance of sleep. The other 54 were spent running. Running from Former Job 2 to Former Job 1. Running from Former job 1 to the hospital. Running errands with ma. Playing chauffeur for dad. Stopping in with my godparents. Skating to Jersey to see a college buddy. Skating back to NYC to lend support to a high school friend. And finally landing in the Christmas party that took me there in the first place. Even when that ended, I had to wake up early yesterday to pack and prepare for a visit from another college buddy before heading to the airport. I'm still not actually sure how. I. did it. I've never done that before. I never want to do that again. That took a toll on my everything.

I was happy to see everyone. I saw many more people than I intended or expected to. It was open arms from friends, family, and extended family. I've been avoiding home since I left. Keeping minimal contact except for those that came in to visit me here. It wasn't anything against them, but my main reason for leaving NY was to get away from all of the drama. the negativity. the bad blood. I just didn't want to get pulled back in once I got out. I didn't realize what that was doing to me. Until I got home. When your own parents don't recognize you because of how different you look, it's time to take stock. I see me every day, I don't notice these things. But the first comment I got from everyone, even long-time friends, was how great I look. I haven't taken any pictures since I left. I've got one or two from the summer wedding, but even that was months ago. It didn't help them any that I cut off all of my hair. I actually had to stifle a laugh as an old friend asked me out, thinking I was someone completely new. I'm not the same person that left New York 8 months ago - not at all. Not mentally, emotionally, or physically. I'm so glad.



"For something to be reborn, there has to be an acknowledgement of something that died. We all have moments in our lives where a piece of us dies. But there has to be a grieving. There has to be a reckoning. You can’t move forward without comprehending and dealing with the losses that have occurred."

There are things that I'm learning died long ago, and I just wasn't willing to see it. To accept it. And seeing it now, a piece of me has indeed died. And now I have to work on the afters of that loss.


Human Condition?

"When your back is turned, fake friends decide to get others on their side and turn people against you"

"Don't worry about what people say behind your back. They are the people who are finding faults in your life instead of fixing the faults in their own life"

I don't understand how people work. I sit and I listen to what (most) people do when relationships go sour. All facets of relationships. It's like people are compulsively driven to divulge the most disturbing, horrifying, personal things about an individual to others. I've sat back and watched former lovers, family members and friends react that way. In public no less. I was even guilty of it when I was younger. It does nothing but make me uncomfortable now. And a little sad. I'm so thankful for Sociology. It has changed the way I view and approach people. Maybe it's all a defense mechanism. We feel better about ourselves if we can in a way put someone else lower than us. It's as if they weren't happy when things were going well, or were pretending to be. Can one bad experience really sour you on life and everyone all together?

When I told my mother what I discovered a former friend was doing with my trust in her, she had two things to say to me - "be careful who you call a friend" and "don't allow yourself to go to that level". But I never had the urge to do that. I never felt the need to run around and tell everyone everything about her. It seemed...juvenile to me. And I have my integrity. The more people I hear that she's "told about me", the more I pity her. It's a shame that she feels she needs to validate her existence, feel important...relevant....by discussing me with whoever will entertain her.

There are a few lines from Survivor that flashed across my mind the instant she started spiraling -
I'm not gon blast you on the radio, I'm not gon lie on you and your family, You know I'm not gon diss you on the internet, cause my mama taught me better than that.

She did teach me better, early in life. I'm glad for it. School solidified it for me.



I came home yesterday. It was amazing. Sure, I've only been gone a few months, but they made me feel like it's been years. I saw some old friends. And some new ones. I saw my patients.  I didn't realize how much I missed them until I came back. I know my friends will always be there, in one way or another. I don't know how long my patients will be around. Three of them have gone in the few months I've been away. Being back, it's become insurmountably obvious how much I've grown. When did that happen?

Regardless, I don't believe that whole thing "you can't go home". I go home when I wanna. I just have to accept that I'm changing. And so is home.


For Better or Worse

2013 has been a year of proposals. Three friends have all taken that big step into matrimony, the most recent this week. I just love happy endings. They make me so hopeful for my own future. I wonder what waits for me down the road. 
They keep me positive. Congratulations and infinite well wishes =)


Round up

A few weeks ago I took on 28 tasks to complete during the course of my 28th year. I had four really good contributors and in the end, my list came out looking fantastic. I'm well on my way to covering them all - I've tackled 5 and I'm only 3 months in to the year. On Saturday, I took on one more. I've been talking to a friend, an RN, about a lot of issues - particularly my health and what it's been doing to my mental state. He suggested I add one more task to my list, a considerably small one. I should try to update my journal(s) every day for the month of December. I've tried to before, always fallen off for one reason or another. Or maybe I just allowed myself to be distracted from doing it. Either way, I've committed to updating at least one outlet every day this month. I think it may actually work in my favor. I can sum up the inception, progression, evolution and cessation of this year. It's been up and down, and I'll have my reference going in to 2014. I'll have reminders. I never turn down a challenge.



"The people we are in relationships with are always a mirror, reflecting our own beliefs. And simultaneously we are mirrors, reflecting their beliefs. So relationships are one of the most powerful tools for growth. If we look honestly at our relationships, we can see so much about how we have created them"

There are reasons why we have so many types and levels of relationships in our lives. If they wither or if they flourish, they all serve a purpose. They, along with environmental factors, help shape us and who we are. In looking back at all of my relationships - family, friends, romantic...past and present included - I can see how every decision made. or not made. affected them. affected me. For bettor or worse, this is me. And I own the person I've become. I'm anxious to get to know the individual I will be.



"If you hate your job, find a new one
If you hate your relationship, find a new one
If your life is too stressful, find out why and fix it
Don’t medicate yourself to the point of becoming complacent with your unhappiness.

If you’re unhappy - find out why, and fix it. It may take some work to get your life in order, but anything worth doing takes some effort. Don’t take the easy way out."

What a year it's been. I've had realizations of self and of others. I've had revelations of my future, and life in general. I'm on my way to 29. No time like the present to start my life. It's time I start living for me. I can't keep trying to break in everyone else, especially if they aren't ready. I don't want to be ok with my unhappy anymore. No one should be. There are people in much worse off situations than me and they are able to see silver linings somewhere. No more feeling sorry for myself. Not when I can change the situation. I know why I'm unhappy, I've deduced the three primary reasons. And I'm putting things in motion so that I can have a fresh start in the new year. I started off 2013 in a good place because I made the decision to leave a job that abused me, that led me to hate going in to work. I aim to start 2014 in a similar place; it's what I need.



a friend came at me with the wildest quote today - "Money motivates people, but no one ever learns from the problems it causes. People act out of selfishness, but even though this can lead to incredible suffering, there’s no real hope for this changing. And sometimes, random shit just happens."

...I don't know where he got it, but there is all kinds of realism in it. So many levels of understanding. These intellectual convos are utterly refreshing.

Who I Am

“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.”- Buddha

With the death of my Aunt Cheryl in 2001, a notably genuine, incredibly GOOD person. I took a step back from the whole empire of organized religion. I had never on my own subscribed to it, just grew up in a catholic house, and went with what I was told is the way to do things. I realized I had no reason to support it. I had done no research, I had no information that wasn't fed to me by everyone else. And I walked away from it. I needed to understand on my own why, with all of these different deities, my aunt had to go the way she did. It wasn't until 2010, through a coworker and eventual friend, that I found an interest again. I've always been a curious person. I like new things, different things. I like to expand my knowledge pool. She gave me a nonjudgmental look at Buddhism through her eyes. She understood my desire to learn, to know about a religion and what it means to you before diving in. I must say, I studied quite a few - Christianity, Catholicism, Islam, Judaism. But I liked Buddhism the most. Although I am far from a practicing Buddhist, I do follow many of their concepts and teachings. Recently I have found myself asking a lot of questions about my own being. Who I am, who I want to be, what I want to do, what kind of mark am I leaving on the world. And in the past, when I began to question, when I lost my focus, it was little Buddha who enlightened me and helped me re-establish myself. Once again, without my realizing, Buddhism has come to my rescue. I kind of understand now why some people are so willing and able to follow religion so blindly. Mine reminds me where my attention should be. once I have that, everything else will fall into place.



"The choices we make have the ability to impact our present as well as shape our future. If all of that goes without saying, we can move with the understanding that the choices we fail to make have the same effects"

Realizations are abound. it's the most incredible thing. ever since I found out I lost the baby, it's as if my...outlook has changed. I mean I know I said Austin has given me hope, but I feel different. Every day is better. I'm writing more, like I used to before I had to grow up. I've been free-writing. journaling. blogging. I even spit out a couple of fiction pieces. With everything, I decided to unplug for a bit also. I don't think anyone even noticed the absence. The holidays are coming and I'm pretty ok with going it solo. I even did (in my mind) a good deed and switched shifts with a friend, so that he can spend the holiday with his girlfriend. That will also keep me out of Black Friday trouble. I have a couple interviews coming up. They could decide where my life goes from here. Do I jump head first into children's health? Do I wait it out, see where ED takes me? I've always been one for new experiences. I thrive on them. I don't feel like I can grow in a stagnant environment. I have things to contemplate. And next week, I go home! it's been six months already. I've changed so much in such a short time. I wonder how I'd fit in up there. I'm looking at people and things much differently now, especially in relation to me. I actually don't think I would fit in up there anymore. The friends I have, the friends I'm making...they just aren't the same. Austin must have been a lot like his mother. Or at least the person she used to be. That person she's trying to be again. All of this creativity and inspiration is coming from somewhere.



if not for my sister, I don't know what I'd do. I had no one to talk to...to really grieve with over the situation. I finally just took her advice and wrote. I wrote a letter to both of my son's grandmothers. I can't bring myself to tell my mom about him, given the circumstances of him coming to be. and I can't tell his father's mom because she's no longer here. but in the letters, I told them. I told them how happy I was to learn that I was having him, and how how heartbroken I was when I found out I wouldn't. what his name was, and will always be. all the great things he would have seen. and done. how proud I am of him, even now. and I asked that they forgive me for not being stronger.

Then I wrote a letter to him. I told him how much he's loved. by me and I'm sure by his father. I told him how much I miss him, every single day. how sorry I am. that I'll never get to see him or hold him...kiss him goodnight. for not bring ready for him. or physically able. I told him that he will never be forgotten, because I won't allow it. one day, his siblings will know what he did for me. and for them. once upon a time, among the falling leaves of 2013; a little boy, without even knowing it, gave his mother hope. for a family. for a future. for love.

Lastly, I wrote a letter to his father. I summarily apologized to him. I know the whole situation is my fault even if he won't say it. I told him i would be there for him and that I love him. that one day, when he's ready, he'll have that family he wants. that he'll be truly happy. I told him that I hoped we could one day talk about the son we lost, because I would hate for time to just erase him from the record books, as it does so many things we hate to remember. 
...it kills me that he doesn't talk like he used to, but life changes people. time changes people. I miss the boy I crushed on; the guy I fell in love with. the man I used to know. 

I actually felt better after writing. I needed to get my feelings out. and although no one will ever hear them, to have them on paper...it's cathartic. now I just need that day to come where the tears stop, or at least subside. I want to do nothing but smile when Austin comes to mind. Remember and smile. 


Silent voices

how do I tell him? do I even tell him? it's so long after the fact, neither of us can really do anything about it. there isn't even anything really to be said.

it makes me so sad though. I...guess the dreams kind of make sense now.


Marriage Isn’t For You

Marriage Isn’t For You

Having been married only a year and a half, I’ve recently come to the conclusion that marriage isn’t for me.

Now before you start making assumptions, keep reading.

I met my wife in high school when we were 15 years old. We were friends for ten years until…until we decided no longer wanted to be just friends. :) I strongly recommend that best friends fall in love. Good times will be had by all.

Nevertheless, falling in love with my best friend did not prevent me from having certain fears and anxieties about getting married. The nearer Kim and I approached the decision to marry, the more I was filled with a paralyzing fear. Was I ready? Was I making the right choice? Was Kim the right person to marry? Would she make me happy?

Then, one fateful night, I shared these thoughts and concerns with my dad.

Perhaps each of us have moments in our lives when it feels like time slows down or the air becomes still and everything around us seems to draw in, marking that moment as one we will never forget.

My dad giving his response to my concerns was such a moment for me. With a knowing smile he said, “Seth, you’re being totally selfish. So I’m going to make this really simple: marriage isn’t for you. You don’t marry to make yourself happy, you marry to make someone else happy. More than that, your marriage isn’t for yourself, you’re marrying for a family. Not just for the in-laws and all of that nonsense, but for your future children. Who do you want to help you raise them? Who do you want to influence them? Marriage isn’t for you. It’s not about you. Marriage is about the person you married.”

It was in that very moment that I knew that Kim was the right person to marry. I realized that I wanted to make her happy; to see her smile every day, to make her laugh every day. I wanted to be a part of her family, and my family wanted her to be a part of ours. And thinking back on all the times I had seen her play with my nieces, I knew that she was the one with whom I wanted to build our own family.

My father’s advice was both shocking and revelatory. It went against the grain of today’s “Walmart philosophy”, which is if it doesn’t make you happy, you can take it back and get a new one.

No, a true marriage (and true love) is never about you. It’s about the person you love—their wants, their needs, their hopes, and their dreams. Selfishness demands, “What’s in it for me?”, while Love asks, “What can I give?”

Some time ago, my wife showed me what it means to love selflessly. For many months, my heart had been hardening with a mixture of fear and resentment. Then, after the pressure had built up to where neither of us could stand it, emotions erupted. I was callous. I was selfish.

But instead of matching my selfishness, Kim did something beyond wonderful—she showed an outpouring of love. Laying aside all of the pain and aguish I had caused her, she lovingly took me in her arms and soothed my soul.

Marriage is about family.

I realized that I had forgotten my dad’s advice. While Kim’s side of the marriage had been to love me, my side of the marriage had become all about me. This awful realization brought me to tears, and I promised my wife that I would try to be better.

To all who are reading this article—married, almost married, single, or even the sworn bachelor or bachelorette—I want you to know that marriage isn’t for you. No true relationship of love is for you. Love is about the person you love.

And, paradoxically, the more you truly love that person, the more love you receive. And not just from your significant other, but from their friends and their family and thousands of others you never would have met had your love remained self-centered.

Truly, love and marriage isn’t for you. It’s for others.

Kim and I
Kim and I



So I made a decision. It was a pretty ballsy decision. Even for me, especially given my history of letting others run things. Made mommy smile. And then she offered me a gem from daddy. He's evidently said, on a number of occasions, that I remind him of my Aunt Cheryl. I can't not be happy about that. To think that I've somehow embodied the personality and spirit that she carried with her.  The one person I wanted to be growing up was Aunt Cheryl. When she went back to California, I asked my parents if I could go with her. How different my life would have been if I had. How different hers would have been. Maybe she'd still be around. If only.

...She had too much spirit to go as early as she did



this week started off kind of rough. true to form, ever since 2008, my week has been plagued with bad news or unfortunate events and...and I just suck it up. slap my smile on and 'celebrate'. because that's what people like to see.
this week I was dealt a pretty mighty blow. took all of the wind out of my sails...pretty much deflated my soul. But then they stepped in. I mean i had no plans for my birthday. I was all set to wake up, work, go home, and curl up in my bed as custom. But, they stepped in. Now here I am, recovering from a week of new experiences, fresh acquaintances, old friends, and just so much fun. I got to wear a dress. i never get to dress up. and on the rare occasion, it isn't normally with friends. I wore a dress, and I felt so beautiful. I actually, genuinely felt beautiful. If not for the fact that I was with friends I might have actually shed tears over it.
Despite how this week started, they helped me end it on the highest of notes. Bad news or no, I've had the best birthday in a long time...and I'm so grateful



Don't have expectations of people, they never live up to them.

Most people would view that negatively, but she makes a good point. There's a positive to it. I started thinking about it like my nephews. They're autistic. People look at them and wonder why they can't "be normal". But...they are normal. Perfectly fine. Not that the world is one giant developmental disorder, but you can't expect oodles from someone and then be perturbed when they don't measure up. People will be who they are. They rarely - if ever - change. And if they do it's for a fundamental reason, not because you thought they would.


 The older I get, the more grateful I am for my choices in education and the more I want to learn. Once you take off the rose-colored glasses and see the world for what it really is, you learn to flow with it. And wonderful things are the end result.



Is it possible that falling in love can blind us to an extent? To meet someone like you, and be very drawn to this brilliant person, and be horribly, terribly let down by him.

It's not wise to trust someone entirely. To share yourself with them. Because it leaves you vulnerable. And if you happen to have trusted the wrong person. The one who serves self first. Because that's the one who will sit high and use your trust. Will tell anyone anything, everything that they can. Anyone who will listen, who will entertain them for a minute. That instant gratification.

And then what? you're left in the dust. wondering why you ever tried.

I'm not entirely sure I want to do it again. I think I'm actually damaged; broken. I was strong after I was cheated on. I was strong after a child resulted. I was even strong after the rape. ...but I really think it's broken now



A white guy chose me today. It was the cutest thing ever! He knew a lot about natural hair and made a convo with me regarding it. I have never been approached by a white guy before on the street. They look and smile but they never speak! I kinda felt out of my element for a minute but it was a beautiful interaction. He politely mentioned how he loves black women. The fact that he knew about the "big chop," "transitioning," and all that shocked me. I don't even think I could hide it from him. I smiled SO hard. It was refreshing to not be approached "sideways." I was politely asked, "are you single?" as the convo went on. It made me sad to think that "damn, black guys out here don't approach me like this but this white man is coming correct."

...Is that a bad feeling to have?



Life is an opportunity, benefit from it
life is beauty, admire it
life is bliss, taste it
life is a dream, realize it
life is a challenge, meet it
life is a duty, complete it
life is a game, play it
life is costly, care for it
life is wealth, keep it
life is love, enjoy it
life is mystery, know it
life is a promise, fulfill it
life is sorrow, overcome it
life is a song, sing it
life is a struggle, accept it
life is a tragedy, confront it
life is an adventure, dare it
life is luck, make it
life is too precious, do not destroy it
life is life, fight for it!


Another Day

Just another day we never forget
Life takes a turn that we don't expect
One journey ends, another is set
And I have found you are my home

One day we're lost, another we're found
So hard to know which way's up or down
Somehow we land, feet back on the ground
And I have found you are my home

Another day is done
Another setting sun
We have come home

So take my hand, their playing our song
All that we have will never be gone
One thing I know, though we travel on
Is I have found you are my home



"Time passes. Even when it seems impossible. Even when each tick of the second hand aches like the pulse of blood behind a bruise. It passes unevenly, in strange lurches and dragging lulls, but pass it does. Even for me."

With all of the unanticipated downtime from surgery, I, in my infinite wisdom, thought it wise to go back through my old journal entries and read. See how far I've come.

The problem is, I haven't really come all that far. In ten years - ten. years. - outside of a couple of college blurbs, my life has evidently only revolved around three things. One of which being my surgery/possible childless-laden future. That bothers me. No actually, that isn't what bothers me. What actually bothers me is that none of those three things has progressed anywhere. So the time spent mulling over them, attempting to make something out of them was...to what benefit?

....I feel like such a loser



Smile at what used to be
The glory and the agony
Smile at a memory
Smile at your enemies,
A smile finally saved me, found me and repaid me
For all the time that I've put in
And now I'm smiling back again



A sunbeam to warm you,
A moonbeam to charm you,
A sheltering angel, so nothing can harm you.

One of my newly minted Irish buddies wrote this on a note for me and attached it to Take Care Bear. Didn't even know there was a Take Care Bear and i'm a supposed Care Bear collector. I'm told that the message is a well-known Irish saying. I was also unintentionally told that I should show more interest in my Irish roots..

Either way, he allowed a little levity into what is otherwise a stressful week; to say the least.


Stop the Clock

"They say insanity is doing all the same things. And thinking that you're gonna get a different ending.'Cause I've been waiting in the storm for you. Freezing in the cold blowing wind. Can't tell my tears from the rain drops. I've been praying for a little bit of light. Listening for your love all night. With nothing but the sound of my wrist watch going tick tock tick tock tick tick tock.

Stop the clock, stop the clock"



It's easy to forget that most of what you know about a person is what's presented to you. It's always meant to be your best foot forward. I start to think about myself at work and I wonder, "How much do my co-workers really know about me?"

Not much.

Character comes through. Attitude and behavior comes through. But few of them know what I'm like outside of the office. When I'm not doing things to earn a living. When I'm around the people that make me the most comfortable.

I don't know.

Because I don't really know anyone. And even many of my own co-workers, or former schoolmates, some family, are people that I've only scratched the surface of.



Proust Questionnaire:

1. What is your idea of perfect happiness?
watching my children play with their grandparents

2. What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
passiveness, impulsiveness

3. What is the trait you most deplore in others?
lateness, selfishness

4. What is your greatest extravagance?
gas money

5. Where would you like to live?
somewhere warm, where I can sit outside and just drift

6. What is your greatest regret?
not being able to spend more time with my aunt

7. What is your current state of mind?

8. What is it that you most dislike?
close-mindedness....everyone doesn't have to share the same views but at least be able to acknowledge and understand that your perception isn't the only one

9. What is your most treasured possession?
my writings

10. What do you most value in your friends?
that they remember our friendship extend to my parents in the same way their parenting extends to my friends

11. Which living person do you most admire?
Alecia Moore and Phil Brooks

12. What or who is the greatest love of your life?

13. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what do you think it would be?
another me

14. What is the quality you most like in a man?
Confidence, in self and the people he truly relies on. A protector as well - to offer a sense of safety and security to others

15. What is the quality you most like in a woman?
Emotional stability - Women are more emotional than men by default and to be able to control them (i.e. - not breaking down at every mishap) is a great asset on every level.

16. What is your greatest fear?
living a life of regret

17. Which talent would you most like to have?
To masterfully turn my thoughts and impressions into incredible visual art forms

18. What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
To perpetuate one's own living hell by opting not to change or take opportunities as they come.

19. What is your favorite occupation?
reading. and sleeping.

20. How would you like to die?
knowing that I lived my life the way I was meant to, happily

21. What are your favorite names?
Tyler, Quinn, Landon, Gage

22. What is your most marked characteristic?
my unfaltering smile

23. Who is your favorite hero of fiction?
The Doctor, 10th edition

24. Who are your heroes in real life?
My mom; Aunt Cheryl, my best friend

25. What is your motto?
Inhale deeply. Pause.
Gracefully collect your thoughts.
Write, publish, exhale.

For you - 2 for 1

Jose: "Your personality and the way in which you carry yourself leaves whoever has the chance to meet you with an impact like that of a child receiving a gift for the first time"

I was feeling kind of sad, kind of down, and Jose came up with this, to make me feel better. And i'll love him forever for it.

"You know what I love about beauty? I can ask thirty different people to describe it and they can provide thirty different examples. That's the definition of beauty" ....that little gem belongs to me =)



They always know. From the very beginning they always know. That intuition is just spot on every single time. I wish I could go back and thank her, in those moments, and apologize for not heeding her warnings. I'm paying for every single one now.

But that's ok. Because now I know. I know what things to avoid, and how they'll be handled ultimately. For that I'm grateful. And I could never tell her enough.



I'm...confused. Well, not really confused, that's a lie. I've never been clearer in my direction and what I want. I think it's just loneliness. Likely due to 30 looming so close. I had plans for where I wanted to be in life by 30. They weren't even outrageous plans like living in a bel-air mansion or owning a fortune-700 company (fortune-500? that's 20th century talk). I just wanted to be married (or engaged), working my dream job, at the end of the day going to my own home. My home. 

I feel like I'm back on that island from 2008. Except with age comes experience, awareness. I know more now. And it's so painfully obvious how quiet this island has been. 

I guess I am confused. I thought there would be progression. I still feel stagnant. 

...maybe I'm just a late bloomer like my mom