Here’s To You

Here’s To You

 

When we graduated high school we swore we would keep up with each other all the time. We said we would talk on the phone and write to each other, believing that there was no amount of distance that could change our friendship.

We were wrong.

Between exams and the clubs and the new friends we met at our respective colleges, the phone calls grew further and further apart. Our lives went on, and we found ourselves on different paths with different people. 

 
It felt odd at first to experience things without you by my side, but over time, things settled into a routine. I became accustomed to discovering life with new friends with new inside jokes and new personalities. I stopped counting down the days to breaks where I would only see you for a few brief hours before being swept away by other friends and family. 

So yes, we were wrong about our friendship. Some combination of life and distance did change us—but not in the way we thought.   Sure, we were just two kids in high school, neither of us really knowing what was going on any more than the other, but talking to you in my driveway, or in your room, or at the beach under the stars always helped things seem a little more manageable. You pushed me to be my best when I was sure I was at my worst, and you saw so much in me that I never saw in myself. There is no amount of time or distance that could make me less grateful for that.

We have both done a lot of growing over the years, and one of the biggest lessons I have learned is to embrace change. Go with the flow. It is what it is. Our friendship is not what it used to be, nor will it ever be, because we are now more than a couple of high school kids hanging around and waiting for our futures. We are living our futures right this very second. It’s so nice to see my best friend do all of the things you said you wanted to do. I am so proud of everything you have done for yourself.  I am in awe of you!

The future is unpredictable, but our friendship is not. If you are ever need a familiar voice to talk with about unfamiliar problems, look me up, because I will always be happy to lend an ear and a friendly word.  New friends may come and they may go, but no one can ever take the place that you have in my heart. 

Everything in life happens for a reason, I believe we were put into each others lives. I love you and hope your birthday brings you even more blessings than you ask for, and may all good things continue to come your way. Happy Birthday, Vero! 

 

To My Baby Sister 

To My Baby Sister 

Today my little sister celebrates her 30th birthday. Like, woah. Thirty birthdays. Somehow that does not seem possible. It feels like it was just yesterday, when we first heard that we were going to get a little sister. Finally, a new addition to the household!  Mom brought you home and I stared down at your little face, wondering who you would turn out to be.  I marveled at your chubby cheeks and your dark curious eyes, unblinking, as if perpetually surprised by this world you were born into. I remember all the times I would spend rocking you in my arms singing Wizard of Oz songs to soothe you. I remember you twirling and dancing in a a frilly dress, immersed in your own little world and being quietly bemused when I realized that you were singing songs you had made up yourself. I remember the time you offered one of our family friends a quarter for her to stop talking. I remember it all like it was yesterday. Of course, at the same time, that feels like ages ago.

Throughout the years I’ve watched you grow up to be a responsible woman, a bride, a wonderful friend and soon a loving mother. I saw a little girl with so many dreams with little resources become a woman that stands today, successful, strong and beautiful. You sowed so many good seeds and your harvest has been great. I appreciate how hard you worked. I am so proud of the beautiful, smart and hardworking young woman you’ve grown into.  I admire you.  You mean the world to me.

I wish I were there to celebrate with a bang, dancing into the morning and sharing tons of laughs.
Have a happy, happy birthday, little sis. I love you, Changa!                

I’m A Turkey

I’m A Turkey
This December will mark our 5th year living in Houston.   Though I made a conscious choice to move here the entire time I’ve lived here I’ve been longing to be back home in California.  Granted my first three years here I lived in a rather secluded setting and without a vehicle of my own had few opportunities to move around to socialize – but I digress.  My lack of vehicle notwithstanding, now that a live “inside the loop” where public transportation is available any excuse I might have to avoid interacting with other members of my community is invalid.
Houston will never feel as familiar and comforting as the town I grew up in.  The town where all the friends I graduated high school with still get together from time to time.  The town where my closest friends and I would meet at my apartment for fun conversation while our children played in the background. The town where every month we would enjoy imaginative art pieces by local artists or partake of a night of debauchery while pub crawling.  Oh, the trouble we got ourselves into!
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Nevertheless, Houston IS home and will remain so for the foreseeable future. Houstonian’s may argue that they pride themselves in being friendly, helpful people but I have experienced few truly friendly people – not in a genuine disinterested way at least.  So while my neighbor may not be inviting me over for a cup of tea or even “un cafecito con pan” any time soon I realize that I can only be responsible for my own actions and that if I wish something to change I must initiate that change myself.
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That being said I’m going to put on my very special sassy pants and put myself out there to experience Houston.  After all, a community is only as strong as the individuals who make it up.  Neighbors helping neighbors and making personal connections with one another.  To that end I’ll be participating in the Houston Turkey Trot!
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Me running is a totally insane idea.  I. Do. Not. Run. Ever.  However, this is an excellent way to get involved.  The race supports more than 167,000 seniors and children in Houston.  Not only do families have the opportunity to gather together for this fun event, it is also an opportunity to support the Houston community through Neighborhood Centers.
Neighborhood Centers is the region’s largest community development organization and the go-to resource for impact and innovation.  With more than 100 years of experience and a nationally recognized model for community development, Neighborhood Centers exists to keep our region a place of opportunity for everyone—bringing resources, education and connection to transform communities.

Join me in supporting Neighborhood Centers by making a tax-deductible gift toward my goal of $300.00 (US) dollars.   Please view my personal fundraising page by clicking on the link below.  Thank you so much in advance for your encouragement and support of this great cause.

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Click HERE to make a donation

The event is still two months away which gives me plenty of time to raise some funds and train my body.  This is going to be challenging in more ways than I care to enumerate but the goal is to get involved, get social and continue being the example for my son.

Emotional Pride and Prejudice

Emotional Pride and Prejudice

Like many women I fancy the idea that someday I’ll stumble upon that special person I am meant to share the rest of my life with.   While I’m not expecting some unrealistic magical love-at-first-sight moment in which we’ll take one look at each other and “just know”, I do believe in true love and the power of human connection – the kind that develops gradually over time, through shared experiences. 

I yearn for the kind of relationship in which I can share moments and pieces of myself with someone; to have the kind of connection that leads to thoughtful conversations filled with laughter and love for one another.  Sharing a simple glance, and seeing in his eyes absolute love, compassion and understanding.   Queue the swooning….  Sounds so easy – right?  It could be that easy, but we each carry all sorts of emotional baggage that we end up sabotaging ourselves.

Two months ago I met a handsome, intelligent, charming, funny, sensible, articulate, knowledgeable, and responsible man.  He’s also a loving and extremely involved father which happens to be a super attractive quality to me.  He’s just awesome!  Except that due to his work schedule and my lack of transportation we don’t see each other much.  While taking things slow is the sensible approach, part of me feels that if he wanted to see me he’d make the time to do so.  I mean, we could work out together or I could help him with his chores while we chat, etc.  In typical analytical form I start imaging that perhaps he’s really not as interested as he initially seemed. He’s always either working, training, working out, spending time with his children or preparing his weekly healthy meals.  Really? Perhaps he’s just leading me on…I mean I’m a perfectly chill chick, witty, smart and easy to get along with – why wouldn’t he want me around more often?  Why wouldn’t he want to introduce me to his friends? Why is he always so busy? My verdict – He’s emotionally unavailable.

But wait!!!!

What about me?  If I’m going to come to such a conclusion about him, I need to take an honest look at myself.  Have I truly been my charming, smart self? Have I honestly been open?

The truth is that I have been apprehensive and more than just a little withdrawn.  The poor guy has practically been doing all the talking every time we’ve spent time together!!!  Here I’ve been all sanctimonious, judging him as evasive and emotionally unavailable when in fact I haven’t exactly opened up to him either.  SMH

He’s intuitive enough to realize that something has been off with me even asking me point blank, “are you okay?” In spite of my dismissive replies he has given me several chances to open up but instead I sat on my “high horse” inwardly judging him.   I think I owe him an apology.  He is a great guy and despite this recent realization I too am a great gal.  I really would like to continue spending time with him, even if our dates are few and far between now.

SIGH…