Never Alone

29 Jun

When you are by yourself, overseas, away from family and friends; the one person you’ve been hoping to hear from doesn’t make any contact; and suddenly you get really sick, all the emotions come afloat and make you feel alone.

I’ve done this trip several times already, and have never felt homesick like I did that night. Sick in bed, in a foreign country, without knowing what to take, where to go… I felt alone.

Thankfully, (like my grandmother says) and I should have know, I am never alone. There is always someone watching over us and this time I felt so blessed and loved.

In this world of technology you are never far away from home. There’s nothing more comforting than a mother’s love so I immediately WhatsApp her. She quickly went on Google looking for symptoms and remedies, and where I could get what I needed. The concern of the rest of my family made me feel taken care of, even if from afar. Little did I know that the people I do business with were out looking for remedies for me too and, later to find out, even looking for doctors/ hospitals for me if needed.

They came to the room with supplies, sincere concern and best wishes to help me get better.

Seeing all this, made my homesick feeling go away. Made me see, once again, how wonderful people can be, in this sometimes dark and horrible world. 

Even though sick, I kept my meetings and appointments, dinners and networking events. After all they had done for me, the best I could do was put on a smile (which wasn’t hard at all with them) and keep going. At the end, this paid off. Not only did I get to see the wonderful side of these people again (they kept taking very good care of me) but, had great conversations (after translations :p) and hopefully strengthened our business relationship.

I guess writing this here is a way of thanking them all, once again, for their hospitality and care, and to remind myself of not looking at the dark/ negative side of things. A reminder that I am never alone, there’s always a light and it will shine on you.
  

Crush & Gurgle The Turtles

29 May

I had to part from my turtles today… makes me sad but at the same time I know it’s for their best.

My dad bought them for me.  I named them Crush & Gurgle The Turtles, they were with me for 10 years. Got them when they were babies, not even 1.5” long.  Had them in a little island, with a palm tree until they outgrew that.

They shared a tank, swam, ate and played together but, as siblings usually do, they became territorial and needed their own space. They have very distinct personalities and preferences so, another tank was bought. They had separate “rooms” now but always kept them close as, they still looked for each other through the glass.

Crush loves to bask in the “sun” light, is more aggressive, and impulsive.

Gurgle loves swimming, has a peaceful/ chill-out face, and is a little more curious but cautious at the same time

After some years, they again outgrew their homes… 2 more tanks to buy, and everything that comes with it. A lot more room in the house for them, and a lot more maintenance time. I never minded any of this, until 2 or 3 months ago when I noticed their tanks were too small again. At about 7” – 8” now (and still growing), they were not able to swim as much, they were clearly going to be very uncomfortable soon… I asked myself, do I keep investing in bigger tanks, more maintenance and expenses or do I look for a better home for them? Very tough decision.

I’m not comparing a pet to a child but, this is the closest I’ve been to my maternal instincts. My pets are my kids.

I feel like maybe this is how parents feel when kids go away to school, or get their own place, get married, etc.

You know it’s right for them to “swim away” and make it in the “real world”, you feel proud of how much they’ve grown and who they’ve become, but you still remember that little baby that needed so much of you.

As soon as Crush & Gurgle saw open water they swam happily in to it (Crush first, obviously). As sad as I was to see them go, it was a happy moment at the same time. Seeing them swim freely, with no space limitation, and how fast they adapted, made me feel good about the care I gave them while they were mine. Even more so, when Gurgle came back and looked at me for a bit as if saying goodbye and thank you.

Kids grow up, they find their independence, and our parents, let us do this and find ourselves.

That’s what I found was best for my turtles and with a heavy heart I said good bye, and good luck! Wishing them a long and exciting journey in their new home.

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Face Your Fears

2 Apr

I’m going to start by confessing something…  I am a big scaredy cat.

I’m afraid of heights, I’m afraid of high speed, I’m afraid of things that aren’t stable and might make me fall. 

I’m scared of things that hurt, yes, that’s it, I think that’s the right way to say it.

 

With that being said, lately I’ve pushed myself a little to face those fears…  


First thing I tried, rollercoasters.  I would not even consider getting on one when I was little.  Now, there are some I can do, so decided to step it up a bit and did “Rock It” Orlando.  Only way I did this one was because my sisters were making fun of me and my brother promised to hold my hand the entire time.  I hated this one, I had a migraine the whole day, and the feeling I had during it I never want it again…  I was not able to breathe the entire ride.  Never again (this one, at least, and any big scary ones), but at least I can say I tried, and amble to do some and even enjoy them.

 

Second thing, skydiving!  I know, I know… How could someone like me do something like that?!?  I just didn’t think about it.  Got to the place, closed my eyes, gave them my credit card, and off we went.  They didn’t give me a chance to change my mind and I loved it, it’s such an indescribable feeling.  So, if you ask me if I’d do it again I would say, maybe, I’m still scared of heights but that feeling is incredible, you feel so free, it’s something I would recommend everyone to do.  Also, my sisters did this together, I knew I would regret not sharing this experience with them.

 

Third, riding on a motorcycle.  In my head these are not stable (they are missing two tires!) and they go fast but,  after the first time, I wanted to do it again and again.  The wind blowing, the way you see things (like first row to a live event), how you can avoid (some) traffic, and the feeling you get holding on to that person, it’s like you’re in your own world.  Would I do it again?  Absolutely but, only with someone I trust.

 

The last thing I did, Ziplining.  On my recent trip to PR, I decided I wanted to do something more than the usual, sightseeing, visiting family, restaurants…   I wanted to push myself once again.  I wanted to show myself I could face my fears and live.  I told my sister, who was with me, she called her friend and we all went to do it. 

Yes, I was scared.  My sister was even joking saying “let’s see if she goes through with it”, and after each line, she would look at me, like trying to make sure I was OK, and doing the next.  I did!  All 8 of them, and after each one, my smile got bigger and bigger not only because I did them but because it was so much fun.  There was a point, towards the last line, we had to go up an unstable, steep, path.  I stopped for a second, my sister sensed my hesitation and held my hand.  I regained my determination and went for it.  That last line was the hardest, wind pushing against us, longer than the rest, but we finished them, and I couldn’t be prouder or happier that I can say I’ve done Ziplining, and in my own PR.

 

I’m sure there are other things I’ll find to push myself, to keep facing my fears.  These, unfortunately, don’t go away just because we face them once or twice but, they do become easier to deal with.  The key is you!  Allow yourself to feel that fear but, don’t let it control you.  There’s one more important thing, which I hope you’ve noticed in each of my experiences, the people by your side.  Having someone you trust reassuring you, holding your hand, and cheering you on, be it in person or otherwise, it’s a great thing to have to succeed.  I’ve been lucky to have all these people in my life to accept me as I am.  To make fun of me when I was scared and even more when I decided to try things.  They helped me laugh through the nervousness and helped me face my fears.  When I haven’t been able to do so, they’ve been there to  say “it’s OK, we’ll try again” and, when I’ve succeeded, they’ve been there to smile and “celebrate” with me.

 

With our fears we might feel alone, like we’re the only ones feeling them but, we’re not.  Maybe not the same fear but we all feel it.  We can all relate so, rely on each other, and help each other.  Take that leap, stare that fear in the face and defy it, again and again until you (and only you) feel like you succeeded, and have fun with it. 


  

Loss

4 Mar

We’ve always heard “death is part of life”, “death is the most natural thing in the world”, “death is the only sure thing we have”. Unfortunately I recently had to hear these over and over again, and know those statements are true… As I grow older, I realize more will leave us.

If death is “a natural part of life” I guess we should consider goodbyes the same but, if these are “natural” things, why do they hurt so much? Why do we not get used to it easily?

Death is not the only loss we suffer during life, we also suffer loss when a friend or love walks away. In a way, it’s death as well, the death of that relationship.

Actual death is inevitable, and definitive. We cry, we miss but, in the end, we must resign knowing there’s nothing we can do about it.

Why then do we fight to keep the ones who walk away? Why don’t we resign to see it as the death of the relationship? After all, those who walked away did it willingly. Is it human nature, the need to control or understand a situation, the love we have for them that won’t let us give up because we know that person is still alive and hope there’s a second chance?

I think fairy tales and movies have something to do with this. Even in those death is final but, love lasts forever. It can move mountains, survive any fight, misunderstanding, war, distance, etc.

We relive in our heads the words they said to us, the moments we had together, the things we wanted to do with them.

We look for a way to get them back, to be what they want, to be happy with them.

We hold on…

Thinking about it now, I guess it’s human nature. The way we do it is not the same but, we do hold on to the loved ones that have passed as well. We keep them alive in our hearts and memory. Those memories help us cope with the sorrow, and even bring smiles and laughter. Those memories are what we have to hold on, and we never let go.

So, what’s really natural and certain is that we love, and that’s why it hurts. Either way they left us, we love them, and we were not ready to say goodbye. They leave both heartache and memories.

We try any way we can to keep them in our lives, and when it’s not possible we mourn them, we miss them.

Those still alive, we hold on to the hope they come back soon, and the rest we hope to see again in the future.

In the end, they all leave a mark, one that will live with us forever and shape who we are. A mark only ours, that no one can heal, take away or match. We love them, and they’ll be forever in our hearts.

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Be a Writer

14 Jan

You know, keeping a blog isn’t easy…

One sets a goal to write every  so often, let’s say at least once a month, to gain and keep subscribers, to prove yourself that you have something to say and write about, as an outlet to vent when talking is hard, whatever the reason, it just isn’t easy.

You see, when you have this type of blog, the one without a specific topic, or someone telling you what to write about, you write about personal experiences or things you talk about with friends.  You write about your trips, your eats, what you see and feel.  On these topics, we all have a lot to say, problem is, we don’t always want everyone to hear.  Our heads and hearts are filled with hundreds of emotions daily.  Countless stories, new and old, can be told in one day so, why don’t we?

I’ve written before about how one should not feel ashamed or embarrassed by what or how we feel but, that’s easier said than done.

Sometimes what comes to our heart to write is too personal we are scared to share it with the world.  Maybe not even with the world but just one person in specific.  We are afraid of how we might be perceived, how vulnerable we feel, what people will say, and how will it affect how they treat us.  Or, we might have the happiest news, but afraid to share it scared we might jinx it, or scared that if at the end it doesn’t end well, we have to write the unfortunate update.

Still, writing is a great outlet.  Someone once told me “Take pictures when you’re happy and write when you’re sad so, in the future, when you’re sad, the pictures remind you of happy times and the writing shows you how far you’ve come and the experiences that made you who you are” (something along those lines).  I write… not all makes it to this blog or to anyone’s eyes but, I see it, I feel it, and it helps me release what weighs me down.  When I read it, later on, when the feelings are more tamed, it helps me analyze the situation and my thoughts better.  It helps me live the moment again, with a new perspective.

We might not all be bloggers but I believe we all should be writers, writers of our own stories.

Grab a pen, a keyboard, anything and write away.  Let your spirit flow in that blank page, not for the world to see but for you.  Discover yourself, what you feel, what you want and need.  Writing will allow you to see many sides of you, you might have not known existed.  Relive the moments and feelings, and let your own words show you a new light to them.

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2014 is coming to an end…

30 Dec

As we celebrate and welcome the new year, we can’t help to look back and think, even if it’s for a moment, about the past.

I’m sure we’ve all had some ups & downs, heartaches & love, loses & gains, tears & laughter…  Through it all, we’ve learned, we’ve become stronger, gained new perspective on things and, hopefully, appreciation of the important things in life.

Cherish the wonderful memories, enjoy the simple pleasures, value family and true friendship, as these are the real treasures and what makes every year special.

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Believe

14 Nov

Sometimes, you have to believe…

That everything happens for a reason

That a closed door means another opens

That things happen for you and not to you

That everything is a lesson

That the pain will go away

That if it made you smile and happy it could not have been that bad

That regrets are useless

That there’s always tomorrow

That it’s not a goodbye but a see you later (soon)

That hope and love can move mountains

That there’s a bigger force looking after us

That everything works out in the end.

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