Category Archives: Personal

Pokemon, Go!

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Hate it or love it?

I grew up a Pokemon nerd, so I personally think it’s a great way to get out of the house and bond with new people or even your own family to be honest.

For those who think they’re above it, kind of sucks that you would put down someone else’s interests just because you don’t understand it or like it.

Let people live!

Now, if you hate it because of the actual game itself or because you don’t like the way it’s set up. That’s a different story.

 

 

 

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The Tank

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I picked up my daughter after work yesterday, like any other day. Her father called to speak with her from prison, which I allow, and they have exactly fifteen minutes to talk. I feel relieved that he called during our thirty minute commute back home because I needed a moment to myself to get over the crappy day I had; I always need a moment like this if I’ve had a bad day to make sure my attitude is positive around Victoria. Once finished, Victoria hands over the phone and I ask her about her day, as usual. We talk about the Thanksgiving lunch they had in class and she tells me all that she’s learned about the Pilgrims and Indians. I smile and tell her how much I love her. I always feel the need to reassure her, to make sure she understands that I will never leave her side…

“I love you…So, so much Victoria. I’m so proud of you honey.”

“I love you too Mãe. Thanks.”

“You’re my absolute best friend.”

“Mãe, you can’t be…You’re my mom.”

“What?! Sure I can!! I love you thiiiisssssss much!” *stretches arm out*

“Wooooow that’s a lot! Well I love you thiiiiiisssssssssss much more!” *extends both arms out* *pauses for a minute* “Actually…No.”

“Hmm…?”

“Actually Mommy…I have a tank!”

“I don’t understand amor.”

“Yeah. I have a tank inside of me. Actually Mãe, we all have tanks inside of us. I fill up my tank with love. Love for you, love for Avó, love for Avô, love for Pae and Titias and everyone!”

“Oh, is that right?”

“Yes! But my tank is mostly full of love for you mom. You’re my favorite mommy! But sometimes, my tank feels empty. Like when daddy doesn’t come and see me. But then! Then mommy comes and fills it up again! You’re a good tank filler mom.”

“Honey, daddy will see you soon. He loves you so much, he always wants to see you.”

“Yeah…Well…I know. It’s okay, I have you right? Always?”

“Yes, honey, always.”

“See! Mãe, do I fill up your tank?”

“As long as I have you, my tank is never empty”

She moved on to a different topic, as she normally takes control of our conversations. For some reason I couldn’t shake our previous conversation, I wondered where she got that from, or if she made it up on her own. A tank. My six year old has a better concept of how love works than most people, and how it affects us. We all have tanks that can be emptied and filled every day, depending on the circumstance. Some situations empty us, and others fill us, and some people do the same. We all have one, but is it empty? Full? Functioning? Cracked? Leaking? Who fills it? Who do we allow to empty it? Are we in control of this? I spent years with an empty tank not realizing that my “tank filler” was always there, staring up at me. Sitting there in all of her youth…And oddly, all of her wisdom. This little person teaches me something new every day.

I think what I would like to teach her down the line is that we shouldn’t rely on anyone to fill our tank…We should be able to fill that ourselves; everyone else is just the “top off”. How could I, when she’s the only one who fills my tank to the brim? Overflowing, making a beautiful mess inside me of emotions.

Is your tank full?

Unrequited Love

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I saw this interesting video today about unrequited love;it was meant to be funny, and it was. But then I got to thinking. Most of the time when one thinks of unrequited love, we think of a one sided love that the other side is not aware of. Maybe you’re in love with your best friend and they aren’t aware of it, or you have a crush on someone who might have a crush on you back but you’re too scared to admit to this, leaving the two of you in a permanent “friend zone” vortex. These are common scenarios, but I realized that this is true for a lot of different situations. What’s worse? A love in which the other person isn’t aware of, leaving you to wonder for the rest of your life “what if”? Or…Loving someone who is fully aware of your love for them, and they neither throw you away nor keep you. You’re just there.

See, I know many who are in relationships where the love is 100% one sided, yet that person won’t leave. They’re treated as if there are a hundred million things that other person would rather be doing than stand in the same room as them let alone be in a relationship with them. Yet, there they are, Facebook official. All smiley and shit on their feed pictures but miserable behind the screen. There’s a particular couple I know who comes to mind and every time I think about it I feel so angry and sad that she is allowing this to happen to her. He was seemingly great at first and then his attitude changed and she was left wondering what happened. She would vent about how he didn’t care about her, how he chose his friends over her, how he was a cheater, etc. She would ask why he didn’t just leave, why lead her on? Why cheat? Why waste her time? I had to keep explaining to her that a love that is not reciprocated, is not a love worth having. That there are other people out there. She shouldn’t let herself get pushed around or used in such a way.

It’s such a childish thing to me, to be in a relationship you’re not happy in (unless there’s mental illness or emotional disease involved then I understand to a degree). These selfish people always wait until the other person is at the very end of their rope, ready to jump, to grow the balls to leave. Why hurt someone so purposefully? Why let someone feel that way, every second of every day, like life is just going to blow up in their face at any moment? I could never understand why people could have such a lack of self respect to let another treat them any less than they deserve.

We’re not all perfect, but no one deserves to have their time wasted or their heart toyed with. Maybe my mind is just not wise enough to grasp the concept that not everyone has the ability to be honest or to do good. That people really do get a kick out of messing with other people’s emotions. They’re completely capable of saying one thing and doing the opposite. They’re okay with lying to your face. They’re okay with watching you cry. They’re fine with witnessing the struggle in your eyes as you try to love them with every ounce of your being. Clawing at a relationship that will never evolve. Emptiness.

Have you ever searched for someone in a crowded room only to find out they were searching for you too, and there’s that moment of relief that you’ve found each other? Now imagine that same scenario, only that person is looking for someone else.

Unrequited Love. Tragic.

Young Girl

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Young Girl

I see you. Holding his hand as you walk across the street, and I wonder. At nothing more than 15 years old, do you worry about what might/will happen? Or are you what I was like at your age? Are you so sure in your mind that it’s going to last forever, that you don’t dare think about this fantasy evaporating into thin air. Do you feel like he’s the perfect boy and are you positive he’ll grow into the man of your dreams? When he touches you, do you feel like no boy could ever possibly feel better than this one? Do your parents approve? Do you care? Does he call you names when he’s upset? Does he ignore you because he feels like it? Does he say things just to hurt your feelings because that’s what teen boys and girls do? Does he respect you the way he should? Are you ready for the heart break that is ahead?

We’ve all been there before, young girl. Just know that we are all rooting for you and your happiness, and if this teenage love does flourish into a relationship that lasts forever…You’ve beat all of the odds. But, young girl, please remember that if it doesn’t work out, you’ll be okay. There is a love that exists much deeper than the one you are feeling now. There is a man out there who will make you feel things, in your future, that you couldn’t possibly be feeling with this boy. This love you feel at this moment is shallow. It’s based on appearances, and popularity, and cool shoes. It’s based on pretty hair and the fact that everyone else is doing it. It’s based on his smooth way of making you feel giggly and your short shorts. Thinking about it now, a lot of adult relationships are like this. That’s not what you want. You want more. You want it to be based on the way he calls you every morning to hear your voice, not just some text. You want it to be based on how he talks about you to others, the twinkle in his eye when you’re brought up in conversation. The respect he shows you every day. The way he holds you when you’re upset. The hair on the back of your neck standing up when he brushes your skin with his hand. How he makes you want to do things for him, not out of obligation, but out of love. Those flowers just because it’s Wednesday. Those sexless nights filled with deep conversation and understanding.

This boy might break your heart, or you might break his. Focus on your well being and your future. Don’t let him pressure you into having sex at such a young age. Don’t let him treat you like shit because you are worth so much more than that. There is time for love. There is time for children and marriage….And sex….And passion. It may not seem like it now, but there is time. This boy will not help you finish school, he will not help you mature, he will not turn you into the successful woman I know you can be. He may not be a bad person, or a boy with bad intentions, but guard your heart for it is fragile. You’ll find that it will harden as you experience and grow, but there will come a time when you meet the man of your dreams and he’s able to soften your heart again. You’ll look back at this current relationship and think…Wow, I learned a lot from that relationship. I don’t even remember what I felt with that boy, because it was smothered by all of the things teenagers go through…Including hormones.

When you’re young, everything seems like it’s the end of the world. But it’s not. It’s just the beginning. When you love life, it’ll love you right back. I promise.

In case you were wondering what my soul looks like…

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Last week was Victoria Isabel’s birthday, yes, my daughter turned 5. Why do I feel compelled to tell you all this fact? I feel like all of you should meet my daughter, I feel like she would offer all of you some sort of lesson. I feel like she’d make your day better, offer some perspective, the light at the end of the tunnel. Yeah, I know she’s 5. How could a 5 year old possibly do this for strangers? She does it every day, with each interaction. I’ve seen grown men melt over her smile and little old ladies giggle at her hair and the way she speaks to people. I’ve also seen this every day, in my home, with each conversation I have with her. There is no such thing as a day of random, pointless conversation between us. Everything we talk about has meaning, has depth, has a purpose. Now, I know many of you parents out there think your children are amazing, adorable, geniuses, blah blah blah blah, and it might very well be true. My child is incredible, my child is adorable, my child is intelligent; however, I am very realistic. I grew up in a family who will tell you if your child is ugly, or clumsy, or an asshole. My judgement is not shadowed by the fact that I squeezed this child out and have been raising her ever since, I fully understand that just because my child is amazing right now, doesn’t mean that she will be stupendous forever. Children become pre-teens who become assholes who become adults who may or may not grow out of being assholes.

All I know is that my daughter is remarkable right now.

Reasons Why I Adore Victoria

1. She’s mine.

2. She’s animated.

3. She’s kind.

4. I never cry in front of my daughter, I don’t want her to feel the way I do when I cry and she’s very good at absorbing other people’s emotions. One day, she caught me crying…Sobbing actually. She walked over to me slowly, eyes deep with concern, grabbed my face in her small hands and said, “what’s wrong mae? You’re too pretty to cry. Okay okay listen, how about I clean up all my toys and we can watch one of YOUR movies? It’s okay mae, I’m your best friend remember?”.

5. She has beautiful, strawberry blonde hair. It’s so long and full and although the curls have died down a bit, it’s still as bouncy as it was a year ago.

6. She has gorgeous blue eyes. They’re not the same shade of blue as mine, but as my father’s. She never forgets to exclaim “my eyes are blue like grandpa’s!”.

7. She always, aaaaalways has my back. She is my sidekick and don’t you ever forget it.

8. Jokingly I always say “Victoria get outttaaaa here with that nonsense!”. She usually can take the joke but today (literally today) she says “Moooooom! I live here, this is my home, I don’t wana get outta here! You’re my buddy remember? I don’t wana leave”. I said, “Oh, honey it was just a joke! Mae says it all the time!”. “Mae, sometimes I don’t feel like joking!”

9. She has an amazing sense of humor, and is witty as all get out!

10. The way she says “yes/no ma’am/sir” in Portuguese. She’s incredibly respectful and knows how to treat her elders just as I was taught growing up.

11. The fact that she speaks Portuguese fluently and can communicate with my grandmother flawlessly.

12. How dainty she is and how she carries that characteristic in everything she does.

13. I love how the only way to wake her up so that she isn’t annoyed is with music or singing to her.

14. Our shared love of music.

15. Her brutal honesty.

16. “Mae, what are you wearing? You’re wearing that to work? Why?”

“Yes, I am Victoria Isabel, why?”

 “Nothing.”

*changes clothing*

“Oh my gosh mom, now you’re so fashion! That jacket and the heels, wow mae, super super fashion!”

17. Her unforgiving laugh when I tickle her or say something ridiculous.

18. The fact that she understands her father is away “working” and how she is completely content with just having me around. She doesn’t even ask for him and that makes me feel like I’m doing something right, that I’m making her feel comfortable and happy.

19. How appreciative she is of anything and everything she’s given. Whether it’s an orange or a new bicycle, she’s just as excited to receive either one.

20. The unconditional love she gives, even if she doesn’t have to, because she’s loved no matter what.

21. This past weekend we went to a wedding and she was the life of the party during the reception. She joined every group of adults and danced with everyone! It was as if I wasn’t even there, so I sat back and watched. I’ve never watched someone so small command the attention of so many adults with nothing but dance moves haha

22. When she asks me to marry her because she heard that you should always marry the person you love the most, but of course, only after she marries daddy haha

23. When she asks me how was work and she actually wants to know how it was. She asks about my meetings, my contracts, even my boss!

24. Her eagerness to share her thoughts, ideas, and experiences with me. That in itself is a blessing.

25. How amazing her memory is and how she repeats every single thing she hears. This may be a curse to some parents but personally I think it’s hilarious. You cannot say ANYTHING in front of her without her repeating it to someone else in the family. BE CAREFUL OUT THERE!

The above merely graze the surface of who Victoria Isabel is and how important she is to me. There are billions of reasons why I love this little gem and with each passing day, my list grows longer. She’s my best friend.

 

 

You should meet her.

Meu Fado Meu

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               Fado. Most Portuguese people know what this genre of music is, they’ve heard it in their grandmother’s kitchen, or at a festa. You either adore it or you hate it and find it extremely boring. This genre of music can be identified from miles away by the Portuguese people, but do we all know what it means? Do we all know what this timeless word means? Fate. Destiny. Love. Loss. Experience. Hope. Saudade. It has been traced as far back as the 1820’s in places like Alfama and Bairro Alto in Portugal. However, I believe it’s been around longer than that. There is normally only one singer called a Fadista and two instruments: the classical guitar and the Portuguese guitar. Now, various artists have added different components to accompany both of these instruments, however they’re still alive and well in Fado. The Portuguese guitar is my favorite instrument, so beautiful and flawless.

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Fado is, without question, my absolute favorite genre of music. I hope to one day open up a Fado House as they have in Portugal, here in California so that Americans can really embrace the essence of the art. It’ll be just like a Fado house in the streets of Portugal; dim lighting, coffee, desserts, dinner, alcohol, and amazing artists. I imagine having an open mic night for local fadistas everywhere, every week. It’s going to happen people, I can see it!

The 19th century’s most renowned Fadista was Maria Severa but Amália Rodrigues is who fore-fronted the popularization of the genre worldwide and is known as Rainha do Fado (Queen of Fado). She is who really paved the way for all modern singers.

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Now we have fadistas such as Mariza, Ana Moura, Katia Gueirrero, Dulce Pontes and let’s not forget the men Camane, Ricardo Ribeiro and Calros do Carmo. All amazing artists, all inspired by the late Amalia Rodrigues.

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Now back to the word saudade as mentioned before. Although there are explanations and meanings of the word plastered all over the internet, I believe that this word does not have a specific meaning. It’s a feeling that is far too complicated to define, a feeling of absence, longing, and emptiness. A feeling that whatever it is you are seeking and longing will never return. Lost lovers. Lost family. A love that remains forever in our hearts even after that person has left us indefinitely. A bittersweet, overwhelming feeling of anger, happiness, sadness, all rolled into one. This word doesn’t even have a direct translation to the English language. Sure, you can translate “tenho saudade de você” to “I miss you”, but it is not the same thing. It isn’t even close. This word is so powerful to the Portuguese and Brazilian people that there is an entire day dedicated to this word alone! You can even have saudade for someone who is standing right next to you. Maybe you’ve drifted apart, or maybe that person has changed and detached themselves from you. Whatever it is, there is no word in any other language that can describe it quite like this word.

I recommend, to any of you that have never listened to Fado before, to take some time to listen to at least one song. The following are some of my favorites:

Mariza – Primavera (Live) <My favorite version

Ana Moura – Fado Menor (Live) <Also, my favorite version

Amália Rodrigues – Primavera <Just so you can compare old school to new.

Dulce Pontes- Canção do Mar

Katia Guerreiro – Amor de Mel Amor de Fel

These are only a few of the great Fados out there and I don’t pretend to be an expert on Fado, but I am passionate about it.

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Patience young grasshopper…

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…I’m new to this. Like really new…Like….I have no idea where to start but I need to do this in order to clear out my mind and my soul. Let’s start with…My name’s Irene. I’ll dedicate this post to writing about myself so that you, as my reader, can understand where I’m coming from in my future posts. So that you, as my reader, will accept the fact that I am a hot mess. So that you, as my reader, will realize that this is real, that I have really no idea where I’m at in life and where I’m going. My posts will vary in topics. They will range anywhere from my past, my future, my present. They will be short, long, sad, happy, judgmental, compassionate, and everything in between.

Let’s Begin

1. I’m 25 going on 60

2. My daughter’s name is Victoria…She’s 5 going on 16 and this is no joke.

3. I’ve been single for 2 years and it isn’t bothering me as much as I thought it would.

4. My favorite color is burgundy

5. I love to read but I’m horrible at writing. My grammar isn’t up to par nor is my vocabulary. English is my second language….Fuck you.

6. I went from being 230 lbs to 160 lbs now back to 190 lbs and am working on it

7. I have a tiny…I mean teeny…Group of friends

8. I’m 100% Portuguese and I speak 3 languages

9. I’m the Director of Sales at a Marriott and I love my job

10. Blogging is something that I’ve wanted to do ever since I was a teenager. I’m not sure why I never started it.

11. I fell in love with a drug addict once

12. I have absolutely no self confidence, but that’s okay, that can change

13. I love the beach, art, photography, my cell phone, and Facebook

14. I love Music more than all of these things. I am, indeed, a music snob.

15. I make decent money and am broke all of the time. Broke doesn’t equal happy to me.

16. I have 3 younger sisters…I only really like one and a half of them.

17. I love to meet new people, especially if I’m networking.

18. I’m loud, obnoxious, and talkative. Yet, I can’t stand in front of a crowd and speak….I have horrible stage fright. No one believes me when I say this but it is very much true.

19. I’ve ran out of facts because I’m boring but I need to make it to 20 to settle my OCD.

20. Fin.

I don’t have any followers yet, but who knows, I might soon.images