Tag Archives: Heartbreak

You’re A Person Too

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As we all know, there has been a LOT going on in the United States in the past few months and in the past couple of weeks. Before any of you start going off about how “these things happen in other countries every second of every day”, please realize that I care about all of these events. I feel for all of the people who have suffered, in all countries. However, right now, I’m focusing on the events here. I refuse to feel guilty about caring for the people in my own country.

Officers dying, innocent black people dying, protesters, mass shootings, PEOPLE dying. People. There is a rage flooding this country that has been rumbling for far too long and it’s getting out of hand. This hate needs to just stop, when will it stop? It is not enough to not be racist. That is no longer effective, action needs to be taken. Change needs to happen. I stand for every race, every ethnicity, all cultures. I don’t, however, stand for violence or ignorance or hatred. I don’t stand for the dummies that say all lives matter, we friggin’ know that all lives matter, the fact that we even need to say that out loud is sad. The thing is, people preach that all lives matter, however, not ALL LIVES ARE BEING TREATED EQUALLY. Can’t anyone understand this? Black Lives Matter’s purpose is to show this country that black lives aren’t being treated justly, they’re not being treated like “all” lives matter. That is the issue at hand. Innocent members of the black community being murdered.Not just by police officers, mind you. Then we have the audacity to be upset when there is friction, protesters, and acts of violence reciprocated.

Imagine always having to walk on eggshells because you don’t know how someone is going to react to you. Not someone, but a somewholeentirecommunityofwhitepeople. Of course, there is bad and good in all communities. The man who shot all of those police officers completely threw all and any progress of peaceful protesters to the wind. Understand this. Understand that it was a peaceful protest that some idiot with a gun decided to take into his own hands. One step forward, four steps back. Blue lives matter too, but that does not dismiss the fact that they are a representation of each other and some of them decided to MURDER innocent individuals in the name of white privilege. If you think white privilege isn’t a “thing”, please go into any Wal Mart or Target and use the self check out….Do they hover? No? Do they check your receipt? No? Hmmm….Funny. That shit is real. The problem is we want life to be so FeeFee LaLa we can’t get our heads out of our asses long enough to take a good hard look. I have good friends who are officers, and they are goodhearted  officers who do right by their community and I am so happy to be able to say that. I have good friends of color and they are goodhearted people who do right by their community and I am so happy to be able to say that. I have good friends who are white and they are goodhearted people who do right by their community and I am so happy to be able to say that. This is a small percentage of a very, very big country.

It is frightening how far backwards this country has leaped, so far backwards. It’s scary. How am I to raise a child in this? How? Should I rely on the fact that we look white? Should I bank on that? I come from immigrants. I’m not talking the regular “oh my great great great great great greeeeeat grandparents came here from England” story most people like to recount. I’m talking my mother isn’t a citizen here, legal, but not a citizen. My father became a citizen in his thirties. My second language is English. We are minorities. So the fact that there are people out there who hate anyone not “from here” scares me. It’s sheer ignorance. We can’t even call this a civilized country anymore, it’s going to shit. We don’t have the right to say that we are civilized. Animals treat each other with more respect.

I want all of you who disagree, to say this with me…Slowly now, don’t hurt yourselves…

Human 

Beings

Shouldn’t

Have

To

Fight

To

Be 

Treated

Like

Human

Beings

Actually, try that a few times.

I heard something the other day that was so true, I had to sit and think about it for a while. I had to let it sink in. “There isn’t more violence, there are just more cameras”. There isn’t more violence. There are just more cameras. People have been suffering for YEARS, undetected, unseen, unheard, out of mind. The black community is now taking a stand because enough is enough. This was bound to happen, people were bound to get fed up. It’s only going to get worse, much worse, before it ever gets better. What saddens me is that this is even still an issue. 2016…Forward thinkers….Innovators….Movers… Shakers…Yet, we still see all of this happening.

The land of the free?

Free, for who?

 

 

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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.

Avô

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You didn’t know him. In fact, if you did, you probably wouldn’t even like him. Growing up, we always heard stories about how terrible he was to his numerous children and to his wife. He was an immigrant who brought this family from the Azores to the United States to start a better life. I never understood this, in the Azores he had a good job and they did okay for themselves (from what I’m told). Everyone around us, judging him and talking about him as if we weren’t standing right there. “We” being his grandchildren, the people who saw a side of him that no one else knew or understood. Sure, we only knew him as our avô, but that’s just it…That’s what mattered to us. Yes, he was a hard man who rarely smiled and had a pretty aggressive personality, However, his grandchildren always made him laugh and smile. We were his weakness.

I remember the days when he’d watch me after school because my single mother worked all hours of the day and night to support us. He would walk to the school and we’d walk back together, hand in hand. I did most of the talking, of course, but he didn’t mind. He would listen patiently and finally ask if I’d like to help him in the backyard. He loved his garden, his pigeons and his paint. He ended up moving to a different town with my grandmother when my mom decided it’d be a good idea to move in with her boyfriend’s family. My grandparents lived in a small trailer where my avô had the freedom to plant and paint whatever he damn well pleased, and he did. I joke that the only thing keeping that trailer together, until this day, is all of the layers of paint. I spent a couple of weeks every summer at their house until I turned 18, after that, I visited at least once a week. I could sit and talk to my grandparents for hours, listening to their stories and advice.

My avô would sit at the kitchen table every day and watch soccer or some other crappy show on the Portuguese channel and complain the entire time. I think I was the only person who didn’t mind this, it always made me laugh. I would sit and vent to him about various things and he would just laugh and tell me how dramatic I was being. My grandparents didn’t speak English, so other cousins only really came around when their parents were around. I tried to make it a point to visit as often as possible since I lived so close by and I liked to help whenever they’d allow.

When  I became pregnant, my grandfather would always say he wouldn’t be alive to meet Victoria. The joy in his eyes when that day came was something that I will never forget. He would just watch her in awe, mostly  because it had been about 10 years since anyone in our family had a baby. Once Victoria started growing, she became more active and was no stranger to getting into trouble. When I would scold her my grandfather would knock me on the head with his middle finger and tell me to leave her alone…She’s a sweet angel. I always laughed at this and I would remind him that she’d be worse once the teenage years approached…In which he would remind me that he wouldn’t be around to see that.

 And he wasn’t.

        He fell ill, recovered, and then fell ill again. His hospital visits were becoming more and more frequent until finally he had to use an oxygen tank and was too weak to stand for too long. I started visiting more frequently, much to my ex’s dismay. I tried to keep things as normal as possible by doing what we always did with each other and following the same routine. I would walk in, give my grandmother a kiss, leave Victoria in the living room with her toys, and walk straight to the backyard because I always knew he was there. It was like he was waiting for me every time. I would call him from the door and he would whistle, letting me know where he was. It was always a hassle getting to where he was sitting, in the middle of his garden. Grape vines, tall leaves of Kale and various fruit trees he invested all of his time in, covered the entire area. I would peak through the hanging leaves and he would look up at me and smile while sitting in his favorite chair. I would give him a kiss and he would say, “you get uglier and uglier each time I see you”.

         This time, it was different, he was different. The process remained but his eyes were so empty. He looked so tired, but his humor remained. Right on the other side of his trailer was a cemetery, and we could hear mourners sometimes, it would always creep me out. He would say, “look at that, all I have to do is jump the fence when I’m dead!”, and I would giggle because it was uncomfortable but funny. I would sneak him packs of cigarettes because they’re what kept him happy. He had been smoking since he was 12, so quitting would just kill him faster. He would hang the oxygen tank hose on the fence and smoke his cigarette; sharing stories with me and joking about how my grandmother would kill us if she found out he was smoking. As strange as this memory is, it always makes me smile. He was always going against the grain, thinking his own thoughts, quoting his own words. I always admired that about him, he always reminded me to be my own woman and to not let anyone call the shots. He was my male figure at the time, the man I looked up to, there to give me advice when I needed it (besides my Uncle Troy). I hadn’t spoken to my father for four years at the time and didn’t start speaking to him until I left Robert.

         Shortly after when I went over, he was sitting on the couch with a vacant expression on his face, eyes glazed over. I gave my grandmother a kiss and walked over to him and sat down. He didn’t look at me, but I started talking to him anyway. He never responded but I knew he was listening, I also knew his time was coming and that scared me. His health deteriorated so quickly, I didn’t have time to take in what was soon to come. We’re never really ready are we? I got a call the next morning…He’s passed. In my kitchen, making breakfast, I turned everything off and walked to my living room. I sat on the floor, I had no idea how to feel or how to react; I felt so empty, so confused, I couldn’t even cry. I left my daughter with my ex and drove over to where my family was, it wasn’t until later that day that it truly hit me. He was gone. Who would pick on me and call me “too skinny” now? Who would tell me that boys ain’t shit and my daughter would punish me by being just like me? Who would paint the trailer and take care of the garden? Who would twist my ear when I said something stupid? Or talk about soccer with me? Or sit in silence with me and stare out at nothing, in a garden near a cemetary?

             I didn’t know. I just wanted him back. I was asked to write a eulogy in Portuguese 30 minutes before the funeral, which I was fine with, but I was nervous and scared and sad. The last thing I wanted to do was talk, if you could believe it. The service was beautiful and so was my cousin’s eulogy. I had no one to vent to or cry to during this time since my ex kept telling me, “Oh, my dad died, you’ll be fine and get over it. It happens everyday”. Not a hug. Not an, “it’s going to be okay”, nothing. I’ve never seen my grandmother react the way she did that day, in fact, I had never even seen her shed a tear before that day. She sobbed and begged for God to bring him back. I stood up to speak at the podium and I was surprised at how many people showed up to pay their respects, he didn’t have friends and didn’t talk to his extended family. It was nice to know that there were those who actually cared enough to show up, even if it was just for my grandmother’s sake.

           Months later, my grandmother had someone gut the entire backyard. She said she just couldn’t take care of it by herself, but I think it was mostly because it hurt her to see it. I think about him a lot. I remember one day, a month or so after I left Robert, Victoria came to me in the early morning and gave me a big hug. I smelled cigarettes and Old Spice in her hair and on her clothes, it was the strangest thing. No one else was in the house, it was just us, and she smelled just like my grandfather did. I couldn’t hold back my tears,I just held her close and she started telling me about a dream she had. “Avô was there and we were at the beach!”, she exclaimed. I looked her in the face and asked if she talked to him a lot and she said, “yes mommy, all the time!”. I am Catholic, but I never believed in any of these things before she came to me that day. Every once in a while she’ll talk about him until this day, or the smell of cigarettes and Old Spice will wake me in the middle of a dead sleep.

I miss him so. He’s taking care of us, I just know it. It’s been three years this past Monday, and I can still picture his piercing blue eyes.

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.

Kate.

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Kate is a woman who is a hard, selfish and who has been through her fair share of turmoil. However, Kate was sweet once. There was a time in her life where she was compassionate, caring, and loyal. There was a time in her life where her children came first and all she ever knew was how to work and take care of her family. See, Kate grew up in a strict household and witnessed some traumatic things.

Kate’s first husband was angry and egotistical, staying true to the old school lifestyle he was accustomed to in his country, bleeding machismo through every pore of his body. “Where are you going?” “I’m going to do laundry, I’m done with dinner” “Sit the fuck down we’re not done here” “I really need to get laundry done, I have to get up early and I still have to bathe the little ones” *throws knife* Kate is bleeding. She walks upstairs to rinse off the blood and the little girl follows her. “Mommy.” “Mommy…What’s wrong?…Mommy….Mommy are you asleep?” The little girl runs downstairs. “Daddy I think mommy is dead” “Sit down, querida, eat.” Silence. Silence. Silence. Kate comes to and carries on with her evening as if nothing has happened.

She’s in this alone.

No one knows. No one would ever suspect.

How could it be possible? He’s a provider! He’s a good father!

“Querida, keep it down your father is sleeping. He has to work tonight” “Mommy, I’m just playing with my barbies” “KEEP IT DOWN OUT THERE I NEED TO SLEEP, PORRA”  “I said keep it down you’re going to upset your father”

*storms out of bedroom* “DID I NOT SAY I’M TRYING TO SLEEP?!!! KATE DID I NOT TELL YOU TO KEEP THIS UNDER CONTROL?! “ *grabs little girl and throws her on the floor* “I don’t like talking this much…I need to sleep!” *stomps on her back* “I’m sorry daddy, I’m sorry!”

Every. Day.

One day Kate met a man who was different. A man who showed her that men should always treat women with respect and should never lay a hand on a woman. He was young but eager to keep Kate forever as long as she could find the courage to leave. So she did. Her husband broke into a million little pieces, forever regretting his decisions. Through the years, as he watched his daughters grow and become attached to another man, he cried himself to sleep. Wondering what could have been, what should have been. As Kate bore two more children with this man, the pieces began to pull themselves together. She didn’t care if they were struggling financially or if raising four girls was difficult; she just knew that things were better. The problem was Kate was already bitter from her first marriage and took it out on her new husband. Things began to change over time, they became more distant, she became angrier and angrier. Why do I feel this way? Why am I not happy? What do I do? How do I change? What’s wrong? All romanticism was gone, feelings were hurt, no one knew what happened or why things fell apart. They just did. They were a seemingly perfect family and suddenly, like most “perfect” families, things weren’t what they seemed.

Again, Kate met someone who was different. Younger. Easy to manipulate. Romantic. She knew she wasn’t going to last with this person as he had nothing to offer but she went for it anyway. A new adventure. What could I lose? My children are resilient, they’re used to change. It’s fine. He’ll do. Over the years Kate also tired of this manboy and decided that she was bored of playing with his head. He, like her two previous husbands, was shattered. He had no idea how to live without this woman and took up drinking. Kate was much more powerful than she thought, she never knew she could have such an impact on others and enjoyed the power she had.

Until one day she met her match. A man who was just as selfish as she was. A man who didn’t take any of her shit and threw it right back at her when necessary. Drama. Dependent. Annoying. Ignorant. He was everything a woman SHOULD NOT want. Yet Kate loved him. She was absolutely head over heels and she did not know why. She remembered the words her daughter once told her, “one day, you will meet someone who treats you just as you treated the others, and you won’t be able to leave. You’ll be stuck”. She was stuck. She found herself playing the on again off again game most sixteen year old couples play. She was so used to leaving and never going back. Why do I keep going back? She couldn’t understand her actions or her logic. There was no logic. Love isn’t logical, but she didn’t know that because she had never been in love before. Love shouldn’t hurt. Love shouldn’t feel wrong. Why was this so wrong? Too stubborn to ask for help, she stayed. Every family member from every corner telling her to leave. She had nothing to lose, why doesn’t she just leave? She can’t. This snake has coiled around her, making it hard for her to breathe and making it hard for anyone to break her free. She’s distanced herself from her daughters, her family, from anyone who has ever loved her. Even the second husband who has begged for her back time and time again.

She’s doomed and she knows it.

Don’t ever let a man change you, don’t ever let your feelings consume you so much that you don’t recognize yourself when you look at yourself in the mirror. YOU are in control.  Take care of yourself because no one else will. If you don’t want help, don’t take it. Realize when you DO need help. Be thankful for the GOOD people in your life. You’re doomed to repeat history if you don’t come to terms with it. Always put your children first.

Love hard, but always be self aware.