Wednesday, November 21, 2007
I know what you are thinking. Is she seriously going to write 101 things about herself? The answer is YES! I had coffee today which is making sleep impossible to come my way. So, here goes...
1) I was born in Dallas, TX on 11/23/77 at 1:42pm.
2) I have one sister who is 9 yrs my senior.
3) I love chocolate milk.
4) Actually, I love anything chocolate.
5) Dave Matthews Band was my first concert at age 18.
6) I could see rated R movies as early as the fourth grade.
7) I had no chores as a child.
8) My parents divorced when I was 8 and then got back together when I was 13.
9) My sister was raised by my grandmother and moved into my parents house when she was 16. (I guess this one isn't technically about me)
10) The first meal I cooked was hamburgers and fries.
11) I haven't worn my hair in it's natural state since I was 12.
12) My first words at 9 months were, "Give me some tea".
13) I drank the best mint tea in Morocco.
14) I only like Paella in Spain.
15) I love foreign men.
16) I lost my virginity in Spain.
17) I was apart of the tech crew for the theater group in high-school.
18) I was kind of dorky in high-school.
19) I didn't go to my prom.
20) I could eat Pizza 3 times a week ( of course I don't).
21) I have a symbiotic relationship with my Mother.
22) We talk on the phone for 4 hour stretches on a regular basis.
23) She was my first best friend.
24) I am kind of bossy.
25) And stubborn.
26) I played the flute in grade-school.
27) I love to dance.
28) I didn't have my first kiss until I was 18.
29) It was with some random french guy!
30) I cried on the way home after my high-school graduation.
31) I barely studied my first year of college.
32) I was put on probation after my first year of college.
33) I managed to graduate from Boston U in 2000
34) I'm a financial strategist.
35) And a writer.
36) I have finished 2 screenplays.
37) My favorite food is Indian.
38) I bought my first car when I was 24.
39) I know nothing about world affairs.
40) And I am actively trying to change that.
41) I love learning foreign languages.
42) I want to live in another country one day.
43) I don't feel attached to the USA.
44) I hate infomercials except if it's weight loss related.
45) I can't ride in a car with the windows up.
46) It makes me feel claustrophobic.
47) I'm starting to like cooking.
48) I have no desire to ever make a turkey.
49) But I will make all the sides.
50) I talk to my best friend from high-school almost everyday.
51) Everyone likes me (no, really they do)!
52) I cherish my friendships more than anything.
53) I never know what to order at a bar when the bartender asks me what I want.
54) My favorite drink is a Manhattan.
55) I discovered it when I was 21.
56) I've had the same cell phone for 3 years.
57) I've never been in love.
58) I'm kind of scared to fall in love.
59) I don't think anyone will ever love me as much as my Mother does.
60) I attract men that never want a relationship.
61) Which I know is a reflection of my own desires.
62) I want to have kids but I am not sure if I will marry.
63) I plan to adopt at least one kid.
64) I believe in reincarnation.
65) But I am not sure how that fits into my spiritual beliefs.
66) I just started going to church every Sunday.
67) Now, I am the greeter at church.
68) I can barely drink coffee now; it keeps me awake too late!
69) Must be a sign that I am getting old.
70) I am turning 30 on Friday.
71) And I am not scared at all;lol.
72) I have been on a diet since I was 12.
73) And it has never worked.
74) My favorite show is Grey's Anatomy but this season isn't as good.
75) I didn't buy my first business suit until I was 29.
76) I LOVED Amusement parks when I was younger.
77) Now, I hate Amusement parks.
78) I don't like camping and I think people are lying when they say it's relaxing.
79) I don't like deep tissue massages.
80) I have always been calm.
81) I have never been called a Bitch in a serious manner. (At least not to my face)
82) I was in the Math Club in high-school but I only got a 580 in Math on the SAT's.
83) I think babies are the cutest things on Earth.
84) I didn't get into my first college choice (Yale).
85) I partied Wed - Sun when I lived in Spain. (Marcha!!)
86) I could never do that now.
87) I love to go winetasting.
88) Sometimes when I get really really drunk, I will accidentally speak in spanish.
89) I have never blacked out.
90) I don't feel attached to the foods I grew up with.
91) I wish I could write in my blog once a day.
92) Revolutionize is one of my favorite words.
93) I didn't really get to know my father until I was 13.
94) I don't like to have the spotlight on me.
95) I am hungry as hell right now!
96) My mom had to give away our family dog when I was 5 because I woke up one day and was scared of him. (Weird!)
97) I haven't had a dog since then but I desperately want one.
98) I am starting to yawn now; thank god.
99) I used to throw away my Mother's cigarettes when I was little b/c I thought they smelled bad.
100) And, now I smoke cigarettes.
101) I think everyone should write 101 things about themselves...
Posted by Madrid at 2:30 AM
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
In the past 2 days, I have found old high-school and college friends on Facebook. People I haven't thought about in years have instantly popped back into my life. Whenever I talk to someone I haven't seen in 7 or more years, I always wonder how to sum up what has happened in my life during the absense. I know I can't include the many intricate details of everything that has occurred in my life since I last saw him/her but sometimes I wonder, what else can I throw in besides what I do for a living and if I am married or single.
This got me to thinking about memoirs and if I had to write mine today, what would I include? Would I talk about the day my parents got divorced and how empty the house felt once my Dad was gone? Would I mention moving 6 times in one year with my Mom in an effort to get cheaper rent? Would I write about the day reading out loud became a challenge? Would I include pieces about when I lost my virginity and how unfulfilling it was?
I would have to throw in travelling to Chicago with my Grandmother every Summer on Amtrak and relishing every last bit of the trip. I would have to mention getting first place for my Division in the State Spelling Bee competition at the ripe old age of 6. I would have to mention how I cried as the cab drove my Mother away from my dorm back to the airport at the start of my Freshman year. I would have to mention using a Hawaiian girl's Eurorail pass while trekking through Europe and not being caught and thrown off the train.
Telling a life story is simple but not easy. We pick the moments that define us but as I take a mental stroll through memory lane, I realize all of the details have their little place in the memoir.
Posted by Madrid at 11:55 PM
Friday, October 5, 2007
I've recently become something I thought I would NEVER become. Domestic. Well, only in the cooking arena because I still abhor cleaning. Lately, I have seriously been channeling Martha Stewart with my recent kitchen creations. It all started out innocently when I got laid off from my production company job and found myself at home with absolutely nothing to do. One morning, I decided to cook pancakes from scratch to help get rid of a large amount of flour stored in my cabinets. Then came the frittata's & omelets. Then came me searching for interesting recipes online.
When I discovered the best cooking blog on the planet,
Now, if you are me, stumbling upon a recipe for homemade oreos is like finding the concoction that is going to save the world from destruction. Okay, it's not that serious, but you get my drift. I loved oreos so much as a kid that I once at half a pack in one day! I got extremely sick after this and my Mom refused to by cookies for what seemed like an eternity.
Since I didn't want to sabotage my weight loss, I made the Oreos for a concert event I attended with friends. The Oreos were a hit and much better than the store bought ones if I have to say so myself. Since then, I have made chewy chocolate chip cookies and korova chocolate cookies. But all this cookie making has only been for events/birthdays because my lack of willpower only allows chocolate to stay in my house for a couple of days.
My kitchen has produced more than sweets since my inner chef kicked in. I made Vodka Cream Pasta and Pizza from scratch last week. From a scale of 1-5, the pasta was really easy to make and gets a 1. The pizza dough made the pizza ridiculously hard to make and gets a 5! I went through 3 batches of dough before the last batch decided to cooperate and rise. I was almost defeated by the mixture of flour, water, salt and yeast.
Cooking from scratch tastes 10 times better than eating in a restaurant and it's as if I have discovered a new passion in life I never dreamt I would enjoy. It used to be soooooo boring for me but I have recently found myself getting excited about new recipes I find. It's gotten to the point where I head straight for the cookbook section at bookstores and I regularly check the food network to see what's cookin'. My mother is just beside herself at my newfound hobby and is so happy that her future grandkids will be eating more than sandwiches for dinner. Whenever I make some new homemade this or that, I call one of my girlfriends and say, "I just made this from scratch and it is so delish". To which she always replies, "Of course you did Martha"...
Posted by Madrid at 11:20 PM
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Monday Night In Review:
Monday night got started with M & I having the luck of the traffic Gods with us as we got to Downtown from the Valley in a record 30 minutes during Rush Hour. For all you fellow Angeleno's, I know what you're thinking. Priceless. We went to Ciudad and got our happy hour on with Mojito's, Sangria and Wine. We figured 2 tiny fish tacos each would suffice to hold our libations at bay. Needless to say, we were drunk by the time we left the restaurant and it was only 6:30pm. I could tell the night was going to be one to remember. We decided to smoke a little sumthin sumthin in the car to heighten our
This is where my memory gets a little foggy but I don't think I will ever forget what happened next. As we pulled up to the parking lot, the attendant was directing everyone where to park but I simply couldn't understand him and was thoroughly confused.
Parking Attendant: Follow me and park here
Parking Attendant: Park heeerrrree.
Still baffled, I rolled down the window.
Me: Can we smoke here? Oh shit, I mean park here?
Insert lots of the laughter from the 3 of us at my foolishness to actually ask a parking attendant if I could smoke a doobie in his parking lot. Ahem, maybe we should have smoked after we parked!
We got to the concert and sucked down more alcohol while we waited for Justin to emerge. I thought the crowd would be really young but no, almost everyone was over 25. We even met a group of women at Ciudad over 40 who were shrieking about the concert. Timberlake's effect apparently has no age boundaries.
By the time Justin was about to come on, M commented on how the Patron tasted like water with a hint of lemon and I concurred by gulping the rest of it down. I pulled out my newly purchased Justin glowsticks and started twirling to the sound of the crowd. To be honest, I can't really remember which song he started the concert with but I do remember not wanting to ever plant my butt in the seat. His live singing was way better than I expected and his dancing was by far the best. M & I kept saying how lucky his girlfriend is and how crazy any woman that leaves him must be. To be with a man that is hot, can sing & dance is just...priceless (can you tell this is my fav word of the day).
Justin rocked out for nearly 3 hours and towards the end, his slow songs induced some sleepiness on M&I or perhaps it was all that drankin & smokin that caused our stupor. However, he had us back out of our seats with the closing song, Sexy Back. The entire stadium sang every word along with him and I'm sure all of us felt a little bit sexier in the process.
Of course M&I got pseudo-lost on our way back to the car but we managed to figure out where we parked. I had to chuckle because we kept saying all night, we can't get forget where the car is! But me and her together = t.r.o.u.b.l.e. This night will go down in the memory books for sure. Well, at least what I can remember...
Posted by Madrid at 3:30 PM
Monday, September 17, 2007
Only 7 hours and 15 minutes to go until me and one of my favorite people on the planet get to see Justin Timberlake in concert!! Tonight I will get to channel the effervescent school girl locked up inside of me as I scream and wail from my seat as if he can hear my falseto voice. I cannot wait to see him shimmie and boogie on stage like there is no tomorrow. Sigh. I am in a happy place...
Posted by Madrid at 12:45 PM
Sunday, September 16, 2007
I got a laptop yesterday. Hip, hip hooray! Now, to some that might seem like not a big deal but to me, it was a groundbreaking achievement. I am a so-called writer but I have never had my own personal computer let alone my own personal laptop. Today owning a computer is like possessing a toothbsrush. Everyone just has one, period. Everyone except me.
I sit here and remember the long laundry list of excuses I told myself to justify not having one. "I don't make enough money." "I have so many bills." "I want to go to Vegas." "Dammit, I just can't spend $600 right now!" But what it all boils down to is priorities. Putting the important things in life at the top of the list of priorities I made for myself was something I ran from like a kid runs from the bully at school. For me it was so hard to activate the discipline it took to save the money. There, I said it, the nasty word. Discipline.
In my first year of college, I got a D in Calculas because I was more concerned with hanging out with my friends till the wee hours of the morning than preparing for my exams. The day before my final exam, I waited 6 hours in line to get tickets for front row seats to go and see the cult classic, RENT. Seeing that show for the fifth time was utterly joyous but I'm not so sure the school probation I incurred from recieving the D was worth it.
That inevitable D dropped my GPA below the number I needed to retain my scholarship. For lack of a better term, I was screwed. When I told my Mother, she said, "What happened?" The laundry list of excuses I told her were:
"I couldn't understand the professor due to his funky Croatian accent".
"The class was too big and I could barely see what he wrote on the board from the back of the room".
"Maybe I just don't get math anymore".
But I couldn't pull the, "I really didn't understand Calculus" act with my Mother because in high-school, I got straight A's in all of my math classes. My mother says, "Were you partying too much?" No, I was just hanging out. "Hanging out doing what?" I don't know just hanging out. "Well if you lose your scholarship, you will be hanging out at home." Needless to say, I got my shit together. I would love to say that I magically raised my GPA the next semester by not putting any extra effort towards studying but I corrected my error ways by letting that nasty word enter into my lifestyle - discipline.
I like to think that all of these funny little lessons I have learned prepares me for the next bigger lesson. And it sure is hilarious to sit back and think about the things I use to put at the top of my priority list...
Posted by Madrid at 12:07 PM
Tuesday, September 4, 2007
I recently read a book that made me think of the good ole days of writing book reports; I used to LOVE writing book reports when I was kid. While every other kid was grumbling during the book report assignment, I was secretly jumping for joy inside. Since reading was my number one hobby as a child, I relished the opportunity to write my opinions about the adventures I discovered in between the pages.
Fast forward 20 years, I still love to read but I don't get around to it as much. However, I recently read a book called, "Why Do I think I Am Nothing Without A Man" and I want to discuss some of its life-changing concepts with you guys. The book is written by a psychologist named Penelope Russianoff (she played the role of the psychologist in Unmarried Woman) and it came out in the early 80's. Although, it is over 20 years old, the author's message is still very much on point.
Penelope addresses her book to all women, married and single, and how she believes that too many women make the mistake of thinking that men complete them. From career driven women to stay-at-home Moms, she says that many women feel empty if there is not a certain someone in their lives.
Penelope gathered her research from studying women in her practice and from the classes she taught at New York's New School of Social Research. She has studied the relationship lives of thousands of women and from the ones she encountered, over 95% of her patients think they are nothing without a man. I know, a staggeringly high amount!
The author uses a great term to describe this "nothing without a man" mentality. She calls it, Desperate Dependence, which can be defined by any of the following:
Severe clinging to a man
Feelings of void if a man is not in your life
Major focus of life is on a man
Feels that the world views you as abnormal without a male consort
The man must be totally absorbed by you and must "need" you
Luckily, desperate dependence is a learned (nature and/or nurture) behaviour and can be corrected if one chooses to take the plunge of reforming herself. According to the author, it is very important for women to get in touch with their "inner core of security" in order to kick the desperate dependence habit. In the author's words, having an "inner core of security" is like having a, "solid spine of confidence that is part of you; you take it with you wherever you go. And with this inner source of sustenance, you do not have to rely for safe harbor or for self-esteem on anyone outside of yourself".
I think that in order to develop an "inner core of security", you have to really get in touch with your wants, needs and desires as a woman. Once we as women learn how to love and depend on ourselves for our happiness, then we can take all of these strong points to a relationship.
Penelope says throughout the book that she is not advocating for women to develop a "I don't ever need a man" mentality. Men are great and they definitely have a place in our lives; they can make some of life's experiences very rewarding. She just wants women to learn how to independently nurture their body, soul and spirit so that when you are with a man, you can bring your whole self to the partnership.
Another important concept explained in the book is learning how to love and enjoy being alone. Unfortunately, many women equate being alone with being lonely. Sometimes you can be very happy when you are single and alone versus times when you are sad & lonely even though you are in a relationship. I think a lot of women get into a rut of thinking that their partner is supposed to make them happy and make their lives not listless and boring. It is not anyone else's job or duty to make you happy. You have to make yourself happy first or you will be going through men left and right searching for the one that can never bring that elusive happiness to you.
Mrs. Russianoff (yes, she is married) says many women think that having a husband or having a man that loves them guarantees they will never be alone. But this is what they call living life with rose colored glasses on. Your spouse or boyfriend might leave you or gasp, die before you. So, we have to accept the fact that at some point in our lifetime, we will be alone. Instead of trying to avoid it at all costs, we should embrace it when it comes. Being alone simply gives you time to get to know yourself and to call all the shots so to speak.
Maybe some women don't want to be alone because they really don't love themselves. But here's a thought, if you don't like or love yourself, how do you expect anyone else to like and love you? I also think that some women might think this type of attitude (not being afraid to be alone) might make them look less desirable to a man but in reality, it makes you look more desirable to a man. No man wants a clingy woman that needs him for survival. And if he does seek this type of woman out, then he has issues too.
In closing, I back the author up full heartedly with her opinions on getting out of the "desperate dependence" line and jumping over to the "inner core of security" line. I think deep down, all women want to develop a love so strong for themselves that will prevent them from falling privy to thinking they are nothing without a man.
Posted by Madrid at 1:35 PM
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Last week, I went to volunteer at the homeless shelter. Whenever I walk into their safe haven, it feels like being home. Everyone is so warm and friendly and ready to help out when needed. Stepping inside those doors always reminds me of being back in the south instead of being in gritty downtown LA.
Outside of church, it's the only place where I see people openly talk about the power of God in their lives. Most of them are ex-addicts who have found Christ so you can imagine how grateful they are to God to just still be alive. But this post isn't about God, it's about me possibly getting into a sticky situation with a MAN.
Most of the men flirt with the female volunteers because they are surrounded by only men for the length of the program (13 months). It's harmless flirting and I play along. I bet you're thinking that my possible sticky situation involves a homeless man; wouldn't that be an interesting saga! In reality, it's one of the employees that works there as a cook.
I deemed him harmless at first because I thought he was married when I met him a few months ago. He talked about missing his older daughter who is in Iraq and he just seemed like a family man. I guess I should have suspected something when he asked if I was married or single but I didn't. I didn't give him my usual "I have a boyfriend" spiel. I think his part-time seminary school status elicited my honesty.
While we were cleaning up after the food service, Seminary man asked me and another volunteer what church we attended, if any. We both rattled off the names of our churches as did he. He then invited us both to his church and asked if he could have our contact info. We both agreed and gave him our phone numbers. In case you are wondering, the other volunteer is a gay man. At this point, I should have known what was up.
Last night, Seminary man dialed me up. He said he just wanted to call and see how I was doing and invite me to church one Sunday in the near future. He then said that he would really like to get to know me and asked if he could take me to lunch or dinner. There it was; the real reason why he was calling. Sunday service was just the point of entry.
He told me that he liked the way, "I carried myself" and that I seemed like a nice mature woman. Although his old school approach was quite refreshing, my interest in him stops at the friend mark. I can already hear you saying, what about what you said in your previous post about fully getting to know someone before you make a conclusion so quickly.
In return I say to you, there is an exception to every rule. He is a nice man and we do have somewhat decent conversation together but we are at two exremely different points in our lives. He is 49, has been married before and has a daughter in her 20's. Not quite the ideal of what I am looking for.
From the brief conversations we have had, he does seem like he has lived an interesting life and I would really like to get to know him but I wonder if the man/woman friendship is only a myth. I've only had 2 platonic male friends since the onset of adulthood and it only worked because neither of us had a romantic interest in the other.
I intend to be completely honest with this man so no one gets hurt. My "filler" days are over and I no longer feel comfortable using someone else just to please my own flesh. I kinda hope he is okay with just being my friend. It would be nice to have a platonic friendship with a man again but at this stage in life, I'm just not so sure it's possible...
Posted by Madrid at 9:12 AM
Monday, August 20, 2007
And no, I am not telling you my number; it's quite embarrassing actually. When I saw my number, the usual thought, "How did I let this happen" stormed across my mind. As I mentioned before, I am apart of a weight loss challenge which started yesterday and ends in February. We went to a health expo a week ago and got our body fat tested but then we found another way to get more accurate results. It's called the
This company does the body fat testing for many of the weight loss reality TV shows like Celebrity Fit Club. I really had no idea what to expect when I arrived. As soon as we walk into the facility, I see a perky Asian woman ready to get our tests underway. She had one of those,"I've never had a fat day in my life" type of bodies. I knew I had to get in a pool to get tested but I thought they would simply hook me up to a machine and be done in 5 seconds. The experience was quite difficult.
I got into the water tank and listened for further instructions. The perky Asian lady said to blow 3 deep breaths out of your mouth as if you were hyperventilating. On the last breath, you hold your nose and dunk your head back into the water while you are still blowing the air out. It sounds easy as pie but everytime I dunked my head into the water, I would suck the air back into mouth. I did this about two times before I got it right and damn near choked during the process. Phewww.
After we finished, perky Asian lady discusses our results and gives us advice on how to change our body fat for the better. Since me and another participant are heavier than the other people in our group, we get a full-blown explanation of how to eat. I was itching to pull the, "I know this shit already, I just have a hard time applying it" card but I sat there quiet and nodded my head. I guess it is true what they say. Knowledge is only power when applied.
I have read countless nutrition and health books but I never follow the plans for more than 3 weeks. But this time is different. Not only do I have to prove to myself that I can shed this weight but I can't let myself look like a lazy bum next to the other 4 people in this challenge. And I REFUSE to go back to perky Asian lady in February with the same body fat measurements I got yesterday. Wish me luck!!
Posted by Madrid at 10:12 AM
Friday, August 17, 2007
I know my topics have been on a marriage/relationship type of kick lately but this theme keeps popping up in my life. This week I found out that yet another friend of mine is getting married. However, this time, it's not one of my girls, it's a guy I used to date.
We had one of those on-again, off-again courtships; it was kind of like a booty call with perks. Although we mainly had a sexual relationship, we still went on dates. He would hint at wanting a serious relationship but I ignored those hints and kept our status as "uncommitted". Throughout the time we were together, he never dated anyone else. He said he could never sleep with more than one woman at once. He was made to be in a committed relationship but he seemed to always get involved with women that just couldn't see him as the "relationship guy".
By the time he met me, he said he had stopped worrying about if he would ever find "the one" and learned to just enjoy his life alone. I admired his way of thinking and his attitude took the pressure off of me. Our booty call romance ended after a year but we still kept in touch. This week, he called to tell me he was getting married. I know what you're thinking, he was dating someone else the whole time. He's not a nice guy after all. No.
His parents found someone for him to marry from his country and he actually agreed. I was shocked. In the past, he said he was never the type to do an arranged marriage. I didn't question his reasons for getting married but I couldn't help but wonder if he was just tired of not succeeding in romance here in this country and decided to take advantage of the old world customs of his own country.
I'm reading this book right now called, "Why do I think I am nothing without a man". The author says that we as humans are conditioned to believe that we can only be happy if we are apart of a twosome. Although the book is geared towards women, she says a lot of men think this way too. There are many more layers to this book which I will have to write about later. I just think it's interesting how someone who claimed to be at peace with being alone is about to jump into an arranged marriage. Maybe he never really stopped worrying about finding "the one" and only pushed those thoughts deep into his subconscious.
After he told me his good news, we said our goodbyes and I wished him well. I know we will never see each other again because it would be too weird. I knew I never wanted to be in a serious relationship with him but I felt kind of sad. He is the first man that I have dated that is getting married (that I know of) and it feels like I am losing someone. Maybe I am just being selfish but it's hard to imagine him taking such a serious step with someone else. I know he deserves every piece of happiness but why is it so hard for me to let go? I think that's why I am so adamant about remaining friends with people I have dated; it's just so hard to have them exit from your life. In the end, I hope it all works out for my friend.
Posted by Madrid at 2:45 PM
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Over the weekend, I went to a health expo with some girlfriends. We are starting a weight-loss challenge tomorrow and we needed to get our health stats. The weight-loss challenge goes from Aug. 15th to Feb. 15th. They need to lose weight for a wedding and I joined in b/c I need to figure a way to become more accountable to myself with losing weight.
So on Saturday morning, we went truckin downtown to get our current weight, body fat and blood pressure measured. While we were getting our body fat measured by the Bally's booth, they were trying to sell us on getting a membership to one of their gyms. One of the guys asked if I wanted to sign up and I said, "No. I don't really like gyms but I have lots of work-out videos". In turn, he said, "Really. Are they dusty?" Ouch. I didn't know ridicule was apart of their strategy. He flashes me a pearly white smile as he sends me on my way but his comment sticks in my head for most of the day. I wasn't necessarily offended by the comment but it made me think of how many times I have started and stopped an exercise regimen.
When I became unemployed, I started exercising everyday cause I was bored as hell. I also ate all of my meals at home cause I was broke. Which makes me wonder if I just need to be jobless and penniless to lose weight!
I must say, I had tons of energy when I was working out everyday and I was almost starting to love the high I got from it. I lost 18 pounds in 7 weeks and I went down one dress size. I was ecstatic but once I started working again and got back into the social game, I started slacking off. They say it takes 21 days to build a habit but I swear it takes me 21 days to build and break the habit all in one go. Luckily, I haven't gained the weight back that I lost but I know if I don't ramp it up soon, those pounds will creep back on.
I touched on this topic before in my "Weight-loss Woes" blog entry back in January. Being overweight is never about the food; lots of crazy emotions are wrapped up into my obesity. I guess I am still figuring out how to better channel dealing with my emotions. So, tomorrow is a new challenge and I really hope I can do it this time. I know that losing weight will be such a great benefit to my health but I also really just want to be able to shop on Melrose...
Posted by Madrid at 8:17 AM
Friday, August 3, 2007
One of my best friends left LA last night to go and get married in Australia. She and her fiance are happily awaiting their nuptials in a few weeks. They met 2 years ago, fell in love quickly, and decided to get hitched. After they get married, they are permanently relocating to Australia to start their new life together.
In the past couple of years, many of my friends have been getting married, having babies and moving to new cities, in hopes of embarking on the next chapter of their lives. I can't help but think back to a conversation I had with my mother when I was 25 years old. She insisted on bursting the fantasy bubble I lived in at the time. Back then, all I cared about was having a great time with my girlfriends and not putting too much thinking towards the future. I always had big dreams of what I thought the future held for me but when I was younger, the "future" seemed so far away. I was more interested in where my next cocktail was coming from!
So my all too responsible Mother decides to sit me down one holiday while I was visiting her and says, "Baby, I know you love how your life is right now but it will change soon. Your friends will get married and move on and you have to start preparing for that". Of course I knew my fantasy bubble couldn't last forever but I wasn't ready to step out of it. Not quite yet. I didn't want to discuss the topic any further so I just said my infamous, "I know that Mom!"
Fast forward 5 years to present day and she was right. I knew she was right because she is always right and not in the "Parent's have life experience" under their belt kind of right. My mother is extremely intuitive and kinda clairvoyant at times; so she is always right even when I don't want her to be. I took heed to what she told me 5 years ago and in the past 2 years, I slowly started taking steps to prepare for the next chapter.
It might sound odd but I purposely stopped hanging out with my close circle of friends as much. I stopped being the friend they could always count on as being present at every social occasion. I started hanging out with just myself so I could learn to be happy with just me. I took myself out to dinner, movies and the occasional bar and I had fun with me. I began to learn how to not make the life I had with my friends so crucial to my existence.
The next chapter of life can mean many different things at different stages of our lives. It can be going to college, starting your career, getting married, having babies or dealing with the death of loved ones. But underneath it all, I think my mother was trying to tell me that the next chapter of life is learning how to be alone and enjoying it.
Learning how to be alone comes at different times for everyone and no one can escape it. Friends leave, siblings leave, children leave and spouses leave. The only person that will always be left is you. My mother says I am lucky to learn this life lesson now when I am young than when I am old. She didn't learn how to enjoy being alone until I went away to college and she still says that was the hardest moment she had faced in her life up until then. Codependency can truly be a bitch at times.
I still soak up and love the company of my friends but I have left the fantasy bubble and I have no intentions of ever going back.
Posted by Madrid at 2:45 PM
Thursday, August 2, 2007
I am that girl. The one who has a hard time putting roots down anywhere. The one who has a hard time staying committed to anything or anyone. The one who hates working 9-5 but does it out of sheer necessity. I am simply a girl that loves to be stimulated by meeting new people and experiencing new cultures all of the time.
Lately I have been reading too many expat blogs about Americans living in other countries and it has reactived my travel bug that has been dormant for far too long. Reading about others experiences has also brought back so many beautiful memories of when I lived in Spain. I lived in Madrid for 10 months when I was a junior in college and it was the best time of my life. I can't sum up my entire experience in this blog but the time I spent in Spain has been the only time in my almost 30 years of life where I felt happy every day. Although, I'm sure my memories of Spanish life are a little romanticized b/c I was a student and didn't have the true responsibilities I have now as an adult here in LA.
In any case, I am getting an itch to go somewhere, anywhere. So far, I have been to Europe, Caribbean and North Africa and now I want to tackle Asia. I contemplated teaching english in Korea for awhile but I'm not sure if that is the right fit for me. As much as I would love to disappear to some faraway land, I still have many tasks to finish here. Besides, I think I would feel disappointed in myself if I just chucked it (my dreams) all to the wind. For now, I will have to settle for a vacation somewhere to satisfy my cravens. Hmmm, where should I go?
Posted by Madrid at 3:57 PM
Back in April, I talked about seeing a ghost from my past when I was perusing dating websites. He was the last man I fell really hard for but it didn't work out due to reasons I mentioned in the April post. We sporadically kept in touch since we stopped seeing each other but I hadn't talked to him for months until... July 4th.
I was at home reading a book and waiting for my roommates 4th of July party to kick in when my cell rang. As I gazed down at the number calling me, it took 2 seconds to register that it was him. Here is an excerpt of the convo:
Him: Hi, it's ____.
Me: Oh, hey. (long pause) Um, how's it going?
Him: Good. How are you?
Me: Great, just great. Did you graduate?
Him: No, not yet.
Me: Oh, bummer.
Him: (Insert nervous laughter) This is my last quarter though. Sooooo, what are you doing right now?
Him: I was wondering if we could hang out today?
Did he seriously think he could just call me at the drop of a hat to hang out and I would drop everything on a freaking holiday to see his trifling behind. Of course that is not what I said to him although I really do need to find a way to channel the "psycho-bitch" persona for moments like this.
Me: I kinda have plans being it's 4th of July today.
Him: Oh right, I forgot about the holiday. We don't celebrate it in my country.
Me: Well, we do here.
Him: I just wanted to know if I could take you out for coffee sometime so we could catch up.
What could we possibly have to catch up on?
Me: Sure. How about Sunday?
Him: Perfect. I'll pick you up at 3.
Did I just agree to meet him that fast.
Me: I'll just meet you at the Starbucks down the street.
Him: No, no. I'll come and get you.
Me: Fine. Ok, bye.
Him: See ya on Sunday.
I hang up the phone and wonder what the hell just happened here? I wasn't really expecting to ever see my ghost again. My mind starts taking off in a million different directions. Does he want to be friends now? Or God forbid, does he need to tell me he has an STD?
Sunday rolls around and he calls me at 3 to tell me he is on his way. Damn, I was almost hoping he bailed. Five minutes later (yes, we live that close), he calls and says he is outside my house. You know what's crazy, I was straight up nervous. Not because I was so excited to see him or anything but I was still worried about why he wanted to see me.
Anyways, I walk outside but I do not see his black Mustang. I scan my head from side to side but I don't see him. I pull my cell out to call him and then I see a shiny new Lexus pull out from one of the parking spaces and drive right in front of me. He waves and I get into the car.
Me: Hey. I didn't notice you in the new car.
Him: Oh, yeah I just got it.
Me: Why did you get a Lexus?
Him: Cause it's reliable
More like, I bought the shiny new Lexus to compensate for what I am lacking emotionally.
Me: Reliable? Uh, okay.
Him: Have you lost weight?
Me: (I smile to myself) Oh, you can tell?
I know my weight loss is obvious since I haven't seen him in awhile but isn't it fun to play along.
Him: Yeah, you look much thinner. Why are you losing weight?
Duh, cause I want to look hot!
Me: Cause I need to get healthy now that I am getting older.
Him: I guess that's good.
By this time we are at Starbucks cause it is seriously only 2 minutes from both of our houses. So you see, there was no need for him to pick me up except to show off his shiny new Lexus. I guess he never figured out that I am not materialistic.
I sit on the patio as he gets our iced coffees. He saunters out looking like he owns the world and sits the coffee down.
Him: Sure. So, how have you been?
Me: Really good.
Him: How is work?
Me: Actually, I am doing very well. I quit my day job and I am finally building up my financial services business right now and I love it!!
Him: Wow, things have really picked up for you. That's great.
Okay, in cases like this, I totally advocate bending the truth just a wee bit. There is no need for him to know that I was laid off from my day job, that my financial services business is starving for clients right now and that unemployment was my only source of income at the time.
Me: Yes, life is great.
Him: Are you dating anyone?
Damn, you waste no time in getting to the personal questions.
Me: At this very moment, no. I dated one guy earlier this year but it didn't work out.
Him: Oh. What are you looking for?
Haven't I told you this like 3 times before and yet you still ask the same question.
Me: A serious relationship; not a casual one.
Him: Then why don't you get a boyfriend?
Like it's that easy to find someone who you connect with physically, spiritually and emotionally.
Me: Well, I don't want a boyfriend just to have one. I want him to be the right person.
Him: You know what, you should get married!
What the fuck?? Okay, I have no idea what is going on in this conversation right now and no, I am not making any of this up.
Me: Dude, slowwww down. Why u trying to marry me off? Do I look like the marrying type?
Him: No but what do I know.
How do you know I am not 100% keen on marriage; time to get the spotlight off of me.
Me: Are you dating anyone?
Him: No, no time.
Me: Well, are you fucking anyone?
Him: (Nervous Laughter) Umm, yeah. You know booty calls.
Nice to hear you are still living a shallow existence.
Me: Do you ever want to be in a relationship?
Him: Yes but not right now. I have to focus on my career right now.
Still singing the same song I see.
Me: Why did you call me?
Him: Because I miss you.
Crap, I wasn't expecting him to say that. There was a long pause right here cause I really had no idea what to say. I kinda missed him too but not in the "I want to be your girlfriend" type of way.
Me: Oh. Well, I miss talking to you sometimes.
Him: Me too. I always thought you were a very nice person.
By this time we have finished our coffee and are back in the car driving me home. We are silent for the full 2 minutes it takes to get back. He pulls up slowly in the front of my gate.
Me: It was good seeing ya and good luck with school.
Him: Good to see you too and thanks. See you next time.
Me: Yeah, next time.
So that was how my meeting with the ghost went. It was kind of weird seeing him but nice in a way. He looked even better than I remembered but I always thought he was hot. We haven't spoken since that day and I am not so sure there will be a next time. I'm not really sure I want there to be a next time. Some things are better left in the past. On the bright side, at least he didn't tell him he had an STD....
P.S To all my friends who are saying, "This happened in July and you are just now telling us in August!" You know it takes me awhile to digest situations that happen in my life before I can completely spill my guts about it. Besides, I am like this in "real life", so why would you expect anything different in "blogland"...
Posted by Madrid at 10:32 AM
Tuesday, July 31, 2007
I've been debating for the past 2 months about putting my profile back on a dating website. I haven't been online since June 06' and I haven't gone on a date since February 07'. I am starting to get the itch of wanting to date but I am hesitant to get back out there due to my lackluster dating history. I tend to attract the sweet, kind and nice men that tend to bore me 95% of time. Whether I meet them online, at a party or a club, it's the same dude. Whether they are black, white, yellow or blue(ain't it funny how people always say yellow or blue when describing races!), it's the same dude. They say we attract what we put out there so maybe I am sweet, kind and boring! (Gasp).
Although I don't think that is necessarily the entire sum of it. I was watching reruns of Oprah yesterday and it was an episode about love. Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance were talking about their love story and how they were friends first before they became lovers. They went to the same college but didn't personally know each other. 10 years later, they ran into each other in Hollywood and got together for a date. She said she thought he was, "sweet, kind and boring" after the date and decided he wasn't her type. She put him in the friend category but they ended up falling in love later down the line. She said after they really got to know each other, they realized they were soulmates. I thought their story was cute; it gives you hope that maybe the boring guy really can turn out to be the prince if you give him a chance.
Her and Oprah said it takes a certain maturity to get past the,"Oh my god he is boring" mentality. Maybe while we are young, we want constant excitement to stem from relationships with men, be it positive or negative. We overlook the nature of the persons heart and immediately look at personality flaws he might have. It's funny, when I ask my mom what attracted her so much to my dad, she always says, "I knew he had a good heart and would always love me". My dad has a list of boring qualities I don't care to name but instead, she looked at his heart. Maybe these older women are on to something...
In the past, I have dismissed many men who I thought were boring but now, I'm planning on being more open in the future. I don't plan on settling but I hope to at least fully get to know someone before I make a decision about him not being for me. I'll let all you darlings know what happens once I get back in the game.
Posted by Madrid at 11:34 AM
Monday, July 30, 2007
I have been gone yet again for 3 months here in blogland but I have returned with more interesting stories to share. First off, I lost my job at the production company end of May. Now I can say/write it with such ease but when it happened, I was a bit distraught. Not because I loved the job so much but I depended on the paycheck. I only had a little savings so I kept wondering where money would come from after it ran out because it sure ain't falling from the sky. I knew I could call on my parents once my banking account hit $0 but it's so hard to ask for handouts when you are almost 30. My parents were married and had a mortgage when they were my age and never had to ask their parents for money by then. And kids are supposed to do better than their parents; I guess I missed that memo!
Anywhoo, luckily I got unemployment which afforded me some much needed time off. All in all, I had 7 weeks of not reporting to any job. I must say, it was fabulous!! I got to have a little taste of what my life would be like if I could make a living as a writer. I woke up every day and felt free and I haven't felt that way in a long time. All of the free time allowed me to think about myself and my needs and the changes I need to make in my life. Unfortunately, when you are working, it's too hard to sit down and really meditate on the course of your life and the direction you want to take. We get so bogged down with what everyone else needs and forget that we have to take care of ourselves first.
My mental break was fun but every good thing must come to an end, right? I decided to get a temporary gig until I build up my financial services business. Building up my client base is definitely not a piece of cake but I'm thinking the benefits will be great in the end. The temp gig is really easy and just what I need; it still allows me to feel free since I am not locked into a permanent contract.
My mom always says, every "bad" thing that happens to us in our life is not necessarily bad. Losing my job was actually the best thing that happened to me this year because I gained so much peace and clarity from it.
Posted by Madrid at 10:57 AM
I went out dancing on Saturday night to a place I used to frequent a lot when I was younger. This particular club had a grand opening because they haven't been at this venue in years, so I saw a lot of old faces that I hadn't seen since I left the party scene. Back in the day, my friends and I went to this same spot every weekend and congregated with the same people. In a sense we built a community of friends at this place.
This past weekend got me to thinking about how people come in and out of your life. I once read this poem about how everyone you ever meet has a certain season in your life. Some are meant to stay just for a little while and others for a lifetime. For me, my circle of friends changes every 5-6 years. It's been this way since I was 6 years old. I moved around quite a bit as a child so I learned early on that people don't last forever in your life. Although I understood this concept as a child, my idealist mentality still has a hard time accepting it. Sometimes I just wish friendships would never change but I know that is ridiculously impractical. Life experiences make us grow in different ways which makes us grow apart in some cases. All of a sudden, you start to realize you have absolutely nothing in common with the person you used to have everything in common with.
Even when past friends have left my circle, I always like to think that we will keep in touch but it doesn't always work out that way. I have lost some friends I never thought I would have lost which brought me to tears in some cases. Now, I just try and enjoy the present as much I can with my friends because I never know when their time is going to expire in my life.
Posted by Madrid at 9:35 AM
Friday, April 13, 2007
I just saw a ghost from the past. I was bored after lunch today and decided to peruse dating websites and came across a face I recognize. Seeing his face conjured up all of the crazy emotions I felt for him last year but what surprised me the most was my sadness in seeing him searching for someone new.
The short time we spent together seemed so special to me. He was sweet, kind and attentive. It's not that I had never met anyone that treated me well before, but I never had felt so strongly for someone else. I didn't know a happiness of that kind existed. Whether we were in a dancehall surrounded by hundreds of people or sitting alone in each other's presence, I was happy. When I was with him, time literally stopped and I lived in the present instead of the past or future. In the hours we spent together, I focused all of my attention on him and didn't think about anyone or anything else and it felt good.
We only lasted for a few months. I could only take his busy schedule and lack of emotion for so long before I felt like I was losing it. He used his schedule as an excuse of not being able to be in a committed relationship but I knew that was only half true. He hadn't quite made up his mind if he fully wanted to be with me and I sensed that he still wanted to play the field. Right around this time, I read a book on relationships and the Author said something that opened my eyes. He said, "If a man is not sure what he wants in a relationship, he usually doesn't want you". Soon after, I told him that I didn't want to casually date anymore because I needed more. I could foresee my heart getting broken eventually down the road and I didn't want to go there.
Even after we stopped dating, we still kept in touch. He would sporadically call just to see how I was doing. I kept answering the phone calls because apart of me still had hope that maybe it could all work out in the end. Maybe he would wake up one day and realize I was everything he needed to make his life complete. But that is not so because today I saw that the search is back on for him. He is out there searching for someone else to make him happy and apart of me hopes that he really does find it. But the other part of me can't help but wonder, why not me?
Friday, April 6, 2007
I had a conversation with a friend of mine last week and as usual, the conversation rolled around to who each other is seeing at the moment. Me: No One. Him: Same Girl he has mentioned over and over for the past month. So I ask him, "Are you really into her"? He replies, "She is a nice girl but she is just a filler". A What??? He says, "You know, someone to spend time with until the right person comes along". I say, "Hmmm, yeah". But I feel sorry for the poor girl because she has no idea that this courtship with him is going absolutely nowhere.
We get off the phone and I start to think of all my failed courtships with guys I was soooo into and realize that I was just their fillers. I get mad at even giving these guys my precious time but then a voice says, "You've also done this to countless people". Crap, there goes my subconscious making me aware of my own behaviour. Don't you hate that. Why is it that we don't think twice about making another human being our filler but as soon as someone does it to us, we are all up in arms over it? Maybe when we are behind the steering wheel, we become blind to how our actions could potentially make the other person feel awful. We say, "I'll never do that to someone again", but we do, over and over again. Why is that?
I know in my case, it's so hard for me to let others down. So, if I tell a guy who is a filler that I'm just buying time with him till the right person comes along, I feel like I disappointed him or hurt his feelings. Not wanting to hurt his feelings is only part of the reason why I am not completely honest though. Maybe I am not truthful in these types of situations because if I choose to be totally upfront with the person, then I would be forced to see myself as someone that goes around playing with people's emotions. Lord knows the truth can be very ugly sometimes.
It all seems like a vicious merry-go-around; I play with someone's emotions and someone plays with mine. Maybe one day I will get tired of the merry-go-round and decide to jump off...
Posted by Madrid at 3:53 PM
Tuesday, April 3, 2007
How many times have we heard the phrase, "There is nothing to fear but fear itself"? If you are like me, then it's something you have heard all of your life. From parents to friends to church authorities and even actors on TV, this statement seems to be blasted from just about everywhere. People akin taking control over fear in your life to baking a box cake when it's more like baking a cheesecake.
I have been thinking about the concept of fear a lot lately because I am beginning to sink my feet more in a career that should eventually propel me into becoming a business owner. Problem is, I never really saw myself as a leader. I don't exactly enjoy being a follower either but having to take on the leader position seems a little frightening. When I was young, my goal was to find a career that would allow me to create a nice little niche in between the follower and the leader. But life never works out as we planned. I struggle at what blocks my vision at seeing myself as a leader and the only thing I can think of is Fear. Sometimes it's fear of failure but mainly it's fear of the unknown. Someone once told me that a sign of personal growth is when you welcome the unknown and make the best of whatever outcome you get. Even if you fail miserably at the task at hand, you didn't let fear win.
I think tackling fear will be a life-long journey but hopefully at the end of the road, I can look back and see that I didn't let it win in the end.
Posted by Madrid at 4:40 PM
Friday, March 30, 2007
If you have been following this blog, I mentioned back in February that I was going to try a Vegan Lifestyle for a month. Well, that never happened. I definitely had a few Vegan days but not 30 days in a row. Usually, I am disappointed when I fail at something I try. Not this time. Going from Carnivore to Vegan is definitely a lofty goal and I am learning to start making more attainable goals first in order to achieve true success at whatever goals I am setting.
So instead of becoming a Vegan for 30 days, I decided to eat all organic food from now on. This goal is much easier because I am not depriving myself from any particular foods; I just have to eat the healthy organic versions. In the beginning, buying organic made me feel like I would never be able to have a social life again due to the extra expense but I am actually saving money. Go figure! Now, I have to eat the fruits and veggies I buy instead of letting them go to waste like I did in the past because not eating them is like throwing a crisp $50 bill out the window. Also, spending more money on groceries forces me to eat most of my meals at home. In the past 7 weeks, eating organic has become a way of life for me and now I can't imagine eating any other way. It is virtually impossible to eat organic all of the time but for the most part, I have stuck to it.
The other thing I am fessing up about today is cigarettes. I quit smoking cold turkey 7 weeks ago but I have smoked since I initially quit. I haven't smoked nearly as much as I used to smoke but I have had at least 2 packs within the past 7 weeks. I take that as progress though and I still say that I am a non-smoker because I really do believe words have power. What I learned most about trying to live a clean lifestyle is that it will not happen overnight. It took me a long time to accumulate these bad habits so I have to be patient with myself in getting rid of them.
Posted by Madrid at 11:57 AM
Thursday, March 29, 2007
Today I took one of those cheesy "What soul are you?" quizzes and one line from it stuck with me. It said I rarely finish things that I start. Of course I am not surprised but a little stubborn to admit that this is so true. I logged back onto this site today to see that it has been over a month since I last blogged.
To my defense, life did get a little all too consuming and blogging didn't seem so urgent. But, it is fun to write about my wacky feelings on here and then go back months later and reread it to see what "place" I was in emotionally when I initally wrote it.
The past 6 weeks have been quite interesting. I have been able to reconnect with faraway friends, discover a love for a new career I am digging deeper into and I have really started to be more proactive to get the things that I want out of life. I used to focus so much on everything I didn't have in life and although I didn't complain to outsiders, I sure did complain a lot to myself and to God. Why this and why that? Why him/her and why not me? I now realize how this train of thought sounds so pathetic but the complaining allowed me to make excuses for not having the things that I want out of life. So now, instead of complaining about what I don't have, I carve new paths on how I will get it.
As soon as I changed my thought process, I started waking up everyday happy and ready to tackle the world. I kept thinking to myself, why am I so happy? Then it dawned on me. I am not complaining anymore or at least 95% of the time I am not. It's a relief I tell you. Now, when something bad happens to me that I have no control over, I say with fervor, "So What". Those two smalls words don't sound powerful but they really are. Just saying them makes me feel like I make the decision whether or not to let something affect me in a negative way and drag me back to the world of complaining. Alright guys, that's enough peeping into my psyche for now. I was only gone for a minute but now I am back!
Posted by Madrid at 6:00 PM
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
One of my good friends has been obsessed with Valentine's Day since we were teens. We didn't have boyfriends in high-school so every year on V-day, she wanted to fake a cold and skip school so she wouldn't have to see all of the flowers, teddy-bears and chocolates strolling the hallways. I guess she figured there was no need of being reminded that she wasn't getting any romantic gestures made towards her on that day. Since high-school, she has still dreaded V-day and became a scrooge for the holiday; until this year.
Last week she mentioned Valentine's nonchalantly over email and how she thought it would be nice to spend it with someone special but wasn't going to get all bent out of shape if that didn't happen. She was looking forward to her Mom's annual gift and a fun night out with the girls. I was a bit surprised at her positive tone but gladly welcomed it. I was expecting the usual cursing every happy couple that crossed her way attitude which always made me laugh. Then today, she sent me a V-day ecard and seemed to be all smiles over email. Turns out a special someone did give her some treats today for V-day but I don't think that's sums up the reason for her happiness. She recently wrote an uplifting story about recognizing that she has been surrounded by love from so many people for so long and feeling blessed because of it. Her once cynical attitude has changed into a fairly postive one. I love seeing my friend really come into her own; she has put a smile on my face because I see her growing for the better.
So on this day of love, I say love, accept and cherish who you are because in the end, that's all that really matters. Happy Valentine's Day!!
Posted by Madrid at 11:33 AM
Thursday, February 8, 2007
I think we all have the cut off age where you swear to yourself that you will start living more healthily. Mine was always 29. So now that being 29 has set into my psyche nice and well, I have started to take steps towards living a more "clean" lifestyle. First stop was the doctor yesterday. I hadn't had a physical in god knows how long. As soon I walked into the doctor's office, I got scared to death. All of my usual calm is generally left at the admitting doors waiting to attach back to me after I leave the clinic. In the back of mind, I think that clinics and hospitals are the places where bad news is a common reality and where dreams go to die. Fellow patients always look a little dejected and worrisome as they are waiting to be set free from their delirium.
Unexplainable recent fatigue and exhaustion prompted the doctor's vist yesterday. Usually I am a ball of energy regardless if I am tired or rested. But lately, everything I do has made me ready to pass out on the floor and sleep for days. Of course, every imaginable disease ran through my head as I waited to be called. What if this, what if that ran circles around my brain. It's funny how we think we are invincible until we get sick. Then all of sudden, you start cursing yourself for every unhealthy thing you do with repentance.
There are many unhealthy habits that I continue to hold on to, but the main one is smoking. I have smoked for far too long and it's time to rid this bad habit out of my daily lifestyle. When the doctor looked at my chart yesterday, she said, "I see here that you smoke. Well, it doesn't hurt to stop". So I quit smoking as of two hours ago. I had to finish the last pack this morning with my coffee. Me and Marlboro had some good times together but eventually the bad times will start to show its ugly face. I felt like I was saying goodbye to a dangerous lover; the feeling of loving something that is not good for you but not wanting to let go. Next stop on the road to healthy living will be trying out Veganism for a month!! Can't wait to see how that goes.
For now, I have to wait on my blood tests to come back before I can fully relax and know that I am still in good health. I still worry that the cigarettes, unhealthy eating and lack of exercise has done some irreversible damage but tis better to change these habits now while I am still young than when I am old.
Posted by Madrid at 10:22 AM
Monday, February 5, 2007
Last week I completed my first session volunteering at the homeless shelter. I didn't know what to expect when I arrived but I was ready and willing to do whatever. The night started off with prayer and then we got down to work.
I was placed on Kitchen Duty;I prepared the tables with water and silverware. I worked alongside former homeless men who are currently in a program that helps get them off of the street. They were definitely the happiest bunch of people I have seen in a very long time. Not one person complained about his less than glamorous job of fulfilling the kitchen tasks.
They didn't even complain about their current lot in life. If anything, they seemed to be so full of joy and hope of what the future holds for them. One talked about buying a house one day and one talked about being able to see his kids on a regular basis after they got out of the program. Their joyful spirit couldn't help but to rub off on me and for the first time in a long time, I didn't think about my past failures in life nor did I think about my current problems. I was simply content and for the two hours I spent at the shelter that night, I wanted nothing more and nothing less.
Monday, January 29, 2007
I am a true Sex & City addict. I can quote damn near half the show but I keep tuning in on a nightly basis to see the many quirks of pseudo real life situations they portray in the dating world. In one episode, Carrie talked about a certain relationship missing the "zsa zsa zsa voom". In other words, it was missing the chemistry and the passion. Here in lies the age old question of, "Is chemistry really that important to sustain a successful relationship?"
A friend once told me that chemistry is overrated; she said you don't need it to have a happy relationship with someone. She thinks there are so many wonderful qualities that people bring to relationships that we are so willing to dismiss if the chemistry is lacking. This might make sense to some but not to me.
For me, chemistry is one of the most important things to have in a relationship. If it is lacking and everything else is good on paper, I will dimiss the person. It is such a wonderful thing when you can strongly connect with a stranger and become left speechless as to why you connect.
Only a certain few men have conjured up the "zsa zsa zsa voom" in me that invoked the "Where have you been all of my life" feeling. If I don't feel the "zsa zsa zsa voom", then I simply place them in the friend category or the psuedo-relationship category. A pseudo-relationship looks like a real relationship but it's not. You go to dinner, movies, coffeshops, museums, have sex but you never decide to be a couple. The decision to not be a couple lies in the lack of chemistry between the two parties. At least in my head, this is the reason.
If chemistry is not important, what is? Do we trade in chemistry and passion for money, sex, fame, security, fear of being alone? Maybe for some, these things really do outweigh the chemistry connection. Even my pseudo-relationships are just trade-ins for when the real chemistry does come along. A simple waiting period to make life not seem so dull. Everytime I find myself with any of the psuedo-relationship guys, I try to convince myself that chemistry is overrated but it never works. My memories of the "zsa zsa zsa voom" feeling eventually over takes me and makes me keep waiting and watching for Mr. Chemistry to walk into my life.
This question will never die and other bloggers will bring new meaning to it I'm sure. I guess there is no good way to end this blog but to say, to each their own...
Posted by Madrid at 6:00 PM
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
I have never been thin. I was a normal sized kid but after I turned 9, I was always the little girl that was 15 pounds overweight. My parents got divorced when I was 9 and my Mom went from working one job to knocking out two for awhile. She tried her best to still cook healthy meals on a daily basis but one person can only do so much. As soon as she realized I was gaining weight, she cut one of the jobs she was working and tried to get me back on the right track.
Enter the long diet phase. For as long as I can remember I have been on a diet. I would lose a little weight here and there but somehow put it back on. I remember having exercising sessions with my mother in grade school; she grew up in a house where she couldn't eat certain foods as a teen because her mother told her she should always "think 6". This might have caused her to be a little lax with me at times. I even started playing sports in middle school but somehow that extra 15 pounds never shed from my body. I grew to accept that I would never be thin.
Over the years, that 15 pounds grew to 20, 40, 60 pounds etc. Now, I am at my all time highest weight but I am not about to have a Kirstie Alley moment and share the number with the entire world. In my early twenties, I was a size 12 and I got comfortable at that size. I still occasionally dieted because I think I am truly addicted to being on any new magical diet that will cause me to lose 20 pounds in 10 days without lifting a finger.
As a new birthday rolled around, more weight piled on. Just like every other overweight person, a recent photo let me see how my weight really has gotten out of hand. Over the holidays, I saw extended family and all anyone could say for the entire trip was, "Oh my God, you got so fat". Unfortunately, my family does not mince words. Although I do find it rather peculiar that people are so quick to point out your short-comings without examining theirs first. But I will leave that topic for another blog on another day. I do want to lose the weight and live a healthy lifestyle; yet something stops me from banishing the weight once and for all.
I think I have grown attached to seeing myself as an overweight person. It's been with me longer than any friend I have to date. At this stage, it's wrapped into my identity. Sometimes I think that losing the weight will be like losing apart of myself. But for now, losing the extra weight also represents the final stage of becoming an adult. I'm responsible in many areas of my life and I mentally matured much faster than many of my peers. The extra weight sort of turned into a way for me to hold on to that invincible mentality we tend to have as a child. They always say that being overweight is never about the food; it's always about something deeper. In my case, I guess it's not being sure of who I will be once that part of me is gone.
Thursday, January 18, 2007
This week was the first week she was alone in her apartment sans boyfriend. She happily said, "I felt like a real single woman for the first time in my life last night because I stocked my fridge with alcohol and then watched When Harry Met Sally!!". In return I said, "So, you think I am a lush that watches romantic comedies on a nightly basis?" Insert lots of laughter from the both of us. No, this doesn't sum up her entire viewpoint of single life but her little saying definitely got my brain off and running. Do we really base our lifestyles on being single vs. coupled?
When a person is single he/she makes all of their decisions on their own and never thinks to consult with anyone before choosing an activity to partake in. If a friend calls asking to go play cards at some random cousin's best friend's house on a Saturday night, he/she is ready and willing. However, when people are coupled, they give up a little bit of their autonomy to the "relationship" and no longer choose to go play cards at the drop of a hat. Sometimes their personal interests literally seem to fly out the window once they have a partner by their side. People go back and forth throughout their lives from living single lifestyles to living coupled lifestyles. Why do we have to put a label in front of the lifestyle we are living?
Another friend recently said that although he likes dating, he doesn't like being in a "couple" for the very reason I just pointed out. He doesn't want to change his "I" status to a "We" status because of the negative stipulations it presents. He doesn't want anyone cracking down on his time with the boys so he prefers to fly solo. Which makes me wonder why our independent nature has to get stifled in relationships?
Sometimes we choose to stifle it and other times, we are forced to stifle it. In either case, I think it shouldn't be stifled at all because what if one day you wake up and can't even find it anymore. Maybe I am thinking too long and hard on one little funny comment a friend made but I think I am on to something with re-examining how we choose to define our lifestyle.
Posted by Madrid at 3:15 PM
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
About a week ago, I went to a volunteer orientation at a homeless shelter in downtown LA. I used to volunteer when I was younger and I have recently been compelled to jump back into it as an adult. It was quite interesting walking around the shelter and seeing what they do for the homeless there. It almost felt like a jail but obviously with less restrictions. What I like most is that this shelter has a special program that lasts for 18 months that teaches them the necessary skills to re-enter into society. The director said only about half of the people that walk through their doors actually enter the program; half is better than none. For many of them, the program is a way to stop abusing drugs while others use it to get their GED. The director said the shelter is their last stop on a long road to recovery.
This void along with other voids I have nursed throughout the years has caused me to fall into a trap of getting too caught up in my own life. It's hard not to fall into this trap because no one else but you can make your life turn into the perfect vision you envision it to be. But now I am beginning to think I have enough time to grow my life as well as help grow someone else's life; or at least I can try. I just have to abandon the "me" parade thinking first. Everything has been about me, myself and I for far too long. I didn't realize I had become so self-absorbed until one day last month, I just got sick of whining to myself about me and my wants. I had an epiphany and thought, what if I transfer all of this "I want a relationship" energy into something else. I'm sure you can tell I am one of those, "Everything happens in your life for a reason" kind of gals. Maybe if I had my perfect life already, I wouldn't have even thought to take this path to the shelter. For now, the shelter is my first stop on a long road to helping myself as well as helping others.
Posted by Madrid at 10:37 AM
Friday, January 12, 2007
For some reason, the idea of close friends of mine starting that next step in their lives towards being parents jolts me back to realizing we are not kids anymore. I tend to forget that we are all grown up now with a long list of countless responsibilities to attend to. In my world, adding a baby to that list seems a little frightening. Which makes me wonder if underneath the over-excited "We're having a baby!!" emails, lies a layer of fear of the unknown?
I started thinking about all of this baby nonsense today because one of my good friends sent me pics of her newborn. I saw the baby one day after she was born six weeks ago and she is the cutest thing ever. My friend says being a Mom so far is enriching, fun and tiring as hell.
However, she says she would never go back to not having that little munchkin around. Another friend/mother once told me that, she never knew she could love something or someone so much until her little boy came into her life. Her statement echoes my mother's comments on raising me and my sister. She says having us around for 18 years was the best time of her life. She thoroughly enjoyed being a Mother and still misses us kids being at home. It makes me wonder if having a baby will really be the best decision I make in my life.
I must be honest with myself and say that all of this baby news has me feeling like I am missing the boat. In the sane part of my mind, I know I am not ready to procreate. As you read in my last post, my paycheck-to-paycheck lifestyle isn't exactly the most ideal situation for being a good parent. But in the utopia part of my mind, I do dream of having the baby and the fabulous husband to go along with it. Of course, we wouldn't have any financial problems and I would be able to spend the first three years of my child's life at home with him/her. The thought of being able to spend holidays and vacations with your kids and hubby does sound quite enjoyable in my all too single world. I reluctantly pull myself out of the dream and back to my reality of still making my own baby (writing career) become a success. Eventually the real baby will come along ( I think) and I can evoke some weird thoughts/feelings in other non-mothers from my "We're having a baby" email!!
Posted by Madrid at 10:02 AM
Thursday, January 11, 2007
However, today things started to take an interesting turn. My boss is venturing into the world of infomercials and wants to know if I want to be his personal assistant. I accepted the offer although infomercials is not something I have ever wanted to work in. I guess we gotta keep swinging the bat even if we are thrown curveballs. Keep on truckin' as my Mom would say.
While I was dealing with my job woes, I got a call from one of my close friends this week. She just had a baby a month ago and now her husband is diagnosed with a brain tumor. I felt absolutely gutted when I heard this news. They are such good people that don't need this kind of tribulation right now. Surprisingly, she sounded hopeful that everything would work out. I thought about how unimportant my own problem was at that moment and said a silent prayer for her family. Sometimes, while dealing with your own curveballs, you have to take a step back and help someone with theirs...
Posted by Madrid at 12:00 PM
Wednesday, January 10, 2007
I would love for many souls out there to read my words but I am really doing this in hopes of having some type of record of what goes on in my life on a week-to-week basis. I also look at Blogging as a form of cleansing the spirit because you get to purge everything inside of you and not worry about what people think. It's a cheap form of therapy, if you will!
I'll start this first post off by giving you a little info about myself. I'm female, 29, single and currently living in Los Angeles. I am from the South originally but La-La land has been my home for more than 5 years. I moved here with dreams of becoming a famous writer. My overnight success hasn't happened yet but I managed to finally land a job in the industry working as an executive assistant at a start-up production company. I spent the first four years in Los Angeles working for an internet company. Those 4 years were great because of the people I met but also horrible due to the sheer nature of what I did. I had to help "to be brides" with wedding questions. Bridezilla took a whole other meaning to me but I won't bore you with the details.
I named this blog, "Which is more important - Journey or Destination" because it's a question I have always pondered over. I tend to gravitate more towards the journey being more important because it will make us appreciate the destination more. It also lets you discover who you are as a person and discover the things that matter most to you in your life. So come ride with me this year on my continuing journey and hopefully I will discover more interesting facets of what I want out of this thing called "Life"....
Posted by Madrid at 9:55 AM