Musing no. 27: Back to da School

School begins tomorrow, signaling the need for me to post my yearly back-to-school litany. Let’s begin with a story.
 
My mom taught me how to read when I was three or four. She used to have me read from the book of Psalms, and her friends used to say, “WOW! She can memorize it!” My mom would then respond, “She can READ it! I’d be more impressed if she could memorize it, though.”
 
No, I’m not minimizing my mom’s comment, or making her look bad. In fact–with challenges like that–I, my brother, and my sister have all achieved what we achieved because our desire to better ourselves was self-fueled. Our parents never imposed. Gosh, I resented my dad for making me write, “I will not go out past 5:30pm and go drinking with my friends” 5,000 times when I was 18 (YES, I actually wrote that crap 5,000 times), but now I have the pride of saying my handwriting is beautimous. (For reference, stalk IG: thecatthatstolchristmas) Shameless self-promoting. Tsk.
 
Anyway, my point is that how you pursue this journey is based solely on yourself and how you react to outside influence. NO ONE can predict what happens while they dictate what you do. In fact, if I listened to everything my parents said, I wouldn’t be here. (I’d probably be at Harvard, lols)
 
You are in charge. You got a new track, stay on it, stay focused, and don’t break up with anyone during finals week because that’s a crappy thing to do and it makes you a total dickbag because you don’t care how anything affects other people because you’re a total user. Also make sure you thank the people you cross along the way who help you, because you may still end up needing their help anyway. (mad shade. hella shade. putting on all the shades😎)
 
But JK, that’s up to you. It’s just much better if you treat people kindly. It is the key to being the ray of sunshine everyone needs when everything starts becoming gloomy and halloweeny and snowy, woo!
 
Begin this path with humility, perseverance, patience, generosity, and kindness. I promise you, it will yield good things, you will accrue good people, and you have the chance to pass on the good that is rarely existent today.
 
Have fun with school, kids. MamaLo is here if you need to rant, someone to talk to about schedules, your boy/girl/other/pet trouble, if you want to buy me food, I’m always here.
 
Oh and also, make sure you say hi.
 
🤙🏼✌🏼😘
-Lo

Musing no. 26: Another sleepless.

Can’t sleep, yo.

Tomorrow I need to be up by later. Meaning tomorrow is now, and in approximately 4 hours I need to get up and fix my life lol. We’re welcoming new students to Columbia. About to encourage those new to the challenge and remember how far I’ve come in spite of everything I’ve gone through. All my choices, all my mistakes; but I choose to learn.

Even if being whoever I was before now was easier, at least I know I have a purpose. Yes, we will all have horrible times in our lives where we feel like the ability to comprehend the reason and purpose for those times are obsolete. Yet we keep on; we have no choice but to keep on. Some may lose focus on their purpose, others may get side tracked. It will always be there, though.

I used to want to blame other people “ruining” my emotional well-being, but I forget that I have a bigger responsibility to myself. I am in control of how I react. I am responsible for how I treat other people.

Yes, I’m a little piece of work too. Nobody said I was perfect. I’m just good at dishing advise I don’t take, which–by the heckin way–everyone is. 😏

It’s good to feel like you have the ability to lift blame off of your shoulders and place it on others, but some do the complete opposite, too.

How others choose to be to you has nothing to do with you. That’s in their control.

How things become and how things end up–no matter how unfortunate or tragic things end up being–is not entirely dependent on you. (Leaving that open, because it doesn’t just fall under life here, but also around the world at all times and different eras).

You choose. You pursue. You fight for it, if it’s worth it.

And if it’s not?

You had fun. 🤙🏼

Musing no. 25: Hello, Wordsmith.

Words. I’ve always fallen for those so good with words. I don’t know, maybe it’s because I love to talk so much, that when someone else speaks I prefer to listen. But that has never benefited me, to be honest.

I dislike when people say things they don’t mean. They say things you want to hear, claim to be honest, then if they fall through–and you did expect them to–they say you have no faith. Excuse me. If I listened in the first place, then I’d have lost my soul already.

We sometimes forget how our words affect others; the way we say things and what our words mean can be totally different. Some may claim to be pleased doing this, some may lie about it. Whatever. You’re in charge of what you do and say to others at this point.

 

There will always be disappointment. You’re literally surrounded by liars. Family, friends, lovers, what-have-you… They all lie to you regularly. Hell, you even lie to yourself regularly. No, Janet, those pants do NOT accentuate your bum.

But my point is, don’t lie to yourselves. When you lie–self-righteousness like “I’m not the same person I was… I only deserve the best… I have to become better for you” type of crap–you don’t like to the other person. You lie to yourself. No, you don’t deserve the best, you can barely handle a real relationship. No, you are not the same person, but that same person makes you who you are, and you can’t really escape it. No, you don’t have to become better for me, you need to become better for someone better than me, because in your eyes I was not enough and I was flawed. THERE. Isn’t being honest SOOO much easier? Jeez.

 

I can not wait until I find someone I can speak to with any thought–no matter how shocking or appalling, how wondrous and amazing, how insane and inane, how beautiful and awesome. Time will come. I shall wait. I shall speak, and I shall be honest.

 

And. So. Should. You.

Musing no. 24: Homebound

As some of you already know, I am headed back to Canada tomorrow to take care of family. I initially just wanted to dip out, and not tell anyone about it, but I need you all to understand something.

I’m here for whoever needs someone to rely on, talk to, confide in, and comfort them. Most of you know that. I just ask two things of you—please say a prayer for my family. Please pray for healing, and that we get through our trials.

The other thing I am asking for you to do, is to love those around you. You don’t know the struggles they’re facing, no matter how happy they seem on the outside. Help them even just by checking up on them. I have friends who know me so well that they check up on me every day, even when everything is seemingly fine. I have friends who feed me when they can tell I haven’t been eating and I’ve lost my appetite (Ronald, I see you!). But PLEASE, be kind to each other. Be kind to those you encounter. No matter how annoying you think they are, you don’t know if you’re the one inspiring them to follow their passions and end up making a big difference in the world. You’re capable of being kind—use it.

I don’t know exactly when I’ll be back, but I am aiming for before the beginning of the Fall semester. I still have unfinished business to deal with here.

If no one else around you is kind, be the difference. It’s so easy to be apathetic and dismissive of people in this city; it’s also easy to just be considerate and helpful. Don’t break hearts. Mend them. Don’t hurt souls. Inspire them.

And again, be kind. Coz Lo told you so. 🙂 ❤

Musing no. 23: Memories of Hooah.

A year ago today I got back from Fort Sill. It’s probably the most ridiculous thing, being sad about coming “home.” Training was my home. That’s where I felt most powerful, most respected, most apt. Hell, even for being one of the tiniest in the battery, I know I was one of the best. I knew all my stuff, trained at night, ate all the food I needed to sustain the strength, tried to get the sleep I needed. I was usually up first to do my hair before everyone. I helped those I can–strugglers, slower ones, the ones that cried at night after being yelled at during the day. I quietly agreed, even if untrue, when my Drill Sergeants told me I did wrong even if I wasn’t–like when I was accused of smiling at a male even though I was freaking squinting because of the sun, yeah we got crap for that. But I did my best. I wanted to be one of the best. I pushed myself to be the best. I did extra work. Hell I carried others’ heavy rucksacks more than the males did, because no one wanted to touch the females’ things–not even their rifles (when they were at sick call etc., we had to bring their crap anyway). And later on, that would take a toll on me. I got injured, because I kept going and didn’t know when to quit. I got hurt in training, but that made them want to get rid of me, because I was not built for it. After 8 weeks of training and being one of the top scorers for females, they wanted me out.
But what was the most challenging when I was away was fighting for my right to stay. I wanted to stay. I wanted to heal up, keep training, do my part, come back to NYC and be one of the first female medics in my unit–a National Guard infantry unit, the “Fighting 69th.” That didn’t work out now, did it? How can you defend ourself when the person prosecuting you works with the people who are supposed to defend you. You lose. 
So they send me back. And here I am, with fractured L5 facet joints, and a stress fracture on my right sacrum. Fun. And everyday I live with that pain. Sometimes I have to take pain medication all day because of it. Sometimes I lose my appetite because of it. Sometimes I’d rather stay in my room and sleep because of it. I can’t go running the way I used to before I enlisted. I can’t stand one way for more than 5 minutes. I ache like someone hit my back with a 2×2 if I went and took a nice long walk. I sleep for 6 hours, but I wake up every 2, because I have to keep moving my body and it hurts. There have been instances that I would be in so much pain, I’d lose my breath. But that doesn’t matter at this point. I’m just tired of the pain, and I have been doing everything I can afford to help ease it–acupuncture, therapy, cortisone shots etc..
Don’t take your bodies for granted. Go work out. Go run. Hell, go walk in the park. What I’d do to be able to do that without pain! 
Also, to those who keep telling me I’m not a veteran, I know. Good job, you did your part for your country telling us that. Nobody ever said I was one. Chill yo butt. Ain’t nobody got time for you. Go suck a duck. 
To my friends and family who have been nothing but supportive and loving, I appreciate you. Please keep doing what you do for me to others. You guys are sunshine and everybody needs a little ray. Being here in my–yes MY country, coz I earned tf out of that citizenship–country without any close family in proximity– shoutout to my Seattle Family–with y’all support helps a lot, even if we all have our own things going on. 
Okay that was a really long rant, and I doubt anyone would read a long long post. But anyway. Go enjoy this day. It’s beautiful. It’s heartbreakingly beautiful. Heartbreaking because this was the day I felt so defeated last year. 
But I’m coming back. 

Musing no. 21: Broken-hearted 

Oh the Broken-hearted.

Spent their time pouring affection onto people who don’t reciprocate, or recognize that their feelings are genuine; that they just want someone to pour their heart into and love. 

And now they’re stuck hurting because people can’t love them the same way they expect. They expect. Don’t expect. 

It’s difficult when you spend a lot of time letting people know you care, that you’re always there, that time will pass but your emotions will be the same. And now you’re slowly going insane. Because they can’t do what you’ve intended for them to do. It isn’t fair to them; is it, to you?

We break our own hearts by handing them to people who can’t do the same for us.

No wonder some of us numb ourselves. 

It’s so easy to say, “don’t give up, love will come.”

It won’t. It never will. Some have to pursue it, and other times it just stays still. 

So then those who are trapped with nothing end up hating. Being miserable. Projecting hate onto those who don’t understand why. And yet we all sigh, we all sigh. 

So I’m tired. I’ll just be still.

And I personally accept the fact that I should just watch idly by. And not pursue. And not wait. And not expect, and not hate. I don’t know if I was made to have a mate.

If I end up alone, I guess I’ll be fine. 

No one wants to end up with a crazy; no one wants to be just mine.

Musing no. 7: To write about other things

Hi, it’s Lo.

So today I’m supposed to write a 12 page paper about geisha. I chose this topic because I feel like there needs to be more awareness about how it is slowly dwindling in appreciation. I’m not saying it’s not getting the attention it needs, but I decided to choose this object for my final paper.

My question is, why am I writing on here instead of writing my paper?

I don’t know.

Maybe I just needed a quick break from thinking about things that I just need to observe, and not try to change. I have this powerlessness that whatever I try will fail, and I end up being right.

But what if I keep writing my musings? Maybe someday I will find purpose. Stop the sadness that constantly visits my thoughts, even in the midst of times that are supposed to make me happy.

It’s kind of sad. Haha.

I don’t know if anyone will ever care about what I write here, or what impact it can make. But this life just seems so bland. Once all the highs are over, what’s next? Give to others? I’ve done that. Do what I want to do? I’ve tried that and have failed so far–or am still working on it.

It’s really difficult when I’m alone with my thoughts most of the time. I just wish that sometimes I could explain it to another person, so they know I’m not just morbid all the time. I just need reminding that things will eventually be better.

 

Just like you need that reminder too.

So I’ll remind you, while I wait for my reminder.

Musing no. 6: Allergy medicine

I feel like I’m floating and sinking at the same time.

To prevent my lungs from drowning in unwanted liquids, I have to consume very mind and body altering medication, and it’s screwing up my thoughts.

Why am I here? Does it matter? Do butterfly wings even flutter? Am I really here, or is this a dream? Why is everything like imaginary–it seems?

 

It’s nice and sunny outside, but all I want to do is go to sleep, and forget that i’m here, because I’m so exhausted. I feel like all my reason and all the help I need are gone because I fill my mind with questions no one is willing to answer. Be patient with me and understand that the reason I want to hold your hand and question things is because I’ve been dealt it, I’ve been dealt a hand. Maybe.

 

Maybe my thoughts are all the same, maybe I’ve slowly gone insane, but remember that what I say and do are not reflective of how I feel about you.

Maybe I’ll ruin it, maybe I won’t. My life is full of questions because when I used to love, I never asked a question and yet, there I was–left, abandoned.

I’m not quiet, I’m quiet–maybe audibly quiet. But the noise that goes through my head and my heart are such a storm that could rival that of the typhoons that take over the ring of fire every year.

But here I am now, and the questions that go through my mind, all the qualms, all my guesses, my worries, everything have to do with me wanting to be there, not screw it up this time, be with you. Not be left. Not be abandoned. I open up my soul, bare.

 

And still, no one knows what’s in there.

Musing no. 5: Talk to them.

Talk to the girl that’s always smiling.

You know her. She’s always asking about everyone else’s day, cracking jokes up, cheering people on, hugging those who need comforting, smiling at those nobody speaks to, and lending a listening ear to those that need it.

She hides something you know not about, something you should know about.

You don’t know that she cries herself to sleep, because of monsters from her past that haunt her. You don’t know that she sets her joy aside to make other people happy. You don’t know that the burden of succeeding and excelling coupled with her anxiety and depression cripple her, rendering her useless for hours on end.

And yet she gets up, gets dressed, and remains the same bubbly person you see.

You don’t know that because she asks about everyone else, but nobody asks her about her.

 

Talk to the guy that’s always watching.

You see him. He’s the one person helping other people move when no one else is willing to help. He lends you his coat when you’re cold, reminds you how amazing you are, cheers up those who feel like they’re failing, suggests solutions to those who are directionless.

He hides something you know not about, something you should know about.

You don’t know that he struggles to be confident because of the constant reminders of his mistakes. You don’t know that he helps to drag himself out of his room. You don’t know that his desire to make a difference coupled with his feeling of inadequacy pile up into a ball of confusion and a feeling of uselessness, no matter what he does.

And yet he gets up, gets dressed, and still goes out of his way to help.

You don’t know that he needs encouragement too, because all you see is him giving what he doesn’t get to others.

 

 

Talk to the person right in front of you.

You’ve been there. You see the difference they can make. You see the beauty they can create. Don’t just stand and watch. Don’t just stand and watch them ruin themselves.

Be their light. They need it. You need to share it.

Listen.

Observe.

Reach out.

Don’t pretend.

Don’t pretend you’re okay when you’re not.

Being aware of how you feel is not a weakness. It’s the beginning to recognizing how you can mend what is broken.

Face it. And if it’s too difficult, talk to them–they’ll help you.

Talk to the people who help.

They’ve been there.

They know how you feel.

They were you.

 

 

Because it doesn’t matter whether people ask about them or not. They find their joy in helping those who need it.

But talk to them. And after that?

Listen.

Musing no. 2: Why do I do this?

Sometimes we think pushing people away before they push us away is a good move.

Wrong.

But it’s difficult not to, when you’re so used to being the one left. Neglected. Cheated on. Left in the dark.

So you build this wall.

And then think no one can tear it down, because you’ve done a great job pushing people away so far.

But you get that one person. 

Who keeps on trying to get through to you. Patient, awaiting your episode to calm. Awaiting your anger to subside. Awaiting you to become your happy you again. 

So they can share their happy with you. 

Don’t push them away. You’ll just hurt yourself. Because if they do leave, then you’re done.
Be happy now. Be miserable when things are worse. You never know what life places on your dinner plate. 

Lots and lots of challenges, but your awesomeness will quell and conquer it.

So don’t push people away. Push your negative thoughts away. Your insecure voices. Enjoy the now.
You never know when the last moment you have with that person will be.