Did I drive you away?

Coldplay has consistently been my go to music for long commutes, road trips and late night cruises. I’ve cried oceans of tears to this track alone over the years because it echoes my own heartfelt sentiments. Whenever I want to evoke deep emotions over the present, future or past, I play “sparks” and allow myself to come undone.

I find myself making excuses to get away on late nights like these to take that long drive down Pecos road and let the tears fall. Alone, I make my way thru the dark searching for clarity and resolutions. I guess I mostly prefer this dark route because of the barely there street lights. The darkness makes it easy to hide all my sadness. Millions of bright stars light up the night sky the further I continue to venture out. Sometimes I find myself lost in daydreams of the past or get caught up in fantasizes of the future. Either way, I’m always tempted to run away to places where no one knows me at all.

The mystery of the unexplored road always has me wondering if there is something or someone still out there searching for me or waiting to be found. The wanderlust within me grows the further and further away i get from the city, closer to the base of the mountains. The need to escape seems overwhelmingly strong on nights like tonight. Like many of the male disappointments in my life, the disarming road comes abruptly to a dead end, leaving me abandoned in utter darkness and despair.

The knowledge of this should probably stop me from continuing to take this gloomy drive, but I’ve come to see that it’s probably the best metaphor for how I view love and relationships in life. Understanding that all circumstances are temporary and that we are all dispensable, gives me the courage to fall in love wholeheartedly with every single soul and moment God sends my way.

The last time I took my drive down Pecos I saw the beginnings of construction taking place to expand the freeway. The realization of losing this space made me feel a profound ache in my heart, but I understand change and growth are just another part of being alive. One day I know my special place will become filled with the hustle and bustle of city life and the road that hid my tears with darkness will be lit up by endless freeway lights. I know the way this road used to make me feel will soon be a memory of the past. I know I’ll take this drive when all is said and done and reminisce on the nights I found sanctuary driving down these barren streets. I’ll play this song and feel the bittersweet sting of closure, knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt..

I saw sparks.

100 random facts about yours truly

1. Showering in the rain. I’ve danced, played, ran and sat in the rain, but my favorite by far is bathing in it. And yes, I mean fully nude, in the comfort of my own home, of course. It really is such a liberating experience. If you haven’t already, you should try it. You’re welcome in advance.

2. New fragrance. New man…I am constantly changing fragrances but after a fall out or break up with a person of the opposite sex, I ALWAYS change my perfume. Sometimes I’ll go back and re-use them, but it’s a rarity. For me, scent is everything and it’s what ties all my memories together. So, if I wore a certain fragrance with or around you AFTER our falling out, just know that it was completely intentional. I’m trying to ruin your life the same way you ruined mine.😜

3. “New Hair” equates to big life changes.

This ties into the fact right above about changing fragrances after a fall out or break up. I’ve had my hair red like Rihanna, blonde like Britney, brunette like Jlo and jet black like Aaliyah. Whether I cut it, dye it, get highlights, get extensions or all over color, the fact remains the same; if my hair has changed in any way, so have my feelings over your importance in my life. I’m in the process of getting over it and you.

4. My obsession with Butterflies

Most people don’t know this, but the name “Vanessa” actually means “butterfly” in Greek. I also love the symbolism of what they represent. Their metamorphosis is incredible because they start out as something small that is often overlooked, and then transform into something beautiful that is constantly looked over. It’s truly amazing. Anyone that knows me associates them with me and that makes me happy. I’ve told my family that the day I’m buried I want hundreds of them released. Death is just another metamorphosis of this life into the vastness of eternity, is it not?

5. I talk to the man in the moon. I’ve done this for as long as I can remember. In my mind, he is the ideal and perfect man, the total manifestation of all my desires and dreams. He’s the one person besides God and Dymalski that knows me best. It’s probably why every other man falls short in comparison to this man in my mind. My imagination is always better than reality.

6. Misconceptions over puberty as a child.

I remember thinking at the age of 5yrs old that once I got older that I’d change internally once I grew up. Everything from my body, to how I filter emotions, my way of thinking and processing feelings was going to evolve. I literally thought I’d transform into an entirely different person with a new personality. In many ways I liked the idea of it, I gladly welcomed it. It made me feel excitement and anticipation for the future. I still love change.

7.  Paying a visit to the past. I always make it a point to practice this habit of remembering how far I’ve come by going back to the places I’ve been. I randomly drive by and sometimes park in front of old homes or apartments I used to live in from different time periods of my life to remind myself to stay focused on the future. Be it good or bad feelings that come up, I embrace them. Even after the darkest storms there is a promise of a rainbow at the end.

8. I had a near death experience which was traumatizing and extremely painful. Death is ugly. I don’t care what anyone says. When the lights start to dim in this life and you begin to fade out into the silence, your mind becomes paralyzed by its own fear. And it’s true what they say. Hearing is the last thing to go. I almost died during childbirth. My firstborn son literally took the life right out of me. I was 19 years old when I had him. I lost half of my blood due to other complications I had while pregnant. My father ended up donating two bags of his blood and I underwent a blood transfusion. It is true when they say “life is in the blood” because without it I was lifeless, and immediately following the transfusion I was brought back to life. I was taken in on a stretcher and left walking out completely healed.

9. I am a true empath. I am an emotional sponge and I absorb any and all feelings around me. I am hypersensitive and intuitive. It’s a blessing and a curse to feel so much. I’m always one of two extremes; completely invested or totally indifferent. I don’t do neutral.

10. Secret diaries. Ive written in journals ever since I could read and write. I’ve kept all of them over the years. But as much as I write, I never have finished one. I think this could be a perfect metaphor for my life. Also I never go back and read them again. Some secrets are better left sealed.

11. I’m a girl in love with love. My first boyfriend was Rance in Kindergarten. The first boy to ever say “I love you” to my face said it when I was in 4th grade. He had written me a poem and gave it to me on the playground. I had stopped liking him weeks prior, but I stayed his “girlfriend” for another few months after his sweet admission. I didn’t want to hurt his feelings so I told him my parents found out about him and that I had to end it. I was a douchebag because a week later I was “dating” his cousin. Every year after, I had a new boyfriend and best friend. Even then, I got bored easily. This pattern followed me until I graduated from high school.

12. Bring on the underdogs, loners, weirdos, black sheep and outcasts! I am drawn to eccentric people. The more eccentric the better.

13. If I could have a superpower I’d have the ability to fly or be able to breathe under water. Clearly I’m an extremist of sorts.

14. I am a very sexual person. I think as women it’s harder to maneuver through sexuality and what society expects us to be like regarding this. I’m pretty blunt and open when the topic comes up. Whether it’s my parent’s, my boyfriend or friends, I’m straight up when it comes to the birds and the bees.

15. I’ve always been obsessed with vampires and mermaids. I like the fables and legends behind them. Wouldn’t you like eternal youth, immortality, enchanting beauty, super strength or a hypnotic voice?…I do.

16. I am a collector of beautiful things and people. No need to elaborate on that. I think it’s pretty straight forward.

17. I’m a Lover of dark people, places and things. I like twisted poets and abstract art. I don’t usually like to share this part of myself with just anyone because they don’t always get it, but I admire artists and writers daring enough to explore the darker sides of their creativity. Artists like Dali, Van Gogh and Kahlo, showed their versatility by revealing both light and dark aspects of their talents and personalities. As far as writers and poets, I love Edgar Allan Poe, Robert Frost, Lang Leav and Pablo Neruda. Talent isn’t perfect but you can always find beauty in it. I love to read. I adore reading any and everything. Poetry and memoirs are my favorite.

18. I hate ALL carbonated drinks. I prefer my soda and beer flat. Crazy? I know. But I put enough pressure on myself as it is, I don’t need any additional pressure from my damn drinks.

19. I have dual citizenship. Be jealous.

Mexican dual citizenship can be obtained by anyone that was born in the United States of America to Mexican born parents. My dad is from Mexico and my mother is from Phoenix.

20. I’m an avid people watcher. People watching at the park, beach, restaurants, bars and bookstores is my favorite thing to do when I’m off by myself. It also ties into my love of traveling. I adore Seeing another persons way of life from their perspective. I’ve always been an observer of people, habits and patterns of behavior. I don’t care what you do. I just wanna know why you do it.

21. I’d rather go nude. I sleep naked and when I’m home alone, I prefer to be without clothes. If I’m wearing clothes, often times I’ll go without bras or underwear. I guess you could say I hate restrictions, literally and figuratively.

22. I must have been a witch in a past life, I swear. I’m naturally drawn to the supernatural, astrology and the occult. If I wasn’t raised by a Pentecostal pastor I’d be a practicing clairvoyant, living a gypsy lifestyle.

23. I play dumb on purpose. I know more than I often lead on. I have access to any and all information due to my extensive network of friends and family. From police enforcement to lawyers, to doctors, bank heads, creditors, MVD reps and techy professionals. I can literally find out anything about anyone I want to. That’s why I don’t mind it when people underestimate me. You wouldn’t mind either if you could see the cards I’m holding.

24. I relate everything in life to music. It often inspires what I write and how I write. Music is the one thing I could never live without. Music is my therapy. Music is everything to me. I’d go blind before going deaf. My taste in music is super eclectic as well. I can go from listening to Tupac to playing praise and worship to Elvis followed by Shakira then Fleetwood Mac. The genre of music I play at any given time is always a reflection of my mood in that moment.

25. I find androgynous people extremely attractive. Especially androgynous men. A man able to convey the perfect balance of masculinity and femininity in appearance is hard to come by. Think people like, Ruby Rose, Prince, Bowie, Michael Jackson, Beck Holladay, Jared Leto, Erika Linder. With Make up or no make up these people have a unique appeal to them.

26. I shave EVERYDAY because body hair is gross to me. I did this even when I was getting ready to head to the hospital when I was having both babies. If it’s not on my head or my eyelashes, it’s gotta go. Period.

27. I’m a night owl due to my on and off struggles with insomnia. For this reason I can’t stand morning people. Don’t try to have a real discussion with me before 11am. My brain still isn’t up.

28. There’s only one man that I fully trust and it’s not my dad or anyone related to me. In fact we’ve never even dated but he’s by far one of the best guys I’ve ever known and I can tell him any and everything. I trust him explicitly.

29. I have 4 sisters and brother. All of us including my parents have our own birthday month. So August thru January we have someone to celebrate.

30. I need my coffee fix. My absolute favorite coffee ever is Gloria Jeans. Sadly they are only found on the west coast. I settle for Starbucks out of convenience but my preference here in Az is Peixoto, followed by Dutch brothers and The Coffee bean & tea leaf.

31. Eventually I plan to move to California. I haven’t already because of timing, but were it up to me, I would’ve already left a long time ago.

32. Animals and children have always been drawn to me. The feeling is mutual. I’ve always said you can tell a lot about a person who is or isn’t liked by animals or kids.

33. I eloped to Vegas at 19 and was married to my first everything for over 10 years. He made me a mother by 20 and then again at 24. And by the age of 29 I was divorced. And no, before you even think to ask, I don’t regret any of it.

34. I’ve had many romantic gestures done for me throughout the years but my absolute favorite was being serenaded by acoustic guitar in bed by an ex. He sang a song I’d never heard before which was great because it took away the cliche element of the moment. He didn’t know it was the one thing I always dreamed of having a man do for me. It’s happened again since, but nothing compares to that first time.

35. I’m 5’2 and a half. I weigh 125lbs, I have a 27 inch waist and wear a C- cup bra.

36. I hoard letters and birthday cards given to me. I value words more than gifts. Things come and go but words are forever.

37. I hate airplanes, jets, helicopters etc. I love the convenience of them but I absolutely loathe flying. I get super anxious and feel claustrophobic on planes. I think it’s more so not having control over anything that terrifies me most. I’m entrusting my life to someone and something else. And I know the statistics about it being safer to fly than drive..and blah blah blah..but I still despise it.

38. Tattoos. I have 6 tattoos on random places of my body. I don’t regret any one of them and they all bare meaningful significance to me.

39. Some people have a set favorite color but I don’t. I seem to go through phases when I’m more attracted to one over all the others. For the last 3 years it’s been red. I think it speaks volumes about time periods of my life.

40. I don’t really care for expensive jewelry. I’ve been gifted with some incredible pieces throughout my life but I actually prefer costume jewelry over real jewelry. I’ve always had bad luck either breaking it, losing it or having it stolen. My collection of costume jewelry is ridiculous. I don’t have enough room for most of it anymore.

41. I have dozens of nicknames. Whether it’s family or friends, everyone calls me something different. I hate being called by my name by those that know me best. It’s just condescending to me. Like you don’t need to say my name, Carole. I know you’re speaking to me. I’m the only one in the room.

42. I used to bite my nails. Like, really really bad. It was a really destructive habit due to stress and anxiety. I would bite them to the point that they often bled. In order to stop it, I religiously get my acrylic nails done every two weeks. I still find myself putting hand to mouth, but at least I can’t bite them anymore.

43. I struggled with self harming after my divorce/ falling out with a friend a couple years ago. Honestly, I still struggle with cutting but I’m proud to say that I haven’t self harmed in a really long time. It was pretty bad. It came to to a screeching hault the night my best friend walked in on me after I had cut myself, and there was blood everywhere. The look of shock, fear and pain on her face was enough to shake me. That moment was my wake up call and I decided I had hurt enough for others that didn’t care, and I was only hurting those that care for me now. I chose to believe that Jesus’ blood was enough to cover a multitude of sins, so I concluded He didn’t need me to shed anymore of mine.

44. Dual personality. Most people see me as a very outgoing and social person but I also have another side to me that is shy, reserved and withdrawn. I actually prefer being alone rather than being with a bunch of people.

45. I have a journal that my best Friend and I write in and exchange with each other every time we visit. She’s in a different state so it’s a nice thing to have when you wanna talk about things on your mind that you aren’t ready to talk out loud about yet. If that makes sense?

46. I have a bedtime ritual that takes me at least 20mins every night. No matter how tired, sick or intoxicated I may be, I always do it. What’s that all entail?..I’ll save that for another post..

47. I’m weird about always wanting numbers even and having things around me symmetrical. It drives me crazy when it isn’t. I’m OCD about it for sure.

48. I don’t trust people in general but I especially don’t trust men that wear socks or shirts to bed. I feel like they always have something to hide. This of course coming from the girl who prefers to sleep naked.

48. Dark hair, light eyes and olive skin are the physical traits I find most attractive. It’s just the way I’m wired.

49. I think people that get annoyed with the noises others make when they chew or swallow are the most ANAL people ever!! I’ve found only 2 exceptions to this rule, the rest need to remove the stick from up their pretentious asses and check themselves for annoying habits their guilty of as well. This may come as a shock to you, but everyone makes noises when they eat, even you. It’s completely normal.

50. I know within the first few minutes of meeting someone whether or not we’re gonna click. It’s not a judgment thing, it’s a vibe thing. Either we connect on some level or we don’t.

51. I’m terrible with names, like seriously horrible. I can meet someone and within seconds forget their name. It’s strange how I can’t retain names, but I never forget a face.

52. I give everyone a nickname. If you don’t know yours it’s intentional. You don’t know it, but I can promise you, I’ve given you one.

53. I’m a dog person. Unless it’s a tiny kitten, then I don’t want anything to do with it.

54. I like to put milk in my ice cream when I eat a bowl of it at home because it makes me super thirsty.

55. I have many boxes and drawers full of make up that I have categorized by the parts of the face each product is used for. I’m a make up junkie and borderline hoarder when it comes to that.

56. My first language was Spanish. I didn’t speak English until right before starting school.

57. I like to do hour long cardio sessions or longer at the gym. I can completely zone out while getting a deeper understanding on things. I feel like I get my best ideas while on the elliptical.

58. I’m particular about how I like my ice. If I’m drinking whiskey or any other alcohol on the rocks it’s gotta be the big cubes. If I’m drinking water I don’t want ice. If I’m drinking soda I prefer the ice pellets. And yes I’m specific about the brand. I buy my ice from sonic. It’s the best.

59. My dream job as a child was always to be a singer. I used to sneak off to my room and sing my little heart out. When I was 13, my family and I went on a road trip and as we drove in the middle of the night I found myself singing along to my fathers music. That was the first time he heard me sing and it was also the first time I let anyone hear me. The next day I woke up to my father setting up mics, stands and cords. He bought us accompaniment tracks and told us we were set to sing in church that following Sunday. That was the first practice my sisters and I had as a Christian girl group he lovingly named “Torah.” First five books of the Bible to represent the five little girls in the group. We went on to record an album and sing at different churches and festivals for the next 6 years. As tough as things got, I have to say it was the happiest times of my life.

60. My sisters call me a “sniffer” cuz I smell everything…Food, drinks, clothing, people, things.. whatever comes near me. I can also smell out a cavity. Sounds weird but there’s a distinct scent to certain sicknesses, diseases and viruses in the body.

61. My first car was a green convertible mustang. I got it as a gift after I graduated from high school. I didn’t even ask for a car and had no interest in having one because of the added cost and responsibility, but my dad surprised me with it anyway. He took me to the car lot to test drive a few cars and asked which one I wanted and I picked that one. I drove that thing off the lot and straight to my best friends house for a joy ride that lasted all night. I drove anywhere and everywhere and I’ll always got there with the top down.

62. I knocked over a motorcycle in a movie theatre parking lot because i believed it belonged to my sister’s shitty ex-boyfriend. He had done her dirty and I guess my sisterly nature kicked in, literally. #sorryiaintsorry 🍋

63. I used to be a huge Phoenix Suns fan. I followed everything having to do with my NBA team as a young girl, but after they lost to the Chicago bulls aka Michael Jordan, I was so heartbroken that I never was into any sports teams ever again.

64. I’ve been in 3 car accidents, all of which were not my fault. I know everyone says that but it’s true. I got rear ended each time. The last time was two days ago and my car was totaled. I’ve dodged death yet again. I’m just happy I’m alive because my injuries could’ve been much worse.

65. I don’t like sour, tart or hard candies. I hate dark chocolate too. I’m simple with my sweets. Chocolate chip, vanilla or milk chocolate is just fine by me.

66. My favorite sodas are Dr. Pepper and Pepsi. I don’t do diet or root beer.

67. The only sweetener I use is sweet n’ low. I don’t like anything else and yes, I heard it causes cancer.

68. I keep my fan on high year round. I can’t sleep without my artificial air. People think I’m crazy but I need my bedroom pitch black, silent and freezing cold to be able to sleep.

69. I’ve been sleeping alone for almost 4 years now but I still only sleep on “my side” of the bed. Which if you’re facing my bed, it’s the left side. I have 10 pillows currently on it, but only use 4 pillows to sleep with each night. I’m bad and bougie in that way, I guess.

70. I wear a night guard every night. I’m a worrier and it affects me even in my sleep because apparently I grind my teeth due to stress. Hot fact, I know.

71. Here’s a fun question to ask yourself or others around you, “If I had to bury a body how many people would help me bury it?”..well for me I have over a handful of people that I could go to that would help me, no questions asked. Not many people can say the same. Can you? I’m blessed with incredibly loyal people that love me more than I deserve. Crazy asses. 😂

72. I’ve dreamt of heaven and hell in extreme detail. Both dreams left me heavily depressed and overwhelmingly emotional. One day I’ll write about it all and share it with the world but for now, “I keep my visions to myself”

73. I’ve attended over two dozens funerals in my life. And most were people I had close relationships with. It’s more than most will witness in their lifetime. I’ve sang, spoken and eulogized many of them. The hardest was my best friend’s funeral in 2007. I helped them do her hair and make up. Then I wrote and read her eulogy at her funeral service.

74. I’ve met Abraham Quintanilla, the father of the beloved tejano star, Selena. We took a trip to Corpus Christie, as a family to visit the singers museum and gravesite. My dad introduced us then slipped him our album and tried to convince him to sign us. Abraham wasn’t into marketing Christian music and thought us too young for a record label contract. I was 14 or 15 at the time, my youngest sister was 7. Mr. Quintanilla was probably right. Still, it was a pretty cool experience.

75. I hate anything grape flavored. Drinks, medicine or candy. It’s nasty and reminds me of when I was sick as a kid and I had to drink cough syrup or dimetap.

76. I still wish on shooting stars..even if science says their actually just dust and rocks.

77. I’ve been heartbroken more times than I can count but somehow I’m always able to rise above it and love in spite of it.

78. I’ve fallen in love more times than I’ll ever admit to.

79. Wrinkled shirts on men drive me crazy! Just give it to me and let me iron it!

80. I play favorites. Anyone who says they don’t is a liar.

81. Gay men love me and I adore them. I feel most comfortable talking about anything with gay men. Plus they have the best opinions on men, fashion and music. I’m all about living YOUR truth not MINE.

82. Sade is baby making music. Don’t argue with me on this.

83. If it sparkles or shines..I want it. Whether it’s food, people or clothes, I don’t care.

84. I’m super impulsive as a person, but when it comes to making a serious decision I’m the kind of woman that stays set in her ways. If I leave I’m gone and I’ll never come back. I promise. Just ask any of my exes.

85. When I was younger I attracted older men and now that I’m older I attract the younger guys. This will probably piss off a lot of people…but I feel like now, when it comes to having something real or long lasting, my preference would be an older man. I’ve learned that men under 30 are still too immature, fickle and inconsistent. They rarely have enough life experience or knowledge to know how to build a stable foundation based on fidelity and trust.

86. I am the first to apologize..every time for everything..and I openly admit it. I value people more than I value my pride or being right.

87. I love to cook. I prefer being left alone to do it so I can listen to oldies while making up the recipes as I go.

88. I like to strike up conversations with strangers while I’m on vacation in new or different places and talk about deeply personal subjects. I find it rather eye opening to hear the opinions of people who have no emotional attachments or investment in me, my issues or situations. Strangers can be 100% honest with you because they have no reason to lie or make judgments about you. And if they do, you never have to worry about seeing them again.

89. I hate shopping malls or overcrowded department stores, but I can spend hours in a bookstore, or vintage thrift shop.

90. I hate scary movies. Really, I just hate being scared. Also I can’t handle rape scenes or scenes where animals or children are being abused. Movies today take it way too far.

91. I’m an organ donor. I’ve witnessed the benefits for other families and I decided a long time ago that I wanted to be part of that.

92. I don’t watch the news. I stopped over a decade ago because I found the media to be too corrupt and full of negativity. All it ever did was depress me. And honestly, anything of real importance can be found in the paper.

93. My zodiac sign is libra and according to astrology, it is considered a masculine and Cardinal sign. My element is air. My October birthstone is Opal and Tourmaline, which comes in a rainbow of different colors. In Chinese astrology I was born in the year of the rat.

94. I’ve never had major surgery or broken a bone. *knock on wood*

95. I love museums of art and history. I can spend hours alone admiring each exhibit, or in the company of someone just as appreciative and intrigued as I am.

96. I’m late to everything. I intend to be late to my own funeral. It’ll be written into my will.

97. The first thing I hear in the morning is

also the last thing I hear at night..music.

98. I prefer variety in everything. For example I have 5 different face washes, 4 sets of shampoo and conditioners, 3 razors and 4 body washes currently in my shower.

99. If I could go back to any age I’d choose to go back to 17.

100. I love my two babies more than anything in this world. I’d happily lay down my life for them and fight any battle on their behalf. They are the only thing I did perfectly right in this world and no one will ever treasure, love or protect them as I do. I found my purpose, anchor and greatest love of all in the eyes of my beautiful children. Any blessing after having them is just icing on the cake.

Relics of the past: I didn’t lose you, you lost me.

“You don’t have to tell me
If you ever think of me
I know you see me dancing
Wildly in the fog of your memory
You don’t have to tell me
I can still believe”

I am an empath. A feeler. A healer. A free spirit in every sense. I am a woman primarily ruled by her passions, feelings and emotions. I am most sensitive when I’m upset or seemingly detached. I am ocean waves of conflicted thoughts and feelings, thanks to my perpetual intuition.

I once believed my empathetic nature to be my greatest weakness and flaw. I used to hide behind sarcasm, false confidence and humor, but I’ve come to the realization that I was wrong. My ability to feel such deep emotions is my greatest strength, and the very gift that makes me unique from anyone else you’re ever going to meet.

Nobody can love you the way that I can. No one can reassure, encourage or protect you, as I alone am able to. I understand now that this is my blessing and not my curse. My superpower is my ability to love unconditionally without limitations, rules, boundaries or demands.  I can love a person for who or what they are right now in this moment, without judgments or restrictions, and not just for the potential of who or what they could be. I love in spite of all messiness because I know that more often than not, love is messy. I remain in the present, never holding anyones past against them, and anyone who has experienced my love can attest to that. My love inevitability leaves imprints on the hearts of those I’ve touched forever. I am slow to love, but once I do, I love harder than anyone you will ever know. My loyal love will leave an everlasting mark on you, because when I love I don’t love from my heart, I love from the pit of my soul, and that is exactly what I aim to love in others.

Although love is everlasting I learned that relationships are not. I think that my ability to recognize endings has been the catalyst for my own personal growth. I know that by seeing people as gifts and circumstance as temporary, it has made letting go of those I’ve loved a lot easier and helped me to remain in the present. Some endings have been more amicable than others, but I’d like to believe that once I walk away from someone there’s an understanding that I have left a part of myself with them forever. I’m sentimental about the little things, so imagine how much more sentimental I am when it comes to people. Love is a constantly evolving force that has the power to heal, grow, change, inspire and motivate anyone. My intuition tells me a persons love language, and my gift is my ability to meet that need whole heartedly. Love is sacrifice and anyone that tells you any different has never truly loved anything or anyone before.

I know that some of you have tried for awhile now, and you still cannot escape me. I have become the unrelenting song playing on repeat in the back of your mind. I am the ever-present ghost, haunting your daydreams and nightmares. I am the face you continue to search for in a crowd and the reason why you take a second glance whenever you come across another woman that bares any resemble to me. I am the person you think of when you’re in need of comfort and understanding because I always understood you. I am the reason you linger in the places I frequent, because secretly you’re hoping to catch me around. I am the person your heart will never be able to forget because of how I once made yours feel. I am the embodiment of all that could’ve been and all that might still be. I am the undeniable laughter you’ll recognize forever even if you never get to hear it again in this lifetime. I am the person you will find yourself wondering about when you’re all alone and your mind begins to wander. And in those rare instances when a butterfly finds it’s way to you, a sweet memory of me will be brought to the forefront of your mind.

Each of you have tried to get me to see what you’ve seen in me all along. You recognized my uniqueness long before I ever did, and you fell in love with the parts of me that you had to dig in deep to pull out. I taught you to believe in yourselves again because I believed in you like no one else could. I made you feel the words I spoke because my actions consistently proved them to you. You felt the love I had in my heart every time I came around. As much as I may have hurt some of you, or as angry as you might still be, one fact remains true; you never stopped loving me or caring for me..at least not really. In the deepest parts of your soul, you knew to trust that my heart was in the right place, even if my actions were misguided at times. You knew what you felt for me was real, because you knew that I was real, and in turn that made what we shared all real. True love can only exist when there is truth, and every person I ever loved can rest assured in the knowledge that they were once adored and deeply treasured by me. You were each unique and special to me and no one before or after you will take your place. The pieces of myself that I’ve given away, I gave with no intention of ever taking back. What’s been given is forever gone, and what’s healed in its place is a newfound resilience and hope to love the next person with an even deeper, more sincere love. Search the world to your content, journey across every sea, hike every mountain high and every canyon low, but as hard as you try you’ll never find another person like me again. Turns out you weren’t the one that got away..

I was.

Change: the only constant in this life

“There’s no one to call …cause I’m just playing games with them all
The more I swear I’m happy, the more that I’m feeling alone
‘Cause I spend every hour just going through the motions
I can’t even get the emotions to come out
Dry as a bone, but I just wanna shout…
What now?..I just can’t figure it out
What now?..I guess I’ll just wait it out
What now?..somebody tell me..
What now?”

I can feel the all too familiar numbness of my indifference begin to sink in as I come across old pictures from the past. I see familiar strangers that once had the ability to move me deeply with just a smile. Now as I gaze at those same smiles I begin to wonder what it was I ever felt for them in the first place. I question their love, loyalty and feelings and every time I try to find those answers, I come up empty handed. In all honesty, the memories have become tainted and blurred because the emptiness is all that remains. In order to understand me there are certain things you must know about me..

See, at a very young age I learned certain defense mechanisms and coping skills, that helped protect me as a child. Sadly, those tactics have now come back to haunt me as an adult. For example, I learned that looking tough mattered more than actually being tough. I came to believe that if they never saw you cry, or came to discover how affected by their cruelty you were, then it would be you who would hold the power over others and yourself. I became the little girl with a chip on her shoulder, rather than the little girl who wore her heart and emotions on her sleeve.

In school I was always well liked, accepted, looked up to and popular. I noted some kids were accepted for their humor, others for their grace and talents; while I felt accepted by my outer appearance and my ability to intimidate everyone around me. I was told by my peers and teachers that I exuded a strong confidence and presence. I didn’t quite understand it then, and I can’t say that I do fully now really, but it helped to protect me.

Growing up I had a new best friend and new “boyfriend” every year. Only rule I seemed to follow regarding the was modifying each annually. Keeping my attention was hard even then and I learned that my loyalty and love, could rarely be matched. I could be confrontation and blunt when necessary. To clarify, I didn’t create drama, but I never coward or ran from it. Outwardly, I appeared fearless and I became the ultimate protector of myself, as well as my four little sisters. No one could hurt them and not hear from me. It didn’t matter if you were the pastors son, the daughter of the teacher, the child of the principle; if you attacked one of mine, I went straight after you and yours. It didn’t matter the time, place or person. I was able to go from loveable to absolutely loath-able in a matter of moments. And as little as I was physically, I never let it stop me. I had the heart of a giant and the undeniable ability to verbally destroy anyone who tried to make me feel less. I learned to put up an impenetrable wall that no one could ever break through. I placed each stone, one on top of the other, year after year, creating the fortress that I struggle to destroy today. I did this because it’s what I needed to be..that hard exterior was my armor and as long as I kept that on, it kept me safe and kept everyone at bay.

For years and years I was the image I portrayed and every year as the roles of new crush and best friend changed, I came to encounter a deeper emptiness than I had ever felt before. I had to live up to a certain image for others around me, including myself, that Id created long ago. I grew older and wiser and saw how these “mechanisms” began to hinder me more than help me. It took some pretty heavy, life-changing circumstances to make me come to terms with everything, but finally I decided to be honest with myself. People I’d came to know and love changed me forever, and then they were taken from me abruptly. I had to lose everything in order to understand anything. I was forced to face myself and question why I do the things I do,why I think the things I do, why I say the things I say, and why when emotionally things get too heavy, I decide to “check out”. It’s been a long time coming and I knew eventually I’d have to confront those demons from my past.

I think it’s all leading me back to a place I always avoided; a foreign, nerve racking and uncomfortable place I had to go to find myself. It is everything I have turned away from and everything I have ever feared. I absolutely hate facing my emotions, feelings or even remotely allowing myself to be in any sense vulnerable. I see MY vulnerability as a total weakness. I see my “feelings” as a potential liability that just makes me cringe. Overcoming such backwards thinking has proven itself to be more difficult than I would’ve ever anticipated.

I just don’t like to go there..at all..for any reason…ever.

So many people truly don’t know the real me, because I am constantly choosing which parts of myself to show, and allow others to get to know. Everyone has the potential to destroy me, if I allow myself to love them, and let them love me back. It’s really sad that these are my thoughts, my “feelings”, my way of life. It wasn’t always this extreme, but just like a cancer that has grown and spread overtime, it eventually poisoned the goodness I had left inside. So I decided to seek advice and help from certain people I trust and respect.

I am making personal commitments and sticking to them weekly to better myself as a person. I don’t tell people anything. I let them create the version of me they identify with best. I don’t correct them or give them much reason to think otherwise. I simply don’t care at the end of the day who it is they think I am. Because I know they are only seeing “pieces” of me and they can only speculate what my complete picture is from just that. I have been greedy and kept the majority of those pieces to myself and only allowed my guard to come down with random people over the years that I felt I could trust. I’m sure it has to do with how harshly I have been judged over the years by my peers, my family and society that has lead me to keep my life so private. Many just want to know for gossip purposes rather than truly caring or having real concerns. Sadly, those in the church have been thee most unrelenting with their pressure for me to be some sort of perfect being throughout the course of my life.

Judgmental eyes are everywhere..always watching..always waiting for the fall..some may be even reading this now..maybe with everything I just said I am being written off as we speak..oh well.

One truth about myself I will share is that at heart, I am a very sensitive, perceptive and intuitive sort of person. I see a lot..but don’t talk a lot. I have endured a lot..but don’t share a lot. I know a lot..but don’t judge a lot. I’ve hurt a lot..but don’t cry a lot..I am the life of the party a lot..but most times I prefer to be alone and left alone a lot.

Where once I despised and judged..I now choose to be patient and loving. Because sometimes I look into people’s eyes and see small reflections of myself..glimpses of my own struggles and pains. You can’t begin to really love people if your constantly wasting all your time judging them. I don’t want to alienate them because I keep isolating myself. And in those moments I realize how desperate I am to tear down this stone wall that has kept me so detached for so long.

I want to be strong enough to be weak. I want to have the courage to once again be vulnerable. I want the ability to be myself completely with any and everyone, without hiding behind my wall when things get to too heavy. More than anything I want to get to a place where I can let those who love me see me broken and give them the opportunity to show me their love by just being there for me. I am always picking up pieces of those I love but I never allow them to do that for me. How selfish I have been to deny them such a beautiful gift.

Reality is, If I’m really honest with myself, I can say that the common denominator in all those failed friendships and relationships was me. I can’t blame everything or everyone else for “making me” into what I am today. At some point we all have to look inwardly and focus on our own behaviors and attitudes and not feel the need to control others by indifference or anger. I’m putting the time, effort and thought into rediscovering who I am. I have to learn what is a healthy balance for me and not be so fixated on what others have done or can do to me. I can’t live like that anymore..because living in fear is not living at all.

I know that’s a lot of heavy baggage to get off my chest and to see it written before my eyes makes it that much more real. Time to step up and accept my part and move forward. I know the road up ahead is going to get more uncomfortable and scarier before it gets better but at least now I know where I’m headed. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and a way out of this maze of madness inside my head. Part of the problem is me just accepting that…and acknowledgment is the first step, right?..What can I say..I’m a constant work in progress.

I’m uncovering the unapologetic, undefined, unhidden and unafraid woman I truly am. I wanna be able to look back at these same pictures I looked at today and feel something.. even if it turns out to be only sadness, disappointment or regret…

“Guess I’d rather hurt than feel nothing at all.”

Just like Halsey, I’m bad at love

“Got a boy back home in Michigan
And it tastes like Jack when I’m kissing him..”

I remember your whiskey kisses, your eager hands and cat like green eyes. You loved having my scent all over you throughout the day, wearing the same shirts to work that I’d worn the night before. You bought my favorite shampoo and body wash as a means of convincing me to stay those late nights and it worked on a few random occasions. I liked the way your Armani cologne lingered on my skin and how even up until today whenever I smell it, I can still feel the stubble of your 5 o clock shadow nestling its way into the softness of my neck. You were never a man of many words and I was never one for lengthy explanations so I guess the way it ended was inevitable. Months later I’d receive numerous drunk phone texts and voicemails from you apologizing for leaving so much left unsaid between us. You told me that you went to my secret place in the desert where I once took you. You played my beloved, Stevie Nicks the entire drive and reminisced over the conversations we shared beneath the stars those summer nights. You said you tried recreating those moments on your own, but somehow the stars just didn’t seem to burn as bright after I’d left. Days became weeks and weeks turned into months before you’d set out to find me again and by that time it was too late, the once open doorway to my heart was now locked shut. Time brought you clarity while it permitted me the space to move on. I can’t deny that even after all this time I sometimes find myself looking up at the stars they way we used to, questioning where you are, if you’re happy and wondering who now lays on my side of the bed. I still miss those whiskey kisses and can’t deny that yours are still the sweetest lips I’ve ever tasted.

“There’s a guy that lives in a garden state
And he told me that we make it ’til we graduate
So I told him the music would be worth the wait
But he wants me in the kitchen with a dinner plate..”

I grew up with you and you knew me throughout all my awkward stages. You were the first guy to tell me you loved me. Back then I was way too young to realize what that meant, but more specifically what that meant being loved by someone like you. I’m sorry your intensity and passion scared me, I understand now what I couldn’t then. I admit I lost track of time and my purpose, but you wanted a commitment right when I was trying to focus all my energy into the music and finding my own way. I couldn’t give you what you needed. I couldn’t be the girl you first fell in love with. I didn’t want to be your muse, I wanted to find one of my very own that I could sing for and write about. I was honest with you about my feelings but you refused to accept them. Looking back now, I see that even though it wasn’t the same, I loved you in my own special way and I know you felt that. It’s probably what gave you hope and made you stay for so long. You will always be the guy that makes my heart skip a beat and the face I’ll look for in any crowd, because you found me long before I ever found myself. I know you wanted to be selfish with me at a time that I wanted the world. Ironically, only three years later I’d fall helplessly in love with him. It wasn’t long before he’d discover all the love letters you’d written and later guilt me into throwing away. I’ll be honest and say, I cried many nights over you and for you. You deserved so much more even though I don’t think you ever found it. I was told years later that you’d found out about my elopement through mutual friends. I still blame myself for not going to you that night and I regret never saying goodbye when I had the chance. No one ever had to tell me directly, but I know I am the reason you continue to stay away.

“I believe, I believe, I believe, I believe
That we’re meant to be
But jealousy, jealousy, jealousy, jealousy
Get the best of me
Look, I don’t mean to frustrate, but I
Always make the same mistakes, yeah I
Always make the same mistakes ’cause
I’m bad at love
But you can’t blame me for tryin’
You know I’d be lyin’ sayin’
You were the one
That could finally fix me
Lookin’ at my history
I’m bad at love”

My once upon a time. My first love. My only everything. My memory of you will always be in love with the innocence of who I was. Loving you made me into the woman I am and since you, I haven’t felt anything close to the magnitude of passion or attraction I had with and for you. I was so in love with you, obsessed with you, fixated and devoted only to you for over 12 years. All the men since you have remained in your shadow, never able to wash out your memory or your mark. I’ll always remember our passion filled nights that turned into early mornings. I was addicted to your touch, your intensity and intricate mind. I was the magnet and you were steel. And being honest, I don’t think I’ll ever feel again anything close to what I felt for you. Getting over others has been made easy, because losing you taught me that I have the love and strength within myself to overcome anything. I know I can and I will love again one day, but it’ll be in different ways. I’ve stopped trying to change the facts of our history and I’ve quit denying the importance your existence had in my life for so long. I found myself in the storm and my rainbow in my healing. I’m comforted to know you’ve found happiness again and I’ve made peace with the past; a past that has made clear her victory…by default.

“Got a girl with California eyes
And I thought that she could really be the one this time
But I never got the chance to make her mine
Because she fell in love with little thin white lines”

Familiar, dark and wild were the aspects of our personalities that drew us into one another. I met you at a very difficult time in my life, while yours was in transition as well. It all feels like a blur now in comparison to how we first began. From complete sobriety to drunken nights, dabbling in the substances we promised we would never touch again, to setting men’s hearts on fire to distract us from our own pain. We became a force of nature, destroying anything in our path. Your love became possessive while mine remained detached and carefree. We lived in different extremes in those two years, but now times have changed. You do more damage than good these days, but in your own twisted way you still try to show me you care. I’ll always care even it’s from a distance. It’s just in my nature and you’ll do what’s in your nature and self destruct. Doesn’t mean I don’t miss the girl you used to be or the version of you I once loved.

“London girl with an attitude
We never told no one but we look so cute
Both got way better things to do
But I always think about it when I’m riding through

I met you at a party and clicked with you right away. It felt natural to go along with your advances but I didn’t realize you were playing for keeps. You pursued me harder than any man had, and I know you felt betrayed when I couldn’t reciprocate the same emotions. You showed me how to accept people for what they are and not try to rationalize why they do or don’t do things. You told me about all your tattoos and confessed your darkest secrets to me because you said I made you feel safe. I still laugh when I remember how you told me that I needed a woman’s love, because no man would ever be enough. Truth is, the only love and acceptance I ever needed was my own.

“I know that you’re afraid

I’m gonna walk away

each time the feelings fades

each time the feelings fade..”

It’s crazy how just one song can take me back in time to a certain person or place in my past. I don’t regret anyone of you. You helped mold me into the woman I am. Keep the pieces of me I gave you, and I’ll forever stow away the love and memories you gave me.

“You know I’m bad at love, but you can’t blame me for trying.”