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Friday, October 6, 2017

The Hide Out

I've been dodging my old coworkers for about a year now. Shit, not even just my coworkers. I am dodging old friends, family, the guy who cleans my carpet, my old crush, even my neighbors! I stopped posting pictures on Facebook. I’ve limited my Instagram post to scenic views. I stopped dressing up and doing my hair. Why? Because somewhere between wallowing in my weak depression, feeling sorry for myself, having the job from hell and dating sociopaths, I managed to stop giving a fuck about my health. Like, I really stopped giving a fuck. Well… that’s not completely true… Here is why... The first 15 lbs snuck up on me so I had no idea that I was in a downward spiral. But baaaaabaaaaaay, these pictures don’t lie! And that’s how I realized I blew up! I went to India for my friends wedding in November 2016. When we got back to the states, her family flooded social media with pictures of the wedding, which included pictures of me. And that’s when I saw my self and I couldn’t believe it. I continued to avoid the scale until this summer. And let me tell you...

As Reza from Shahs of Sunset would say:


What. The. Fcuk. 

How did I manage to gain over 30 pounds? Why? When? Where? Who? You mean to tell me I wasn't just bloated? I thought my clothes was shrinking in the dryer. Yes, I wasn't as active as before but I was walking a lot more. That's what I was telling myself. Laying a thick ass layer of the denial over that Krispy Kreme Dream.

Back Then
Me in 2015

Me Now

Number one, I know I must have had some idea because I refused to go on the scale for over a year. I knew I was over eating frequently and I stopped going to the gym regularly. Looking back, I can pin point to when it all started. Around late fall in 2015. I think my depression, feeling sorry for myself and bad relationships exacerbated my self neglect. Surprisingly, things started getting better for me mid July of 2016 but I still didn’t make the necessary changes. Fast forward to today and my thighs are rubbing together, my face is round, about 75% of my clothes don’t fit and I am starting to have some health issues.

I finally reached the point where I was so fed up  that I started to workout and eat right. That lasted for about two weeks, but in that short period of time I lost 7 lbs. However, I got side tracked when my relationship hit a bump in the road and my cousin  died after 30 years of battling cancer. Once those two things happened, I went back to not giving a fuck anymore. 

This week, I was lucky enough to get an invite to be in the studio audience for a CNN Townhall with Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi. I was excited until I thought about the possibilities of being seen on camera. But I always loved journalism and politics so there was no way that I was going to miss out on this opportunity to see this broadcast live and in person. But just the thought of not going to the townhall because I didn't want to be seen helped me to realize how my weight gain was really hindering my life. Like, damn, I’m hiding out like I am wanted for murder... like I'm hiding out from the FBI or some shit. I had to tell myself “Is it really that bad? Yes, you gained some weight but you’re still cute tho. It's not like people never seen a fat person before. Being fat isn't the mark of the beast. Hell, half of their assess is fat too!” So, that was enough to get me pumped for the show. To make sure I felt confident that night, I dressed up in the nicest business casual outfit I could find (and could comfortably fit) in my closet, put on some make up, put on my contacts and wore a cute twisted out afro.

After the tapping, I immediately get a text from my cousin who was watching the townhall at home. Ms. MacGyver managed to spot me way in the back of the audience in the corner on her TV screen. Yeah, I was cute in the pictures. With my big old fat cheeks, and round face. But damn… I didn't realize the extent of the damage done. And then my friends sent me pictures that we took at the CNN studio that night, which just served as another reminder.

I know there are some people that say there is nothing wrong with being over weight. Some even say it’s extra cushion for the pushing. But not when you feel uncomfortable, lethargic and unnacttractive. Not to mention, all this weight gain has messed up my sex drive! My hormones are out of wack causing irregular periods and polyps in my uterine. My doctor recently diagnosed me with Acanthosis Nigricans. (Look it up!) You would think I weighed 300 pounds the way my body was acting... like “cease all motor functions” on some West World shit.

Enough. I’m tired of my legs scrubbing together. I am tired of making excuses. I am tried of ducking and dodging old friends because I know they will be thinking “she gained a lot of weight”. I want my life back. I want to feel free. I want to wear my old, fashionable clothes that's too small for me now. I want a period that comes on every month for five days like it used to. I want to feel sexy and get my freak on. I want to get dressed up and feel good when I see myself in the mirror. I want to be healthy. I want to be fit. I WANT TO BE WHO THE FUCK I WAS BEFORE I LET MYSELF GO!!!!

Damn. That felt good. Why is typing in all caps so gratifying?

Anyway… I am aware that the weight gain was just a side of effect to something more serious: My depression. After a long time of allowing myself to stand under this dark cloud, I am stepping out into the sunshine. I am writing again for the first time in almost a year. I went bike riding for the first time in three years. I plan on going to one of my old coworkers farewell party next week. I can’t be afraid to live my life. Furthermore, I don’t want to wait until I loose all the weight to start socializing again. I want to be free, sociable, active and lose weight while I am doing it. Not the other way around. The first step is just accepting myself for how I am now and knowing that the journey to better health will be hard, but worth it. So, if you want to join me and get on some healthy shit, follow me on Instagram. I made a IG just to track my health journey. It’s don’t_call_it_a_diet.

I know I am not the only one. Tell me about your weightless/health journey! I would love to hear other inspiring stories! I will definitely need the inspiration.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Feigned Love - Part 3

We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.

- Joseph Campbell

You must have expectations that you hold firm to. The last time Perturbado and I spoke, he called me and asked me out to dinner. I was perplexed because I didn’t hear from him in several days. The entire time we were "dating" he never called me just to invite me out. It was usually me asking him if he wanted to hangout. A big part of me wanted to say yes. I imagined that we would go out and he would apologize for all the things that he did and said to me. But the voice deep inside said no. The inner voice was the loudest it has ever been, and it no longer wished to be strung along. 

So I asked him “Are you inviting me out to dinner as a friend?” Hell, I wanted to know. Three nights ago he made it clear that a relationship was out of the question. So why do we need to get dinner together?

His response was "I am just inviting you out to dinner." Translations: He wanted to keep me on his string.

You see, I was tired of feeling strung along. A few days ago you told me we would never work, and now you're inviting me to dinner? Keep in mind, while we dated, I complained that he never called me and invited me out… so this is when he finally decides to do it?

Trust me, I was confused... and it was a feeling I didn’t want to endure any longer. So, I declined his invite for dinner. 

After we hung up I felt terrible. I thought I may have really hurt his feelings and that he may feel rejected by me. I wanted to call him back and tell him sorry for turning down his offer and explain to him that I was just trying to move on and going to dinner with him would just make things worse. But then I had to ask myself "why am I feeling guilty?" He did this. He created this distance. He wasn’t concerned about my feelings. He was concerned about himself. And it was about damn time I started doing the same. So I let that guilt go. I declined his invite because it was the best thing I could do for myself. I should never feel guilty about taking care of myself. And that is when I started respecting and acknowledging my needs. 

What made it hard for me to move on? The rejection. More than anything. The rejection burned through me like a freshly lit cigarette bud pressed against my beating heart. I cared so deeply for someone that discarded me so easily. I had to continuously remind myself that there is something better out there for me. If there weren’t, the Universe would've just left me to rot in an unhealthy situationship. But, the Universe didn’t. It pulled me out of that black hole. 

I would think back at all the mistakes I made with him and the mantra “You fool!” would go off repeatedly in my head. I was such the fool. An ingenuous fool. An openhearted fool. A nurturing fool. But a fool, nonetheless. I spent several weeks looking in the mirror with questions racing through my mind.  “How could you be so foolish? Why did you tolerate the way he treated you? Why did you believe his lies even when you knew he was lying to you? Why did you sleep with him? Why did you let him say that to you? Why didn’t you cut it off with him?” I was mad at myself for opening up to someone that did nothing to deserve such intimacy, care, or attention. 

Not wanting to beat myself up anymore, since I was already beat down enough, I tried to bring my head above water. So, I researched what to do and what not to do in relationships for future reference. After one failed relationship after the other, I wanted to pin down “what I was doing wrong” so I began inundating myself with relationship articles, podcasts and meditations. (I also medicated. Red wine is great for easing a heartbreak.) It didn’t take long for all of the love advice to start sounding the same. 

To fall in love you have to be (1) extraordinarily understanding and patient (2) give the best blow jobs (3) a bit cold but not too cold hearted… so pretty much a bitch but you still have to be likeable (4) confident… because being bitchy is only sexy when your confident and (5) did I mention blow jobs? (6) Blah blah blah blah blah.

It was bizarre. All this advice. All this research. All this these experts. But yet so many people are looking for love. Even those who are already spoken for seem to find themselves lonely and unfulfilled. Hell, half of these “experts” are trying to sort out their love life themselves. After all my delving, I felt like there was one main theme that could summarize it all, and that was SELF RESPECT. 

I mean, it all makes sense. Take my story for instance… my biggest regret is that I allowed him to treat me poorly. I wanted him to give me something that I had failed to give myself, which was respect. Regardless, we probably wouldn’t have lasted either way. However, I would have preferred an ending where I could have walked out with my head held high. An ending where I realized that I deserved better than what he could give me and left the situation before I was so battered and bruised. 

Self-respect is tantamount to self-love. When you want to be loved and respected, it starts by loving and respecting yourself. People aren’t always going to recognize your worth and treat you the way you should be treated. When you respect yourself, you ensure that your worth will not be overlooked. You ensure that no one batters and bruises you, only to leave you as a damaged good reducing your value. Self-respect breathes confidence, self-esteem, self-worth, self-love and more. Self-respect is the most profound way you tell others that you value yourself and that in order to have a relationship with you, they will have to value YOU too.

You can cook for a man. But that isn’t going to make him love you. You will just be the girl that cooks for him and he will come around to eat when he’s hungry. You can give a man great sex. But that isn’t going to make him love you. You will just be the girl that gives him great sex and he will come around whenever he’s horny. You bend down for him to ride your back and he will. A man will only do what you let him. And if he knows he can do whatever it is under the sun and you will still be there waiting on him, he will do exactly that… everything under the sun. 

When they know you will always be there no matter how much they hurt you, they will most certainly take you for guaranteed. Your love will be like bottled water in a USA grocery store. He knows he needs water to survive but he doesn’t cherish it because whenever he’s ready for it, he can run to the local grocery store and grab himself a bottle off the shelf.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Feigned Love - Part 2

I knew Perturbado was cheap so I opted for the 2 for $20 deal. This was our second time going to Applebee’s. Not because the food was great. I just knew that he preferred cheap dates. I hated Applebee’s. He thought it was me being stuck up which couldn’t have been farther from the truth. I liked good quality. But I would eat at these places because he liked it.

Before the waitress could arrive to our table he asked me “Do you really think this is going to work?”

“Yes.” I answered before even having a chance to fully process what was going on. I wanted it to work. I asked him if he was breaking up with me and he laughed. “What exactly did you think we have here?” Perturbado responded.

I thought we had something. Something of a train wreck. But it was something.

Restrained head deep in a pool of desperation and the fear of being rejected while at dinner sitting in front of this man that I thought would be my future husband: I pleaded. I told him that he confused me and that we could work if we communicated better. I told him he was pushing me away and not opening up his heart to find love. At that moment, I believed all the things I said to him. I knew that he was making a mistake and that he would regret it later. All the ups and downs in our courtship was due to him. He created the tension. I’m the one that should be breaking it off with him. After all the things he’s done to me. I’m a great girl. I thought he knew that.

And then Perturbado said “I know you were worried about me leaving you after we had sex. We can still continue to have sex. I’ll still be there for you”.

Okay. Sex. He wants sex.

We dated for about a month and a half until that night at Applebee’s. After dinner, during the car ride home, he told me a secret. A secret that most would find disturbing. I tried comforting him. But from there I realized that his guy really has issues. Issues that could possibly put me in danger. He told me that he was cold, I was sensitive and that he didn’t want to hurt me. But he had already hurt me. On numerous occasions he would toss my heart in the air as high as he could and then have target practice. Shooting it to a pulse before it managed to hit the floor.

I slept with him that very night after dinner. And when he dropped me to my car the next morning I was somehow still swimming in a deep sea of denial.

It didn’t really hit me until that afternoon. Perturbado dumped me. He didn’t dump me… he discarded me. He used me. He wanted to continue using me. We weren’t in a relationship but rather a situationship. Something that started off fast yet so beautiful and then quickly turned into souring milk on the longest summer’s day. But all I wanted to see was the initial beauty and promise. All those things he said in the beginning was just a water hose of endorphins being released in my brain. 

You're the girl for me. You're mine. Always. Only. You. Hermosa. Mi Vida. Mi amor. Beauty. Sunshine. Care. Attention. I miss you. I want you. Being with you is like being in heaven.


After lie.

After life.

After lie.

After lie. 

I got addict to the way he made me feel. That undivided attention. The sweet words that held my future... those words that seemed honest at the time. Those first two weeks had me on a cloud so high, you couldn’t see me with your bare eyes from earth.

Hot and cold. Everyday was a gamble. I never knew what I was going to get. The only thing consistent about Perturbado was his obsession with saving money and his appetite for sex. I held out as long as I could… which was pretty long for me. His sexuality confused me. Did he want me or did he want to have unrestricted sex with me. I knew the answer then, I just hoped that I was wrong. I tried to rationalize it by telling myself that he was older… that maybe he had stronger urges than most. But it made me feel uncomfortable. Why was I okay with feeling uncomfortable? The first time I turned him down, he reminded me of a spoiled two year old child that couldn’t get his way. Pushing himself to the other side of the couch while giving me short lived silent treatment. That wasn’t love. It was nothing that could blossom into love. The seeds were planted in polluted soil. Even weeds knew better than to grow there.

It wasn’t until we stopped talking when I started to look back and realize that he was pretty fucked up. I always knew it deep down… but deep down I also wanted someone to love… so it didn’t matter. The little jabs he would take to wound my confidence. Nights were he wouldn't respond only to text me in the morning saying he "fell asleep". How he would talk on and on about himself and not ask me a thing. How he would try to turn every phone conversation into phone sex. (No exaggeration.) And every visit into sexual intercourse. I mean, Jesus… find out my favorite color first! 

Every nuance can’t be detailed. Mostly what I remember is the way he made me feel. Unwanted. Desperate. Used. Judged. And I wanted him. I was drawn to him. I admired him. I wanted to love him and I wanted his love desperately. I would probably still be talking to him ‘til this day if he didn’t try to call it off with me at dinner. Five days after that night at Applebee's, he invited me out to eat. And I realized then more than ever before that he was willing to drag me along as long as I will willing to let him. So I declined. I wanted to go with him. But I saw that as my chance to escape the hurt. Because living with my stomach in knots was starting to take a toll on me. Surely, being single couldn’t be any worse than this.

So, I decided to move on.