I did it. I changed my hair.

My hair appointment lasted 4 hours. It strangely went by fast. Its hard to find people that I can relate and connect and be able to maintain conversation without completely faking it. I was able to do it with this hair lady. The talk was non stop. For some reason I build myself with courage and for those few hours I let go of fears or what ifs. I let her touch my hair, wash it, bleach it, dye it and style it. I even made it to her Instagram account.

We talked family, kids, marriage. Those 4 hours flew by. And most of all I liked my results. I felt her honesty.

My husband didn’t know what I was doing. When he saw me he couldn’t believe it. He was in awe. He just stood there with his jaw dropped. He told me he couldn’t believe I had done something like this. It made me feel proud of myself. I crossed that line and stepped out of my normal boundaries. At 33 I finally let it happen. It may not be major thing for some but for me this is huge. It’s of a gigantic magnitude. I feel proud. I feel brave.

I’ve always had my dark brown hair. For a while I went with black. And that’s it. Now look at me!

My next challenge: professional pedicure.

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Stepping out

Today I am stepping out of my comfort zone. I’m writing this waiting to get my hair done by a complete stranger, whom I contacted on my own without no third party involved.

My coworker was looking through hairstyles and I said wow that looks good. She said I should do something like that. I laughed and said I wish. I’ve had my natural hair color for years. I did dye my hair black for a while but that was years ago. And of course I did it myself, no stranger touching this hair. I’ve had my natural hair for years.

After that conversation my thoughts were craving. Just going back and forth. Should I do this? Should I take a leap and go for it? Yes I should.

The next day I found a stylist, messaged her and set an appointment. I’ve never met her. And I’m letting her so close to me. She’s going to touch my hair. And wash it.

I have a slight discomfort in my stomach. I feel this tingling sensation in my arms. I can do this. I can let this happen. I will go though this because I want to do this for myself.

I’m nervous and excited. I’m also listening to another client here on phone. She’s beyond pissed. Who ever brought her left her here for hours and apparently she’s hangry. She’s having a fit over the phone. I guess this will entertain me until I’m next.

It all started with a phone call

On Sunday April 15th my mother and I were having breakfast at my house. She had spent the night before at my house when we got a phone call, it was my father. My aunt, my father’s sister was taken to the emergency room and they weren’t sure what was wrong with her. She had a very bad cough and had apparently lost weight the last couple of months. My mother left abruptly to meet my father at the hospital.

The next couple of days went by in a very normal way aside from a concerning doubt as to what was wrong with her. They said it could be pneumonia, they said it could be lung cancer. But how? Yes she’s older I thought, 77 to be exact. She never drank in her life, never picked up a cigarette, never had a child. This was all even more concerning since just this past November my father had lost his brother to cancer too. Tuesday I get the call, its cancer, and there’s nothing they can do.

I had to leave work early. I got the the hospital and I saw her. It was devastating seeing her that way. Seeing someone connected to a breathing machine gasping for air, struggling at every single breath. I spent the whole night with, waking every couple of hours trying to desperately remove her IV, her machine, my aunt kept saying “just let me go, I want to go now”. It was heartbreaking. After that she was on a heavy dosage of morphine. We never spoke with her again.

At around 2:30 pm the next day we took her off oxygen. It took only about 6 minutes for her heart to give up. She laid there peacefully sleepy, finally resting. Surrounded by us, rubbing her back, telling her we loved her and to rest.

I’ve never seen anyone die. But if I ever experience that again I hope they go as peaceful as my aunt.

I’m left with wonderful memories, loving memories. My aunt never had children, and we all were her children. I’ll miss you Tia Ofelia, may you rest in peace.

Tables are turned

I’ve always felt that I’ve communicated my feelings pretty clearly with my husband. Most of my feelings I put out there. The reason I do it is because I know that communication in a relationship is key. I know I have daily struggles, I know being married to someone with depression, anxiety, sensory issues and so many other struggles is a huge struggle in itself. I try to be as open as possible to keep this relationship working. I know that communication can help us bridge that gap, that separation that sometimes seems to grow and grow. But it doesn’t work both ways.

My husband has recently been struggling and I can see it. I married the most positive and outgoing person. He’s the type of person that never worries…or at least I thought. My husband teaches and he also travels for his music career. He manages his own band. Lately I can see the stress and anxiety in him. I can see it in his tired eyes. I can see the lines in his eyes which I never noticed before at only 35. I can see that smile he gives me when I get home and then I see it immediately¬† vanish right after. Yet he won’t share his problems, his worries with me. I don’t know how else to make him open up.

He tells me he can’t just dump all his problems on me that it wouldn’t be fair. It hurts me to think he is hurting yet he won’t open up. We recently had a medical scare and had to take him to urgent care. He was prescribed high blood pressure medication as well as anxiety meds. I told him last time he needed to communicate yet he still refuses. I don’t know what to do. He does what he loves for a living. He works with music in his day job and he also travels with his band. He not only manages the band but he’s also their drummer yet he seems tired and worried and sad. It angers me. It angers me because he gets to do what he loves and live his dream yet he doesn’t seem to enjoy it. And the worse he doesn’t share what he’s going through. I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to help him. When he shuts down like this I want to pack my stuff and leave. I can’t handle it. I feel like the day-to-day interactions seem fake. Then I think, is that what it is to live with me? With all my symptoms, sensory issues, depression, anxiety and so much more. Is that what he has lived with for all of our marriage and now I get a glimpse of what is like? I don’t know. I want my old happy husband back. He seemed happier when he wasn’t pursuing his dream. I don’t get it.

The Darkness is Back

I don’t understand it. I just wish I understood this darkness that is present inside of me. Why it leaves me and I seem to be doing so well then all of a sudden it’s back, and it feels it’s back with a vengeance. This pain in my chest grows. The darkness clouds my thoughts. It pollutes them with sadness, loneliness, desperation, frustration and agony.¬† I can’t do this to my family. I have a husband, 3 children and family and friends.

My life consists of playing an act. By the end of the day my acting skills are exhausted to the bone. I am ready to drop my costume and acting  game and live in despair. The sink into my bed and drown myself under the covers. Maybe if I cover my head the right way it will muffle my thoughts, just maybe.

I don’t understand how I can live a lie, how I can mount a Broadway show of a life everyday when I am slowly withering away inside. People around me have no idea of the real me. My coworkers think of me of the always happy, pretty smile, full of jokes and spontaneous comments full of life.

I don’t understand this. I don’t understand myself. Is it possible to live like this? Is it really possible to be able to live this show everyday? Or do I really have control over myself? Over this darkness? Is it possible to control it always? Why is it that I can control it, hide it, in front of people? If I can do that, why I can’t do it at all times? Living a real acted out play everyday that becomes reality and making the darkness disappear. Why can’t it just go? How do you even start getting rid of this darkness?

I thought I had it under control. I learned to meditate, do yoga, I even started running when this darkness started to eat me alive, when it started slowly suffocating me a few years back. The non athlete who never ran, started running. But it never fades away, it never really leaves me. This darkness is part of me. This darkness is me and it terrifies me. I’m 33 years old, half of my life is gone and the darkness gets stronger.

Post concert recovery

Residente’s concert was just amazing. One of the things I love about attending concerts is, aside from of course the show and listening to your favorite artist, the energy shared with those attending. There is a magical connection that goes beyond sharing a very tight physical space. The passion that is shared as you release this energy and lyrics fill the air is almost mystical. You probably won’t ever cross paths again with those you share your space with in that moment but the energy released stays with you to recharge your life battery for a while. It stays there so when you feel nostalgic your memory brings it up and instantly you have this warm softening feeling. It’s like taking a Xanax.

By the way no medication was needed last night. Towards the end my feet and legs were tightening, I was tired but the music and vibes kept me going. There was some pushing there was some shoving, there was a long walk from the concert to a small place still open for homemade Mexican sopes and tortas. Getting up from that wooden bench in the wall eatery (literally, there was a right dark hallway to get to eat, probably scary for some to venture at 1 am in Tijuana) was hard.

As we shared out sopes and torta my husband and I enjoyed our relaxing late dinner. The walk from the fonda to the hotel was just a few minutes but it felt eternal. Our muscles had relaxed, our adrenaline was long gone and our 30+ plus body felt it. We drunkenly changed into pjs and fell to our bed.

My shoulder hurt all night and I didn’t sleep well but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I woke semi early, did a quick yoga routine, took a hot shower, got ready and walked to a nearby cafe. I sit here by the pool drinking a Mexican Mocha and enjoying some pastries. I don’t want this to end. The quiet is recharging. The stillnes makes my heart content. Today my life chaos continues. The crazy loud kids, work and the noisy coworkers, the routine continues. But I will always have this. This will live forever with me.

Today is the day

I write this while I rest before getting ready for my much anticipated concert from a hotel in Tijuana, Mexico. Mexico gets a bad reputation, but Mexico is a beautiful country with humble and caring people.

After checking in to our hotel which happens to be less than 1 mile from the concert’s venue we decide on going for lunch. My husband took me to a local seafood place, the place was packed. Like people in line outside to get in. It’s also very loud, music playing, families having a great time, busy servers and kids laughing. I take a deep breath and look down. My husband holds my hand as they direct us to a table, slowly tightening his hand around my fingers. He does that to let me know he’s there for me. He will protect me. I can count on him if I suddenly can’t take it anymore.

They sit us at a smaller section. He tells me, “I was worried, it’s a bit quieter here don’t you think?”. It is. I don’t look around. I concentrate on my husband’s face and my food. They keep me focused. We ate delicious octopus tacos.

Then it’s coffee time. We took a small stroll around the streets close to our hotel and found a great coffee place. I can see the stadium where today’s concert will be from outside the coffee place. I can’t wait. I have Xanax in case my anxiety decides to take over. I’ll be right in the front section. I’m nervous, excited and ecstatic. But it could be the Vietnamese coffee I had.