The feeling of happiness can vary from person to person, depending if you are a true social butterfly, or a closeted lonely person, pretending to be a social butterfly, to avoid a million questions from well-intended friends, or family members.

Sometimes it comes from people literally being alone, and the feelings of not being good enough, not only for others or more importantly, not being good enough for yourself, seem to be the menu permanently. Or someone can feel alone, even though they have a phonebook full of friends, or maybe they have a handful of who they consider true friends.

They might have blessings up to their eyeballs, and they realize they should be grateful. Some also have a hope for a better future, in which life will be different, nothing like what we live in today. Where true happiness awaits, and abounds for those who deserve it.

I get that, and I hope for that one day, as well. Today, Content, Happy and Joy have gone on a three day weekend, and stepping in as substitutes, are Alone, Self Pity, Guilty and Self Hate.

Hope the other guys come back on Monday, 8 AM sharp.

I understand, that “It’s okay, to not be okay”. I hate thinking back, I hate thinking in the present, so I try to focus on the good, the happy, the hope. But past seems to always win. It thrives in quietness of the night, it slips in the day, when taking a break, or a breather. It seems to scream when I long for quiet time. I think back and wish for a different outcomes, and of course with the only outcome of failure, as the past can never be changed.

So why waste my time, right? Well, it’s the default in my mind. I think back at what I hoped for. What my goals were. I remember at 18, I had aspirations of being a photographer, of traveling, I wanted to eventually be married, with children, and a having an amazingly loving husband.

Steps were taken in the wrong order after all, I started off, getting married early. Oh that heart of mine, naïve and inexperienced, and he called the shots. Insert roll of eyes HERE!

Excited at this new road I was embarking on. I told myself, with everything, there is a learning curve, and eventually things will settle down. Or so I had hoped.

I remember getting so excited, at marking “X” in the Married box. I remember getting butterflies in my stomach knowing he was coming home, or that I was racing home to see him. I also remember the sleepless nights, where I’d walk out of my house, and walk a mile down the road, and hide behind a school, and cry my eyes out. Exhausted, I’d walk back in around five am, to someone who had just a completed a wonderful night sleep. Carpooling to work, for about an hour. There is no worst cruelty, than that of being next to someone you love, and they not wanting to even speak a word with you, knowing and feeling his growing repugnance of me, every day of my life.

Eight years later, I finally took someone’s advice. They reminded me of the saying, “If you love something set it free, if it comes back to you, it’s yours.”

Thinking that time and space might bring him a reality check or a realization that I was a good person, worth fighting for, he’d come back, or he’d ask me back. Never happened. I guess I wasn’t worth it.

Now when filling out stupid applications, I had to search out the dreaded “Separated” box, and angrily mark that sloppy “X” next to that option. A whole new excitement to look forward, is when you realize, that this is a small world we live in. Running into people we mutually knew, and shamefully having to to answer the question, “Where is your husband? They knew the answer to that before they even made it. Initially, I answered, “Oh, he is still in California”, along with the “raise your eyebrows, and give an awkward smile” look and excusing myself from the uncomfortable moment. People can be so cruel.

A year and a half later, and countless of stomach and heartaches, that no longer represented my status. It was now the dreaded “Failed at your marriage” option, that brings all those fuzzy feelings to the surface, better known as “Divorced”.

I hate that box. I think a “Single” box should’ve been enough, in applications. There is no need to have to rub salt in that wound, with the shameful box also known as “Divorced”. When do I get to stop marking that box? Is there a Statute of Limitations that runs out, and I can go back to “Single”? Heck, Bankruptcy only applies for what, 7 – 10 years on your credit? Shouldn’t the “Divorced” status have one as well? (Mental note: Avoid new hair dresser, manicurist, meeting new people going forward, don’t want the “why is she still single, or why isn’t she married?” – phase)

Where did I get off the wrong ramp? Or the U turn take place?

Have you seen when someone throws a rock through a window, and the pieces dangle for a while until they finally come crashing down? I remember that feeling. I wasn’t very well versed with Facebook, as it was a younger generation thing, I finally caved, and created a profile. What was the first thing I did after creating my profile, putting my profile picture as one of me and my dear husband, and uploading all our pictures, of the trips we took, pictures with friends, and family, and couple pictures with friends, and my married to and searching to choose his profile to link up with mine?

Taking a deep breath. Sorry for that run on question In my head it was a lot longer, with specific inappropriate adjectives to add to a certain noun, of whose name we do not speak of.

I looked at my husband’s profile on Facebook, and instead of saying “Married” it was marked, “It’s complicated” – The real shame is that I knew that before it was cataloged as such on Facebook, but silly me, I thought I could work hard at saving my marriage, in working things out. Instead, I found myself signing an official document where the box marked was “Unreconcilable differences”.

Depending on where we are in our life, whether we are on the 18-24 range, the 25 – whatever the next stupid range is, or the dreaded 40+ box is, we can look back and learn from these choices. We can’t see the future, and we can’t go back in time and undo our choices either.

I chose this road, I am on now. I chose Pacific Highway 1. If you’ve been on it you know that it’s beautiful, scenic, lots of stops along the way. Unknown to me at the time, was that it’s constantly being worked on. Especially as you head up North. Now I know from experience you shouldn’t drive it at night, as it gets foggy, and there are lots of dangerous curves, along with signs of “Danger – falling rocks”, or danger curves ahead, but you don’t always get warned about the potholes, that happen due to wear and tear, and bad weather. My road in life, has been like this road, dangerous curves, foggy nights, and narrow, slippery roads, with little or no light on them. Just the light from your car that seem to not do any good due to the intense fog. In trying to avoid all of this at the same time, you forget about the potholes, and they seem to get bigger and bigger. You try to drive slow, but they are so big, the last one you drove over, seems to be as if you might have lost an axle in that last pothole. You either “barely escape” the rocks falling, but you don’t escape the boulder that just crashed on to the hood of your car.

I know I shouldn’t complain, in fact, I have taken each one with a grain of salt. In fact I have a Morton’s 25b. bag of salt in the back seat of my car, for just these occasions. I almost done with it.

(Reminder, pickup another bag at Sam’s Club this weekend – that’s the optimist in me peeking out from the gloomy clouds, saying “You must stock up, many more potholes, rocks, and boulders to come, so you need to be stocked up in salt.”

I push my car out the pothole, I have fallen into, or roll the big fat boulder that just landed on the hood of my car. Get back into my car, check my mirrors, and start the car and keep going.

I can already hear, “What, you want a Gold star, for something we all do already?” No I don’t, and I don’t need someone cheering me on. I just want off of this road. Been driving looking for the next exit, but all I seem to see ahead is a dead end sign.

In the Spanish culture there is a saying, “Mejor sola que mal acompañada.” Translated in English to be “Better to be alone, than to be in bad company”. It is true, I have learned that from my own experience. But, it still doesn’t make the loneliness feel any less painful.

I know that Pacific Highway 1 is a whole different scene at dawn, you might even get to see the sunrise that makes you forget that you drove all night to see this beautiful sunrise. You end up thinking as you close your eyes, and hear the waves on the beach, as they slowly go back to where they came from. You feel the mist in your face, and you open your eyes, and realize it was worth it.

I hope to one day feel this way again. My heart hurts, I hate that I wasn’t enough for either of them. And I realize that I was never enough for me either. That’s three failed relationships. Swell!

Great! Sarcasm has now joined the substitute gang.

Lots to think about.


Life goes on…and so does the ride!

Have you ever been on a ride, where initially you were a little afraid, as you didn’t know what to expect?  Then after a few minutes, the ride becomes more enjoyable.  You feel the wind in your face, you’re smiling from ear to ear because you can’t believe how great it is!

Ups, downs, sharp lefts, sharp rights, upside down – the works!

Then abruptly the ride ends… leaving you disappointed.

I’ve had a couple of relationships that came to a complete stop.  But like the rollercoaster ride, you build a connection, you come to enjoy it and you hope it doesn’t end.  Your hope to make the type of friends that are for life.

All relationships change… they all evolve to a different stage.  A simple friendship that seemed to revive your soul, sparkle return to your dull eyes, adding pip to your step, and had you smiling from ear to ear.  Making plans for life!  You are happy, and excited in life again, as if suddenly the world you’ve know was turned on its axis.

You look back at everything as B.T.F /A.T.F – before that friendship, and after that friendship began.  It seems as if 1940 are just ending and color tv has now been implemented into our lives.

And suddenly……. you no longer matter, you lose your luster in their eyes.

And you ask… “What happened?” “What did I do?” or “What didn’t I do?” And sometimes, you don’t get an answer, so you start to drive yourself crazy, with..,. “Was it this…or could it have been that……?”

Sometimes the standard answer is given… “It’s me, not you”.   That’s when you have to learn to just move on.  If you’ve done your part, and your effort isn’t reciprocated, than you move on.

In both relationships where this happened. I allowed doubt, self disappointment to lay roots in the cracks “between thoughts and feelings.”

And, after many days and nights of mourning, my heart and mind finally came to an agreement…”get over it!”  It’s until these two agree, that the advice given by other dear friends, finally made sense.  “Just let it be…”

 “Only YOU have the power to either dwell in the mud, or rinse off and move on.”

One friend said, “It could be simply that person is done with you having purpose in their life.  You’ve played the necessary role in their life, and they’ve grown.  Just like you should.”

My initial response, “OUCH!” It was hard to move on.  I had created a bond that I had always longed for.  So hearing this, at first made my heart ache.  But after, gallons of tears, boxes and boxes of kleenex, the classic movies of BFFs and breakups, and a playlist of songs that reflected my pain.   Queue TLC – “What about your friends..”

I finally came to the realization that, “Okay, maybe this relationship died, but I didn’t.”

So I took their advice.  After much self examination, coaching, meditating I found the bright side to this sad chapter in my life.

I learned from it, I grew because of it, and in turn found myself and learned to love me.  I read a quote that absolutely hit the spot, “I didn’t change, I found myself.”

If you find yourself dwelling, and miserable… it’s because YOU want to.  Not because you have to, no one is forcing you to stay stumbled.  Get up, acknowledge your situation, and remember YOUR worth.  If you need to, remenize on what once was, do so.  Analyze what you learned from that relationship, or event in your life.  Smile that it happened, because whether good or bad, you grew from that experience.

Get on a new ride…the ride of YOUR life.  While on your ride, close your eyes and enjoy the wind, enjoy the excitement, the ups and downs…because life goes on!


Change your filter

As I lazily looked through the pages of a magazine, though many different models appeared, I stopped at one particular girl. She was very pretty, beautiful smile, but something about the look in her eyes seemed to me very insincere. But of course, I shrugged my shoulders and move on.

At that moment a co worker passed by and I asked his opinion on her, and he said “false advertisement”.

That caught me off guard. I asked him why he said that, and he stating his past disappointments with women. “After the “wooing” stage of a relationship the girl changes”. He sits on his chair, and plays with a ball against the wall…he continues, “She doesn’t wear makeup, she’ll wear sweats all the time, she stops going all out for the guy.”

I listened, and pondered. And then, it hit me…

“Oh, no he di’int’!” The latina in me heated up! That to me is a bunch of -whatever! And I will tell you why. (I won’t go into the fact that men change, they grow weary and look to greener pastures)

A very large percentage (NOT ALL * there are exceptions…) of men only look at appearances BEFORE they get to know the girl. I UNDERSTAND that physical chemistry has a lot to do with someone allowing the opportunity to further the initial “meet and greet”. But more men will “write” off a particular woman because she doesn’t have the right proportion (she’s fluffy) that they are looking for, or the right hair color (not a blonde).

MEN! Wake up! SO many men have overlooked a great person because of their looks. Don’t give me this garbage of “false advertisement” because it’s your fault you end up with disappointments. Why? Because YOU look for THAT “look” instead of giving the girl the opportunity to show you how great she is! Of actually seeing the real her.

Meghan (photo courtesy of Gary Edlund

Gina Botello



I am not saying that the perfect girl doesn’t come in an “all inclusive package”. I know of several beautiful young women (all pictured above) — they are very intelligent, very witty, walking encyclopedia/dictionary/thesaurus, etc… who are genuine “Good girls”. They can make you laugh so hard you cry! They have the whole package going on. So I know that those packages exist.

It’s just that a lot of men sure miss out on women, who are witty, genuine, kind, caring, intellectual, and would make you a happier person. But, because of their filter “criteria” for dating so many have slipped them by.

I have a great friend who for quite sometime had been looking for that “someone”. What did he bring to the table? Great personality, great dancer, super funny, spiritual, very intelligent, and fabulous cook. Added value? VERY good looking.

Knowing what a great catch he was, and knowing he was on the “prowl” — I tried to get him to meet several of my really good friends, who knowing his personality and theirs, had them meet each other. These girls were “down to earth goodness”, and would give their all to a relationship. They would be someone you’d be happy to bring home to mother.

His take on them….she’s too short, she’s not enough blah…she’s too blah…blah…blah… she’s married…. JK….

Found HIS flaw…

He always found a “superficial” reason that wouldn’t allow him the chance to get to know them to a deeper level. So when he kept asking me about my friends, I no longer had any… I wasn’t going to allow them to be cherry picked. End of story ? He finally found someone who DIDN’T fit his initial criteria. Perplexed? He grew up. Got married, and now have their first child — all is good!

What it took? He changed his “filter”.

Moral of the story — don’t be superficial! End of the day… ALL that makeup comes off, and if she is not as pretty with that off, and doesn’t have the “persona” to backup all that “pretty” you are going to be disappointed on a greater scale — ALWAYS.

Refinance myself

There are some moments in life when your are at the brink of something and you are fully committed to it. Sometimes it’s a decision of a split second that sometimes is the best…. “Choosing the Cajun Shrimp Fettuccine was the best choice, and my tummy agrees!”


Then, there are the decisions that you rummaged over for weeks, or even months… and then you finally pop the question.

However, in some of these decisions made…picking the red pill instead of the blue…you can’t undo (thanks, Morpheus, a little heads up or FYI would have been useful.)

“Selling your soul”. A phrase many jokingly speak of, but when you have…it’s no joking matter.

Especially, when you’ve signed on an invisible dotted line, if you will. When you have vowed to be loyal, to be “in it” through thick and thin. No, not talking about the wedding vows. But the vow of being true to you, to your foundation engraved in your DNA and have made you, you.

Beliefs have been etched into minds, more as tradition and not out of true enlightenment, or self-convincement. An automatic entrenched, learned instead of a belief that has been etched into one’s heart, from proving to oneself it is so.

The real duel… mind vs heart.

We’ve all been through that fight… sometimes even to round 9 only to be disappointed to see the outcome. KO!

We allow ourselves to entertain the What if’s.

“What if it’s not what I really wanted? What if there was someone better out there? What if the Altima was better than the Audi? — Not usually the case, but still a valid question, depending on budget no doubt.

That is where the pool of regret starts to form. And, as you allow it to form, drop by drop… what if after, what if…. it starts to overfill. How is THIS beneficial?

It’s not.

Let’s pull the plug, and allow the regret to dissipate down the drane. Why?

Because… the decision has been made, there is no “going back in time”. Believe me, I’ve wished upon that star… pleeeeeeenty of times.

So, if my only control is the now, then fold up the sleeves, pen on paper, fingers on keyboards and hit go. Future decisions can start to be made.

Such as, reviewing the fine print, the small details, or the situations that caused your doubt to start. You know, such as thinking that the grass was actually greener on the other side.

Photo credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/284712007671510963/

When in reality…it’s was synthetic grass, the visual pleasure of what I thought was going to be “the real happiness” turns out to be a fluke. Faux happiness.

So maybe we can refinance ourselves, but in different terms. A realistic plan, with factors of failure of the past, details that should have been taken in consideration, and cross out the terms that didn’t work, and marked the new terms and conditions of our soul contract with our mind.


Even choosing a new lender, all together.  But, this time, please read and be aware of the small print.


Mildness, the new black

We all have that favorite little black dress… the one we have for that special event. That black shirt for my favorite jeans… or the black skirt that saves the day, when I haven’t done laundry.

Why do I say, “Mildness, the new black”? Because this world is so overrun by the opposite… Me-ism….

It think I had always thought “If I see myself as this… I am being conceited, I am full of myself…” That is why I never viewed myself as important. A friend told me once we all need to “honor our self-worth”. But, it was a “foreign language to me”. Sorry, I don’t speak French.

I didn’t have that in me, I didn’t know how to, and for a bit there, I didn’t quite believe I deserved to see myself in that way. I appreciate that someone was now, teaching me how to be outside of the box, for once, and look at me through different eyes.

What I noticed, is that when I look in the mirror, it’s always in a negative way. I never compliment my hair, my eyes, my smile… it’s always, my wrinkles, my quadruple chins, etc. I realized that I was for lack of a better word, my own worst enemy, my own worst critic. But, why?

In the stories we heard as a children, their is always a villain. The big bad wolf, the evil witch, etc. Okay, let me start by wiping this mirror, as I never noticed before how muggy, foggy, and distorted it was.

I stared back at this clean mirror, and asked, why? Why was I the one that hated myself the most? I was my own villain.

I started to “dissect” my inner me. I was always taught, others come first, then me. I now feel that though, that is a good for manners, it’s not fully accurate. We need to put ourselves first, at times, to be able to keep a healthy relationship with oneself. A person once told me, our first date should be with ourselves. INSERT BIG GULP! I never “dated” myself. I have to work on getting the courage to ask myself out. I am nervous. This will be an ongoing project no doubt. First date, here we come!

But back to this “me-ism” of which I am tired of, of this world. It involves not caring about anyone else, showing no regard for the needs of other. Just their feelings, their space, their time, etc… nothing else matters.

A while ago, I was suggested a project and was given a list of characteristics that pertained to the spiritual side of things. I research the one assigned to me, but I started to see that mildness, intertwined with love, with patience, with joy, gentleness, self control…. etc.

I noticed on my way home, rush hour traffic, that none of these qualities were shown. People honked at others because the light turned green and they didn’t sprint! Honked because they were wanting to go faster than the limit, and the person in front of them wasn’t going to go above the limit.

I thought what characteristic could I start with…

Patience… We are driving on the road, and someone keeps slowing down, over and over and over…is our initial reaction to:

a) honk their brains out

Image Credit: https://goo.gl/images/hE9T8C

b)scream — Idiot! What are you doing?!?!? Make up your mind?!

c) Pass them on the left, and emphasize “sign language” in a heated moment, or in a different form of expression

Image credit:  https://goo.gl/images/XMe8t

What I noticed, is that as started to apply different characteristics, even if just for one day, I noticed that my life was a bit calmer, a bit more joyful, enjoyed the feeling of being happy. My blood pressure was more in control, I had less headaches, and my day went by quicker.

To some people displaying mildness, self control, kindness, comes natural.  To some it becomes too much of an effort, as they are used themselves always being put in first place.

I was at a grocery store not to long ago, and there was only one cash register available at the time. As I approached the counter, an older lady was putting her things on conveyor belt. This was the express lane, and she did have more than 10 items, and she was carefully and slowly putting things onto the belt. I was in a rush, but I thought to myself, “It is not her fault that I am running late, it’s my poor planning that has me in this predicament.” I saw her shaking hands as she pulled her gallon of milk out of her cart, and struggled… so I asked her if she needed help, and she just smiled. I am not sure if she understood, or heard me, but since I didn’t receive an answer, I just smiled back and leaned back.


A lady arrives behind me a few seconds later, and she has about 10 items, and she looks at the lady in front of me, and sighs heavily. She complains “Really?!? It says express lane 10 items for a reason!” Another person joins her, and she has to express her frustration to them as well.

At this point the older lady in front of me, is now about to pay. Her frail hands are reaching into her purse, and she realizes that she either doesn’t have enough, or forgot something. I couldn’t really hear, because of “angry pants” behind me is rudely complaining, again.

I had held my tongue long enough, so i told her, “Look if you are in such a rush, you can go in front of me, but stop complaining about this lady.”

She rolls her eyes at me, and tell me to mind my own business.

Ohhhhh…. no…..she…. didn’t! I looked back at her, and said “Well, if you didn’t breath so heavily into my ears every time you complained, maybe it wouldn’t have become my business!”

I am sure she said something, but this time, she made it a point to not be as loud about it, as her previous complaints. By this point, the lady in front of me smiled, and nodded her head towards me, and went on her merrily way.

Now, my turn to put my items on the belt… I take my time, make small talk with the cashier, and for the heck of it, “Oh, I forgot, can I buy a bag of ice please?” after she had already rang me up. I hand her my cash, she rings me up, and I said “Thank you very much!” my words oozing with caramel, if you will. I grab my cart and slowly move out of the line.

The moral? I will get to it, be patient!

So I put all my things in the trunk, start my oven of a car on, and roll down the windows, and wait a bit for my car to cool down. A few minutes later, I am heading down McDowell Rd…and I get a little of a chuckle.

The lady that had been so unkind, and complaining about this older lady, and how she was taking so long… was pulled over by a cop as she must have been speeding by.

I will leave that… to self interpretation.

So back to kindness, when we show it towards others the benefit is not just for them, we receive the benefit inside ourselves. We feel good!

How about we take a characteristic from this list below:

Choose one a day, or one a week, or one a month….however it suits you best.

Try it! If you don’t see, feel, or experience a difference in your “persona” then quit.

Allowing an opposite characteristic to be a constant in our life, such as anger… does have many side effects….

Side effects of allowing anger to be a constant in our life… to name a few…

Your choice, try each one, and make each of them, the new black!

Now what…

It’s crazy how life seems to trick you into thinking…. everything is awesome!

And, it’s really not life’s fault because – it doesn’t make decisions. It doesn’t decide what road you are going to take… it doesn’t decide to have the beef instead of the chicken, it didn’t decide if you were wearing a skirt or dress… you did.

We make our choices.

Everything surrounding life is our distraction. Friends, family, work….etc.

But their comes a point where something, someone, changes…. and your life that you had all figured out.,. Comes to a halt.

Now what? I didn’t have a Plan B.

Whether this be with the end of a friendship, a job, a relationship.

What do I do now?

Like the little fidget gadget had a start, you restart it again.

Sometimes it maybe a spiritual jolt of energy that we need. A new haircut, a new outfit…a new person of interest.

Sometimes, it all comes down to, coming back “home”. Home to yourself.


I looked into the mirror today and thought, “I never noticed my brown eyes…” and the more I stared, I felt a smile coming on. I kind of chuckled… and for once said to myself: “You have pretty eyes.”

The next thing I knew… I started to cry.

What happened to me? Why have I never made it a point to really get to know the inner me?

What else have I overlooked?

That’s where my new adventure will start… “Hi, my name is Toni”… I looked in the mirror again, and brushed my hair from my face…”Nice to meet me”…

To be continued…

“I am Prime Rib”

I was recently talking to a friend of mine, and this person indicated that certain things are released in themselves depending on whom they choose to be around.  Not those exact words, but that is what I took from it.

Made me wonder, “what did I contribute to this person?  In their life.

So in trying to wrap my mind around this question, I thought to myself, “I have to make sense of this, what could I likened this to?  Then, it came to me…. a meal.

Friend “A” connects in an emotional way, Friend “B” connects in spiritual way, Friend “C” connects in a mental way – and so I went through the alphabet list… and found myself being likened to an appetizer or even dessert.   .

Who doesn’t like dessert, right?

In a meal, you have your “appetizers” that start your meal.  To hold you over until what you are really craving comes your way.

You start with your salad.  Crispy, refreshing lettuce of all flavors, and croutons, preferably the garlic flavored,  and a side of ranch dressing.

Then you have your main dish.   Your cut of meat…. some prefer Porterhouse, T-bone Steak, Fillet Mignon.  For this story, I will use Prime Rib.  Whatever, the cut,  that way its cooked, it completely overwhelms your sense of smell, as it arrives, and is placed before you.  A sense of euphoria takes over, and makes you salivate as your eyes feast on the view before you, as you see it glistening with juice dripping down the sides of this tasty dish.  You compliment your main dish with golden, fluffy, mashed potatoes dressed with melted butter with flowing rich brown gravy that seem to dance together to a beautiful waltz.  Last but not least, your vegetables.  Crispy, beautiful, orange carrots, green asparagus, so rich in color that you can’t wait to sink your teeth into.

Mmmmmm….  You’ve had your fill.  You push your plate away, and sometimes, you leave room for dessert.  Which is just enough to complete this decadent meal.

Back to dessert, I mentioned earlier, I am either the salad with croutons and a side of ranch dressing, or… I am the delicious cheesecake you ordered as a closure to your meal.  I would normally be content, except… I am not.  With my own placement, of me… in my own life.

What do I contribute to myself?

I had been the “Prime Rib” (pun intended) at one time. Someone took the time to look at a menu and made a choice.  But from placing the order to receiving it, He changed his mind.  Regret set it, and this led to hurt and pain, I didn’t deserve.

Pushed away, until I began to emotionally, and mentally rot, and eventually be thrown out.

What a disappointment I had become.  Took ten years to finally remove myself from the “dinning table”, with my head hung in deep remorse that I had not been my best.  I had all my life looked forward to being that important part of someone’s life, the best wife I could be, only to be brought to a very harsh reality, that I wasn’t.

In trying to make sense of my place in my friend’s life, I began to see the parallelism, and I came to realize, I have changed.  I used to feel, that I was only worth  whatever placement I was given…IN MY OWN LIFE.

Being displaced previously,  I believed I was only the salad with croutons and ranch dressing.  I didn’t think I could ever measure up again, to ever being the main course, the “Prime Rib”, if you will.

At the closure of that initial disappointment, I was given some closure: “You are an amazing person, I am sorry I treated you the way I did, you deserved better.”  Even though, I believe it was to wash his hands.  It still brought closure to my heart, and mind.  I went over details in my mind, of things I said, things I did, things I didn’t do – “had I done this, or done that, or been this, or been more that…”  But, I realized, it wasn’t me, and I won’t let it be me any longer.

It’s taken me TWENTY years………. to come to this realization.

Not everyone wants salad, not everyone wants Prime Rib, not everyone wants dessert either.  And that’s okay.  So whatever someone sees me in their life as being, great.  I may be someones “soup that comforts on a cold day, or “a crisp refreshing salad on a summer day”  or even dessert – at any given second of the day….  I will however never cease to be the best me.

But, as for me, in my life….. I am Prime Rib.

Oh! You should’ve been there!

It’s true, many people prefer the “taking in the moment”…. visually, emotionally, and mentally.  I am all about that as well.  There will be moments, that I see a sunset, a sunrise, that I just “breathe it all in”.  Those are amazing and priceless, and rarely does a camera really “relay” with exactness that moment in all its glory.

There are, however, those tender little moments, where a baby takes their first steps, or giggled in a full belly mode, or has her first taste of a slice of lemon … where our hearts just melt, or we are forced to grab Kleenex because the moment has us laughing uncontrollably.  Moments later, as we are video chatting with family, we try to relay the moment to others.  If you are a great story teller – well, the point gets across. Mission accomplished – everyone is crying and laughing, and sharing in the moment.

But, if you are like me, all we can do, after we failed to transmit the feeling, is just say, “Oh, you should have BEEN THERE!”  Clear my throat… and move on.

That’s where the having a camera/smart phone handy, and ready to go – comes in handy.  Whether you take the picture, or you take a video (most ideally) then it’s as easy as setting up the intro with the words… “Oh my goodness, you HAVE to see what she did today!!!”   Hit play, or start scrolling through the pictures.

fuhgeddaboudit…wait… DON’T!

At first this was a hard habit to develop. I’d go through moments and then be like, “Awwwwwwwww! I should have taken a picture?!”  And the moment passed.  Or when I did think about running for my camera -I had no batteries or in this modern day… my smartphone was dead. “Oh, well.”  I’d shrug and move on.

Until I started to really “feel” these moments.  I obviously lived them, but “out of sight, out of mind”, came into play.  Sometimes when other people would relate the story, and would ask me to give my input I was “fuzzy” and then as the story progressed, and we would start laughing and the “Oh YEAH… resurfaced, my heart would “re-feel” if you will, the moment.

So I did made it a point to change the “norm”.  I tried to look at each moment, as a possible event that would either make me  laugh, or even make me cry.  I took pictures.  Some, were meh… can’t lie.  I would go through the albums and about 6 out of 10 I would deleted.  But as I “edited” the photograph, I relived that precise moment.

Example  :  Every time I look back at this picture I grin from ear to ear…and once my imagination recreates the moment in my mind, I laugh uncontrollably as I re-tell the story.

“Remember the time Maye and Erica were trying to just get their feet wet?”

I describe to you my visit to Monterey Bay, and the waves! Countless, majestic waves!  In your mind, “Okay, well that is normal, that is what the waves do, there is nothing out of the ordinary about that”.   Behind the scenes spoiler for the picture below –  this beautiful moment when the wave pounded against the rock! Lucky shot? No… about 108 frames later… I found the ONE shot.  But NOW as I look at this picture, I remember, the salty splash of water that resonated against on my face, and made me loose my breath with every crash against the rocks creating a deep, full, reverberating sound.  I remember that I  squatted anticipating each wave…for about twenty minutes  and my legs fell asleep.  But it was so worth it!!  Afterwards, I looked like an idiot hopping on each leg trying to get the blood circulating.

But if show you the picture, you actually understand my emphasis of how beautiful and how amazing it was.  If you have a good imagination, you could probably feel the salt on your face.

“It was so amazing to sit there on the beach, because as I sat there, I saw the most beautiful waves crashing against the rocks.”

So by now you get the point….taking pictures will help preserve those memories longer, whether it was a sunset, or a flower that stood out more than the usual, due to its imperfect surroundings, enhancing its beauty even more…

No matter how silly you feel taking a picture, it’s the memory that is preserved, that later in meaningless chatter you can relive the moments… “remember when the subway took off and Toni fell on that unsuspecting victim?  How she couldn’t shut up and the guy just got off the subway, on the next exit?”  The story makes you laugh, but had there been a picture, well, that would be a whole lot funnier!

So “click” away… share the moment that keeps on giving!


Making my way through life

I don’t know about you – but I really live a busy life.  I am always…go-go-go!  Some days that is a good thing because of the fact that your day flies by! When I least expect it I look down and see that it’s 5:00 PM already?!?!?

I know I shouldn’t complain if I never feel a day drag.  But, I sometimes feel like the day has control over me, instead of me having control of the day.  Wishful thinking, I guess. But, all I can do is just shrug it off, roll my eyes, and move on, because there is no complete control of all things – despite our attempts.

We can however, do little things we do can bring our spirits up, to help us feel in control again. As simple as stepping back and enjoying what’s in front of you.  At this moment, the in front of me happens to be my computer.  “What is so good about that?”

I am glad you ask.  Because at this moment, I am giving you insight into my mind and later into my heart.  Hence the name of my website “Between thoughts and feelings”.  I know you may or may not agree with much on these pages, but its purpose is not to change the world, but just trying to bring a smile to someone’s heart.

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