Lent and Me

I was away this time because I was trying to keep away from all social media as my “giving up” something I enjoy for Lent. I must say I have been somewhat successful. I came back to posting because this is more of a therapy for me. I have found in writing some of the things in my life to help me process and let of the baggage that sometimes weakens my soul. I wish I could dare myself to be more out there, and just talk about everything, but then nothing would be left for me. Right?

To talk about a lighter subject, I have not been on my Facebook account, which has made me realize how pathetically obsessed I am with it. So the question comes to mind? What is the fascination with learning about other people’s lives? I have studied psychology, which is the study of human behavior, but I still find it amazing how people, no matter the race, ethnicity or age, all enjoy going on FB either to snoop around or to post their achievements and a very few post their “failures”. It is crazy to think that giving up the most widely used social utility, I guess Twitter could be as big of not bigger, is highly addictive. I think this has been the hardest lent for me. I think next year I may fins something else to give up. I find myself surfing the web for random things. I also find myself picking up my phone with the intention of going on FB only to shortly remember that I purposefully erased the app from my phone as a reminded that FB is off limits until April 2nd. 

I only have a few more days to go. Interestingly enough, I will be in MD April 2nd, so my first post will be in MD after a 40 day hiatus. 

God Bless.

Never Ready For Something Like This

Today after a long day of working, I called my parents awaiting the diagnosis of a biopsy that took place about a week ago. My dad, my ideal of a man, my superhero, the man that has set the standard high for any other man that tries to come into my life, was diagnosed with prostate cancer today.
Growing up with a man that has a been a beacon of health and strength has always been admirable, a motivation to continue, and my strength when I got sick came from his genes and of course my mom’s. At first , I did not believe what I had heard on the phone, I had a client which needed my attention, so I did not have time to sit down and actually process the news. On my way home, I called my mom to get the specifics of the current situation and realized that it was a reality. My dad had been diagnosed with prostate cancer, and tomorrow a test is going to be done to see if it has spread. My reaction was to cry, and cry some more and think, “I can’t believe this”. I am not really sure what this will mean for the family. I am a 1,000 miles away from them. I think that’s the worse part; not being able to be there for them.
I am going to take this opportunity to tell my dad, if he happens to read this, the many things I never told him because I was never courageous enough. I grew with this feeling that my dad did not love me. I thought his adoration for my brother consumed his heart and I was left in the dark of a love I always strived to obtain, but never quite achieved. I realized and felt the love my dad has for me when I got sick. At first, he was in denial. He could not admit that I was ill, that my illness was more real than he could stand. He closed off and I felt abandoned. His anger and resentment as a response to the family changes caused him to abandon me when I needed the support. It took him about a year to understand what was really going on and to be there for me. That day, I realized that my dad did in fact love me but like so many of us, he has a hard time showing his love, and he’s not the best at communication. My dad is the type of person that loves it when people show him love and care, but he has a hard time showing it back although he is a deeply feeling person. Throughout the years I have learn this about him, and I accept him. For a long time, I felt resentment, and I think in a way I still did, but God has a very special way of showing me that my resentment is irrational because all people deserve second chances. All people have the right to make mistakes and be forgiven. I have been mad at him, but at the same time I have always wanted to make him proud. I have always wanted to show him how much I love him, and it’s funny because my mom always says to me,”you love your dad more than you love me, his opinion is the only one that counts”. I must say that what my dad thinks of me does matter, and I am so proud to call him my dad. I’m so proud of the person I am because through his teachings and my mom’s I have become the person I am. The good and the bad is all a representation of them. God has blessed me with amazing and dedicated parents, and I could not ask for any other. I love you so much dad. I am so happy to have you in my life. I am sorry if I don’t say it enough. This is just another hurdle in this adventure we call life.
I’ll see you soon.

An Overdue “Thank You”

I have this really good friend at work that keeps me humble. She is a woman that has shown me that there are still those who are pure of heart. Thank you. I will not say her name for obvious reasons, but I have been wanting to write a post in her honor since she has taught me so much. Anyway, she and I went to mass the other day before work, and she got to read the first reading, which was this:

Beloved, we love God because He first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” but hates his brother, he is a liar; for whoever does not love a brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. This is the commandment we have from him: Whoever loves God must also love his brother. Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is begotten by God, and everyone who loves the Father loves also the one begotten by him. In this way we know that we love the children of God when we love God and obey his commandments. For the love of God is this, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome, for whoever is begotten by God conquers the world. And the victory that conquers the world is our faith.

1 John 4:19-5:4

As I heard her reading this, and the emphasis she gave it as she looked at me with a big smile on her face I knew she was once again teaching me how to get closer to God. This was such a beautiful reminder of God’s love for me. Then the priest emphasized this reading with the Homily in which he said that loving someone is a conscious choice we make, and that emotions are ambivalent therefore we cannot guide our decisions by them because when someone does something nice we feel they are great and want to “love” them, but when they do something bad then we do not like them, and want to “hate” them. At that moment many things fell into place for me, especially when I thought back to my broken marriage. I had realized that no one had promised to love me forever and do what Mignon Mclaughling said about the secret to a successful marriage,”…requires falling in love many times, always with the same person”. I guess that choice was not made when my ex-husband and I said “I do” before God. I am glad I was able to be reminded that loving someone is a conscious choice because hopefully the second time around it will made consciously.

Im Back!

It’s been a while since I wrote in my blog. I guess you could say my life has been busy these last months, and I am having this amazing time getting to know me again. I am currently seeing someone, its recent but it is going really well. I also just bought a house, something that has me feeling accomplished and proud. Of course, this purchase would not have been possible without the help of my parents and support as usual. God has been so merciful with me when it comes to my parents. I could not ask for better ones. Work is okay. It’s sad when you realize the people you thought cared really don’t, but you live and you learn. After 3 years of being alienated from the outside world coming into it again things are not bad. People will be people, and I have to take the best out of every experience. I have wanted to write about all of these positive changes in my life, but somehow I’ve been trying to keep it all to myself. I guess that’s not really allowed when you have a blog, right? Lol
Let me first talk about this wonderful man God has placed in my path. He is kind, generous, loving, understanding, a man of faith, a family man, and the best thing he has is that he wants to take care of me with lupus and everything that comes with it. God kept this man for me, and I’m lucky enough to enjoy him as my boyfriend. This man’s family is sweet and they have taken me in without any reservations. I am so happy! Everything I lacked in my marriage I am finding in him. What more could I ask for?
So…I bought a house in Florida, so I guess this means I am officially a Floridian! I am here for good, and I love my new home and life. I am living with this really cool girl that keeps me young, even though I am 26 I act like a 50 year old, my housemate is 23 and acts her age, so it’s a good balance. I am grateful for having met her. I wanted to go back and go into more detail with the mishaps that have happened at work, especially since I have already lost 2 people in FL that showed me so much care and love at the beginning. However, I have come to the understanding that God places people in our lives so that they can help us in some way, and then takes them away when more damage than good will come from the relationship. It has taken me a lot of acceptance of the person I am and acceptance of others to realize that, on top of the fact that my faith in God grows everyday a little. He has tested me lately and has achieved me to get closer and fonder of His grace and kindness in my life. But I will always hold those people close to my heart remembering their kindness when I needed it the most.
Christmas and New Years are around the corner…and I get to spend them with my family, boyfriend and his family. There are no words to explain the happiness that this brings to my life after having lost faith in love and in the possibility of finding someone worthwhile. I am so blessed. Thank you Lord for never forgetting about me.

Clash of the Cultures

How many people have ended their relationship because of the culture differences? Never would I thought I would be in a situation where culture was an issue between me and the man I was seeing.
So I’ve been dating this amazing guy, whom I’m scared will turn out to be too good to be true, but that’s beside the point for the purpose of this posting. I feel something special for him and I’m so grateful God placed him in my life, but with everything good comes something bad, ours is: culture! He’s from Guatemala, and while we are both Hispanic, I can assure you there are many differences between the Cuban culture and the Guatemalan culture.
For example, there are words in my culture that are bad words but Cubans take it more lightly, and in Guatemala there are considered “very bad words”. Another issue is the use of formal versus informal; in other words “usted” and “señora” or “señor” versus “tu” and first name basis when it comes to relating to his parents and family. In Cuba, formalities were lost as a consequence of the revolution and everyone being “equal”. In Central and South American countries everyone is mr and mrs: very uncomfortable for Cubans. I am surely trying to adapt to this as I would not like this relationship to end over something trivial (at least I want to think it’s trivial) but it is not easy, and somewhat absurd by my standards. I don’t know if this will cause problems, hopefully when his family gets to relate to my family this will all be behind us. I’ve always imagined the mother of the man I dated and someday married to be my friend, and call her “mom”, it didn’t happen with my first husband, and by the looks of it it won’t happen with my new boyfriend. C’est la vie! I will have to adapt and move on.
God placed this wonderful Guatemalan man in my life, and I plan to keep him! Hahaha
At this moment my life I almost complete.
Changing the subject and adding some amazing news aside from the part that I’m dating someone, and it’s getting to be serious, I went to the Miami Beach the other day. I am delighted, excited, ecstatic to say that I was able to get in the water and I swam, floated and went under water. I had not been able to do that in 3 years! That was a major milestone for me in with my illness. God is renewing me in every possible way, and for that I am so grateful. I have been able to sleep for the past week without the need of pain killers. I just can’t thank God enough for this wonderful stage in my life where my health and love life are so amazingly synchronized.
For those out there that are suffering with pain, don’t lose hope. I never did. I continue with my daily struggle of finding complete healing from my illness, but God has been merciful and I’m so amazed by His presence in my life.

What is God trying to tell me?

A while ago something in my life changed. I dont know how to explain this, and I’m not really sure if I am ready to disclose this but it’s something that has confirmed God’s love for me. I am still dealing with the aftermath of my bitter separation, and most likely than not I am not ready to start anew because I’m getting to love me again, but God has placed someone there to help me in this, I think. I am so grateful that I am feeling things that were dead in me, and I hope that His message is much more profound than I believe it to be at this moment. I’m still trying to figure out what this means. I continue to need His guidance but I hope with all of my heart that this will bring me happiness.
The person that reads this, you know who you are, this is a way to express my gratitude towards you. This is all I’m able to give at this time because my heart was broken into little pieces and I’m still putting it back. Thank you for valuing the person I have become and for staying by my side. God has been so merciful with me, as He always is.
I continue to love my life here in Florida. I was so excited I got to spend a day at the beach in October, and it was an hour drive. So amazing! It’s great to walk out the door not scared of feeling pain in my bones. An amazing feeling to actually live and not just survive.


Always Learning

Lately I’ve been contemplating if making the move to FL was a wise decision, things have been going well but a few bumps along the road always makes me think if I made the right choice. There is not doubt in my mind that I am functional down here. I don’t have to hibernate when winter rolls around. For example, today October 5th it’s 84 degrees outside. I’m in heaven! In Maryland it’s 57degrees- not so great for this body. The fact that I can have a life and support myself gives me a lot of happiness. I have found a roommate under the most random circumstances; a sweet girl whom I know will be a good asset to my life. My plans of buying a house have been a bit shaky, but God always gives me a solution to my misery. The best message He sent me was today during mass in the second reading

Brothers and sisters:
Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petitions, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me. Then the God of peace will be with you. –Philippians 4:6-9

I felt like that was for me because anxiety has been close to my heart lately.
I shall not lose faith, I shall continue trusting Him because through Him all things are possible.
Lately, He has been teaching me about me as a person and how much I’ve matured but at the same time how much farther I have to go.
The first thing I need to do is value the person I am. I am learning that people come and go into your life when you need them, but not all are meant to stay. I found a quote that states:

“Your value doesn’t decrease by someone’s inability to see your worth” –anonymous

Not everyone is capable of valuing another person’s virtues. I married a person like that. So, I know that this is a definite possibility.
There are a few things happening in my life that I would rather keep for me at this point, but I am definitely hoping that God will take me exactly to where I will find my happiness.

Blessings to you all! Happy Sunday!

Lupus Nightmare

I was wondering if any of my other lupus readers go through what I went through yesterday. This happens to me every once in a while, but it had not happen to me since April or May of this year. I am still trying to figure out what brings on these attacks that leave me defenseless and absolutely miserable.
I woke up yesterday with my body feeling achy and uncomfortable. I went downstairs to have breakfast; eggs and kefir. I could not finish it. I felt like throwing up. I quickly stopped eating and went to sit on the couch. I lasted there about 10 minutes before I had the strength to go up to my room and rest. By the time I reached my bedroom I was barely able to walk, very fatigued, and extremely cold. The house temperature was 79 or 80, and I felt so cold I started shivering. I don’t know how I had the strength to get in bed, cover myself and sleep. My feet were cold the entire time I slept, but not freezing cold as they were before putting my socks on and covering myself. God was definitely with me because in instances like these my dad or mom would usually help me get in bed. I slept for about 4 hours waking up ever so often feeling tired and feeling the latent pain even when I swallowed. After my nap, I woke up not feeling cold, but I felt like I had a fever, I suppose it must have been all of the covers and comforters I was under. I took a nice long hot shower and by 6 pm I was able to start my day or night in this case. I had very little strength though and felt tired- sleepy. I went to bed early but did not fall asleep until 11pm. Today I feel much better, almost as If yesterday was a distant memory.
I wonder what it is that causes this to happen to me. The night before I experienced a strong emotion and stress. I have been over working although I am trying to cut back on that. I just feel that this will be a sporadic thing that I will have to deal with as long as I live. I continue to drink a lot of water, and when I feel like I explained above the only thing my body asks for is water-lots and lots of water! I continue to eat gluten free, little sugar, little milk, and I try to sleep at least 10 hours a night. Does this happen to anyone else? Please let me know your experience.


Humans & Love

Sometimes I sit for hours wondering if when a person says “I love you” whether it be in a romantic relationship or friendship, if the person is willing to abide by what those words entail. It is with much sadness that I have come to the understanding that most people don’t. Lately, I’ve been faced with the rough reality that people too often say “I love you” but their pride seems to be more important than that love they feel.
I have always been of the opinion that pride cannot be more important than loving someone. Granted- I was not always like this. There was a time when I would rather lose a person than say “I’m sorry” or try and process the situation. In fact, I lost people because of it, but looking back I guess they lost me too because relationships are a two way street. Maybe I’m abnormal or maybe I’ve been hit enough in life that I’ve learned that we were given this life to live it and love it to the fullest because once it’s our turn to meet the Creator we can live with regrets of the things we “should” have done. That’s what Albert Ellis talked about in his theory that people use “I should…” or I “would…” instead of saying “I did” We live our lives so worried about preserving our pride or keeping a certain stature that we forget what living is about.
I often ask myself what humans were placed on earth to do: it’s a given that we all have this strong need to be loved, not said by me, but my many theorists in the field of psychology. I can honestly say that all humans crave this and the ones who don’t have some sort of mental illness. The Bible even speaks about humans and the need for loving and nurturing others.
I don’t know if I more often than not make a big deal over things that are really not that important. But if there is something I have tried to teach myself and I think I’m succeeding at it is never allow a misunderstanding to pass and try and fix it. I try to surround myself with people who have the same values as me. I have allowed too many people to invade my life, use me and discard me. The people who are a part of my life at this moment have proved they deserve to be there. I only wished that those same people that are in my life would be less proud and more “love”. But I guess we must learn to take people with the good and the bad: part of learning to live.


My Crazy Mind

It’s funny that I’ve been giving therapy to a variety of clients everyday for the past 2 1/2 months. I have to admit that giving therapy is a way to give yourself therapy. I am definitely learning from the things I tell my clients. During these moments I realize that it’s very different to learn something to pass a class as opposed to learn something to actually put it into practice.
I think back to when I first started in my masters programs and how little I knew about life and conflict resolution, rules of arguing, thinking distortions, etc. God has a way of showing us and giving us the things we need when we need them. However, even though God gave me the opportunity to learn these things, he also gave me free- will and my free- will took me to do the opposite of the the things I was learning; I was never capable of using them in my marriage. I used to spend hours lamenting the decisions, the words, the tones used when arguing with my ex husband. I would find myself blaming me for all the wrong things that happened in my marriage, and it took me a long time to realize that a marriage is of two people and if there is a need to blame then we are both to blame.
Now I’m lying in bed thinking that tomorrow is his birthday, and I can’t help but wonder what he will do. It’s important that my readers now that I pray for my ex- husband every night. I pray that he finds God and that he find himself and what he needs in order to be happy because he is not. The Bible says to pray for your enemies because that’s the hardest thing to do, and even though I don’t consider my ex my enemy I know that he does consider me his enemy, so I pray from him and I pray for me.
I’m also having these thoughts hanging over my head about the things I need to do with my life. Everything is money and I can’t help but feel overwhelmed since I don’t make too much of that. I wanted to get a part time job where I could gain more experience but that’s a hard thing to find here in FL. I’m hoping God will give me a way out of my problems, as He always does.
I really have felt pressure lately due to so many things that are happening in my life. It’s hard not to have a person to support and just listen. But I know God has something wonderful for me. I must believe it as it helps me keep going ; it gives meaning to my life.