Monday, October 24, 2011

Wine, tapas and a literature~ @ Corcho~

Corcho Wine Room presents a book reading

Finding Your Force A Journey to Love
by Alicia Anabel Santos

A memoir written in the form of a love letter to a daughter. It is not a love story but definitely a story of love.

Saturday, October 29th, 6pm @ Corcho. 227 Dyckman Street. Tel. (212)203-3371. Come enjoy Tapas, Burgers and the best wines in New York. Don’t miss this special event.

Corcho Wine Room presenta

Encontrando tu Fuerza: Un Sendero De Amor
por Alicia Anabel Santos

Es un libro de memorias escrita en la forma de una carta de amor dirigida a su hija. No es una historia sobre el amor, pero sin duda es una historia de amor.

Sabado 29 de Octubre, 6pm @ corcho. 227 Dyckman Street. Tel. (212)203-3371. Donde podras disfrutar de Tapas, Burgers y los mejores vinos de New York. No te pierdas este evento especial.

Fearless Chicana’s Dream Come True~

We’ve known each other for a long time. I would say since 2006… that’s when we became good friends and not just women who met at a networking event. We both wanted the same things out of New York a sense of community lasting connections. The day we really connected she wasn’t sure if New York City was even for her. New York seemed to be too hard. She was getting ready to throw in the towel. She was looking for a sign. She was searching for a sign that would confirm that her decision of moving from the West Coast leaving everyone and everything she loved was the right decision.

Fear does that. Fear of success or fear of failure can paralyze us and make us question if our decisions are the right ones. We become afraid that doors will close on our faces or that opportunities will disappear if we don’t jump at them. And sometimes this fear keeps us from having what we really want. And if you’re a woman of color… women in general… we know what this fear looks like and how it has appeared in our lives. A West Coast Chicana in New York City… it takes a lot of courage to move across the country alone. It’s a completely different experience and pace. I remember looking at her from across the room at a Las Comadres Networking event as we went around sharing a little bit about our dreams… who we are and what we do.

Aurora Anaya-Cerda shared with the group her story of opening a bookstore. I just looked at her and shared with her my dream of writing and how I was going to be attending a huge book conference in DC so that I could meet Barack Obama. It was scheduled for that following weekend. It was just the sign that she needed. It was just the push she needed towards continuing in pursuit of realizing her dreams and not give up. Here we are five years later and I have watched her attend conference after conference, take business class after business class, create a solid business plan, support author after author and travel all over the United States meeting book sellers and store owners all in preparation for this moment. A moment she deserves. A moment this community deserves.

Her dream of opening La Casa Azul Bookstore in East Harlem is close to coming true. She has worked tirelessly for so many years to get to this point. Aurora is a few hours away from meeting her 40K goal. This incredible campaign of raising 40K in 40 days ends today and EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS!!!! Please spread the word and support this Fearless Chicana~

About the campaign: CLICK LINK

Visit La Casa Azul Bookstore Website: CLICK LINK

About Las Comadres Para Las Americas: CLICK LINK

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Meditation 4: Attracting Gentle Life Lessons~

Release judgments of self and of others~

So today I meditated and spent the entire day thinking about the ways I have judged others and more importantly have judged myself. I can be incredibly hard on myself and there are occasions where I am definitely hard on the people around me. I am quick to check them on all the things I believe they should be doing. And lately, I have been judging myself incredibly hard… extra hard… too hard.


That was the word that rose for me today after yoga. Have compassion for myself. Be gentle with myself. Be kind to myself. Use loving words to address myself. Sometimes I have the right words for everyone else but don’t have kind words for myself. Alicia, have some compassion for you! Don’t be so hard on yourself!

Today I choose to attract gentle people, gentle life lessons and gentle words.

Today I will have some compassion for me~


Today I am able to accept that I am flawed.
Today I accept that I still need to work on acceptance and being more accepting of others.
Today I accept you for you and I release all judgment.
Today I accept me for me and I release all judgment.
Today I accept all the gifts in my life.
Today I accept what is.
Today I accept myself just the way I am.

And so it is~

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Meditation 3: Healing from the inside/out~

I just finished doing yoga and praying. I have to admit I feel really good right now. My body feels strong. My mind feels clear. I am incredibly peace filled. Full. I am feeling filled. Fully nourished.

The thoughts I was having during meditation and what I prayed for was healing. Healing from the inside/out… upside down… all the way around. I am feeling like there was a puppet master holding me by my legs upside down and all of my personal belongings were being dumped onto the floor. I was thinking about my purse… full of crap. Junk, candy wrappers, old receipts and notes on napkins. Basically I was carrying things I just don’t need.

I am healing from the inside/out.

I wrote a book about healing and Finding MY Force and how in each of the moments I describe the ways I was able to survive those moments and come out on top. Whether through healing, recovery, understanding, realizations, faith, prayer and meditation. Yet lately, I have been a bit scattered, feeling lost, alone and lost. I have been angry and in a dark place. It has felt like I have lost every skill, technique and affirmation that has helped me on the path towards finding my force.

Then I feel as if the people around me expect me to have some sort of magic trick up my sleeve and poof automatically I am healed. It doesn’t work like that. I’ve been living with the pain for a very long time but today I no longer want to live here. I don’t want to feel sad or depressed. I want to heal from the inside out.

How do I do this?

I return home! I get up. I un-roll my yoga mat, light a candle and play some beautiful music. I call on all the guardian angels, saints and spirit guides, my protectors, Gods, Goddesses and all the people who can carry me. I call them forth… I call on them to help me. I call on them for strength and healing. I give each of them something to heal for me because I can’t do it alone.

I am asking for help all I have to do is ask! I let go and let my force help me out of this. I trust that there is nothing that my force can’t handle. My force can carry me. My force is healing me. My force is healing me right now with every word that I write. And this is how I heal from the inside out. I let go… let my force do the work through me and I sit still and wait for the miracle.

How are you going to get me out of this one?

I have been here before… so many times and you have always healed me and so I thank you Creator. Thank you for always holding me.


I am on a path of healing~
I am healing from the inside out~
I let go and let my force handle this`
I know that my force can when I can’t~
For this knowing I am so grateful~
Help is on its way~
I am not alone~
I am divinely favored and loved~

And so it is~

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Meditation 2: The Real ME~

On this search for understanding and self-awareness I realize that it doesn’t matter how much I meditate or know exactly what I need to pull myself out of sadness what I think I know no longer works and sometimes we need a reminder. Growth is constant evolution. So for today I am looking at THE REAL ME~

I don’t always have the answers…
I don’t always
know what to do…
I need help…
I’m feeling a little lost…
Trying to find
my way…
Trying to find
a way out…
Trying to find that place inside me that knows
that really knows…
how to pull me out of this - -
Searching for that place that strengthens me…
that place that guides me.
help me…
I am so sad…
strengthen me.
I want all you have for me…
Clean my wounds…
Remove all the toxins from my body…
Remove all the poison that does not serve me…
Walk with me…
Fill me…
Strengthen me…
Please work through my words today…
guide me…
push me harder than I’ve ever worked..
I need to work nonstop…
I need to get it done.
Help me be authentic…
I need your help…
Authenticity is based on truth…
The truth is I am weak…
The truth is
I am getting stronger…
The truth is
I am learning all that I need.
The truth is
I am getting ready~
The truth is
I am always growing…
The truth is
I wasn’t always THIS way…
The truth is
I was completely torn down…
The truth is
I am re-building from scraps…
The truth is
I am getting rid of the debris that was left in me…
The truth is
I am working with the parts that remain
I am starting over…
The truth is
I don’t pretend to be perfect.
Or act like I have it all together.
The truth is
she told me she felt deceived…
I say she saw the truth
and didn’t like it…
The truth is
The truth is I am weak…
The truth is
I am getting stronger…
The truth is
I am learning all that I need.
The truth is
I am getting ready~
The truth is
I am always growing…
The truth is
I wasn’t always THIS way…
The truth is
I was completely torn down…
The truth is
I am re-building from scraps…


I am getting stronger~ I am learning all that I need~
I am getting ready~
I am always growing~
I am re-building from scraps… BUT I AM RE-BUILDING~
I am getting rid of the debris that was left in me~
The truth is the Divine Source is always at my side~
And so it is~

Pick up your copy of Finding Your Force A Journey to Love~ Available on Barnes and Noble~ CLICK LINK~

Monday, October 17, 2011

Meditation 1: Today I am going to take care of me~

For far too long I have been taking care of people. I believed that it was my job to fix people. I have always been here for people. My house, my space, my time, my love has always been wide open to anyone and everyone who needed me. Always wanting to extend a helping hand. I worried about everyone. I wanted to make it ALL better for them. I wanted to take on their pain. I wanted to wipe their tears and make their pain go away.

Today I went to church and cried and cried over the pain I have been carrying, everything that I have been feeling… forced to look at the things I haven’t had the time or energy to face. As I got off the train I was having this internal dialogue about the people in my life. The circles I run with and I said out loud; “I can’t take care of you!”

It’s not my job to take care of you.

It’s not my place to try and make it all better.

That’s YOURS to work through… to grow through… that is your pain to carry and heal from.

I can’t take care of you!

Today it’s all about me. Today I am taking care of me.


Today I walk without guilt or shame!

Today I will look in the mirror and do that internal work that heals me.

Today I am taking care of ME!

I am healing ONE DAY AT A TIME!

And so it is~

Friday, October 14, 2011

Everything happens right on time~

Last month during my reading at Casa Attabex Ache the women who attended the event were asked to write a letter that CASA would then mail to them at a later date. I received this love note in the mail last weekend and only opened it yesterday. I definitely needed to hear these words:

My beautiful Alicia~

I miss you so much~


Alicia Anabel, on the day of your second reading of Finding Your Force I want you to know how much I love you~ you are healing with every word you write~ with every word you read~ you are healing with every woman you meet~ I love you.

I need you to really know that this work you’re doing right now is bigger than you even know. Your work is important. You have so much value and I am so very proud of you~

Light and love~

That’s what I send you.

But I also send you forgiveness and understanding.

It’s ok to be mad, angry and piss’t off.

Stay in those moments I will love you through it~

I love you Alicia~

I love you!

I love what you bring~

I love that you care~

I love that you are always here~

I love you~

Will you marry me?

Love always,
Alicia Anabel

As I head to my next reading on this book tour “Stanford University” I can’t help but feel everything that I am feeling. Things are rising for me that I haven’t been prepared for. It hasn’t been as easy as writing a book and publishing it. Things are resurfacing that I wasn’t ready to feel. And I am feeling all of it. Healing is constant. Growth and evolution are a natural process and very necessary. So today I am acknowledging that I am feeling some pain… and require healing. Yet I also acknowledge that I have been here before and I know that I will be ok.

With love,

Thursday, October 13, 2011

TONIGHT~ Book reading, discussion & signing @ Bowdoin College in Maine~

The students of Bowdoin College have invited me to a special event in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month~

Hosted by LASO ~ Latino American Student Organization and the following organizations:

Alliance for Sexual Assault Prevention~
BQSA ~ Bowdoin Queer Straight Alliance~
Women’s Resource Center~
Resource Center for Gender and Sexual Diversity~
Latin American Studies Department~

I am looking very forward to sharing my story but am more excited to meet the students and faculty and hear their stories~ tonight will be a beautiful shared experience~

Peace, light and LOVE~


when you deny the truth of what is…
denying what’s happening before your eyes…
living where you wish to be rather than where you are
Choosing to believe in hopes that it will be
When it just isn’t~

Meditating on the word denial today~

Few tragedies can be more extensive than the stunting of life, few injustices deeper than the denial of an opportunity to strive or even to hope, by a limit imposed from without, but falsely identified as lying within.
Stephen Jay Gould

It's not denial. I'm just selective about the reality I accept.
Bill Watterson

Delay is the deadliest form of denial.
C. Northcote Parkinson

Doubt, indulged and cherished, is in danger of becoming denial; but if honest, and bent on thorough investigation, it may soon lead to full establishment of the truth.
Ambrose Bierce

The greatest barrier to someone achieving their potential is their denial of it.
Simon Travaglia

Your denial is beneath you, and thanks to the use of hallucinogenic drugs, I see through you.
Bill Hicks

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

COMING OUT! In today’s society~

Yesterday, October 11, 2011 was National Coming Out day and the thought of this while on several level sounds empowering can also be quite frightening. While I was giving a workshop in St. Louis last week one of the students at McCluer High School shared with me her desire to start a Student Gay Alliance at their school after a few of the students were being bullied at the school for being gay. These teens were teased so much that they were forced to leave the school. Then this young student asked me, “Ms. Santos, do you think kids should come out?” It was the first time I had ever been asked that question.

When should someone come out? And should they come out?

Without even thinking about it I thought about all of the people who have been killed, all the people who have committed suicide and all of the hate crimes for being gay. The question scared me. I would never want to tell someone what they should do or when they should do it. I mean really… I didn’t actually “come out” until my late 30’s. I looked at this student and said. “No! I don’t think people should just jump on OUT of the closet. I think that a person should come out when THEY ARE READY to come out. And by ready I mean emotionally ready. It’s a personal choice.

I wasn’t ready for a long time. I don’t think I could have come out in High-School I was having a tough enough time being Latina dealing with violence just because I was lighter than some girls with “good hair.” I don’t think I was equipped with that inner strength needed to be an out lesbian. I certainly didn’t have the courage when I was in high-school especially since I only wanted to be liked and accepted in high-school and my parents probably would have killed me. “Coming OUT” as an older woman was incredibly symbolic for me because I was forced to release all these religious beliefs and that desperate need to be accepted. As an adult it was a little easier for me because I was comfortable in my skin and the only person I even cared about what they thought was my daughter. However it didn’t prepare me for what I would have to deal with once I did come out~

My coming out story~ (excerpt from Finding Your Force A Journey to Love)

Careful what you wish for. You just might get it. I can’t tell you how many yoga sessions I’ve had where my closing prayer ended the same. I would ask the universe to send me the most magnificent expression of love. So when she arrived… she was definitely A LOVE UNLIKE ANYTHING I HAVE EVER EXPERIENCED. Those first conversations seemed fluid. We connected on a spiritual level. We were both writers, both single mothers raising teenagers. We talked every day for weeks. At first it was just about writing. We shared poetry. Then something started happening. I started to feel things. This was brand new.

Was I attracted to her? Was I feeling her in the same way that I had always felt men? Did I like her – like her… in that way? Was I having romantic feelings for her?

I had never felt this way before. Things were happening to me and I was confused. What I felt was beautiful. It scared me. It felt wrong. My upbringing was blocking the love I was receiving and feeling.

Then it happened one day. I was at war with myself. I was so confused. There was so much against me. I was feeling things for this person but I was torn. I was in the middle of yoga and I could not hold my poses. I kept falling. I was crying throughout my entire meditation. My chest was tight. I didn’t understand what was happening to me. This was foreign to me. So I did what I always do I prayed on it.

I prayed for understanding and healing. I began reading excerpts from the bible and every passage that I read was about how women would be stoned for this or that. Honor thy man!!! God made Eve for Adam… men and women were made to procreate… and anything outside of that was a sin.

I wanted to push what I was feeling out of my body. I wanted to resist and deny what I was feeling for this woman. I really believed that I was going to hell for loving her. That day while I was an hour into yoga and my eyes were closed, I continued crying and praying. I knew that my creator would want me to feel love. I could no longer deny myself who I am. Finally, I gave in… I allowed myself to feel everything. I released my religious and spiritual battle and gave into what was happening to me. I accepted that I was gay.

We were in bed when I told you. We held each other. I looked over at you and said,

“Baby, I need to tell you something.”

“What’s up mom?”

“I’m in love with a woman… I’m gay!”

You looked at me and said, “Are you sure momma?”

“Yes! I am sure.”

“Are you happy?”

“Yes… I’m very happy!”

“If you’re happy… then I’m happy for you. That’s cool!!! My momma’s gay.” You smiled and hugged me.

Your opinion and approval was the only one that mattered to me. Once I came out to you I felt free. I was liberated. I was so excited about this new chapter of my life. It was like I was born again. Everything was new to me. It always felt like there was just one piece missing to my puzzle and now I finally figured it out.

The moment I came out to you was one of the most special days of my life. The moment that I accepted that I was a lesbian was a moment of COMPLETION. It felt like I was finally a complete being. I wanted to share it the world. I wanted to shout it from the highest building. Once I knew that I had your love and support, I figured everyone else would just follow. I believed that the entire family would love me anyway.

Dedicated to:

Larry King

Mathew Shepard

Kenneth Cummings

Teena Brandon

Tyler Clementi, Rutger Student who committed suicide

Seth Walsh, 13 years old commits suicide

Onxard, California
Lawrence King
February 12, 2008
15 year old gay man killed for being gay

Edmond, Oklahoma
Steven Domer
October 26, 2007
62 year old gay man killed for being gay

Sacramento, California
Satender Singh
July 5, 2007
26 year old gay man killed for being gay

Brooklyn, New York
Michael Sandy
October 8, 2006
29 year old gay man died for being gay
Ahmed Khalil
May, 2006
14 year old Iraqi gay teen executed by police

Montreal, Quebec
Montreal Female Engineering Students
December 6, 1989
Fourteen young women were killed. They were killed because they were perceived to be feminists. The students killed that day include:

Genevieve Bergeron
Helene Colgan
Nathalie Croteau
Barbara Daigneault
Anne-Marie Edward
Maud Haviernick
Barbara Klucznik
Maryse Leclair
Annie St.-Arneault
Michele Richard
Maryse Laganière
Anne-Marie Lemay
Sonia Pelletier
Annie Turcotte

Mahmoud Asgari and Ayaz Marhoni
July, 2005
Two gay Iranian teenagers executed for being gay.

Tucson, Arizona
Philip Walsted
Young man who is thought to have been murdered because he was gay.

New Jersey
Sakia Gunn
Lesbian teenager stabbed to death, because she was gay.

Octavia Acuna
January, 2005
Gay rights and health activist stabbed to death in Mexico.

Richie Phillips
Richie was a 36 year old man, who the prosecution felt was lured to motel room and murdered for being gay.

Waterloo/Cedar-Falls area, Iowa,
Jason Gage
March, 2005
Gay man murdered.

Justin Enos
Young man murdered because he danced like a girl.

Sierra Leone, Africa,
Fannyann Eddy
September, 2004
African Lesbian activist raped and murdered.

Scotty Weaver
July, 2004
Gay teen was murdered. He was beaten, strangled, stabbed, cut and burned.

Billy Jack Gaither, 39 - 19 February 1999
James Primus, 35 - 21 June 1993

Brandon Teena, 21 - 31 December 1993


Should you come out?

Come out when you are ready. Don’t allow anyone to dictate to you when that is. No one will ever walk a day in your shoes so don’t allow yourself to be bullied. Surround yourself by people who love you and accept you for who you are. Know that its your decision when to come out and KNOW THAT YOU ARE LOVED~

Peace, light and LOVE~

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Tonight~ Open Mic Event ~ Hispanic Heritage Month

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month Medgar Evers College has been hosting a series of wonderful events in honor of Latino culture. Along with a group of amazing artists I will be reading poetry and from my memoir Finding Your Force A Journey to Love~

MEC Open Mic Series Hispanic Heritage Month Event:

Hosted by La Bruja~ Caridad De La Luz

Location: Medgar Evers College
Time: 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Founders Auditorium
1650 Bedford Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11225

Hope to see you there.

Peace, light and love~

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

A moment to be still and of gratitude~

I was born in July but my month of rebirth is OCTOBER~ which has started off a little bumpy and not at all HAPPY. But as I sit here preparing for all that is coming… as I really sit still for the first time in a long time I am looking at all I’ve been through and where I am headed… literally, Missouri, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Maine, San Francisco, Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens NYC I am feeling so grateful and blessed. So today I stop RIGHT WHERE I AM to say thank you creator!!!

Readings & Events ~ OCTOBER 2011


Wednesday, October 5th - 7th
Afrolatino Presentation
McCluer South-Berkeley High School
St. Louis, Missouri

Saturday, October, 8th @ 3pm
FYF Reading in Private Home
New Jersey

Tuesday, October 11th @ 6pm
FYF Reading
Medgar College - Open Mic
Brooklyn, NYC

Wednesday, October 12th - 14th @ 8:00pm
FYF Reading @
Bowdoin College (private event)
Brunswick, Maine

Friday, October 14th @ 5:00pm
FYF Reading @
Stanford University
Palo Alto, California

Sunday, October 16th Time TBD
5th Anniversary of the NYC Latina Writers Group
in Private Home
Bronx, NY

Saturday, October, 22nd @ 3pm
FYF Reading in Private Home
Bronx, New York

Saturday, October 29th @ 6:00pm
Corcho Wine Room
227 Dyckman Street
New York, NY

For details on how to host a book reading in your home CLICK LINK or email Emma Diaz @