Monday, May 30, 2011

Chapter 12: There was still so much work to do... there was even more work to undo!

Good Morning Family,

I am about to embark on another journey today. Today I leave for Bogota, Colombia for two months to complete my work with the AfroLatinos project.




My partner Renzo and I have spent three years dedicated to this important work. I am excited to spend the next couple of months getting to the finish line. I am heading to South America to write the last six scripts for the film. I am so blessed to have the opportunities that have come to me. Check out the website and trailer at: WWW.AFROLATINOS.TV


11 days to go... as of this moment I have eleven days left to my kickstarter fundraiser campaign... this is the part of my blog where I ask for your support in getting to the finish line. This process has been incredible. On Friday, May 27th I gave my daughter the completed manuscript to Finding Your Force. Words can't describe how it felt to actually hold this finished work. It really did feel like giving birth. I cried when I held it. I cried for all the people who I have met in my life who have left this earth who believed in me and will not have a chance to read my work (but I know they are with me).

This weekend it all felt so real. I can see the book published. I saw the color of the book, the color of the font for the title, FINDING YOUR FORCE, the photo that would go in the cover... this is the part of the journey where I see it take shape as I get closer to seeing it in the bookstores.

That moment of holding 292 pages of my life story felt incredible and I can't wait to share this story with you. I understand that this story is NOT my story--it is OUR story... I hope you will consider backing my project and help spread the word.

Here is today's excerpt:

CHAPTER TWELVE


Prayer: I know that there are NO OBSTACLES~ that all that you put in my path is for my learning… for my greater good. Please help me to release the poison inside of me. I'm miserable, unhappy and feeling unfulfilled in my life. Spiritually I know what I need to nourish myself. I know that I am stronger than this. My writing is suffering. I haven't given it the time it deserves. I haven't given myself the time I deserve. I need to release this tension and anxiety. I know that no one can come in and fix it for me. All the work has to be done internally. I need to get to the core of me… all that is beautiful, loving, compassionate, tender and gentle. Mostly, I want to be able to give ALL that I possess to myself. ALL THAT I GIVE SO FREELY AND OPENLY TO EVERYONE ELSE BUT ME~ I release all that causes me pain. I forgive myself. I surrender all my worries. I don't have to believe what others tell me about my life. I don't have to worry about security... I have all I need. I know who I am! "YO SOY UNA AMAZONA!" No one can take my peace away unless I give it to them. I know YOU got this! I know YOU got me! I am DIVINE! There's nothing in my way. Light shines all around me. I ask YOU to clear my heart of fear. I hold positive thoughts and intentions. I have a mission. I feel my strength. NO WIND can knock me off my path! I know that I am ready! I know that I am a leader! And when I forget YOU always hold my own hand. And so it is~


I affirm: I call forth my strength and I move forward anyway! This journey to healing is not an easy task. Things will appear to knock me off my path. Things will come in to test where I’m at and show ME were I still need some work. And ITS ALL GOOD - - after crying I had to remember where to turn to for my strength and acknowledge that I have been here before and my force reminds me everyday that I'm strong enough to continue~

~
When I walked out on my dream job I had a nervous breakdown. I didn’t need a doctor to diagnose it as such. My nervous system broke down. I was having suicidal thoughts. I was giving up on life. I was giving up on you. I had already given up on me a long time ago. My mind was a mess… our apartment was a perfect reflection of what I was thinking about me. We were living in total chaos and disorder. There was shit everywhere, clutter, clothes and papers. Then ELLEN DEGENERES came in and saved my life.

We stayed at our friend’s apartment for a few days after my purging. I was still incredibly depressed lying on her couch clicking through the channels and stopped on HBO. There was a special about to start called, The Beginning. I was about to change the channel when I saw her walk out on stage. I hadn’t really heard anything about Ellen for a few years since she “came out” on national television. I was curious to hear what she would open with so I watched. Ellen walked on stage to an audience of over 2,000 people who came to see her at the Beacon Theater. I could feel from the television ALL the love for her in that space. I saw how humbled she was by the warm reception.

I just watched her and thought to myself Wow! Ellen is so brave after all of her private and professional life was plastered in every magazine on every talk show. After being the topic of discussion by everyone. I just sat there and thought… she’s gangsta! I don’t know if I could do that. Then I thought shit… she better be funny… there’s a whole lot of people up in there.

The first thing she talked about was how she had been planning the evening and wasn’t sure if she was going to share where she had been over the past three years and all that she had been through. She decided that she was going to tell us the story through an INTERPRETIVE DANCE. When the music started playing, I almost fell off the couch… I could barely breathe… I laughed the entire time. I laughed and laughed. It was so hilarious. The combination of the music, lights and her movement had me on the floor. Her interpretation of “coming out,” dealing with darkness, finding light… all of it made me laugh. I laughed and cried.

They were tears of joy. I had not laughed like that in such a long time. I couldn’t even remember the last time I’d felt joy. I hadn’t felt happy in years. Ellen Degeneres healed me! I had forgotten how to laugh. Ellen gave me permission to laugh again. I could release all the pain I had been feeling. I could turn everything I had been through and laugh at all of it. I didn’t have to live in this darkness. I didn’t have to continue punishing myself for my past. I could laugh. I could be happy everyday that I am alive and am able to start again. So I would tune in everyday to the Ellen show just to watch her dance.

Your tia Josie surprised me with tickets to a live taping of the Ellen show in Burbank, California in 2005. I was so excited. I hoped I’d have an opportunity to tell her exactly how she had impacted my life. I wanted her to know that I was so grateful to her for pulling me out of my darkest hour. I wanted to thank her for being alive and spreading love and laughter. When we arrived to the studio we were really close to where she sat on stage. I was nervous and excited… what would I say to her if I got to meet her? I didn’t know if I would be able to speak to her after her show so I wrote her a letter. I gave it to one of her producers. I don’t know if she ever received it. The show was about to start… I heard them announce Ellen Degeneres and when she walked out on stage I just started crying. I couldn’t control myself.

When you’re in the presence of someone who changes your life like that it’s incredibly profound. Laughter was the beginning of my healing process. There was still so much work to do… there was even more work to undo!

~

I am off family... off to Bogota... let's do this!!!


Please help spread the word. To help publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

Get five or more people to back me… you will get receive a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

THE END!!!!

Memoir COMPLETE!

No blog today. My fate is in your hands. I am taking some days off to rest but am hoping you all keep reading me... forward my work and help me get the 2K to publish this book.

Please send the link to everyone you know. I will post excerpts again when I reach the thousand mark.

TO BACK ME PLEASE VISIT MY KICKSTARTER PAGE: Finding Your Force~

Thanks so much everyone. See you soon.

Peace, light and LOVE
Alicia

Monday, May 23, 2011

Chapter 24: HEY, LOOK AT ME WORLD, HERE I AM!!!

CHAPTER 24

It’s not your place~

I have been preparing for this moment for what must have been my entire life - - never really knowing what it was I was preparing for, when or if my dreams were ever really going to come true. I was so inspired after we burned that email… I believed that I was onto something really special—I had a story idea. I sat with the words Its NOT your Place. Its not my place… it reminded me when I was a little girl and would go to Santo Domingo how the kids would make fun of me… mira a esa gringita. Because I was born in the United States they called me gringa. To me it felt like a bad word. Gringa felt very unwelcoming. They weren’t trying to compliment me. I felt excluded. They thought that this gringa couldn’t speak Spanish and that I couldn’t dance.

When you’re a little girl you want so much to belong. I think I grew up my entire life trying to find that place where I could feel apart of something. Coming up in the 70’s in New York there were one of two groups you belonged to. You were either black or white. I wasn’t light enough to be white and I wasn’t dark enough to be black. There was no Latino. Those who were a hint of beige darker than the average white person were automatically black. So hearing as an adult…it’s not your place. Threw me… it jumpstarted my heart and pushed towards finding my place. it was a moment of revelation and self-acceptance. For me it became, wait a minute, not only am I Latina, but I am black also and not only is my right… but it is my place to write our story. So in June 2007 I pitched my very first story idea titled, “Will the Real Black Girl Please Stand Up” to Essence Magazine. The story for me was about unifying this divide that seemed to exist between African Americans and Latinos. I wanted to tell the story of the shared history that existed within both cultures. The story was about Afrolatinos, the 150 million Afro descendants that currently exist in Latin America. I never got back so much as an acknowledgement for that email. I was little disappointed. REJECTION SUCKS.

I sent it to the Editor-in-Chief of Urban Latino Magazine. The editor-in-chief responded the very next day, telling me she loved my story idea and would like to run it. Dream come true right? Wrong! When I received the email that she was interested in the story I knew that I needed to begin writing it.

After the initial email of interest weeks went by and the EIC hadn't gotten back to me. I was a little disappointed but I said fuck it. I'm still gonna write this story even if I write it just for me. So I kept on going.

~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s when it happened… exactly like we've read about… exactly like we've heard so many people say that "IT happens” when you least expect IT!" Just as it says in the Alchemist when one walks towards their dreams the universe conspires to make it happen. It happened to me...the very next day on October 17th around noon. There it was…an email on my blackberry from the EIC: "Sorry it took so long to get back to you, but I most definitely want to print your social feature in our November issue… Can you get me a 2000 word draft by Monday, October 22nd?"

I sat with that question for a minute (can I get her a 2000 word story)?

When I hit the send button at 7:44pm, Monday October 22, 2007, I just sat there in front of the computer for about 15 minutes in complete silence and prayer and gratitude. Because for me it had nothing to do with being published nor did it have anything to do with the EIC liking the story, or the fact that the title of my story would appear in the cover, or that there would be a photo and bio of me in the contributors page. I HIT SAVE AND SEND. The moment of pure ACHIEVEMENT and EXHILARATION for me came with hitting SEND. In that moment – I finished it! THAT moment was the greatest accomplishment and best feeling in the world. I did it! I had no idea when it would come out but I was ecstatic.

A week later I left my office and needed to run an errand. It was really dreary out. I was wearing my yellow raincoat… bright ass yellow… you could see me coming from miles away. I was walking up 7th Avenue with the biggest smile (ear to ear), I had my ipod on and I was listening to Barbra Streisand. As I was walking to the bank I was thinking about ALL that we've been through together and all that it has taken for us to finally MAKE IT in NEW YORK. I am so thrilled to finally feel and say that I have MADE IT. WE MADE IT!!!

So as I am walking, listening to Barbra's incredible voice telling me, "HEY, LOOK AT ME WORLD, HERE I AM..." that's when I realized all I've been through, what the payoff has been for all the pain I've endured. It was always about the lessons learned. It was about me appreciating all the beautiful things that surround me. In that moment while I walked up 7th Avenue all I could see in front of me were the 1000's of people coming toward me, and the feeling of complete and total happiness that filled me. It was this feeling of joy and love that I was emitting... it was electricity that everyone who walked by me took notice and smiled because my smile touched them.

HEY, LOOK AT ME WORLD, HERE I AM... I felt like Barbra singing and Mary Tyler Moore flipping her hat up in the air ALL at the same time. I finally arrived. I am so very proud, blessed and grateful for every gift and every person I have ever met. My writing career is born!

Please help spread the word. To help publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

Get five or more people to back me… you will get receive a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Chapter 25: It felt wrong. My upbringing was blocking the love I was receiving and feeling.

CHAPTER TWENTY-FIVE

Dec 25, 2007

I had a conversation with God today and SHE told me SHE loved me! This evening I meditated on the word Unconditional Love.

There was a moment in my life when I was truly afraid to be loved unconditionally. I was afraid of what it would do to me if I had it or it left me. I was afraid that love was painful. I believed that love hurts, love betrays, love beats, love disappoints, love demeans, love belittles, love breaks, that true love doesn't exist, that I would never be loved and that I would never find love. I was convinced that love destroys, that love leaves, that love lies, that love dies, and worse that love ends.

I was being forced to look at where I’ve been and where I’m headed. I needed to ask myself, Alicia, am I open to ALL the experiences of my life? Am I open to different expressions of LOVE? Will I allow opportunities to pass me by? Will I allow my soul mate to just pass me by on the street without even so much as a hello? I can not control what is happening to me. What I do know is that I will not run away from love. I won't fear love. I know that I am worthy of love WE ALL ARE.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Creator, please send me a love unlike anything I’ve ever experienced… a love unlike anything I’ve ever known.

Everyday during meditation I prayed for the same things. I gave thanks for everything. You hated that I prayed before every meal, saying, “c’mon mom! I’m starving! You don’t have to say thank you for your jeans, your sneakers and your t-shirt… c’mon lets eat.” It was important for me to give thanks for everything we had and all that we were receiving because I know what life has been like for me without having faith and expressing gratitude. I didn’t care what you said—I prayed everyday. I was thankful to the creator for another day to begin again. Thankful that you were always protected and guided. God brought you home to me safe everyday and I was grateful. I prayed for the protection of my family and for everyone I know and I prayed for all those I don’t know. I prayed for the homeless that they would have food to eat and some place warm to sleep. I prayed for all the little children who have been abused or broken that they would hold onto some of their innocence and know that they are loved. And during my daily prayers I would ask my creator to send me a love unlike anything I’ve ever experienced… a love unlike anything I’ve ever known.

"Most of us remain strangers to ourselves, hiding who we are, and ask other strangers, hiding who they are, to love us." – Leo Buscaglia


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’VE 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 a few weeks. At first it was just about writing. We shared poetry. Something started happening. I started to feel things. This was unfamiliar territory. 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… like that? 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… but 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 and falling. I was crying throughout my meditation. My chest was tight. I didn’t understand what was happening to me. This was foreign to me. I prayed on it. I was 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 is a sin. I was going through an internal battle. I wanted to push what I was feeling out of my body. I wanted to resist what I was feeling for this woman. I really believed that I was going to go to hell for loving her. That day during yoga, as my eyes were closed as I cried and cried and prayed for an answer. 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 and you 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?” I said yes. You asked me if I was happy. I said yes… I’m very happy. You just looked at me and said, “If you’re happy then I’m happy for you. That’s cool my momma’s gay.”

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 felt like there was always just one piece missing to my puzzle and that 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. I 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.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Please help spread the word. To help publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

Get five or more people to back me… you will get receive a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Chapter 13: Finally Free~

CHAPTER THIRTEEN

2005 Finally Free~

It was freezing that December 31st it was my last day EVER walking into that building. I would never have to walk back into KB’s office. I would never see those people again. After everything that I had been through the head of HR was still so supportive of me. She paid me for three months after the breakdown. One of the terms of my termination was that I would float from department to department just to keep my benefits. I would then receive a small severance package. She let me keep my laptop and cell phone. She made it possible for me to have the kind of termination where I could collect unemployment. I was so incredibly grateful for that. At 2:00PM I put on my coat, my hat and gloves, grabbed my purse and walked out of the revolving door and never looked back.

The moment I stepped onto the streets of Times Square it was as if I could breathe for the first time. I took a deep breathe and allowed the cold breeze to fill my lungs and in that moment it was as if two tons were lifted from my shoulders and I was floating. I just smiled. That chapter was finally closed.

This was gonna be our year girl!!! Big things were gonna happen!!! We finally got the call that our number came up. We were on a waiting list for three years for the apartment in Harlem. The building we were moving into was just remodeled. We would be the first people living in our space. Things were changing. I decided that this time we would make our apartment HOME. I had never really cared to decorate our apartments before now because they always felt so temporary. None of the apartments we lived in felt like they fit. I didn’t buy stuff to make it too comfortable because I always felt uncomfortable. Warwick, Providence, North Providence, Pawtucket, Davie, Plantation, Tamarac, Sunrise, Astoria, Far Rockaway, Ridgewood, Tia’s house, Tio’s house, abuela’s house, grandma’s house… GIRL WE MOVED THIRTEEN TIMES. You are a trooper!!! I have moved you everywhere. How do you do it? How is it that you are this amazing? You put up with so much shit. Thirteenth time is a charm and we finally got it right.

THIS TIME… we were NOT MOVING!!! I was so excited that we got this apartment. The management office had NO IDEA I was unemployed. And I certainly wasn’t telling them. I had to come up with a few thousand for us to move in. We bought paint for the first time. I didn’t want us to move into the space until it was exactly what we wanted. I wanted it to be perfect for us. I remember charting out exactly how I wanted the house to look. I drew a sketch of the entire apartment. The living room was painted red and orange, purposely so that we would feel warm like we were in the Dominican Republic. The color for entry hallway we decided on was special to us because it was called “brilliant” and reminded us of KB. KB always said, “That’s brilliant!” our beautiful brilliant yellow hall and your room was lavender. Back then you were so girly and gentle. I rented a truck and hired movers. It was moving day! This was the perfect month to move you would be turning thirteen.
We were finally home!

It was time for me to return the truck to the rental place in Queens. You and I were driving onto the bridge. There was a check point at the toll booth. Since 9/11 NYPD presence was everywhere. They pulled us over to check the truck. The police officer asked me for my driver’s license, registration and the rental agreement. He came back to the truck and said, “Ma’am do you know your license is suspended?” I played stupid. Of course I knew it was suspended. Where was I going to have the time and money to reinstate my license? How was I going to pay that $300 speeding ticket that I got in Atlanta so many years ago? I considered falling apart right in front of him and telling about everything I’d been through from leaving Florida to the breakdown in New York City.

“No officer, I had no idea my license was suspended?”

“You realize I can have the truck towed and arrest you for driving with a suspended license?”

My eyes started to swell up. All I could think about was how you, my little girl, was going to have to watch me be arrested.

We were parked on the Triboro Bridge for a long while and you were just looking out window smiling. You were staring at the women’s prison on the right and a baseball field and bridge on the left and I’m sure you were thinking to yourself, we’re gonna be fine. Mommy gets us out of worse messes. He has no idea! You looked at me and said, “Don’t cry mommy… it’s gonna be fine. It’s like that movie I was watching… we’re on an adventure!”

I started laughing hysterically because you had no idea how serious this shit really was. My ass could be thrown in jail. The cop was kind. He had me pull the car over and we called your tio to meet us on the bridge and drive the truck back. He let us off—thank God. After that scare we were back in the game. We were good. I dropped you off at school everyday. Our commute was amazing just one train and a twenty minute commute. I went to Starbucks to write every morning and then would go to central park in the afternoon to read. We lived well. I felt light. We were living a bohemian lifestyle. We finally had that phat apartment in Harlem. And I was FINALLY FREE!


Please help spread the word. To help publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

Get five or more people to back me… you will get receive a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.
Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Friday, May 20, 2011

Chapter 22: I gave him the test that I gave people on the journey.

CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO

Closer to my dreams

It was the night before New Years Eve. I had been writing all day at my writing spot at Grand Central Station and it was time for a break. I was participating in a competition write your novel in 3 days. I decided to go home. I was waiting for the D train and got on. While I was writing I felt this person looking at me but I continued writing. Today I wasn’t really in the mood for making connections on the train. I arrived at my stop and I hear this voice say something to me, “Hi there!” It was the guy that was watching me the entire ride. We walked off the train together and he engaged me in conversation. He asked me what I was writing about and I just started yapping about my writer’s life, my novel, and my upcoming project. Once I started talking you couldn’t shut me up. I didn’t even know what direction he was headed in or if at any point we were going to part ways. I told him I was going to KFC he offered to walk with me it seemed harmless. I stood in line for a few minutes and then decided I’d rather have food from the Dominican joint. So again I told him I was headed in another direction. He continued to walk with me. He told me he was a writer and that he also wrote music. What’s up with me and these musician types? We shared small bites of information he sat with me while I waited for my food and then I told him that I needed to get home and get back to my writing competition. I asked him were he lived. He told me he lived in Queens... that he only got on the train to meet me.

I was like the song moving… closer to my dreams~

Since things were going so well in my life I just figured I would go with the flow and be open to what the universe was sending me. I allowed myself to be open to the possibilities of this new man in my life. In the beginning, I was saying things to him like, Slow down… we are still learning each other…this is new… I am just enjoying each moment… all I can offer you is truth, sincerity, genuineness, and time to know me. He on the other hand told me he was like the Lionel Richie song...."Easy." He was jumping, leaping way too soon. We were becoming an US and I was trying to hold onto me. I was learning that I don’t believe I’ve ever known what it feels like to actually find the person that I’m supposed to be with the person who was made for me.

I gave him the test that I was accustomed to giving people I began meeting on the journey. There were two books, The Alchemist and Mastery of Love. I didn’t want to continue making the same mistakes in relationships. I knew right away when something didn’t align. There were two parts of those books that were very significant for me in knowing if the person I was dealing with was on my level spiritually. I asked the guy I was seeing to give me his interpretation of both stories…. He called Fatima a bitch for pushing Santiago away "didn’t she see how he loved her. How could she do that? What if she was his treasure?" I just listened. Then I asked him what he thought of the couple that didn’t believe in love. The question at the end of that story was who is to blame for that relationship not working? He blamed the woman, "didn’t she see that he was willing to give her ALL of his love. She is selfish."

That night I asked him where he saw himself in five years. He told me – I don’t see myself. So I asked another question, what is your life purpose? Where do you see yourself headed? What do you want? His response was, "what if my life’s purpose is to love you." That might have flattered a younger me. That’s when I knew that it was time to let him go.

Letter to the man who could love again:

I give off a powerful magnetic energy that says - - come on in! “I’ll love you - - let me take care of you!” I love to give myself distractions that will keep me from what’s important to me… like my healing or working on my writing projects. I almost made you my project. I wanted to show you how to love yourself. You wanted a little bit of what I have. But the thing is I’m still not whole. I’m good but I’m getting better. Forgive me for having to release you. I must honor myself. I had to honor my heart and you were not the one.

Being with you reminded me that I am closer to my dreams and I can not allow anything that doesn’t contribute to forward movement and personal growth to get in my way of achieving that. When you make someone your—everything—telling them that their life is in your hands… that’s a lot of pressure to put on someone else. I’m afraid I can not and will not live up to. While I’m willing to share my happiness with someone—I’m happy with me! And it has taken me a long time to get here. I can’t be responsible for healing your heart – that’s your job. I can’t give you your love. I can’t give you your happiness. I can’t give you a sense of worth or a sense of place. I can’t give you your creativity.

I want to share my life with someone not give my life to anyone. SHARE is the operative word here. When you GIVE someone ALL your love you give them a lot of power. At least I think so. I thank you for the music… in such a short time you have given me many gifts, encouragement, motivation, inspiration, support, and love. I was lying to myself. I was not ready to receive ALL THE LOVE you wanted to give me especially at a time when I made men my projects. You would have become my distraction to keep me from what’s most important to me. I forgive you for lying to yourself that you were ready to receive me and I forgive myself for lying about being ready for love. I wish you every blessing. I’m moving closer to my dreams. Love you, Alicia


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

There were just a few more lessons I needed to learn. Just a few more men needed to appear before I got this shit right. I was sitting at a club and there was a Latin group performing. There was this person that walked by me. Something made me reach out and grab him. I felt him so strongly. I didn’t know him. I didn’t know his name but I was compelled to touch him. I got up and asked can I hug you? I was feeling so much of his pain. We saw each other for a few weeks. There was an attraction. But we were friends. We just hung out. We were in our apartment and he was sitting on my bed and I was sitting in the corner chair when we had one of those let’s talk about where this relationship is headed conversations. It went something like this:

“Alicia, what is that you want? What is that you want from me?”

I responded, “I want what we have. I love our connection. I enjoy our conversations. I want this.”

His response, “Well, I just need you to know that I’m experiencing this kind of connection with several different women.”

I don’t know what he thought I was going to say to that. I just started laughing. Was he serious? Did he think that I would be ok with that? While I respected his honesty I needed him to know that I am not one of those women. I was beginning to master loving me and so at this point it was laughable to me that I would even consider moving backwards.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My second wedding~

Alicia, our courtship has not been an easy one. It has been a bumpy road, filled with twists and turns and climaxes that haven’t always been so pleasurable. There have been failures and huge successes. We’ve had some incredibly great highs and some bad lows. I've been through some dark places but have always come up to find light. So this time around it feels like this is the perfect time, it’s certainly the perfect date for my rebirth. July 26th my birthday. And this is the perfect spot for my wedding. Other than under a sunset outdoors… there's no better place to marry me than in my home… surrounded by everyone and everything that I love.

Today I give birth to a new way of loving me… to a new way of living. What I want most out of this marriage to me is GENTLENESS with me. I can take things slow. I understand that there is no need to rush. I will take things one day at a time. I can live my life with compassion, understanding, patience and all the love that I have for me. This remarriage is one of truth, to honor, to love and to respect me. The good thing about marrying me today is that I no longer feel this need to mold myself into this perfect image of a person. I can just be me – and I take me as I am.

To the old Alicia…

Please help spread the word. To help publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

If you get five or more people to back me… you will get receive a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Chapter 26: The Seduction~

CHAPTER TWENTY-SIX

Sharing our lives when it has always been just US~

Things were changing in our lives. You and I were good. My writing career was taking off. I no longer had the need to be in a relationship. I wasn’t looking for anyone. It has just been you and me. We were doing fantastic. I was more inspired than I’d ever been. I was writing everyday. I was attracting abundance in everything. Our lives were about to change. I could feel it. We were at dinner at our favorite African restaurant when you said to me, “Mom, you did it! It’s amazing. Everything you said you were going to do you did! We’ve done it. The move to New York, apartment in the city, published writer, and you’re working on the Daughters of the Revolution. I’m so proud of you!”

I’ve tried so hard to be a good role model for you. I have spent my life thinking about how every choice, every big decision and every move I have made affects you. Our entire family especially Tia would always have something to say about how I treated you and respected you. They can’t understand our relationship. It so fucking foreign to them how close we are. Tia could not accept why I was treating you like my equal, almost as if I should be treating you like a useless piece of shit. They believed that you should be invisible and have no thoughts of your own. I didn’t care – no one could tell me shit about how to raise you. We have built a pretty great life together. It’s been you and me for such a long time. We were better than good. We were happy.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We think we know when things will happen or why they happen but we have no idea. This is what I have told myself time and time again and most recently that I would know when the love I’ve been waiting for has arrived. I just knew that I would recognize the love that was being sent and prepared for me the moment I got here. I believed that I would know when I met him. We think we know what love will look like when it arrives. We create this idea of how they will be packaged creating checklists of the things we’re looking for. We write down ALL the things, qualities, characteristics, similar beliefs and careers that we expect and want our potential partner to have. And we even keep a separate list of the things that we might consider letting slide. That second list contains the things that we might overlook in order to have love. These things that we do in fact settle for… just to say we have found THE ONE.

When ever I meet someone that I’m considering having a romantic relationship with the issue of having children always comes up. I'm not perfect and certainly have many flaws but starting my life all over with an infant is something that I have resisted for a long time. I think as far back as when you were a baby. I’m usually the first person to bring it up and have been known to bring it up on a first date. One night you and I were talking about love and relationships and you said, "Maybe we need to find someone who has everything we want even if they don't blow our minds or we're not madly in love with them." You were telling me that maybe we shouldn’t be so picky and be open to the potential of what people bring and not what we believe they can offer us. That really has settled inside of me.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Seduction~

YOU took me~
YOU had your way with me~
Whispering succulence into my ear…
YOU did things…
You made me want to…

WALK

By the water and
WAIT
For the sun to set~
I'm left with
thoughts…
Your greatest conquest
obsession ~
I the accused intruder~
the girl in the dream~
I'm no dream come true~
part of me still fears you…

You're seducing me~
With your words~
Luring me~
Taking me~
Pleasing me~
And I succumb~
If I allowed you
to have me
in that way…
Then what?
Am I yours?

SEE…

me…
I don't give it up to JUST anyone
like that~
YES – do tell me what I wanna hear~
The words…
how I LOVE WORDS~
My feet are firmly planted~
your words~
Entrance…
arouse…
Rise in me…
This sense of uncertainty~

Suspicion

Questioning la verdad~
Quien eres tu?
Passion
that's what I'll call you~
What do you want from me?
Whisper those sweet nothings
Taking from me those things
that make me…
ME!

The words make me want to open myself
up
OPEN my…
Yeah~
That's it
right there…
My soul~
Like I said I don't know you~
But I know words~
LOVE will know…
How to win my heart~
The right words~
But those words alone~
Can't sustain me~
They'll never obtain me~
The pleasure I seek is deeper than a hands touch…
There's a spot~
That spot…
where ONLY few know how to receive me~
Reserved for ONE~



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Please help spread the word. To help publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

If you get five or more people to back me… you will get receive a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Chapter 1: How could she love someone who beats her?

CHAPTER ONE - Cielo’s little box~

I want to tell you a story about Cielo and her favorite box~

Cielo is little girl with dark eyes and no smile. She has beautiful brown hair that feels like silk. Her skin is like caramel. She came to me the other day and we sat. She sat in front me and didn’t say a word. I could tell she wanted to laugh at my funny faces but she was afraid to. I wanted to play with Cielo, but she has never played with anyone. Cielo has been in prison since the day she left the womb. Her life story was revealed to me with out the use of words, through her eyes because she couldn't speak. I have never heard her voice. She said nothing the entire time we were together… but her eyes told me everything. They told me that she was sad, that she was lonely, that something was missing, that someone had taken something very special from her. She told me that she has never once held a doll.

No one talks to Cielo.
No one visits Cielo.
No one looks at Cielo.
No one sees Cielo.
No one asks Cielo if she’s happy.
No one asks Cielo if there is anything she needs.
No one asks Cielo if she wants to play.
No one asks Cielo what she wants to be when she grows up.
No one asks Cielo what her dreams are.
No one has ever told Cielo that she is special.
No one has ever told Cielo that she is beautiful.

I kept visiting her. I kept listening to her silence. And one day her eyes smiled at me when I said, Cielo, I love you! If no one has ever told you that… allow me to be the first…

Cielo you are magnificent.
Cielo you can be anything you want be.
Cielo I love playing with you.
Cielo you are my best friend.
Cielo your eyes are kind.
Cielo you are special.
Cielo you are beautiful.
Cielo you were born for greatness.
Cielo you are love.

KNOW THAT YOU ARE LOVED~

Her eyes started to get watery. A tear fell down her face. “Cielo what did I do? Have I hurt your feelings? Don't be sad. What is it? Are you hurt? I can see the pain in you. I see it in the blood from your tears. Who has hurt you? I will protect you. Don't cry. You will have all you desire. All your dreams will come true. The pain that you are feeling will eventually go away in time. Cielo, what’s that on your lap? What's in the box?”

She carries a box and holds on to it tight. She would not let me hold it. She wouldn’t let me see what was inside of the box. She was protecting it. Cielo was afraid that if he found out what she carries in that box he would take it from her. I wondered if it was lonely for her walking in the world alone. A girl should never walk alone when she's only in the 4th grade and can’t speak. A lot can happen to a little girl who walks the woods alone. Stripped of her core, her personality hidden, forced to be who she’s not.

Cielo will go through life gripping her box, never opening it.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A Child’s Playground

I was riding the train one day when I saw this beautiful Central American girl. She had dark hair and dark eyes. She must have been 4 years old. She was just swinging around a pole… smiling and laughing… she had no worries in the world – she was so happy. The D train was her playground and it didn't matter who was around looking. Nothing could take away her happiness. She kept playing and playing. In that moment I couldn't help but think about all the kids I see daily. The cute Asian boy sitting next to his mother who was sleeping while he drew these incredible sketches of what I can only imagine will be a video game he will develop in the future. I also remember a family sitting across from me on the train a little girl, her mom and dad all playing together acting silly – it was beautiful to watch. There was a little baby in the stroller who was with angry parents who were arguing yelling at each other on the train when suddenly, the baby looked at me, I just smiled and she smiled back and in THAT moment I knew that nothing else mattered but the two of us smiling back and forth while the grown ups were piss't off at each other.

Some other moments I’m recalling, are of the little boy who was walking with his father who a minute ago was happy and then got slapped in the face for speaking in a tone that his dad didn't like. Then there’s a three-year-old boy walking with his mother being yelled at in Spanish. As they approached a restaurant she said to him, “habre esa puerta! Silve pa algo!" (Open that door - - be worth something - - be good for something). The worst moment for me though was the day I actually saw a mother slap her child in the face. Just imagine the sounds echoing loudly over the 125th Street a noise. The slap was heard above the sounds of buses, and horns honking, a noise that went directly through me, a noise that felt like she just slapped me. All I kept thinking about was that little boy. What will he grow up to believe about himself? Will he think that he’s special? Will he know that he's gifted? Will he believe that he can be anything he wants to be? Where will he find his sense of worth when the people closest to him are stripping him of that?

`````````````````````

For a long time Cielo felt like she was fighting for her life. She’s been keeping it safe in that box. She won’t let anyone near it. I wanted to ask her how she could love someone who beats her. But I knew the answer…

You tend to love them anyway. You tend to love them more. You forgive them easily. You will do just about anything to gain their love. Even take their abuse. You want them to love you and you want them to stop beating you.

Please help spread the word. To help publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

If you get five or more people to back me… you will get receive a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Chapter 11: I was self medicating... numbing the pain~

CHAPTER ELEVEN

It’s my first day on the job. The new boss was FINE!!! She was fucking FIERCE!!! I know I use that word a lot… but she was. Her job—she was the Editor-in-Chief. I would be in charge of all that goes with assisting someone at her level. I was in charge of organizing her style book that she would take on trips. The woman even had a clothing budget. Part of my job was to work with the style department and put together these binders with images of all her outfits, the shoes that went with them, the color make up that complimented them, and the accessories. LOVED IT!!! She walked in wearing this white suit… these beautiful pumps, her hair was straight. This B&*%# was bad!!!! We met for a few minutes. She told me she had some meetings but that we would catch up later.

I could finally breathe. It was a brand new day. I could begin again. I was alive again. I could move forward.

She returned to the office and asked me to come in and shut the door. Her office was beautiful. There were paintings everywhere, a couch and large bookshelves. There was a private bathroom. “Alicia, have a seat, what I’m about to share with you can not leave these walls.” I was like ok… awesome… company secrets I’m in.

“They just fucking fired me. I have until the end of the day to gather my things. After being here over ten years they just let me go. There’s a lot I need you to do for me.”

Did she just tell me that she was fired? ON MY FIRST DAY OF WORK! You’re fucking kidding me right? This is a joke! This is a horrible joke! This can’t be happening to me. Where are the hidden cameras?

I spent the day scheduling meetings with her direct reports. She asked for a meeting at the end of the day with the entire editorial team of over 30+ people to say goodbye. I wanted to die. This was so not happening to me. I was moving up… I was moving forward… and now I was moving all of her shit out of her office. I was only kept on in that role until the new publisher came on board and then I would be out of a job because he was bringing his assistant with him. WHAT???????????????????????????

The head of Human Resources told me not to worry about it that they would find something for me but this was just all so fucked up.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

“Alicia, we have some great news. We are launching a new magazine. You would be supporting the Editor-in-Chief. Are you interested?”

HELLO!!!! Am I interested? Hell yeahhhhhhhh!!!

The interview went great. I met the EIC and we hit it off. This was her first magazine and role as Editor-in-Chief. She had no experience launching a magazine and was putting together a strong team to launch her baby. I was excited at the potential to write for this magazine. I couldn’t wait to get to know her. I was a part of the editorial meetings. She shared concepts with me. It was so much fun learning the step by step making of a magazine. I was involved in ordering all of the office equipment and d├ęcor. I finally felt like I was part of a team.

Ok… I could totally go on and on right now about how glamorous this new job was. Or I can just jump to the truth. This job fucking sucked. After working together for a few months I started asking for more responsibilities. I wanted to write for the magazine. She didn’t respect me. She was horrible to me. She was incredibly disrespectful and condescending. I believe she was a racist. I spent more time ordering shit for her private house parties than doing any real work. Anytime I spoke out on anything it seemed like she had a problem with me. I really believe she had a problem with the fact that I had ideas and thoughts. I think she just wanted some young, fresh, right out of college, newbie, “white girl,” as her assistant. Honestly, I think she picked me because she had to—not because she wanted to. And so as the months went on I continued to take her shit and downloaded all the photos from her camera of her travels, ordered the pizza and cupcakes for her daughter’s birthday party, bought her makeup at Sephora and ordered her lunch everyday.

I was in NYC… my dream come true. Ever since I was 15… when my parents pulled me out Richmond Hill High School to move to Rhode Island all I ever wanted was to return to NYC. And now I knew that I was a writer. The sad thing about that was that once KB died I never wrote again. I was uninspired. Our house was an absolute mess. There were piles and piles of clothes everywhere. We were living in an episode of hoarders. I was so unhappy. I was incredibly depressed. I saw Dr. Kate every week for therapy and Dr. Chan for my medications. I was on all kinds of medications for ADD, antidepressants, pills to help me sleep, pills to get me going. I was drinking a bottle of wine a night. One day you looked at me and said, “Mommy, you always have a glass of wine as soon as we walk in the door. Why?” I don’t even know what I said to you. I probably said something lame like, “I just like to unwind. I have glass once in a while to relax.” When the reality was that I was self medicating and numbing the pain.

Please help spread the word. To help publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

If you get five or more people to back me… you will get receive a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Monday, May 16, 2011

Chapter 8: "Yo Lee, a plane just went into the towers!"

CHAPTER EIGHT

I was getting ready for work. It was the most beautiful sunny day. I dropped you off at your abuelos and there was not a single cloud in the sky. My morning ritual… an AM phone conversation with your Tia Josie as I drove into work. It was our daily catch up, check in and gossip about what was happening on TV, the soaps or in the entertainment world. She was watching Good Morning America when there was interruption. "Yo Lee, a plane just went into one the twin towers," she said.

“Get the fuck out of here out!”

We started to immediately come up with our own scenarios of what happened. I said, “may be one of the pilots had a seizure.”

Josie was trying to make sense out of all of it. I was changing the radio station hoping there would be something being reported describing what was happening in my beloved New York City. After a few more moments of our rambling, she said, "OH MY GOD!!! Another plane just crashed into the towers," all I remember saying was, "We're under attack!!!"

I arrived to the office and my boss hadn’t heard the news yet. We all ran to a conference room and turned on the TV. I said to my boss, “Look if one more thing happens I am going home to my daughter.” Only a few moments later did we hear that a third plane crashed into the Pentagon. The Pentagon! Are you fucking kidding me? This was not a TEST!!! I left work as quickly as I could. I called your abuelo and told him he needed to leave work. He said he couldn’t. I told him that he needed to. “Does your job understand what is happening in New York? Leave work now!” I’m not sure if he even spoke to you about what was happening. I rushed home and there you were sucking your little fingers. I just held you tight. Abuelo and abuela had the news on. And for that entire evening and the weeks that followed we watched the towers fall over and over and over and over and over and over again.

On that beautiful Tuesday morning, in front of the backdrop of a magnificent blue sky all we could see was a thick dark gray cloud of smoke that extended for miles coming out of the side of the towers. Over 3,000 people died that day… they were mothers, fathers, grandparents, brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts, uncles, and friends… black, white, Jewish, Hindu, Asian, Latino… everyone in the world lost someone that day even if they didn’t know someone personally. We sat and watched both towers collapse in two hours. We cried. We were frightened. We didn’t know what to do. The house was silent. We knew that everyone on the flights that hit the towers died on impact. People were jumping out of the windows from the 90th floor. My girlfriend called me frantic saying that her best friend worked in the towers. They never found her body. That moment woke up an entire nation. That day changed the way New Yorkers treated each other. Hands were extended from unlikely place… love was felt—at least for a little while… until… any person wearing a turban started being discriminated against. 9/11 changed the lives of many but it would mark me forever.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

October 3, 2001

It was two weeks after 9/11 happened and we were all still feeling the aftermath of that devastating day. While people lost loved ones… the rest of the world seemed to get closer to those still here with us. You were eight years old when the towers came down. I’m not sure you understood what had just taken place in NYC. I don’t think you fully could grasp that what just took place did not just happen to New York. The residue of that day was in the air and felt all over the world.

After September 11th happened I felt this urgency to get my life together. I just turned 30 years old only two months prior. When those planes came down I became desperate. I was experiencing this sense of urgency. It was a matter of life and death for me to figure out my life. I started questioning where I was in my life and who I am. I realized that my life felt insignificant, unimportant. I felt that I wasn’t contributing anything to the world. I believed that my life was of no value. No worth. We were lying in bed together reading. You were wrapped up in a Nancy drew story and I was reading a book on writing titled, Writing from Personal Experience.

I started to wonder about things like… what would people say about me after I leave this place? How will I be remembered? I started to get scared. I was questioning everything I had done and not done. What have I contributed to the earth? What will I leave you with besides debt and rumors of promiscuity? “Que tu madre era una locita.” What was I born to do? What is my legacy? Who am I? Where have I been? How would I want you to remember me? I decided that I would write you a memoir. That would be the legacy left for you a book filled with my life story—written for you. I had no intention on letting anyone read it.

I decided that I would document where I was for ten years. I was going to write it from 1991-2001. Since I had never written a book before I printed a calendar for ten years and started plugging in all the places I lived in, all the people I slept with, all the jobs I’d held. I wanted to give you a true account, an authentic story about where I’ve been. I wanted you to know about all my dirt, the many mistakes and bad choices. I certainly wanted to include all the fun I have had. I wanted you to know where I came from. I didn’t want someone else telling you their version of me. I wanted to tell you my story, my truth, so that you could form your own opinion about who your mother is. That night I began reading exactly how one goes about writing a book when the most amazing thing happened at 9:39pm. As I was reading I came across a line that talked about where one can find inspiration for writing and telling stories. This book was giving me all kinds of messages about material being found in everything and in that precise moment I had an epiphany… one of those LIFE ALTERING moments. On October 3, 2001 something I read jumped out at me… it was about, how even in our own lives there’s a story to be told… and in that moment I whispered to myself… OH MY GOD!!! I’m a writer!!! I AM A WRITER!!! I knew that moment was significant so I made sure to write down the date and time of that experience. I looked over to you and said, “Baby mommy’s a writer!”

You just looked at me with this glow in your eyes… like you were looking at your sheroe. All you said was, “I know mommy… I know… you’re gonna write me a book”

No honey. You don’t understand – I AM… A WRITER!!!

“I know mommy… we’re gonna be rich and you’re gonna buy me a big house with a McDonalds and a Carvel inside…”

I just laughed… you didn’t get it. For me that moment would mark me. That moment would change the direction of my life forever.

Please help spread the word. To help me publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

For those who get five or more people to back me… you will get a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Chapter 6: You’ve been served~

CHAPTER SIX – 1996

The happiest days of our life… and your favorite apartment~

You were three years old with chubby cheeks and little hands. We used to call you mitts. Your uncle Tony gave you that nick name. He and your father called you mitts because you could grip a beer bottle and a basketball with one hand. I used to call you my little cookie monster hands. I think you knew all along what was happening. I think you could feel me. I know you felt me. I look at the picture of you on your third birthday and it’s the first time I don’t see you smiling. So many years later when you were around six years old you asked me about the man with the kids, “Mama, what happened to them… what about the little girls?” I pretended like you were crazy. I didn’t want to acknowledge that question. I wanted to erase that moment from your life. I wanted to give you your third birthday back. That year was completely robbed from you… it was robbed from me. I punished myself so much for not being there for you. I hated myself for making the worst mistake of our lives.

When you asked me about Terrance… I wanted to die. I couldn’t believe how much of the details you still remembered from way back then. You told me, “Mama, I didn’t like that guy. One day when you were at work and he was watching us. He made me eat tuna fish right out of the can. He wouldn’t let me get up from the table until I was done.”

I had no idea how he treated you when I wasn’t around. Whenever you and talked about 1995 I always ask you the same thing, “Baby, did he ever put his hands on you?” you always tell me no. I have carried that moment your entire life. I would spend everyday after that moment trying to make it up to you. I desperately wanted you to forgive me. I wanted to fix it… erase it. But that moment did happen and I can’t run from it.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

You’ve been served

February 14, 1996

Our life was finally looking up. We were happy. It didn’t happen immediately… but eventually I told Joseph about all that I had been through with Terrance and the divorce. Why I wasn’t around as much. He just listened. This other mother fucker was still hanging around. I told Joseph about the restraining order that I just filed. He asked me how he could help. I told him that I wanted him to be served in Boston at his job. The hard part was that the paperwork would have to be handled in Massachusetts. The great thing is that Joseph was from Boston so he took care of it for me. He paid the fees and took care of it. I was so grateful. He even helped with the move. You and I were starting over. We had a fresh start. But there was one more thing I needed to do. I planned it perfectly. I booked a 10 day trip to Margarita Island for the day that I knew Terrance was going to be served. I figured if he came looking for me I would be out of town.

Joseph picked me up at 3:00am and drove me to Logan Airport. Of course, I almost missed my flight. Once we were there he asked me if I wanted him to check on our house. I left him the keys and asked him to water my plants and I was off. I needed to get away (more like runaway). I left you with abuelo, abuela and your dad. They would take care of you while I was gone. I knew you were safe. Once I arrived to Venezuela I was a mess. For the first five days I was homesick… I missed you so much. I had never been apart from you for that long. I found a picture of me holding you in that apartment. You were still 3 years old. I had just returned from Santa Marta, those 10 days must have felt like years for you. I didn’t think for a moment how my leaving town so suddenly would have affected you. I didn’t stop for a second to wonder how you would feel. So when I look at you at that photo I see so much happiness you were filled with joy. Mama’s home… your smile was wide, eyes bright. You didn’t want to leave my side. We were inseparable from that moment on. So I’m left feeling like shit – thinking about how beautiful and innocent you were. How happy you were to have me home. But I wonder how scared you must have felt. Did you wonder if I abandoned you? Did you fear that I’d never come back? Has that moment marked you?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To help me publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

For those who get five or more people to back me… you will get a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Chapter 4: Insecurity doesn't have a color, a race, a gender~

November 1995

I came home and noticed my personal things had been touched. Someone went through all of my personal belongings. A private box I had at the top of my closet. I was looking for my old phone book that’s how I noticed something wasn’t right. This phone book was special… my little black book… it had numbers of people from my past, my life in New York, people I met while I was married. He went through all of it. He went through it and decided that I no longer needed those pages. He decided that I no longer needed to keep in contact with people from my past. He decided that HE was all I needed. He decided that HE was enough for me and he decided that HE would decide who it was or wasn’t ok for me to speak with.

I was living a nightmare…
I remember screaming…
His screams…
My screams…
Familiar voices from my childhood…

“Don’t let him in… PLEASE!!!!!! Don’t let him in! Don’t let him in the room… he will kill us both… don’t let him in the room… please hold the door shut!!!”

The apartment was empty. There was no furniture in that apartment. I didn’t give anyone our new address. Not even your father. We moved to Ortoleva Drive, in North Providence. The space was dark. It was completely filled with dark wood paneling. There was no light coming into the house. It was closed in… hidden… and he lived with us… the new boyfriend. I really didn’t want to live with a man but I allowed him to stay from time to time. He stayed whenever he wanted. You were three years old now. I was so not present. I was consumed by this relationship and my desperate need to be loved. At the same time I was yearning for freedom. I met him at a night club and allowed him into our home. I allowed this complete stranger into our world. I don’t know what the fuck I was thinking. There was a part of me that believed maybe being with a black man was just what I needed. Deep down I knew that he would finally be someone who could relate to me. Someone I had things in common with… he being black, me being Latina… both minorities in this society. Maybe he wouldn’t be threatened by my family and culture. Perhaps he would lift me…love me… be an active participant in my life.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I would go with him to his job most weekends. I left you in Rhode Island with your grandparents and father. One day I was working security for him. I was security and checked all the women. It was Latino night at some really grimy spot in downtown Boston. There were lots of questionable characters. There was one girl though who stood out to me. She was really pretty. She definitely didn’t look like she belonged in that spot. Her clothes were too nice. She looked like one those smart chicks. Something told me that Terrance and this girl had something. Sure enough I got up and walked to the door and I noticed him pushing her away from the entrance I guess she wanted to get a good look at me. All I kept hearing was her asking him, “Who’s that girl at the door?” and I was wondering the same thing. Who was this girl? I guess whatever it was they needed to resolve was handled because he came back into the spot trying to “hey baby me…” I was like… Hey baby—who the fuck was that?

“Oh that was nothing… just some girl I was seeing. She won’t leave me alone. Don’t sweat that. She’s just a groupie you know you’re my girl!”

I was such a stupid bitch then… yeah I fell for that shit.

Weeks later, I was at the apartment he lived at in MA. I was taking care of his three kids (from three different women) and you. The four of you were all sleeping in a bed together. That girl from the club came to the house. He was at work. She knocked on the door and I came down. We sat on the steps and talked. She told me that she was pre-med attending a school in Boston. She told me that she had been with him for two years. She told me that she was his girlfriend. I was stunned. I was like, you’re his what?

“I’m his girlfriend.” she replied.

Then I did something so stupid. I told her that I would prove to her that he and I were together. We got in his black Saab convertible (a car that he didn’t own) and I took her to our apartment in Providence. I showed her all of his things, but there was one thing that was all the proof she needed. There was a drawing of Martin Luther King hanging above our TV. It was a drawing of MLK’s face, with the words from his famous “I Have a Dream” speech the words were all around him. She just looked at it and said, “I gave him that piece of art.”

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INSECURITY doesn’t have a color… doesn’t have a race… doesn’t have a gender.


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All my numbers were gone. My history erased. Professors that I had met… relationships that I had formed… all gone… he got rid of everything… all the pages were torn out… I was so angry… How dare HE? It was just the ammunition I needed to get rid of him… to ask him to leave once and for all. And I would… this very night!

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To help me publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

For those who get five or more people to back me… you will get a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Friday, May 13, 2011

Chapter 10: "NO MOMMY!!! This is your dream."

CHAPTER TEN

New York City, July 18, 2002

After 9/11 I decided two things 1) I am a writer and New York is where I need to be to make my dreams happen and 2) If I'm going to die there is no other city in the world I'd rather live in than the one I was born in. I had a plan. I had saved all the money necessary for my move. I had many connections in media. There was a job waiting for me in New York City, and I had found the perfect elementary school for you on the upper west side. Everything was moving so smoothly… then BAM my perfect little plan got all fucked up when I got myself into that financial mess in Miami. Everything I had saved not to mention the money I needed to borrow was used to get me out of that mess.

I was broke and too embarrassed to tell my family what I was going through. As far as everyone was concerned all was good in my world. I cried silently in the shower everyday. When the executive from HR called me about my next steps… I wasn’t kidding. I pushed past my tears and told her I was still moving forward with my plans. I was still going to NYC. The plan was only altered. Actually, I no longer had a plan we were winging it and I tried like hell to keep it from you and pretended that all was good. No cash, no job, no phat apartment in Harlem. It was time to go… my family was still so proud of me… I left on your Tia Fabiana’s birthday. I was like fuck it I gotta do this! New York City here we come. I left you in Florida for the summer so that I could get things in order.

I remember feeling good when I arrived in NJ because I knew I was finally one state away from HOME! Once I got passed all the traffic…my mind kept going back to what happened in Florida I carried this overwhelming feeling of failure. Disappointment in myself – I allowed a mistake I made in Florida to define me… I was in a self-imprisonment – a self-torture - - I made a mistake and just kept punishing myself. But I had to push it out when I arrived to New York… GAME FACE ON!!!

When I arrived to NYC I had about $100 bucks in my pocket, a carton of cigarettes, suspended license, and my vehicle was uninsured. I was living off of soda and parliaments. I lost forty pounds. I punished myself for much too long. I allowed myself to be treated like shit by employers when I arrived to NYC and the men let’s not forget them… I believed I deserved to be treated like crap. I believed that I was crap. I was feeling so down. I was groveling. I needed every crap job I got. In my first week in NYC I sent out about 70 resumes. I registered at every temp agency in the city. I was hungry and not just because I was hungry for a job.

In August I mailed you a post card of the New York City skyline with an ocean liner cruising down the Hudson River:

My beautiful daughter, I can’t wait to see you. This is our new home. And it will be everything we ever hoped for. We will be sooo happy because we are together. We have so much to do. We are going to have so much fun. I will show you where your “new” school is. You will see and play with your cousins. It’s going to great. I will see you Sunday. Be a good girl. Say your prayers—especially on the plane. I love you. Mommy xxoo

After only being in NYC two weeks I started a temp gig at Tiffany's (thank you creator). However, don't get excited. Yes it's the Tiffany's on Fifth Avenue, which for some folks might sound fancy. But for those of you who don’t know what Tiffany's is… it’s not all that impressive. It’s where they sell high priced shit, with the name Tiffany’s on it and where they mark something up that was made for $1.00 to $100.00. I quit my first day on the job. A woman asked me to take out the trash. I was wearing a three-piece suit. WAS SHE SERIOIUS? “No I will not do that!!! I need to call my agency!" I didn't care how desperate I was for cash, you're not going to demean and disrespect me! Fuck that! I called the agency and said, "Look this is not what I signed on for!” Her response was, “Oh we forgot to tell you they're moving their offices…blah…blah...blah. Can you just pitch in we'll find you something else.” My response to her was, “NO…I'm out! If I knew I would be taking out trash I would have come in jeans and timbs and NO I won't be back!!!”

A few days later I landed the job of a lifetime. It was the job of my dreams. It was a temp gig working for one of top magazine publishing companies in the country… in the world. "I thought I arrived YO… for real!" Amen~

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New York can be a tough place. It requires a resilient mind, strong spirit, confidence, courage, and tremendous amounts of patience on the A train at rush hour. When things don't work out we get disappointed. It seems like we try and try and try and it never seems to happen for us. It’s like we never seem to get there. Sometimes when we get to this place of defeat… we want to give up… we throw our hands up… we don't believe we'll ever have IT. It feels like what the fuck!!! I've paid my dues and still NADA, all this hard work and still nothing to show for it.

At this point we had been living in New York now for about four months and those first two months were rough. We lived with Tia under her dictatorship. You and I slept together on a twin bed in her two-bedroom apartment in Harlem. I lit candles and prayed every night. It’s funny how when shit really gets rough all of sudden we turn to God in hopes that he/she will save the day. I prayed faithfully for a job. I prayed in the morning when I woke, in the shower and, as I got dressed. I prayed before I ate. I prayed as I washed dishes. I prayed as I walked to the train. I prayed on the train. I prayed on the elevator up to my temp assignment, during the day while I worked and in their bathrooms. I prayed during dinner while I ate and at night before I put my head on my pillow. I prayed and prayed. I prayed that this new publishing job would turn into something permanent because living in NYC wasn't cheap and I had catholic school tuition to pay.

After temping and proving myself for two months I got the job. Ache! Amen! God DID in fact answer my prayers. I was so grateful. Once I was hired the days were long. I was working most nights until 8pm. It was a busy office. I was the assistant to two executives, a Vice President, a woman who was rising fast to CEO status, and KB, Creative Director in the Corporate Sales Department (which covered 30+ magazine titles). Name any magazine!!! They probably own it. When the VP hired me one of the things she stressed was that she understood that I was a mother, but that she hoped that it wouldn’t get in the way of my job. She made it point to express to me that she never wanted to hear excuses about being late, taking days off or anything having to do with my responsibilities as a mother. Basically what I understood is… my baby better never get sick I could lose this job.

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Then I got the call I had been afraid of…

That morning you told me you weren’t feeling well. We now lived in Astoria, Queens so the commute was hell. Everyday we would take the M train to the L, the L to 14th Street, walk that long ass tunnel to the number 1 train, take the 1 uptown to 72nd and I would get off the train and take you to school. Then I would get back on the number 1 train and head downtown to 42nd I had to be at work by 8:30AM. We would do the reverse to get home. Most nights we got in at like 9:00PM. This day you were taking extra long to walk to the train. I carried your book bag for you. You weren’t feeling well. You complained on and off all the way to school. I asked you if you thought you would be ok. You said yes. When we got off the train at 72nd you just looked at me and said, "Mommy, I'm going to be sick."

“Its ok baby, go ahead and throw up right here.”

You were so embarrassed. You started crying. I tried to comfort you. I asked you again, “Baby, are you sure you want to go to school. Do you think you’re going be ok?”

You said, “Yes. I will be fine mommy. I don’t want you to get fired for taking time off from work to take care of me.”

I couldn’t believe you said that to me. You were more worried about me being fired than how sick you were? I went to work feeling crazy GUILTY. I wasn’t at work thirty minutes when I got the call from your school.

"Ms. Santos, your daughter has a fever and has thrown up. Can you please come pick her up?"

I was afraid to approach my boss and tell her, LOOK I have to bounce… my daughter is sick I don’t care what you think… my daughter comes first. I walked into her office and informed her submissively, that I had to leave but that I would make up the time. I ran out of that office to get you. I got on the cell phone to try and get you an appointment with a doctor. I picked you up and asked you if she would be able to ride the train (we didn’t have money to take a cab to Queens). You said you would be fine. Your face was yellow… you were flushed. You were so weak. You didn't look good. Once we arrived to queens we jumped in a cab and your head was on my lap.

I was rubbing your head, touching your hair. While watching you… I started to cry. I felt so much guilt about what I had done to us with this move to NYC. Was I being selfish? I took you away from the life you knew. I doubted myself, my ability, what I was doing here. This was just too hard and now you were sick and it was all my fault. I didn't think I could do it. I was alone. I have aunts and uncles in New York but they didn't live close and couldn't take care of you because they all have jobs. You had never seen me cry like that before. I just looked at you and said, "Baby do you wanna go back to Florida? Do you wanna just leave NYC and go back to our life? This is just too hard! You could have your pool again and go swimming all the time. You would have your abuelo and abuela, your Tia Josie, Tia Fabiana and Tio Fabin… do you wanna just go home?"

You just looked up at me with those beautiful eyes and said, "NO MOMMY!!! This is your dream. I don't want to leave. You came here to be a writer. You can do this!"

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To help me publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

For those who get five or more people to back me… you will get a special gift not listed.

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Chapter 5 & 9 I was exposed... my insides were now my outsides.

CHAPTER FIVE Moment of Enlightenment - 2007

I continued meeting with Enlightenment to discuss the issues I did not want to deal with. There were things about my life I didn’t know if I wanted you or anyone to know. There was something that was keeping me stuck. There was something that I refused to face. I kept meeting with her and she would always bring up my past. A past that has been filled with the kind pain better saved for a LIFETIME network television special.

So to be the person living the nightmare up close and personal was not something I cared to admit or face. I was sailing in my sea of denial, quite comfortably telling myself that I was good… that it was ALL GOOD. It felt better to not dwell – to not live in the fire that was cooking my insides alive. On the outside I wore this mask. But something was happening I could no longer run from. I was exposed… my insides were now my outsides.

Will they leave me? Will they love me? Will they hate me? What will happen when they discover the truth? Can you forgive me? WILL YOU STILL LOVE ME? Will you still be proud of me?

The moment I put pen to paper to write, “The Letters” came after I went to see my spiritual advisor. She would have all the answers. She would be able to provide me with insight and guidance for all the questions that were stored under lock and key. She quite frankly and assertively said, “You know what the fuck you need to do!”

CHAPTER NINE

I was not proud of sleeping with her man. She’s my sister. How could I do that to her? On so many levels I was wrong. She didn’t deserve that. Not from me… we were close. At one point in our lives we were each others confidant there was a time we were best friends—inseparable. For years I kept this secret. I've been sitting with the guilt and shame of it internally from the moment I slept with him. Writing this letter is not easy. This incident was a huge mistake, my biggest regret filled with every negative emotion that I have ever felt: betrayal, self hate, shame, guilt, embarrassment, loneliness, fear, jealousy, envy, competitiveness, and regret. They're all ONE feeling that feeds off each other. Shame is this beast that was feasting at my insides like a parasite.

Of all the letters I’ve written this one falls in the top three of the most painful during this process. This letter is painful because I can no longer run from it… I am being forced to admit some things and really look at myself. I am sitting here typing this letter afraid of the keys with each stroke. Scared of the words I am about to see in print. I am so conflicted. So much of me would rather shut the computer down and not face what I must! I think I've been writing this letter for over six years.

This one is way past due… I will take my time… This one can't be rushed… This one I will treat with every ounce of love that consumes me… this one I need to get strong for. It requires that I build up positive energy. I must call forth everything I am. I must come with patience, faith, trust and love and believe in my force. This letter calls forth ALL of my learning. I am channeling all of the tools from my arsenal of healing. It’s like I’m that little girl waiting… waiting for my beating. A beating I know is coming.

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Everyone has a position, a role they play, a place they sit on the hierarchy of the family tree. I am one of the eldest girls in my family. Of all the females in the family I would say that I command the most attention the moment I enter a room. Mostly because the first thing people see is my height, then it would be a combination of my strength, truth, personality, confidence, voice, brutal honesty, vulgarity, generosity, ability to take control of a situation and make things happen. The one constant is that I am always there no matter what! What would my sisters say about me? What would people say if they found out what I had done to her? What would my cousins say about me? What would my girlfriends say about me? What would my best friend say about me? What would the women in my life say about me? What would YOU say about me? What these women think about me has always mattered to me.

Dear Woman in the Mirror, you the reflection of me,

The hardest letter to write is yours. Most of the letters are about me forgiving others. In this letter I must ask you to forgive me. Yes I slept with him. It was careless. It was wrong. I am so incredibly sorry for hurting you. I know that our relationship will never be the same. I was hurting inside. I was belittling myself at every turn. I wanted to punish you. It was so fucked up after the many years I have spent working on the development of my self, my spirit and my heart. It was absolutely the most horrible thing I could do to you… and I knew it would devastate you.

So I waited... I waited until the right moment… I waited for the moment to pay you back for all the pain our relationship was causing me. I was so incredibly hurt by so much of what was happening between us. At the same time I was dealing with my own shit. My own issues of worthlessness. I thought that pay back would make me feel better about myself but what it did was make me feel worse. I felt like shit. First, because I believed that I was somehow justified in doing what I did. I believed that sleeping with him would somehow get my power back. A power I believed you took from me. Second, because I allowed another man to touch me who was not worthy of me. I felt all my years of healing and self work was thrown out the window in that moment.


For more of the letters... keep following...

To help me publish my memoir please visit: FINDING YOUR FORCE on kickstarter

Thank you for your support.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Alicia

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Chapter 3: What mom hopes for your future~

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY

Today you get two excerpts for the price of one. This is what I wrote on Mother's Day~

CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

Today in church I understood why I was having such difficulty starting this chapter. I am about to explore the FEMININE SPIRIT. I am about to journey into my soul and unlock feelings that we as a women have been taught to stuff deep down… locking the power within and placing it into the Holy Grail never to be found. It’s Mother’s Day and the minister at Unity Church shared a story about Mary Magdalene and the reasons perhaps that the Catholic Church has kept her out of the bible. As he spoke I wondered, were they afraid of her power? Would crediting Mary Magdalene for actually being seen as Jesus’ equal pose such a threat? Why were Peter and Paul so angry that Jesus appeared to her first? What if Jesus saw how powerful Mary Magdalene really was and decided I must have her at my side? At the end of the service I was incredibly emotional; I called forth the strength of all the women who were present to help me write this section. I called on all the strength and pain of all the women in the world and when you ask the universe for something it comes. After having a wonderful lunch with my cousin and her son I headed home to begin writing.

This part of the journey requires everything that I am made of and everything that I have learned. After I was home and settled in, a dear friend was going to bring me groceries and have lunch with me. She stayed only for a short while. Then it was time for me to begin. I went to turn on the computer and it wouldn’t start. I was sitting on my bed and was like, oh no! NOT my manuscript!!! I kept restarting it and restarting it and nothing. The computer screen just stayed blue. I didn’t understand what was wrong. I worried that all the pages I had written were gone. All of sudden I got so tired. I felt every woman in my life. I was exhausted. I was completely drained. My entire body started to shut down. I was falling asleep with the computer on my lap. I was thinking about all the women in my life, my mother, you, cousins, friends, spiritual sisters, aunts and our grandmothers. I was feeling all of the women of the world. I called forth today the pain and strength of the women of the world and one by one I could feel all of them. It got to a point where it felt like too much. I turned off the lights, took off my clothes and pulled the covers over my head. I slept for two in half hours and am now up. It’s 8:40pm and my computer finally turned on. ACHE! My body was calling and asking for stillness, quiet and sleep. This work requires that you take care of yourself and rest. Once I woke up I was ready although I still felt a little strange, the left side of my face was numb, almost paralyzed as if it was still asleep. With all that I have gone through the past few days writing the memoir I now feel ready to begin my journey into my spiritual awakening.

Here's today's excerpt... Chapter 3: What mommy hope's for your future~




Thank you so much for following and supporting me on this journey. I am sending you all peace, light and LOVE.

Always Alicia

Chapter 7: I need space~

Hi family,

I am so proud of the work that I have done. I am so grateful that I have such a community of people sending me strength. Over the next few days I will be sharing excerpts from the book. This is much different than what I shared during my first kickstarter campaign. I plan on starting a new fundraising campaign. I am very close to the end and will be looking for an editor to edit my memoir as well as self publishing. If you are excited about my memoir and like my story please spread the word and share it with as many people as possible. Thank you for your continued love and support. Keep watching, keep reading... this story is getting good.

Peace, light and love,
Always Alicia

Check in: Writing my way out of a BLACK cloud~

This journey is hard, can be lonely. I am so grateful I have people in my life who make sure I am fed and well rested. This journey is kicking my ass.

Thank you for your prayers and constant love~

Peace, light and LOVE~
Always Alicia

Inside my world: Finding Your Force~

It's been such a long time since I have checked in. I have been real deep IN IT~ This video is an inside look to my process and the creation of this memoir.

Thank you for walking with me.

Peace, light and LOVE~
Always Alicia