Flawed Fem

My Flawed Life as a Mother, Sister, and Daughter -To my Family, With fellow women, & In Christ.


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The End

How do you know it’s the end? How do you know it’s a new beginning? How do you know?

The death of a relationship is complex. When you’ve invested your heart, when you’ve bared your soul to someone, how do you suddenly stop? When your times were filled with endless laughter, when your beings were soothed by each other’s presence, how do you press the pause button and wait for the other to come back? When your routine involves a consistency, and the other decides to check out, how do you know if the magic will still be there the next time?

There are people who you can trust and have the assurance of a lifelong friendship. These people may be far, they may not be physically present. But your souls have been intertwined for life. Your hearts have been taken and kept in theirs. They treasure you as much as you do them. You finally see each other and there’s nothing but laughter, warm hugs, and loving glances. You have good memories of the past, and you create even better memories for the future.

Then there are people beside you, always with you. But you never know where you stand with them. Or you thought you knew, and then things change. Without a known reason. With no warning. With no provocation. And it makes you question life. It makes you wonder how much of your heart to open up again. How do you share your deepest pains and utmost joys to someone and then suddenly leave? How does one decide to love today and be indifferent tomorrow?

When life presents me with the end, an unexplainable end, my soul shatters. I am sad, I am nerved. I feel afraid, and I feel angry. When my conscience is clear, and my heart is pure, damning whispers and tempestuous lies seek to break me. When I care deeply and the other is careless, my being is shaken. And I hide: My heart cannot take another heartbreak. My open heart cannot bear another closed off door. The mind fucks, the on and offs, the judging eyes. I am sick of it all.

There is nothing good in the end. It takes my frail heart and crushes it. There is nothing good left in the end. It takes my soul to a dark and lonely place. An inevitable hole of numbness and ugliness.

So where do I go after the end? Where do I find a new beginning? It is easy for me to wander. In the hellhole. Indulge. In self-pity and self-doubt. And withdraw. Put on the brakes. Rest my weary heart. The hard part is the healing, to hold my head and heart higher than the forces that seek to put me down. To forge on, despite the ebbs and flows. Even as I now lay low and still, I must still go forth. To conquer the lies and seek souls of truth and integrity. To fight the temporary highs and find a real and lasting love. To be the light at the end of a hard long dark tunnel. To find peace in the end of an unworthy presence, and see clarity in the beginning of me.

~o~

In the more poetic words of Kesha/ Praying —

You bought the flames and you put me to through hell. I had to learn how to fight for myself. And we both know all the truth I could tell, I’ll just say this is “I wish you farewell.”prayingkesha

 

 

 

 

 

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HIatus

I was in a writing hiatus for several reasons. There’s the physical- the sleep deprivation from a toddler’s sleep regression; the return of migraines over the season, and unpredictable summer plans. Then there’s the emotional- tragic news that hit me hard; and deep-seated conflicts that hit me harder. To say I was overwhelmed was an understatement: I was drained, exhausted, and broken. To say I had writer’s block would be an easy excuse, the reality is that was only a part of the truth. It is true I couldn’t write, but I could not write because I had no energy to write. And it did not stem from not knowing what to write. It’s quite the opposite: it’s from having too many issues that makes it hard to know what to release and what to hold close and private.

If I’ve stated this in earlier posts, please excuse the redundancy. Even as I am all about
exposing my flaws and feminist ideas (hence the blog name;) I created this blog with a purpose of empowerment. I am careful not to throw dirt or throw shade just because I’m pissed. I will use my sadness to learn a lesson, I will use my rage to engage my passion. I will use my ugly disappointments and channel that energy to a beautiful art. That is the essence of this blog. And when I cannot find that light energy, I feel like I’m writing incomplete sentences. When all I have is doom and a seemingly inescapable hole, I could not bring myself to write dark thoughts and end it there. Even if I do not have a resolution, I feel this need to counter the darkness. Even if it’s a sliver, a miniscule glimpse of light, I’ll take it.

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And so therein lies my problem at this moment. Have I seen the light? There are days when I am hopeful, more days that I’m not. Am I any close to any resolution? The physical exhaustion is relatively easy to remedy. The mental part, not so much. Especially when the resolutions depend on others. When I am at several crossroads, and yet waiting for others take their own journeys and seeing if our paths are truly meant to continue together or apart- that is the struggle. When my heart is torn and confused, when my brain threatens to explode from too much possibilities, none of which are completely desirable. I am stuck. And it is neither all darkness or all light: it is part darkened and part enlightened, and it is a most confusing state to be in.

So where do I go from here? One thing I realized during my hiatus: I need to write. I miss it. My heart needed the release, my thoughts needed to be poured out. And if I am going to be true about my flawed life, well, here I am, naked in my future unknown. Some answers have not yet been revealed, some lessons have not yet been learned. But my heart is open, and my love is true. And wherever life takes me, I draw on the grace of God and the courage of me. And for now, that is enough.

 

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ALL HEART. Sparkly and all 😉

 

 


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Politically Incorrect: Outsider

An outsider, that’s what I am. A rebel since birth, an introspective. I question my beliefs, I affirm my morals. I love with passion, I fight injustice with a bleeding heart.  I am not part of the elite, I am not part of the “in crowd.” I have cupped the face of a few hardened souls, I have held the hands of one homeless too many. Yet as I have tried my damnest to  save lives, I feel helpless in the face of dangerous and dirty politics facing my two worlds. I love my people, but I’m afraid the people that I love has now turned to hate. Hate for their fellow sufferers. Hate for each others’ differences. Hate that has overpowered too many hearts and minds: where change and progress might have occurred, we are now clouded and painfully covered in hate.

I am no saint. I have fallen prey to hate and rage far too many times lately. It is hard for my feminist heart not be affected by misogyny, especially when such is expressed by the highest ruler of the lands. It is hard to sleep well at night when I know my fellow immigrants are being beaten, bullied, and deported due to a flawed immigration system. It breaks me to know that impoverished countrymen in my otherworld fall victim to the war on drugs, and that young potential minds have been wasted and killed in the crossfire. I feel defeated and helpless.blogpi

Yet…there can be hope. For I do not have a one sided view of these tragedies–

I do not blame anyone for wanting to make “America great again”  I understand seeking to improve the US economy, for tax and healthcare reforms. However, I do not believe they can be achieved by bigoted immigration laws and a tolerance for white supremacy. I do not believe in inequity and creating laws to make the richer rich and the poor worse off. There has to be a better way. The current POTUS was not elected by mere hate alone. He has touched upon the disillusion of many, and it is that disillusionment that needs to be addressed. Unfortunately, instead of turning the disheartened into positive changers, it has only increased the hate in their hearts. Hate that has turned to blame and loathing for others that do not look like them, hate that has blinded them to the plight of people similar to their own ancestors’ survival, hate that has made it near impossible to institute any real and logical change in the land of unlimited possibilities.  Yet I cannot react in hate. Hate begets hate, and it is a vicious never ending cycle that has put us in the predicament we are in now. Instead of responding in rage, I want to feel their rage and seek to help. Instead of hating them for hating me, I choose to love, and open myself to these people, so they can see me as more than an outsider, but part of this vast colorful country that we all choose to love and defend.

In my homeland, the war on drugs have taken its toll. Countless lives have been taken, and more will be. The latest victims are young teens, boys whose lives have been cut short by this bloody war. Do I believe it is the President’s fault? Do I believe the drug cartels are the ones killing each other off? Do I also think that the opposition may have a hand in this war? I DO NOT KNOW. Moreover, I also think those are the wrong questions to ask. The more important, meaningful question is how can we help the country alleviate itself of the drug problem? If we abhor the violence, what are we doing to help, really truly help the victims?  Violence makes me flinch. But I flinch even more at people spewing hate in the name of human rights. You do not care about human rights if you only care about the dead dealers/addicts and not the people killed by these dealers. You also cannot call yourself a true human rights advocate if you ignore the police arrogance/violence. You want justice and human rights? Then HELP. Donate to the rehab centers. Volunteer and give to the shelters. Do the hotline for abused women. Drug addiction is a true epidemic, believe me, I’ve seen it. It is a disease, that needs to be treated and prevented, not killed. Love him or hate him, Pres. Duterte has established many rehab centers and helped women in domestic cases. What have you done?

I am not here to convince you of my beliefs. I am not here to condemn anyone of their beliefs. But I am here to challenge you of your beliefs. Whether you are left or right, Yellow or DDS- that you stop seeking to be right, and seek to find unity and progress in our differences. That your beliefs pushes you to help- to build, not destroy; to lift and not to stomp on others.  I am using my pen (or phone) to exercise my power to lift you. I am using my meager savings to help those who need it more. Use yourself for others. That is the most powerful political statement one can ever make today.

 

 

 


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M.O.M. (Mother series 3)

For a woman who loves herself least, and loves God and her family most. MOM.

She was a simple girl. She is a simple woman. A gentle soul who seeks to help others throughout her life: She was a beauty queen by chance and a star dancer by passion, and in both instances, it was her humility and kindness to her peers that made her so well loved.  She was a teacher who has so much compassion for her students/ children.  She was the oldest of 6 who stepped up to be her siblings’ caretaker when her father died early in life. She was the new wife who moved to the city and became her husband’s mother’s dutiful daughter, through the good and bad, caring for her in many sick and difficult times. She lived out God’s love and light, even through her own tears, even as her family struggled through finances and death.

She is most patient with her children, 4 unique souls, with distinct personalities, with different sets of challenges. She is not perfect, but amidst moments of frustration, she finds a way to transcend anger and show kindness. She seeks to understand us even as we misunderstand, dismiss her. She remains steady, even as we rebel, then and now. Her faith in us never wavers, her heart for us continues to beat strong in the storms. She never fails to teach us about God’s love, and how that defines her love for us.  She is our first glimpse of heaven, with all the comforts of an unconditional love.

Her goodness knows no bounds. She has a big heart for the downtrodden. She has a sincere empathy for the poor and disadvantaged. She is unusual in her ways as a boss, whether it’s in her workplace, or at home. Unusual because while her colleagues show a short fuse towards the less educated workers, she instead bears and teaches them skills. While other homeowners treat their help with contempt and high demands, she befriends them, and treats them as equals, as human beings deserving of basic rights and respect. Her goodness reflects her righteousness. She lives a life of integrity and value. She always tries to do the right thing, even if it causes her undue hardships. She will fight for her children, her mama bear instinct always seek to protect us from harm. She is simply a light force that shines beauty in dark realities.

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This is my mom. A woman of extraordinary beauty and light. Her open heart invites sharing life, and I cannot help but live for our chats, ranging from the mundane day to day, to the big ideas. She is my yoda, simple in her speeches, yet wise in her insights. Even as we relate differently now, in spite of conflicts in views, my relationship with  mom remains the most beautiful thing I have in life.  It is her sacrifices that gave me life choices.  It is her faith that pushed me to live my dreams.  It is her nurturing soul that has enabled me to live. So today, and for the rest of my fortunate life, I would like to live a life deserving of her sacrifices. I would like to honor her with my faithfulness, to protect her as she has held me, to comfort her as she has calmed me, and to pass on her Godly light to my own children. I would like to thank God every day for giving me her, and for giving me the highest honor of being called her child. Happy Mother’s Day Mom!

 

 

 


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My Reasons Why

A few weeks back I finished the show “13 Reasons Why.” The show was disturbing and compelling. Love it or hate it, it forces dialogue about bullying and mental health. I was personally affected. Deeply affected. I was pulled back into the pain of my past. Into my own dark abyss filled with a broken heart and a damaged mind. I do not have 13 reasons why, but I have an idea of my what, some whys, and the reason I am here today. This is my survivor’s story:

My early childhood started out innocent and happy. I grew up simple, but I had the assuring love of my family. We moved around quite a bit, and I experienced my first bullying when we moved to a new grade school. I was a tiny and painfully shy kid,
and I was easy target because I don’t talk much. Two girls decided to take my things
on a weekly basis. Pencils, pads, cases, hairclips, money. My mom started getting
suspicious because I wasn’t the type who loses things, so when I keep coming home
with lost items, she knew something was up. But I didn’t want to say anything because
these girls would threaten me bodily harm if I talk. One of them would pick me up and squeeze my body hard to show me that they were serious. I was horrified. Suffice it to say, it was my first rude awakening to the world of bullying and mean girls.

But that was just the beginning. Grade school got better when I made a few friends and fell in love with learning (aka I’m a nerd;). Then high school came. I was transferred to a new class and it was like the first day of grade school all over again. Oblivious to the high school hierarchy, I offended a Queen Bee (one of several, I later learned.) At that time, I was fairly soft spoken, so I must have uttered one wrong thing her way, and the war was on. Unfortunately for me, this war was pretty lopsided- since I was the new kid, she rallied everyone against me, she would make snide remarks loud enough for everyone to hear, she would make sure the other Queen Bees (or Queen Bitches, really) would spread the word against me, so that even people who barely knew me would think the worst of me. It was the war of the words..  Except I barely uttered one.

As much as the physical side of bullying hurt me in grade school, the emotional toll of gossip and ostracism in high school devastated me more. I was always a positive person. But I found myself slowly clouded with pessimism: First there were tears of disbelief and sadness. Then a heaviness and weariness overtook my body, making me sick and weak. My mind was filled with confusion and I doubted my self-worth. And finally, my soul was drained. It felt empty, with nothing left to give, and with no one to turn to.

I was almost completely taken over by my darkness. Almost. My story could have ended tragically if it did. I had some reasons to die. But I was blessed to have found better reasons to live:

  1. Parents- specifically my mom. They never knew how deep the darkness was, but they knew I was lost. For parents that value academics, they did not hesitate to pull me out the end of the semester to take me out of my personal hell. They did not know it then, but they literally saved my life when they did.
  2. Music/Poetry- my songs were my only outlet of expression. I couldn’t turn to friends for fear of betrayal (which some did) My early songs of love and rosy gardens turned into songs of heartbreak and loss. Edgar Allan Poe fascinated me. Nonetheless, dark songs and poetry gave me the courage to express the dark side of me and allow me to release them.
  3. Friend(s)- One particular friend is most significant. She remains one of my best friend to this day. I’m not sure she remembers this, but on one particular event when another Queen Bee (or King Bee) started another round of malicious attacks on me, she gently held my hand and smiled. No words, just the simple but most valuable touch of friendship. She had offered me the saving grace I needed on my most hopeless moment.
  4. GOD- the most important one. the one true Savior. First off, he gave me #1-3, so that in itself were more than enough reasons. He also revealed Himself at my lowest point. In the midst of tears and weariness, when I had wanted to give up, He came to me. His presence enveloped my heart and protected my fragile soul from completely losing it. My heart started to sing His songs, and my soul started seeing His hope. Through it all, He walked with me. And He carried me. And He lifted the burden that was long wearing me down. And as my circumstances pushed me towards darkness, His grace and love lifted me back up to the light.

(To the above reasons, I may have been too consumed by my sadness in the past to have expressed my gratitude then. Allow me to express my eternal thank you now. You have and always will be a most valuable part of my life. You have no idea how you saved me then. And continues to save me still.)  

I struggled to write this post… I am struggling as I am writing it now.  Digging into my past is never an easy thing. Bringing up a time full of shame, anger, and sadness can be overwhelming. And emotionally exhausting. I am in tears reliving my ordeal through this post. But as hard as it is, it is also freeing. And I do not write/blog just for personal venting alone. It is my one hope that one lost soul can read this, and know that there is light, that there can be light at the end of it all. Then I would feel that my difficult past was not for nothing. And my darkness would have served it’s purpose for the higher good.

SUICIDEPREVENTIONLIFELINE.ORG 1-800-273-8255

STOPBULLYING.GOV

PACER.ORG/BULLYING

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homage to the show

 

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(I actually had the same nail polish as Hannah’s, by chance;)

 


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Love x10

So the hubs birthday and our wedding anniversary just passed. With two sick kids, it’s been low key. Both of us exhausted and cash strapped, a lavish 10 year anniversary seems unnecessary. But it would seem awful to not celebrate such a milestone, for surviving a decade with each other! (I kid. Or not. Haha.) So to commemorate this special time in our lives, I dedicate this post to the Man, the Dude- as I celebrate his birth and the bond we shared all these years.

According to tradition, the 10th year anniversary is referred to as Tin/ aluminum=flexibility. Modern times allude to the diamond=beauty and strength. This makes perfect sense to me- for any marriage to last 10 years a lot of patience and flexibility are required. And in being flexible the bond is strengthened and made more beautiful each day.

In the beginning, our ‘diamond’ shines bright. When we first met, we were enamored with each other, we bonded over our similar interests. I always tell people our first date was the best date of my life! A simple lunch date became an all nighter- we wanted to know as much as we could of each other. Even in our differences, we compliment each other. I.e. our idea of romance: In our relationship, I am the cliched romantic- love notes, random trinkets. I even framed our wedding poem. My man’s idea of romance is a little different. He likes to do things- Midnight runs for snacks and NYC commutes for dessert gifts. But the ones I am especially turned on to are the times when he does chores. You know, mundane chores like laundry, washing dishes, vacuuming. He thinks I’m weird, but I always say- who needs the sparkle of a diamond when you got the bright sparkle of dishes and floors?!

Time passed. We both evolved. We also both discovered opposing values. And with that comes conflicts, and change, and conflicts because of the changes. Our rosy beginning started to show its thorns (reference to “Every Rose Has Its Thorns” a fave song for us both:) The good times were great. But the hard times, they were very trying times. Some differences seem irreconcilable, some conflicts seem to have no resolution. Marriage is a relationship where you are committed to be close to someone. And that closeness is bound to produce sparks. Some become great fireworks, and some turn out to be destructive bombs. And in order to survive, bombs needed to be diffused: pride needs to be killed and in its place, grace.

Aah GRACE. I love that word. It is a word that holds so much beauty. But that beauty requires selfless compassionate love. And when you’ve been together for so long like we were, and you’ve seen each other’s ugliest, that is not an easy feat. It requires the willingness to embrace each other’s worlds. It also requires freedom and space, to allow each other room to grow, room to change. And therein lies the challenge for us. While one submits, the other resists. While one seeks new things, the other finds comfort in consistency. Most fights result from both of us insisting to be right, neither one willing to give in and give grace to each other, and to some extent, grace to ourselves.

But I wouldn’t be here writing about a 10 year anniversary if we haven’t survived, right? I can’t say we have it all figured out, but by the miraculous grace of God, we are still here. I quote from a fave movie, “I’d rather fight with you than make love to anyone else.” Despite all the hurdles, all the hurt, we have stayed committed to each other. I think we call that LOVE. And when I watch a scene from my fave tv show, where in the middle of their biggest fight, Jack started telling his wife what he loves about her-that hit me big time! Because that scene is my life- In countless fights my own beloved had uttered similar words of love to me. And I have done the same. Words of praise when we don’t like each other at the time. I think we call that GRACE. And somehow, when love and grace are present amidst turmoil, this marriage has lasted this long. 10 years. And hopefully for another 10…And more.

So to end this extremely cheesy post on an even cheesier note, I will expose my penchant for poetry. As per our tradition, I made hubs a poem this year. Please pardon the quality of the poem- It was written with very little sleep 😉 —

To My Dude,

There are times when my body feels drained
There are days when my head is wrapped in chaos
You feel my pain. You ease me.
On the times I don’t feel happy
On the days we don’t feel synced
You move forward. You push through.
Life with us is never easy
Love we share is never smooth
But this is us. This is we.
We are one. We are true. We are free.
I am the bones of your bones,
the flesh of your flesh.
Apart we are torn, together we heal
What God has joined together
Let no man put asunder.
So today on our special decade long love
Here’s to cuddles, neck rubs and heat wraps.
As our bodies grow frail may our souls grow strong
As our eyes grow dim may our hearts glow more.
My RomComs to your Freakshows
My Country to your Classic Rock
We doth share love for mosh and comiccons
And pledge to honor scifis till we grow old
For every difference lies a common ground.
For every conflict lies hearts that cries aloud-
I LOVE  YOU
— So here’s a happy anniversary to me and you
The Man The Dude The One
Here’s to a decade more of living
Less fights more love more spirit filled fun~