The Meaning of Life is Love

Pride. A huge street party where it is perfectly acceptable to wear anything love anyone and accept everyone. Pride is divided into two days, Saturday being the kickoff, consisting partying, stages, alcohol and naked people. Sunday is basically the same day, accept with a parade and even more naked people, well more people in general. I’ve always loved the craziness and happiness of it. How can you not smile with rainbows and naked/half naked people everywhere?

The first day I went to San Francisco wearing a fun pink corset that I had gotten at Hot Topic for half price. The corset was accompanied with booty shorts and black tights with a rainbow string weaved through the back. I accompanied my roommate and her boyfriend to the Bart station. There we met up with our friend who was already prepared with plastic bottles of tequila. The party was on! We got off the train at the Civic Center stop and walked up the stairs where my friend/coworker was waiting with 6 bud light necklaces and dozens of rainbow stickers… clearly she had a head start.

It wasn’t hard to find the celebration, it was everywhere. People were gathered in what seemed like every street, dancing to the music that seemed to be pulsating from the core of the city. We walked the streets, checking out the booths and the stages, when we came upon a particular stage playing party nicki-manaj type music (of course =)) We squeezed our way through the crowd until we were at a reasonable distance from the stage. After dancing through a couple songs, the woman on the stage called for two volunteers to lip sync and dance onstage. People started raising their hands and jumping up and down trying to get noticed. After they picked an enthusiastic boy named AJ, they announced “OK GIRLS?” I started wooing and jumping and waving my inflatable microphone in the air (yes I had one of those). The woman smiled and pointed at me, “How about this girl in the pink corset come on up!” My friends cheered and clapped for me and I scurried onstage. I was pretty drunk at this point. So I danced, tried to lip sync, which is I found is not easy to do while drunk, but despite that, I just had fun, the crowd was screaming and shouting for me. It felt so cool, I danced out my fifteen seconds of fame. After I did so it was AJ’s turn. He had the crowd, and the crown, well not a crown, the prize was a cup. I wasn’t offended though, I was just happy for the experience and story to tell.

We walked around some more until the festival shut down at 6, and the party moved to the Castro. We took the train back to the east bay. Our friend who met us on the train wanted to go back to the city for the after party at the Castro. So we picked up 3 of his friends and made our way back to the city. The streets were filled with people even more than they were during the day. The streets looked like outdoor clubs, packed with people dancing and drinking. We all decided that we were in the mood for a club, so we headed back to the bay area to attend club 21 in Oakland. Latino music and Cowboys made for a very unique and fulfilling experience. By the time I got home it was 3:30 am. I opened the door to find my roommate who had to work that day sleeping in the living room. She woke up to tell me that her friend and his boyfriend were meeting us up in the morning. We awoke at 7:30, I still felt drunk from the night before.

On this day I wore a blue fishnet shirt with just a bra underneath, accompanied with booty shorts again and the same tights. After they picked us up the four of us went to eat breakfast at Dennys. Afterwords we were on our way to the city. The parade was wonderful, people in loud costumes, rainbow floats, even a bus full of gay and gay friendly senior citizens. Afterwords we made our way to the hip hop stage, where I was dancing with a rather muscular almost naked model who swore he was straight. But I’m sure I looked rather questionable as well. =) We danced, drank, and made fools of ourselves throughout the day. We went home, but I was still ready to party. I started hitting up some friends who may want to go party in the city again. Everyone seemed partied out. I ended up falling asleep on the couch and waking up an hour later. My head was fuzzy, the kind of fuzzy that happens with substantial amounts of alcohol and sun. I stood up, my whole muscles throbbing, and I suddenly realized what “partied out” felt like. It’s a strange form of accomplishment. But I was satisfied, I had just spent two days having a lot of fun and forgetting all of my problems. I think it’s safe to say that Pride was a success! If you haven’t been to Pride before, I strongly suggest looking up a Pride festival in the city nearest you. It’s an experience you will never forget.
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Carpe Diem

A friend of mine once said, “We spend more time in life waiting then actually living.” I thought about this claim, and he was right. We are always waiting for something. A new job, the next paycheck, the next day, love, happiness. But something that most people don’t realize is that is exactly how life ends up passing you by.

I was thinking about this today as I was drowning in my own thoughts about the things that I am waiting for. I allowed the day to go on as I existed. But after wasting this beautiful day indulged in my mind, I reached an epiphany of sorts. These things that we wait for seem to flood our minds and take control. Pulling us from reality, but the ironic part is, no matter how much we think about these things we wait for, they will always happen. So there is really no point in dwelling on them. Thinking doesn’t change inevitability.

I only have a short time left here in California, so instead of dreaming and thinking about home, I am switching my focus to my Cali “Bucket List” that my good friend Yolanda and I have fashioned out of the things I must do before I leave. Some of these things include:

-Visit Alkatraz

-Visit Santa Cruz

-Return to Stinson Beach

-Attend a walk against cancer

These are only a few of the ideas on the list, but rest assured I will write about these adventures as I complete them. Yes, saying something and then doing it are two different things. But I am known for following through on the things I say. And I say this now, the world is not going to pass me by any more.

Let the adventures begin!

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Heartstrings

A few days ago, I received a text from my best friend Korin asking how I was doing. “I’m great!” I replied, ” only one more month till I come home!” She caught me by surprise when she said “Yay! You’ll have to visit me when you come home.” I told her that her and her unborn daughter Lilly were two of the reasons for my decision. Then she confessed her guilt, “I know, I feel bad though because you are giving up on something you want to do and coming home because of me.” I reassured her, “I’m not giving up. I have a lot of unfinished business back there. And it hurts being away from so many that I love. And it’s the birth of your child! I wouldn’t miss that for the world. You’re my closest and oldest friend and you’ve always had my back, so I’m not giving up on anything, it’s a new adventure to me.” After this discussion she realized that she wasn’t forcing me to do anything, and the conversation turned toward  Lilly and the excitement of her arrival.

But the conversation got me thinking. And I’ve realized that it doesn’t really matter what I’m going back for. What matters is why. I’m doing it for all of the right reasons of which I could very easily list. But all of the reasons could be summed up in one simple word. Love. Yes it’s a little cliche. But it’s also the truth. I love my parents, I love my friends, I love the unborn Lilly even though I haven’t even met her. I love the snow and its glistening beauty. I love the high school that I used to dream of leaving. I love the teachers there who have inspired and shaped me. I love the college that occupied a couple years of my time. I love the people who I’ve met there. I love the man who changed my life by showing me that I can fall in love. I love the possibilities that wait for me, even if I don’t know what they are. But most of all, I love the fact that I love all of these things and that I am not worried or regretful for leaving the state of my dreams. Because I know where my heartstrings are pulling now, and I know that I will return one day. I’m following my heart now, and I have full confidence that it will lead me in the right direction.

The universe has a funny way of making things work out, even though they don’t always go as planned. 

I had received an e mail from a casting director for a movie stating that he wanted to meet with me in Los Angeles. So after pinching pennies, getting my work shifts covered, and scrambling the day before to make a professional portfolio, I was on my way to LA via train. The Amtrak train left my local train station at 7 a.m. While on the train I met a countless number of friendly people from all over the world. I sat in the observatory car while the train glided through the mountains and along the ocean almost majestically. That was where I met a small group of travelers from France. They seemed to be just as awed and inspired by California’s beauty as I was. After about an hour of chit-chat , my new acquiescence’s  left to return to their seats and prepare for their stop. I sat in the observatory car for a little while longer, captured by the beauty of the blue pacific ocean. I took that time to reflect on events from the past. At that moment a strange feeling came over me, relief. The stresses that replayed in my mind, my mother being sick, money problems, my heart aching for that one person… these things didn’t matter any less, but for some reason that I cannot explain, I knew that everything was going to be okay. I was relieved because I know in my heart that the decisions I made were done with the right intentions. 

I was snapped out of my reflection time by a staff member of the train informing all those in the observatory car that the lounge was closing and to return to our seats. By then it was 8 p.m. Which meant that I would be in Los Angeles in less than an hour! I have wanted to visit and live in LA for as long as I can remember. And as the reality set in that I would soon be in the city of my dreams I felt my heart rejoicing. I shall never forget for as long as I live the moment that I saw the city for the first time. I was listening to my I Pod, the song playing was Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep,” Just as the first line of the chorus started and the song reached and instrumental climax, the train exited from underneath a bridge exposing the city of Los Angeles. I couldn’t help but gasp loudly and smile at the sudden reality. I immediately felt like I was meant to be there. Even though my trip was short, and I would be leaving the next evening, I still felt as if something wonderful was about to happen. 

I caught a Taxi to my motel in West LA. Not the best neighborhood, but not the worst either. As I opened the door to my room, expecting to see less than perfect accommodations, I was pleasantly surprised with a king sized bed, a rather large sized Television and refrigerator, and a nice table with two chairs. The room itself was big and unexpectedly clean. I rushed to the bed and leaped on it happily and sprawled out. Everything at that moment was perfect and welcoming. 

The next morning when I awoke, I checked my e mail for any updates regarding the meeting at 3 p.m. My heart sank as I opened the e mail, “We are sorry for the inconvenience, but we will have to reschedule.” I sat up, allowing the bummer reality to set in. I turned on my computer in search for auditions. Thinking that perhaps I could find some other opportunity to occupy my time with. Since it was mothers day, there were no audition postings. So I decided that my best bet to finding an audition at that point was to walk along Hollywood Blv. So I packed up my small suitcase and set out to the bus stop to head down to Hollywood. After 45 minutes of riding on a crowded bus I had reached my destination. The sounds and sights of LA delightfully filled my senses. I pulled my rolling suitcase down the walk of fame, taking pictures of familiar stars on the way. Eventually I ran into this guy who was promoting for a street arts and music festival. He took me around the corner to a small group of people crowded around a stage which was occupied by the front man of a band out of LA called Fishbone. Next to the stage were tables of hand made art and jewelry being sold by their creators. After buying a couple of cheap souvenirs and talking to the artists, I set out to Union Station to catch my train. 

As the Amtrak was leaving LA behind, I felt no remorse for leaving my favorite city. I know that one day I will return to the welcoming embrace of Los Angeles. 

The universe works in mysterious ways. Even though my meeting was cancelled, I wouldn’t trade my experience for the world. The people who I met and the things that I saw had such a positive impact on me spiritually that it has made me appreciate those moments when things don’t go as planned. Because those moments seem to be when the most memorable experiences unfold.  

I can’t help but be afraid that someday someone else might have you.

That moment when you realize that you are loved, very very much. 

The Tapestry

I like to think of live as a giant Tapestry. The Tapestry consists of two different colored squares arranged in a checkered pattern. One color represents opportunities (I imagine it as blue), and the other color represents the tests of life (I imagine red). Each square is illustrated to show the different tests and opportunities. For example, in one of my blue squares, a picture of California, and in one of my red lets say, a picture of California and Michigan and a Question mark between the two. I can also imagine that the pictures all form the shape of a heart when looked at from a distance, thus symbolizing that Love is the meaning behind everything that life has to offer. 

Since these are what make up the tapestry of life, I do my best to grab the opportunities, learn from the tests, and make all sacrifices necessary for love. 

I feel as if opportunities are knocking on my door now. I just received an E mail from a movie project asking to meet with me. And the other day I received a different E mail from a company that is making a TV pilot asking me to attend their audition. I am going to grab these opportunities, and although limited money is making my adventures difficult, I can only do my best an pray that the universe gives me a few breaks. 

I’m tired of being strong. There. I said it. I’m sick of being in physical pain all the time and no matter what meds I take, what knee braces I wear, the pain never goes away. I was hit by a car 7 years ago, and now I have trauma induced arthritis because of it. I know it could be worse. But I feel weak. And I’m sick of being so strong but feeling so weak. Not just because of the physical pain. But my emotions have been running wild. 

I think about him. He’s all I think about. However I accept that he doesn’t feel the same way toward me. But then it makes me think. Who wants a girl with arthritis? It’s like I’m a Grandma or something. I just want to cry, the two things I want most, a relationship with someone who will cherish and care for me as much as I have for him. And to be able to walk without any pain. Is that too much to ask for? 

The feeling of weakness is overwhelming. It engulfs us in sadness and vulnerability that causes us to break apart at the seams. I just hope I never find myself alone with this.. 

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