Broken

My best friend Candie Flores and my husband do not read books. They just don't. So when one of them says "hey, I'm reading this book and it's really good", I listen.Last week Candie texted me about this book called "The Year of Magical Thinking" by Joan Didion and told me that it was really good. It's about grief and how so many people feel the need to shove their grief down for the sake of others' happiness. Also how we as a culture reward people who seem to "move on" and be "strong" which … [Read more...]

A Note From Way Back Here

It was the 4th of July 1994, I was seventeen and 9 months pregnant with my first child. My best friend and her family invited me to the local fireworks show that evening. I managed to somehow get my very pregnant self on the hood of her car (you know your friend loves you when she allows you to get on the hood of her car when you are that big) to watch the fireworks go off.I was just a child myself waiting on my baby to be born. I had no idea what our life together was going to look like. I … [Read more...]

The Tomb of Grief

Last week I wrote about what happened the day that my son Anthony died by committing suicide, it had been five very fast but extremely heavy weeks. Today it’s six weeks and a day after the one year anniversary of my uncle’s death. To sum up how this last year has been let me tell you a story: the neighbor told me yesterday that the cat my dead uncle gave to my now dead kid was found dead months ago by the mailboxes. That is a lot of death in one sentence, if it’s hard to read, just try living in … [Read more...]

Grief part 27

Here's the thing that a lot of people do not get about losing people you love. Who you love has nothing to do with who someone else loves. For instance, you may think that losing an aunt is no big deal because you aunts are all crazy and you haven't talked to any of them in 13 years. I get that. I have 8 aunts that are my mother's sisters who I have not talked to in a decade and who are all insane. I have one uncle that I haven't seen in maybe twenty years. But my Tio Roy was like a father to … [Read more...]

Waiting

A few weeks ago I went deer hunting for the first time in my entire life. I grew up in the country, in a town that is full of city folk visiting deer leases every fall to try and shoot themselves a trophy buck to mount on their wall. I hated it when I was a kid thanks to the movie Bambi. I also hated it because one year I ran out the front door of my uncle's house to see three deer hung upside down with their insides hanging out. I yelled at everyone that they killed Santa's reindeer! That is … [Read more...]

Did I Die? Let Me Count The Ways

By now most of you must have heard the leaked tape where Donald Trump explains to Billy Bush that he often kisses women without permission and grabs them by their genitals as they both die with laughter at how funny that is.I was pretty upset about that tape, but not because I am a prude or even that I am shocked that men talk like that. When Billy Bush says "will you give him a hug" while holding back giggles, I remembered all the times that I was the girl who was the butt of jokes between … [Read more...]

One of the Stages of Grief: Anger

I am over at Aleteia talking about grief and how I used to try and say all the "right things" to others who were mourning the loss of something they loved.Grief is a very difficult thing to deal with because it is so personal that it's different for each of us, even if we lost the same person. We are each different, how we handle our emotions is different and who that person was to us is different.My uncle was my Tio Roy to me. He was mean, made fun of me, scared the shit out of me but … [Read more...]

Death Does Not Win

Three months ago I sat by the bedside in a hospice and witnessed the most terrifying thing of my entire life as I watched my Tio Roy take his last breaths. His death scared me and the sounds, smells and loss of life haunts me. But even in the middle of all that I saw beauty, holiness, God's Faithfulness, the beginning of a new life and so much joyful love. I learned why I'm Catholic. It's not to impress anyone, it is to die with dignity and love for God like my Tio did. It is to leave behind … [Read more...]

Will We Let Fear Win

“I plead with you--never, ever give up on hope, never doubt, never tire, and never become discouraged. Be not afraid.” ~ St. Pope John Paul IIYesterday I wrote a piece for Aleteia about the shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile being a pro-life matter. I explained my personal experience of fear when getting pulled over by police officers as a Hispanic woman. I wrote it hoping that people would read my words and not add all the other words and rhetoric of the day to it. I was … [Read more...]