Opal Siren

My life in dreams

I rather bury my head under the bed!


I turned 30 on October 1, 2011. Very big milestone. I really freaked a few months before my birthday. I hated the idea of not being “young” anymore. However, my birthday was not that bad. I celebrated with my closest family. I received beautiful flowers from my husband and I got a new E-pad. What more can I ask for? It does feel a little weird saying “I am 30-years-old”. But I do not feel 30. I feel like I can do so much more with my life and I have so many dreams. Then, there are those annoying questions that people ask you as you get older. The mere fact that people ask these idiotic questions, makes me want to turn into a witch and rip their eyeballs off: “So what are your plans?”…I don’t know, if I knew I would not be sitting here discussing this matter with you. I would be out there pursuing such goals. Or, “How does it feel to turn 30?”…As USUAL, it does not feel like anything. There were no SUPERNOVAS in the sky that were visible to me. No comets flew by. I did not get abducted by aliens, and no spacecrafts landed in front of my car. As far as I know, I did not turn into a fairy, dragon or mystical creature. Neither will you!

JUST KEEP IT SIMPLE IF THERE IS NOTHING ELSE TO SAY: HAPPY BIRTHDAY! THE END!!!!

But now I would like to turn from those annoying questions to a VERY important subject matter. My dog Carrott Top.

Our little-old dog that runs around our home like she owns it. Most days, she ignores myself and my husband. She rather sleep in her bed all day and only comes out to eat or when we take her out for a nice stroll. Not that she cares to exercise. She just wants to go do her thing and come right back into the house. Yet, I do feel guilty that I do not own a nice yard that she can play in and run around like a normal dog. My husband and I often think what terrible owners we are, to live in an apartment and not provide her with a nice big play area. Until, I visited my sister-in-law who happens to have a nice big yard. We finally let Carrott out on her yard. We figured she’ll be happy running around, digging holes and leaping in the air. Exactly two minutes later, after she was done doing her business, she was sitting by the door waiting to be let in, so she can go back to her comfy bed!!!  This dog really has a personality of her own. Then, there are days when she simply does not want to go out.

Sigh! What you are looking at is our dear Carrot ignoring us. She rather bury her head under the bed than be bothered with any of us. (Exactly how I feel when people ask stupid questions!).

Don’t get me wrong. When she wants something she will nag to the point that you have to give in. She won’t bark, but she has a look about her that you cannot say no….

So there it is. I just wanted to show you who the real boss is…Birthday girl in sight or not.

Happy Reading!!!!

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The Sick Feeling


Today I woke up feeling sick (literally!!!) I had stomach cramps, congestion and a bad cough. I also had severe anxiety. The type that makes you cringe, shake, sweat and makes your heart race. It almost reminds me of being in sixth grade and being excited to have graduated elementary school. Then, your dreams are shattered when the teacher calls your name to come to the board. There, you get nervous, you shake and sweat a little, and you think to yourself: “God, I hope I get his math problem right!!!”. Then, you stand there for mins or so, but to you it feels like three hours. You know how to do it, you just need a little more patience and time.

One of the biggest culture shocks when I moved back to the U.S. from the D.R., is the rushing that never seems to end. We rush to work, to class, to get our assignments done, to shower, to cook, to listen to our partners (if we do indeed listen), and to do almost everything in our lives. We even rush through being sick. However, some of us just need a little tender care, patience and TIME!

As a child, I did have a slight learning disability. I needed more time than most to get caught up with the material being taught. Once I learned the material though, I was like a speed racer wanting to know more. That feeling was short lived, as new material was quickly introduced. I was happy not to be labeled and managed to graduate Summa Cum Laude from college. But, I had to study harder than most, lock my self in my room for hours doing home work, and I had to really try to catch up with the class. Not to mention, that I was constantly reminded by one of my teachers on Middle School: ” I would had not passed you in the first grade, if you had not learned how to read” Later on, the problem for me was not reading, it was comprehending and associating information. This was tough for me when it came to math. I was very creative, so writing and reading were a bit more easy for me. Even if the letters on the page jumped around at times, I could not associate numbers and it always took me longer to get caught up. But once I understood the material, I was like an astronaut in a space ship, just floating in space. I was told over and over again that I was so smart. But I could not belive that because of my earlier challenges with my disability. NO…I AM VERY SMART!!! (I had to keep telling myself this to get me through school and college). It’s important that we all know that we are all smart and that we keep telling this to all that have a learning disability. Most people, with a learning challenge, are very smart. They just need a little more time than then rest to cook and absorb the juices. Maybe then, we can get rid of that sick feeling.

~ To my brother Dan, who was labeled with ADD since second grade, changed schools, and graduated from High School a year early with honors!!!

Happy Reading!!!!

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The girl with the pink book bag


In my previous blog, I spoke about my accomplishments and how I was not honoring the small victories I have already achieved. It was important to me, because we live in an era where your success is measured by how much money you make, what you own, or what kind of car you drive. This is how I grew up, and I want to leave those thoughts behind me, like my frustrating 20’s.

I have been reading many New Age books and self-help books throughout the years. The main lessons I keep coming across are that you need to get to the small stuff to get to the big stuff, and its the small victories and the journey that you embark on that will lead you to the major highlights of your life. The only thing that you take with you when you are ready to leave this plane,  are the memories and the journey that has led you to the bigger accomplishments. No amount of money or success can change this. I know it does not take a rocket scientist to know this, but even for me (currently an aspiring Bioinformatician), that was the hardest lesson to learn. When I sat down and started to think about all the little things that used to bother me like: not having the perfect lifestyle, not having the money and recognition, working so hard to only feel so unfulfilled……These thoughts only led to what I thought I wanted, and focusing on what I did not have. These thoughts only led to more frustration and it led me to NOT be appreciative of what I have right now. I have come to the realization, that I have made my own choices, and most of what has happened to me or why I am not in the place I want to be, is only for a reason: ME. It took me a while to understand this, and when I did, I had a panic attack!!! I could not believe all the years of misery I spent thinking that others managed my life, when I am the creator of that same life. Now, the only thing that matters is honoring the small victories, a positive attitude and having a checklist. I am not a fan of a bucket list because I do not like to think of death. I suffered from depression my entire life, death was the focal point,  and I am now LIVING.  However, in order for me to appreciate what I have now, I need to also have a list of the things I still want to accomplish, so that when they are fulfilled I can cross them off and taste their success at that moment.

I can only go back in time to understand why I was so hard on myself which led me down this path, or why I was so depressed even at the age of five. This may come to a surprise, but even as a child I was miserable. I was always sad. I have a picture I drew from kindergarten, and its me with a sad face. Even then, I was programmed to see only the negative side of things. I was the product of a dysfunctional relationship, which led to divorce and me being shipped away to a foreign country to live with my grandparents. I attended an all girls school run by nuns. By the way the rumors are true, the nuns were mean. I felt lost and alone. I did not understand their language very well, could not read nor write their language. It did not help that I was shy and liked to be alone. It was the only thing I knew how to be. My grandparents were strict and the only thing to do was to pray all day and play with dolls. PRAY AND PLAY!!!  That was it, literally!!!  You can only imagine how terrible it could be to be around girls all day. To make matters even worse, many of the girls that attended the school were very poor, and there was a lot of theft going on. The jealousy, cattiness, bitchiness, was always on play and on steroids. I did manage to make friends whom I keep to this day. I have recently re-connected with some of the girls I attended school with. Some are truly amazing, and most are still in that same phase of who is doing better than whom. One of the girls identified me and said: “Oh, you are the girl with the pretty-pink book bag !!!”

                                              


    In school, it was always a competition of whom is better than whom. I was bullied in school for several reasons besides being an outcast with a pink book bag. I was a U.S. citizen, my grandparents lived in a gorgeous home, and my single working mother would send me these flashy book bags that only triggered more jealousy and bullying. By fourth grade, I was receiving harassing calls in my home from some of the girls. I did not know what else to do but to feed into it, act stuck up, and pretend that my life was better than theirs. This only made matters worse. This only started a trend of me feeling bad about myself and feeling like the world was against me. All I can think of is that the way I acted was the product of my own frustrations and my depression. I should had not pretended I was better than them, I should had shown them that I was in the same boat, if not worse than them, and I did not deserve to be treated that way. Although I am U.S. citizen, I have a Spanish accent that will identify me for ever, and I had the same transition pains that many immigrants experience here in the U.S. I suffered as a child as each summer came to an end, and I had to return to the Dom. Rep. and leave my mother behind. I would had given up my citizenship if I could only be with my mother and later on my siblings. It was the reason I was sad most of the time. I felt abandoned. My grandparents built a beautiful home with all of their savings, which left us living off the land: Rice, beans and plantains everyday!!!! Not to forget that, although I love my grandfather, he was a gambler and there were many times I went to school starved. I was also emotionally abused by another member of the family a few years later. All the book bags in the world could not fix the misery I was in as a child. Of course, none of these things I brought to myself or can excuse the bullying and the harassment. However, now I am hoping to help other children and adults that may have had the same experiences. I am lucky to have a partner that shares my views on aiding those in need and being of help to anyone. Sometimes to make a situation better, you just need to feel listened to and that you are not alone in the fight. The recognition of this situation is a BIG victory for me and something that I am treasuring right NOW. It is the past, but I would not be here savoring the light NOW, without that past. 

Happy Reading!!!

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Let the games begin !!!


Well, here we go. This is my first blog ever. So, be patient as I get used to this new world. I have never had a blog, but always wanted one. I waited so long for the right time, the right topic, the right background theme….and lets just say I was turning gray while waiting! I am turning the big 30 this year, and it is time that I stop waiting and start playing the game of life.

If you asked me what this blog is about, I have no clue. As the matter of fact, I haven’t had a clue for some time now. I haven’t had a clue about my goals, what I like, aspirations, dreams, etc. Could it be that I am just here to be here? Who am I? What am I going to do with the rest of my life ? Where, and how did it get to this point ? Why do I feel like failure ?

All these questions I have pondered on for the last 29 years, but I have never attempted to answered them. I am sure that I am not the only one with these thoughts and there have been many books written about the same questions. Now, I want to answer these questions on my own, and try to not be afraid what the answers may be. Who knows, I may find through this process that I am a mystical creature from children’s fairytale books, who hunts children down and takes their souls LOL. The even bigger question for me is: what does the word “accomplishment” mean for me?

I was about 9 yrs. old when the question of what I wanted to be when I grew up  first came into question. I was a rather small, skinny child, just walking around the halls of an all girls school in the Dominican Republic, when one of my friends asked: “Arlene, what are you going to be when you grow up?” Naturally, I answered: “I am going to be an actress”. In reality, I had no clue. All I cared about then was playing with my Barbies, making believe I was a singer in front of a mirror, and trying on my grandmother’s clothes from 1965. I said the first thing that came to my head. I knew whatever I said to her, It had to be something that impressed her. After all, she was going to be an Engineer.

I really did not think of the time I was put on a stage at the age of 6 for a school play, and I started to cry because I was scared of being so high up on that stage. Or the time my grandmother made me sing in front of family and I wanted to throw up. Still, I wanted to be an actress, and a singer, and a fashion designer, and, and….

Yet, today I felt very unaccomplished. I did not make it as an actress like I wanted, or any of the other careers I wanted. Then, my best friend called me and gave me something to think about. She has been with me since my late teens, and we are soul sisters. She said, “you have accomplished everything you wanted, you are not seeing it because it did not realize itself the way you wanted !!! “. Then, she urged me to cross it off my list. Could it be that I have accomplished a lot, and  I just been focusing so much on what I did not have, or the negative side of things, that the real accomplishments were staring me in the face and I could not see them???  Plus, I did not have a list to check off !!! Well here are a few of my ignored accomplishments :

  1. Acting: I acted in most school plays at my school in the Dominican Republic, as well as a few plays in college and community theater.
  2. Singing: I wrote songs back in my teens and I was featured on a CD in college. The singing was terrible by the way LOL.
  3. College: I graduated Summa Cum Laude from college while working full time.
  4. I lived on my own for a while. YES! I supported and lived alone while attending college.
  5. I had many jobs. I worked at many places and even was in Banking for a while.
  6. Got married. I found a great guy that loves to serve his country, after years of dating the wrong guys!!!
  7. I have my siblings, many parents, a great husband, and my best friend, who are there for me each time I have one of these moments.
  8. Writing: I am writing this blog.
  9. Travel: I have been to Dom. Rep., Puerto Rico, Bahamas, Mexico, VA, NY, NJ, PA, FL, N.C., S.C., CA, AZ, IL, MD, GA, etc.

I have to say, after all this, I will be blogging about my experiences with my family, friends, and my own life experiences. I hope to go on this journey of self discovery. I hope it will help others, and that I can gain insight from other’s comments.  What is your accomplishment ???

Happy Reading!!!!

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