Thursday, April 21, 2011

Day 71-74

So its been a week back home and I feel much more settled. I'm finding it harder and harder to write. To stop things and sit down and write. But its crazy, even though I go a couple of days without writing, I think about it all the time. Making mental notes of things I want to make sure I share with you. So being home has been great. I made the list and did all the groceries I want and need for myself. I have been working on organizing my clothes. Getting rid of clothes that dont fit and taking out old clothes that didnt fit before and need to see where I stand with them. Now that warm weather is supposed to be coming soo, I'm excited to strut clothes I haven't been able to. So I totally went back on my word and weighed myself. I was very happy with the numbers but for right now I will not be sharing where I stand with my weight loss. An important mile stone is very close and when I reach it, I will share that with you. I was able to find a gym with a pool at a really good price. Excitingly, its the same gym as my brothers. So from time to time, we will be able to go together. I'm sure as I go along, I could use his helping hand. It is also the same as Sarah's gym, which is great for when I'm at her place. I've mentioned before that I know the more support I have, the better.  I have lost a significant amount of weight and everytime I look at myself in the mirror, I giggle. I think part of it is out of delight and another part is out of disbelief that this is how I look now. Regardless, it makes me giggle and I enjoy it. But I'm also noticing that my skin is a bit flabby, and that is the opposite of what I'm aiming for. I can tell the difference now between just skin and fat. It feels different. Sometimes I think I have new skin all together, so sometimes it feels very  new.  So that tellsts also me that I need more gym time. Excited to start swimming soon and to start some sort of dancing classes. I bought a huge eraser board to hang in my room so I can write all the amazing things I want to do. Short term and long term. One of them is to find a stable to volunteer at. I have a serious adoration for horses and a wise friend told me that I need to learn how to speak "horse" This wise friend also inspired the huge eraser board. Something you constantly look at and update. Something to constantly remind me of the things I'm striving for and towards. I'm also interested in learning a new language. Possibly Italian or German. We'll see.
Everything with the food has been going good. Totally on a seafood kick right now. Loving tuna, crab, fish and shrimp. Turkey is the only meat I'm eating right now. Its so funny. I go through serious food phases. I think I'm ready for sushi. I haven't had sushi in about 5 years and I'm starting to crave it. When I lived in California, I ate it all the time. When I moved, I stopped. So I go through weird phases of foods I love and cant live without and food I cannot even think about without gagging. So weird.
I have had great reunions since I got back and everybody's reaction has been so great. There was a point where I would reject compliments, now I'm all about accepting them. Its nice to come back and truly feel like a different person and also be perceived in that way as well. Definitely a break through.
I miss my family in Colombia. Miss their presence. Altough being home is amazing, the daily obstacles dont seem to disappear. Co-living with people is simply not easy. I cannot wait for the day that I can live alone and independant. Living at home with my mom and step dad in the end is a huge help and a blessing, but its not easy. I have to work hard mentally to keep the peace within my mind. My favorite mantra has been extremely helpful. "Nobody nor nothing can take  the peace, that I have decided to create for myself, away....unless I allow them/it to". It definitely helps in challenging moments. I know it is not correct grammar, but I translated. I repeat half in Spanish and half in English, LOL
My mom is throwing me a "Welcome Home" lunch on Saturday. Looking forward to it because I will see more family and friends that I haven't been able to see. I'm on a mission to see the people I want while I'm not working yet. They are waiting for a release from my Dr in order to allow me to begin working. I cannot wait to start working. Hopefully sometime next week is possible. I'm with Sarah these next couple of days, helping her watch the little one. Lil Ari is my favorite.
Last note, my mind, heart and body are still alligned. Every day I wake up and ask myself, am I balanced? I am fully aware that if I'm feeling down, it will reflect in all areas. So I work hard to switch whatever thought process might be causing the negative feelings in order to keep that "balance". Its everything.
Thank you for reading.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Day 68-70

So I think that every muscle in my body is aching right now. Sarah invited me to workout with her pesonal trainer and she kicked our asses. Can barely move today, but I love it. We did some kick boxing and I think I would really like to get into that. Its definitely feels like a good outlet for aggression. Had a great time envisioning that I was kicking my fat in the face, LOL. I felt my blood pressure dropping a little but was able to recuperate pretty quickly. A good sign. I wish Sarah and I lived closer. It would be so great to be partners. Were good partners. I think that having a partner can be extremely beneficial. Not only do you already have that comittment with yourself but with someone else, which can be a good push sometimes. Unfortunately, we live an hour  apart. I try to see her every weekend. We want to start walking marathons. But not official marathons. Just picking certain days, and walking a 3 1/2 mile walk. Maybe there is even a way to involve a charity into that. It can turn into something pretty cool. You have to pay to walk marathons, and we want something where it can benefit everyone without having that entrance fee. This is all Sarah's idea by the way. I liked it, and I told her I'm in. I also need to find a pool to join. I need to continue with that because I miss it. Besides the fact that its an amazing workout.

In about an hour is my reunion with my mom. I cant even explain how excited I am. The biggest moment I have been waiting for. She is the cutest person I know. She told me the other day that I have to tell her what to change. I said that I can't. Its really a process. and truly I believe, she shouldn't. Its me that has changed, and as we go she will find out where I've changed and how to manage it. You can't ever expect people to change. I've made the changes that I need and now its time to show my household, how I work. I'm excited to get home and plan out my week of meals. I'm excited to make my shopping list and go shopping with her. I've also decided that I want to change my room a bit. I dont want to come home to the same room, because I am different. We're going to IKEA because she wanted to have a full body mirror as a surprise. She is too cute. I love it. I also want to buy a big dry eraser board to hang on my wall. My board of Happiness. I want to fill it with different mantras to repeat, pics of people I love, cut outs of what I want my life to be. Of what my dreams are and the steps I need to take to get there. So a mix of images and writing that I can look at every day to remind me of how far I have come and where it is exactly that I would like to go. I also want to change the colors around a bit. I dont want to paint because that is a bit drastic. But they sometimes use curtains to change the color of a wall. I'm thinking teal is my new color. It has been red for so long and I think its time for a change. Teal is very much a part of the peacock and I have so many amazing images of peacocks from Castalia that it would be so easy to decorate with. Its such a beautiful color and for some reason its sticking with me. For me, its definitely new. When I pain my  nails its usually, purple, pinks. I was getting a manicure and saw the Teal, and immediately went for it. Absolutely love it!! So hopefully we will find some cute stuff today. New things for my enviornment. I want to surround myself with things that make me happy. That includes people too.
So I'm very excited for today. I think it will be productive and another day full of love. Hopefully I will see more family and friends very soon. But first, its me. I need to feel settled and organized. This week. It'll all fall into place as it should.
Thank you for reading

Friday, April 15, 2011

Day 66 & 67

So my last day in Miami was my favorite. I got to spend time with my friend Julio, which is always so inspiring. We ate at a great restaurant on the bay, then went to the beach and talked about life. Catching up. He had great advice for the goals that I want to achieve. He is living many of his dreams and its so great to see. I realize that there are certain people that you have in your life that blow your mind away. What a blessing that is. To have people living on the same parallel as you, is not always easy to find. So many of us may talk in English, but do not always speak the same language. I've been fortunate and have found a handful of people that challenge my wisdom and school me. I truly believe that the next man in my life, has to challenge me mentally and spiritually. There is literally like a click that happens for me when I come in contact with people that are on my same vibrational level. Its  comforting!
All in all, Miami was a perfect trip. Going to the beach never seems enough though. Being on the beach and in the ocean is an intense feeling of connection to love. Hard to describe.  I love it there. I am now back in Chicago. Back home. Staying with my BFF Sarah and her family for now until Sunday. That reunion was just so amazing. Sarah and I are very connected and we share many similar body image concerns. Today we started to touch the subject about how we need to be better examples for one another. She has been amazed with my weight loss. I catch her staring at me, and its so cute. When I first came in, she was quiet. Maybe shock? Or just absorbing it all. The fact that I was back and that I look very different then from when I left. In the end, my message is that if I can do it, anybody can really. But it takes some digging. Its not the surgery that fixes everything. I started losing weight the minute I landed in Colombia. I have accepted that this is a process that I cannot do alone. You need a good support group. Obviously your number one is you, but you need those people you can rely on when your feeling weak or discouraged. I also think that you need the professional support. Drs, nutritionist, councelor, coach, etc. Whatever helps you educate yourself on your situation is beneficial. I think were way too close to always have the answers for our own issues. I'm awesome at giving advice and knowing what to say for others, but sometimes when it comes to me, I'm lost. An outside perspective can change things drastically. Trust me, I know what it feels like to simply take up space in this world, but I am a living example of what transformation really means. I didn't just lose weight in Colombia, I made serious changes. I can say that I feel happy. That I am happy. I feel in control. I faced many of my fears and I continue to do that daily. That in itself is an act of faith. Fear controls the majority of our lives, and to begin facing them, creates room for more growth and love. Without love, you have fear.
The food has been going good here. Portions are still small and frequent. I haven't worked out these couple days. I have been so exhausted from the trip. Tomorrow Sarah and I will be going to her trainer together, so that will be fun. A good start to the workout routine. I look forward to finally getting to my house and seeing my mom. Settling in, unpacking. I get to go through my whole wardrobe and see what no longer fits me. I also have old clothes that I never let go of for the day that I lost weight. So I'm excited to go through them and see what new articles of clothing I can add to my closet once again. It will be interesting to start seeing people that I havent seen in two months. Receiving the praise and compliments is new and I'm enjoyin it. I used to reject them in my mind, and now I feel myself accepting them and much more open to hearing other people start to recognize what I've been working so hard for. Being back is a familiar feeling, but thankfully, I'm still a changed Ana. Still confident, strong and determined.
Thank you for reading.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Day 62-65

I love Miami so much. Makes me happy. Its definitely been a nice transition back into the US. I've been to the beach, spending time with family and also with friends. Its kind of weird being back in the US. So far, I've stuck to my habits. I still feel great. My walks have been happening at night with my aunt, which is great. The weather here is perfect. Well today was a bit hot, 93, but evenings are great. The breeze is so affectionate and the heat has felt great. To feel the salt water on my skin and sand on my feet has been a great treat. So years ago when I lived here, my life was pretty crazy. I think it was my first phase into having any kind of self esteem and self confidence. It was a crazy time in my life and loved every minute of it. It was a bit of a partying point in my life. Sex and drugs were very familiar to me. Never truly in abusive manners. My mom was out of town a lot, and our apartment was literally right on the beach. Those were really good days. From that time, I've made life long friends. I love having friends from a certain point in time because they get to witness a significant amount of growth in me. My cousin told me the other day how great I look and that its not just the weight loss, but that I really look happy. My response was, "I am"! Not sure if I have ever felt this happy, for this long at a time. I'm grateful.

I'm excited to get back to Chicago. Start a routine. I've been doing my best at keeping it here, but its difficult when your not in your own home. Today is technically my last day because I leave super early tomorrow. Cannot wait to hug my dear friends again. I'll see my mom on Sunday. That will be a very sweet reunion, that I truly look forward to. One thing for sure is that being far helps you have a whole new appreciation for the people you see everyday or regularly. Its trying to remember that once things return to normal again, to keep that appreciation present. Its hard to do. Being in Miami makes me want to live here for a while. Its so full of nature and tropical energy, that I'm always smiling. To have the option to go take a swim in the ocean, is just therapeutic. Feels so healthy. Makes me wanna do yoga and eat carrots. LOL Who knows what the future holds, but it is an option that I've been contemplating. I was expressing some concerns about future options and my mom kinda laughs and said, "We are all naive to think that we have some kind of control in our lives." I loved it. The process of actually just trusting life and having faith is so so powerful. I know I deserve great things. I've put a lot in to life. I get so worked up about the next step, that a lot of the time theres so much to learn in the NOW, and sometimes I miss it. But things repeat themselves until you learn what you need from them, and move on to the next lesson. So trusting God, the universe and in my karma is my new practice. Here are some pics from my stay here. Dont have too many but they make me happy.
Thank you for reading

Staycy, cousin Erika and I at the beach. 

I was here

My favorite causeway 195. Surrounded by beauty, even in  traffic

My cousin Jonathan and I at Lincoln Rd, eating Gelato..mmmm

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Day 60&61-Colombian Farewell

Here I am. Sitting in bed, writing my last post in Colombia, from this beginning. Crying is the only thing that seems logical. So much has happened here and I truly do not have enough words to express all the mixture of emotions I'm going through right now. Please excuse the language, but I am so fucking proud to be where I am today. I'm so proud, it seems unreal. I look at myself in the mirror and I look at myself in my heart and I am no longer the same person you once knew. I have new skin, new glasses to look through and new found love for myself. Theres truly nothing more that could fulfill me more. Tomorrow at 930am, I get on the same plane that left that Ana behind. I will be getting on it to fly back to that place I once knew that was filled with darkness, fear, desperation, sadness, pain, hopelessness and loss of direction. I will get on this plane with hope, courage, bravery, strength, Clarity, security, determination, patience, happiness and most importantly LOVE. My gratitude is infinite. I find myself without words to describe it, the only thing I can hope for is that you can feel it through this post. Hope you can feel all the amazing energy I am putting into this post and into your hearts. This is a very important post. Its the most important g'bye. The g'bye to a place, geographically and time, that has brought me so much enlightenment and transformation. G'bye to the place where it all started. The place that gave me life and created this being that you read today. Flawed and strengthend. Beautiful and scared. This g'bye begins the rest of my journey. The next step on my very bright path. Thank you to all of you that supported me and showed me love. For the first time, I allowed it to happen. To all of you, you are with me every step of the way on my journey. I am ready. I am ready to face those fears and to conquer them. To continue this amazing jump start I have on accepting myself and allowing you to see how amazing I really am. To show you the light that lives within me. My essence.
Yesterday I was able to have a final, physical coaching session, and it was dedicated to celebration. There is so much to celebrate and I will only mention a few. I celebrate the feelling of really liking myself. I celebrate all the relationships I have been able to establish and discover here. I celebrate being 36 pounds healthier. I celebrate my new, more independent relationship with  my mom. I celebrate all the challenges that I was able to overcome. I celebrate my de-layering. I celebrate my courage and my strength. I celebrate life and all of its wide open doors that I'm ready to walk through. I celebrate my greatness and ready to let it shine.
Last night I had a great g'bye gathering with cousin Laura, my sister Magda Cristina, Camilo and a friend we call Gordo. It was a great evening. Just a final reconnection with friends. Tonight was my g'bye moments with my family. That was the hardest. But I truly appreciate every moment spent with everyone and could not have asked for a more perfect of an experience. Colombia, thank you. For your support and for your love. I didn't get to see my cousin Pedro. So Pedro, thank you so much for being so damn great and for showing me that its possible to be happy no matter what. Thank you for your inspirations and wisdom. You are truly an example of a pure essence of an amazing being. I appreciate the times we spent together and everything I learned from you. I love you and will miss you dearly. I cordially invite you to Chicago. Hope one day, we can make that happen. Good luck with your problem though, lol ;)
I love you all, and for the last time from this chapter,
Thank you for reading

A soul mate.Thank you for the CLARITY

Laura and I. Thank you for the laughs. Mi Lauris, gracias por las carcajadas. Te adoro

Ha!!! Cant come to Colombia and not eat their amazing hot dog.

Dont worry, I took a total of 3 bites of this and was full. So damny yummy!!

Beautiful Lauris. Te adoro!!!

For you! Gordo and I. Childhood friends

Gordo, Camilo and I. Many great laughs. Camilo, my dear friend

The farewell PJ party. Laura, sister and I

My little sister Cris and I. Love her!

My little cousin Sebastian and I. He took this pic himself. So damn cute!!

Sandra, Uncle Jorge and I. Love them so much

Uncle Guillermo and Aunt Marcela. My 2nd parents. So much love and adoration. Words arent really enough here.

Then theres me. Happy and ready. Will miss u Colombia, and all of the greatness you hold within. Thank you and Thank you!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Day 59

Ok, so Its official I leave Colombia this coming Sunday. I know I know, its short notice. But I'm ready. It may be that there are other people that dont seem to be ready, but I totally am. Things had to be sooner than later because of the ticket prices. I'm thrilled. To be honest, I just packed my bags. LOL I have my clothes packed. Just still have a little shopping to do for my bosses and such. Today is my 2 month anniversary here. I'm grateful that things have gone so smoothly that I get to leave a month earlier than planned. I will be continuing my coaching through skype and I'm not worried about continuing my process no matter where I am, really. I am going to Miami on Sunday and will be spending a few days there. I plan on attending the beach everyday and having a little escape before I get back home. I get back to Chicago Thursday the 14th. I will be going straight to Sarah's. I cannot wait to spend time huggin her. My cuddler. and I get to see lil Ari. I have so much to look forward to. To hug my mom seems so incredible and comforting. It wasn't easy to decide to leave so soon. But I knew that it may come to a point to know what I'm willing to sacrifice in order to get home soon. The hardest thing is that I wont be able to get to see my cousin Juli and her baby. It hurts my heart. But I plan to visit them this summer or fall and I would get them all to myself. Really, all I did was ask for the light to help me. To guide me. and for whatever be the best for me, come clearly and easy. and honestly, for the most part it has. My uncle doesn't want me to leave and doesn't understand my reasons, but I realize that not everyone is going to understand me. and thats ok. I accept everyone has different opinions, so it makes sense for some to disagree with me. In the end, it helps make my decision that much clearer. I have no doubts about this decision. It took me a minute to not allow doubt and guilt creep in. For a minute it actually started effecting me physically. I truly hate to disapoint people, especially people I love, but I guess thats part of life. Even if their mistakes, their mine to make. Its no ones responsibility to save me or to live my life. Hopefully I get to see all the people I want to before I leave. Sadly, tomorrow the g'byes begin.
Thank you for reading

Day 57&58

So these two days have been great. I had my Drs apt and he was very happy with everything. I'm at a total loss of 36pounds. That will be the last time I weigh myself for a while. But all in all he was just so pleased with how my recovery has gone. So well that he says the next apt will be in December. So I'm released from anymore appointments. I was so happy that I cried. My blood pressure is perfect, the black pigment is almost gone on my neck and face. My hands and elbows are still darker but a lot lighter. Things are falling into place physically and I've never felt better. I'm really proud of myself and that feeling of pride and gratefulness was overwhelming. So thats it. I'm leaving. Tonight I will look for tickets and plan my trip home. My time here is done and its time to move on to the next phase of my process. Many challenges are ahead but I feel ready. I was able to have a coaching session right after my Drs apt. It was great. Again, I left feeling with new wisdom and stronger. With more amunition to move on with. With less fear. Fear always has a tendancy to creep back in. To create doubts and start the stream of negative thoughts. But I'm learning how to cut it short and get back on track. It was a great session. I decided to go to a movie by myself and thoroughly enjoyed it. All in all this all feels just perfect and just as its meant to be. I ended up going to my aunt and my uncle's and spending some time with them. oh and I found my thumbdrive so here are some last pics from when I was in Castalia and some from here in the city.
Thank you for reading.

My favorite calf. She is so bossy and rude with others but loved me!

My Dad and I at the bus station. Our b'bye :(

Laura and I on our romantic date. 

Greatest guy I know!!!! My cousin Pedro that loves chocolate bars, lol

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Day 55&56

So I'm back in Bogota now. I said my g'byes and it was really hard to leave my Dad. I wish we could've had more time together. More farm and machete time. LOL 2 weeks is just getting past the icing on the cake. I want to one day get to the core. I have so many questions. Many topics I want to touch, but maybe I need to get to know him better before I be so forward with him. I dont want to cross boundaries or relive painful memories for someone who doesnt want to. Although, I'm notorious for that. Maybe I'm a masochist. Well, I kinda am. but maybe thats too much info for you. LOL No, but somehow reliving and reminiscing on difficult times in my life, makes me realize that I'm a soldier. That I have survived many emotional, painful tornadoes within my own mind and heart. So maybe I enjoy sharing it out loud as being proud that I overcame it. And I realize that by sharing, I touch lives and maybe even inspire a little. But not everyone is like me. Many people live with regrets, die with regrets. I dont think I have any. If you had to do it over again, and you would do it a little differently, does it mean you regret it? Part of living is learning, so I dont regret doing the things that I have done, but they werent always the smartest. They were pretty fun for the majority of it, LOL All in its due time. My cousin says maybe there are questions that arent meant to be asked. and thats true. But I'm way too curious. I'm more of a "lets just ask and if goes wrong I'll apologize later" kind of person. LOL I was sharing the fact of how curious I am about the way things went down before and during my life between my parents. Also curious about my brother Luis. He is not always the easiest topic to bring up. But I have definitely learned a lot more about his childhood being here. I'm like an open book. Many people are very reserved, and really I dont think there is a question that I wont answer. I may not always be the most comfortable, but I'll answer it. Good example is tonight at dinner in front of family, my funny cousin decides to ask me if I own a vibrator. Ummmm. My only hesitation was that my aunt was there. Too funny.  I figure the more I share, the better I feel to be so free and honest and in the end, the easier you get to know me. and vice versa.
I'm upset because I  cant find my thumb drive to transfer pics. I have a few to share with you guys and cant find the way to download them. Hopefully its somewhere in my suitcase.  These last couple of days, since I got back have truly been great. I have had amazing company and I have had amazing conversations. I dont want it to end. I can talk to my one cousin all night. I truly enjoy conversing with someone who challenges my thinking and thought process in general. Not only that, but he has qualities that I aspire to aquire one day. Its enviable. So worry free and simply happy. Theres nothing complicated about him. (not that I have found yet at least, lol)Nothing bothers him. I asked him what things in life make him happy, and he answers, "buying a chocolate bar every once in a while". LOL  Not the profound answer I was looking for, but thats him. Simple. Its admireable and inspiring. I truly appreciate every moment spent. So thank you!
Today I started a cooking class which was absolutely awesome. It got me excited to get in the kitchen and try out healthy recipes. Cool recipes for healthy bread, healthy butter, taboule, falafels and this fantastic apple and cinnamon dessert. Not only the food, but she talked a lot about the things I am already integrating into my life. Eating slowly, eating by using all 5 of yours senses. Using food as your meditation. So it was very cool to have something to identify with. Its only a 2 day course. So Today and Thursday. Tomorrow is my follow up visit with my Dr. We'll see what the next step is, if there is one. Everything has gone so well, the only thing I can think of is some blood work to check my nutrition levels.  Its hard to fully nutriate(is that a word?) your body when you cant eat all that much. But I'm excited to see him and for him to see my progress. At which point I will decide my return date and start searching for tickets. Besides tomorrow, I'm going to follow my cousin's advice and not weigh myself for a while. I realize it frustrates me and I think it takes the focus off of what really matters and thats, that I feel pretty awesome. So I'll keep you updated and hopefully find my thumb drive so I can post some fun pics.
Thank you for reading

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Day 49-54

Its been a while. The farm has no signal really. And I haven’t really left the farm to go into town for much reason at all. I leave tonight on an 8hr bus ride back to the city of Bogota. Back to loudness. Back to traffic. Back to pollution. Back to daily stress. Back to my grandmother’s house for a little while. Its hard to leave this paradise that I’ve grown accustomed to for the past 2 weeks. Especially being with my Dad. We had a routine down and everything. He would wake me up in the morning, we would have breakfast together. Go to work on his farm for a little while. Come back for lunch, then back to the farm to work some more. Come back to Castalia, he would watch and time me swim. We would have dinner with the family and then sit out front in the dark and look at the stars. Watch a movie, then to bed. We did that everyday. I became much more active on the farm as time passed. It was definitely a new experience for me. Helping him cut tall grasses for the cows with a machete. Yea, he taught me how to use a machete and I loved it. I felt like for once, maybe I am his daughter. I obviously have always been his daughter, but never with this much bonding or this much in common. I have been in his world and have loved it so much. I wish I could stay and help him feed the cows daily. They started to know who I  was. There were a couple that would come to me for me to pet them and for them to lick whatever it is that was in my hand. Its amazing how people can adapt to things. I truly enjoyed sweating and being hot and getting dirty. I know where everything is in the farm. I started doing jobs without him asking me. More than ever have I become a part of him. Females don’t really work much here. They cook and they clean. That’s about it. Here I walk in, asking him to teach me how to use a machete. Lol Its truly been great.

I’ve learned so much while being here. So much about our family history. My uncle Pedro is so great to talk to. I really got to know him so much more this time. He is the “boss man” of our family business here. The Ramirez family started in the fish business in 1982. The year I was born. It is owned and operated by our family only. My Dad side is huge and more united that anything you have ever seen. When we all get together, including all 3 generations, were about 80 or so people. Its never a small reunion. But their so great. Regardless of differences, regardless of arguments they all gather here in Castalia to engage in family/social events. Its truly a blessing to be part of such a big family. Castalia is the name of the farm where my Dad and uncles grew up. It’s a huge house. I found out my grandfather named it Castalia because in Rome there is a fountain named Castalia and it means Life. I don’t even know how many acres it is, but its huge. And here we cultivate and process Mojarra aka tilapia. Throughout the country, Castalia is its own brand of fish. They were the first to make fish something popular to eat here in this town. They made it affordable for people and every part of its success has come directly from each family member. Its amazing that a family business can still be successfully thriving after 29 years. It says so much about the respect and dignity that my family holds. Its been such a pleasure listening to my uncle and Dad talk about the history of the house and of the family. Being able to spend more time here has been so beneficial. Especially that theres not too many people here now, so I’m much more a part of the conversations and the sharing.

They have a big holiday coming up which is translated into Saint Week. It’s the week that leads up to Easter. So that whole week family begins to migrate from all over the world really so that they can all be together. Its been tough to decide what to do because I really want to be here for it. There will be family that I haven’t seen in such a long time. But at the same time, my time here is done. I cant explain the feeling I have to be back home. There are things that need to be done and my mind cant rest thinking about them. Not to mention getting back to work. Being here for so long feels like a luxury. One that I don’t have at this point in my life. I’m not financially independent in my life yet and it feels irresponsible to be relaxing by the pool, while at home I have a car situation to figure out. My mom is trying to weigh out her options for her future, which forces me to re evaluate my life as well. Where will I live? What do I do next? Do I stay in Illinois or back to Miami? There’s a lot on my plate now and I feel like from here, I cant do much of anything. I have no control from here. If my Dr says I’m good to go, I would like to leave Colombia April 16th. That way I can get to see my one cousin that I absolutely love the most, Juliana. She is my soul sister, my best friend and I haven’t seen her in about 5 or so years. Not to mention she just had a baby, Victoria. So on Wednesday I will know more because that is my Drs apt that I’m waiting for more news from. I’ve been doing great that I don’t see him keeping me here for any longer. I’ve accomplished so much and I’ve come so far. It feels like whatever I came to do here, is done. Time to go back home and start the new routine that needs to be implemented in my life there. Here its easy. Everyone cooks for me, there’s always someone there to make my bed, I’m extremely spoiled here. My real challenge comes, when I get back home. Why wait any longer? I’d like to spend some days in Miami on my way back home. To go to the beach and spend time with that family for a bit. Come home and get to it.

A lot lies ahead and mainly, I’m excited.  But I’m also very scared. I know there are tough times ahead, but I guess that’s how life is. Nothing great comes that easily and I always get through it. Its like taking a cold shower. LOL I know I have to take a shower and I know at first it will be unpleasant, but once I’m done and take that first jump in, I feel amazing. Even if I have to work at controlling my breathing or shiver, I make it through the shower cleaner and happier than before. I know it’s a silly metaphor, but I ask why be so scared when really I confront and make it through obstacles on a daily basis. This new eating style of mine is definitely an obstacle. Not because I want to eat more, because really I take my 4 bites and I’m good, but mainly because I have to be careful and monitor my thoughts and make sure I’m moving forward psychologically. And also because when I eat, I have to be careful and not over eat not one bite. One bite over, and the uncomfortable feeling of being full is overwhelming. Its me against me. Yesterday I finally ate red meat and it was Milanesa and mashed potatoes. Milanesa is a very thin, breaded meat. Its absolutely delicious and it comes from Argentina. If you know me, mashed potatoes is my absolute favorite food. I got full so fast and started to feel frustrated that I couldn’t eat more of it. I love it so much and I wanted to fully indulge. Talking to my mom today I realized that was not really the best way to think of it. I’m in this position because I made that choice. Thankfully I can eat anything I want so far and not get sick, but just a little bit of it. I don’t believe in sacrificing the things I enjoy to eat. And so far so good. Instead of being frustrated, I should’ve been thankful I can savor such an amazing meal. Its thoughts like that, that I have to be careful with. I think someone in my position can easily ruin things if I don’t keep on my path. On the whole path. The physical, mental and emotional path. Its all connected, so if one is slacking the other start to be effected. It’s a lot of work. It can be overwhelming at times, which I’m sure is very normal. Just goting stay in tune with me. With my essence. With my greater purpose. That probably the biggest challenge. To remember that it’s a daily struggle to love yourself unconditionally and that you have to keep it present at all times. One blink, and you can be back at square one. That will not be my story. Square one, no longer exists for me. It is not an option. Thankfully, this blog truly helps keep me present. Instead of eating to comfort myself or to escape, I write. These days, that I haven’t posted anything, I have felt different. Emotionally heavier. And well now that its time to say bye to my Dad, even more. But this is how it goes. Unfortunately this is just another good bye, among the many I have had to say. The great part is that eventually, I get to say hello again.
Thank you for reading