Ginkgo Biloba.

I’ve put on the chunk in the past couple of months (I blame it on the merriness of jesus’ birth and the anxiety of a Y2K repeat) so I am on a cleanse. I am avoiding sugar (except for pumpkin coffee bread, come oooon) and fried crap. The soda, alcohol and junk I have is minimal. I don’t believe in depriving myself, but realistically, to lose some weight and be an overall healthy individual, you have to cut out the majority of the bad stuff.

I’m eating a lot of green and leafy things. No dairy. Normal portions. I’m the glutton that continues to eat without being hungry, so I eat enough to allow me to live. Actual meals, not feasts. I speed walk around the high school like I’m running away from a rat and being on the third floor requires me to take the stairs. So, I’ve shed some pounds. My mojo is making a comeback.

I drink a lot of water, so for the past couple of days I have been incorporating a cup of tea, to mix things up and to prevent losing my goddamn mind. A lot of them are good for stress, headaches, and burning fat (ching ching!). I used up my coworker’s peppermint tea, so I grabbed a new one – ginkgo biloba, it’s called. I made myself a cup and tra-la-la’d to an ELL English class I help in twice a week. I sat and sipped my tea as the teacher yelled at a student for being…a student. Halfway through:

Bluh. Bluuuuh.

I felt it first and then I heard it. It was my stomach. I only got to eat half my sandwich, I must be hungry.

Bluuuuh. Bllllllllllll. Bbbbbbbb. Holy shit, what is happening?

You know how you clench real tight to minimize the bubbling sounds coming from inside you? I must have an ass of steel right now, the way I was squeezing these buns. I sat upright and the pain shot up my ass and through my spine. I slinked down into the desk and the pain punched my belly.

I dealt with the noise and the stomach pain and started to wonder what made me upset. Obviously, nothing, since I eat less than a damn baby bird. An hour later I walked back to our class, tail between my legs. I felt woozy. I’m unprofessional, so I brought it up to my lady coworkers.

Something made me sick, man.

Nah, it wasn’t anything I ate. I haven’t touched dairy.

Ugh, I might have to go home early.

To which one of my coworkers said, “Yeah, that tea you had? I looked it up. It’s supposed to work as a cleanser. Like, a digestive cleanser.”

Really? Really, god, mary magdalene and all the angels? Really, universe, galaxies and cosmos? Really, karma? Really, Jackie? All a girl wants to do is be healthy and this is what she gets? When I went on a cleanse I meant a bad shit cleanse, not a shit shit cleanse.

Fuck this diet. Coca-cola never gave me the runs.

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Rage.

December 31, 2015 @ 5:04 pm

The last year was rather uneventful. No big changes, no winning lottery ticket, no dream job. Yet, it was a great year. I enjoyed myself, laughed, ate well, had new ideas, felt smitten. My emotions still exist, yet they do not consume or rule me. This is what I worked – fought – for, and I am thankful for 2015.

I wrote this in a journal prior to being picked up to celebrate the new year. I reread what I wrote and wanted to be more profound, more elaborate. But nothing came to mind, and it’s because what I wrote was enough, was right. Nothing big happened, but I was able to enjoy the things that were happening. I was around for happenings. I was happening. Unfortunately there were years where I did not want to be happening. I reflect on that Jackie and feel for her and her wounds, but I also thank her, because she pulled through – she fought like a motherfucker – to allow this Jackie to happen, to be. A five year old could probably kick my ass and I would break a hip trying to karate-chop a dude in the neck, but I am as tough as anybody. I am brimming with rage, but it is a rage that compels me to keep on going, keep on keeping on, keep on trucking. Can’t tell me nothing.

“Rage, rage against the dying of the light.” – Dylan Thomas

Rey.

I hate Lana del Rey.

Not because she exudes mystery or because her nose is strange-looking, but because you said she was your favorite, perfect, and beautiful.

I remember the precise moment. You were making a right onto Newport Avenue and she came on the radio and you came out with that shit. I said that was strange because she wasn’t all that interesting. What I was really thinking is I look nothing like her. I am nothing like her. Since then, I have been jealous.

I used to like a few of her songs. So usually when I hear her voice your name pops into my head and I change the song real quick. Ever since then I blame her for our gradual realization that your idea of love and my idea of love are vastly different. I blame her for your terror of commitment and for my relentless insecurity. I blame her for past ghosts which we both pretend aren’t there but cannot outrun. I blame her for the time I cried lying beside you.

I also blame her for the times you made me shriek with laughter and when you played with my hair. I blame her ass for making me feel comfortable and open and vulnerable once again with someone. I blame her for showing me that liking someone doesn’t have to hurt. I blame her for not hating or regretting you, because you took my weak heart and gave it life when I needed it the most. You showed me that I can, and will, move on from the deepest of pains. Despite your faults and despite the outcome, you are a king amongst men, and few that I know compare.

So sometimes, when a Lana song starts, I turn it up and let it play.

Mistakes.

For those who have been rudely ignoring me (*ahem* all of you), I am currently serving as an AmeriCorps VISTA with the Pawtucket high schools, Tolman and Shea. Though I am getting paid, this is more of a volunteer position. Our goal is to connect juniors and seniors with jobs, internships, college resources, etc. It isn’t as easy as it sounds.

To keep it fun, I’ve already begun to infuse my ridiculousness. I looked at two students today and said, “I probably shouldn’t say this but…there’s a chance you might make a mistake.”

They looked at me, wide-eyed.

“A lot of us make mistakes. Picking the wrong school or major isn’t the end of the world, though. It’s okay.”

I figured I’d give the girls some truth. Or maybe I’m just bitter and cynical. I dunno, you tell me.

It is my job to expose them to different colleges and majors and careers and anything that will help them transition into the adult world. I want to encourage them to dream big, way bigger than what they have believed possible. It is also my duty, I believe, to prepare them for reality. You cannot predict, at 18, how your decisions now will affect you at 25. You do not know all there is to know, you’re 18. Some of us pick colleges or jobs that turn out to be what we expected – and more; others, not so much. There is no outline, no guide, no guru. The Oprah channel is a bunch of shit, don’t believe it. Life is not fair (*Mr. Schanck as he points to the poster on the wall*).

In 2005 I thought I was the bee’s knees and that I didn’t need college or a job or “the man” to be something. Turns out, that was a lie (*Maury Povich voice*). We all need a future. We have to feed our families, pay our bills, contribute to society. It took me two years of straight boozing, two years of total ass kicking at CCRI, three years of exhausting commuting to and from Boston, and a few months having a heck of a hard time finding a job to be where I am today. No one told me that I would graduate from a private university and be unemployed. No one told me my incredible looks weren’t enough to get me hired as a director of communications. Rude. Actually, yes, they did say it, but I’m as dense as a rock.

Fortunately, I now have a role that I enjoy, in the field of my preference, trying to make a difference within a demographic that is severely underserved. It is low-paying, however, so I need to supplement it somehow (and selling my body on Craigslist wasn’t working, obvi). So today I found myself in an interview for a weekend job answering “What are your plans for the future?”

Um. I might as well have driven into a wall at a buck fifty. Um. For some reason I hadn’t thought they would ask me that. I could literally feel the confusion on my face. I was tempted to respond with “I’m grown. Why are you asking me this?” But the truth is, I am not sure what will happen after my year with AmeriCorps is over. Will I serve another term? Will I be able to snag an awesome job? Will I travel? Will I write a book of short stories? I felt like an 18-year-old on a first interview. The voices in my head weren’t letting me think and my ass was getting sweaty. I answered as best I could.

I should get to thinking about it, though, for the sake of my future, but my head hurts and I have a knot in my neck, man. I’m just trying to make it to Friday. I can’t possibly know how my life will be in 5 years, much like 5 years ago I had no idea where I’d be now.

Anyway, after sharing a bit about myself, one of the girls said, “Wow, so it’s like you are going through what we are!”

Exactly. And will I make mistakes? You bet.

That Girl.

Another dose of poetry, ya’ll! This was sent to me last night by my babybun Cindy. I’ve watched it about ten times and it gets better per viewing.

I love this because it is what I have been trying to explain to him for years. Is she me? Am I her? Sadly, this is a poem many women can recite. We are all her at one point in our lives. Sometimes that girl, sometimes refusing to be that girl any longer. Fitting, for today.

“…and though I love you / I’d rather spend every night crying alone on my bedroom floor than to ever be / that girl.”

Again: Strong language.

Pobrecita.

I’m in a poetry kind of mood. Goosebump city right now. There are so many things I want to say but I can’t get it out so I listen to other writers’ release. First poem, which I could watch over and over is “Wolfchild” by Ariana Brown. The second is “Is That All You Got” by my new personal favorite Aja Monet. Note: Strong language.

Dele Tiempo al Time.

*Hooray!* My blog’s second birthday is today. It’s in its terrible twos, yikes. Time seems to creep up on ya in the quickest of ways. It doesn’t feel like I’ve had this blog for that long…but the past two years have felt like forever. I began this blog after my sister’s wedding in Miami, during which I felt happy for the first time in a very long time. I was depleted and defeated and thought I would never be me again. My trip to Miami proved that there was life outside of Rhode Island, life outside of the no-life I had been living in. My blog – jahksofhearts – was my way of trying to engage myself once again to the world. I wasn’t me, but I was so completely and entirely devoted to this not-okay-me that I forgot anything else existed. I didn’t care, to be honest with you.

I intended to get off to a running start on August 24, 2013, but life isn’t quite like that. The past two years have had their ups and downs. It has been such a long process that I am exhausted. But it’s a good kind of exhausted, because the more I go through the less I want to give up. I don’t mind the downs – we all have downs. We all need downs. Like the saying goes, they make the ups even more amazing.
Time doesn’t heal all wounds, but it sure helps. Dele tiempo al tiempo. Give time some time. Or like my dad says: dele tiempo al time. I’m in the terrible two’s stage but hey, at least I’m potty trained. Two years ago I wasn’t sure what today would look like. I don’t know if I even gave it any thought. But so many blessings and funny moments and lessons have occurred that I’m glad they took place, just as they did. Today wouldn’t be today if they hadn’t.

I don’t know what two-years-from-now’s today will look like. Two more years will be two more years of progress and healing and adventure. I can’t wait. But, I can also wait. Know what I’m saying?