Enough is Enough.

So after the dark days (and the kiss strike of nfjashfu$%#@), this is what it's like.

You get out of bed and you say "ENOUGH. Enough now"

Because, life goes on.


It's Not Easy (When You're Depressed)

Holly Golightly: You know those days when you get the mean reds?
Paul Varjak: The mean reds. You mean like the blues?
Holly Golightly: No. The blues are because you're getting fat, and maybe it's been raining too long. You're just sad, that's all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly you're afraid, and you don't know what you're afraid of.

Everyone is fighting a battle; some tougher than others, but the point is we're all battling. I believe that. And I also believe that the hardest battle is the one with yourself.
We all get the blues but then the blues linger on and on and on; enter the mean reds. It comes out of nowhere on an otherwise perfectly good day. And it's temporary, right?.... Intermittently so.

On good days, the all-too-fabulous-albeit-hostile mindset of "I don't give a flying fuck" gets you by. 
It's a tight rope you learn to walk on and respect. Not giving a fuck has its upside: nothing hurts. Not giving a fuck has its downside: not giving a fuck. 

** Source **

The bad days are full of desperation. You want to be able to simply shake off this feeling, this constant fear and repression built up in your head that holds you back. 
And so you resort to isolation. Alone and gloomy, that's the only place for you. At least, that's how it feels. 
Then comes the torturer and killer of all good: Guilt. Guilt does not shut up: "I have no reason to feel like this. I have everything going for me. Why do I feel like shit? Why do I hate myself so much? Why am I not happy? What if I just dropped dead? Is there a point to my life?"
The pity turns into hatred, pure loathing that strips you to nothing. And you start to believe you are nothing.

Sometimes you're so afraid of yourself because your thoughts overpower all grasp on reality of things.
You continue punishing yourself (verbally, physically, mentally) because you know you shouldn't feel like this. And you continue to do so because it becomes a habit, your own ritual.
You think too much. You believe things you shouldn't. You get scared and you become paralysed.
You decide it's easier to hide away in bed and avoid everyone, especially yourself.
But you're still here. You can't run away.

Habits and rituals....
There was a time in high school I cut myself. Actually, it became a sort of fad amongst a group of people. Part of me did it for their recognition. To feel like i belonged with a group of people. Part of me did it for attention. 
The scariest realisation was that a greater part of me actually did enjoy it.
I used whatever I could get my hands on; scissors, staples, razors, knives, anything reasonably sharp really. 
One time I recall using shards of glass from a recently broken shot glass... You get desperate. You become addicted. It becomes a ritual.
I never thought it was about "feeling alive" so much as punishment to your suffering and adding actual reason to the suffering.
Then, the guilt, again.
The worthlessness.
The never ending cycle..

My senior year in high school we had a rude awakening. In a span of 3 months, 3 students killed themselves. One, a classmate of mine. 
I didn't even have the courage to tell my parents until the school called them and word got around via other parents. 
If I said it out loud perhaps it would make it less real, less painful. I didn't want it to be real because it would mean having to face my own dark side and that was too much for me to handle.

The 3rd boy was a family friend, one we'd known for many years.
My mother and I had spoken to his mom a week before he did it. "He's fine, his older brother spoke to him." We were at a piano recital and everything did seem to be okay.
They say there's a calm before the storm; that once the decision is made, they accept their choice with peace.
The night it happened, I was chatting to a mutual friend on MSN. It's a hazy memory.
I remember going up to my mom, freezing, saying his name, and crying. That was all I needed to say.
My parents headed to their house to support the parents. I was not to be left alone, so I went over to a friend's house. We watched Friends. I made sure my other friends were okay.

The following weeks were difficult for me because someone had done something I fantasised about. I had nightmares, insomnia, a sense of guilt because I was still alive. 
Some people say it's cowardly, some say it's brave.
They don't all do it for the same reason. Either way, some of us still hold on. 
Some fight, fight, fight.

I'm still here. I'm still surrounded by people who love me. I choose to live everyday- the reason may not be clear right now, but it's there. Otherwise, I wouldn't be here. Believe it ornot, it is a choice.
You will eventually see yourself the way others do and you will love yourself. Unconditionally.
The decisions you make may not always be the right ones, but they're decisions. They get you through the hours, the day, the week. Keep making them, keep choosing, keep living.

You get better at it as time goes by. All you need to do is give yourself a chance.
Give yourself a chance to enjoy. To live. To smile. To be grateful.

The good days-or day (in singular)- are worth all the bad ones and so much more.

** Source ** is worth reading. I encourage you to do so RIGHT HERE.


Past the Roaring Mid-Twenties

It's official: I am closer to 30 than I am to 20. 
Don't let the Totoro cupcakes fool you.

My birthdays normally consist of a smallish get together of friends and family. They never disappoint!
This year was also better because it included a weekend getaway to Malinalco.*

Reading, hiking, market walking, ice cream eating, good company keeping, and greenery all around make it the perfect city getaway. I couldn't have asked for more!

2013 has been very good to me.
For that, and many others, I am grateful.

 * Paradise on Earth.


You Waited This Long Now Stop Debating, 'Cause I'm Back*

I'm too embarrassed to check the date on my last post. Oy.

It's been an interesting last couple of months, which I guess I will slowly (but surely) go into details.
Most importantly, it's been a time of personal growth.
I know 2013 isn't over yet, but I'm a fan.

Something I've finally gotten to doing more again?
And it's helped me feel like me, again.

And in the spirit of books, What Red Read answered a bookish survey (who, in turn, links back to Jamie and Sarah) which inspired me to get back on here.

So, here it goes!

Authors you've read the most books from: Does Shakespeare count? 'Cause I've read about 70% of his work. Or Austen, which I admit are only 5 that I've read.

Best sequel ever: I agree, does this mean it's a 2 book thing only? Either way, 'Prisoner of Azkaban' is still my favourite of the Harry Potter saga (that word makes me think of Twilight *shudder* )

Currently reading: The Cuckoo's Calling and The Phantom of the Opera

Drink of choice while reading: Tea. Tea. Tea. A nice hot cupp'a tea.

Ereader or physical book: I love a physical book; the engagement in the turning of the pages, the weight, the (hard)cover. I'm not, however, against e-readers. I think they have their own charm too. But nothing will ever beat a book.

Fictional character that you probably would have dated in high school: Mr. Darcy. Horatio. Mr. Rochester (he had his charms).  

Glad you gave this book a chance: 

Hidden gem book: No Great Mischief by Alistair MacLeod. I though it was a beautiful. The imagery wasn't long or pretentious, but I felt as if I were looking through someone's family photographs (a-la-Harry Potter, movement wise).  
"All of us are better when we're loved."

Important moment in your reading life: Actually, studying English Literature and getting my BA. I enjoyed every second of my degree.

Just finished: Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson. Hilarious! 

Kind of books you won't read: Isn't good to expand and move away from your comfort zone? I've always been a fiction lover. And classics lover. I feel like I need to get more into History. Baby steps, right?

Longest book you read: Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. 

Major book hangover because of: Cormac McCarthy's The Road. I had to stop reading it at nights because I'd have nightmares; I still had nightmares after having finished reading it...
Also the last Harry Potter because... what else was there to look forward to every summer?!

Number of bookcases you own: 3, I guess. 

One book you've read multiple times: The Little Prince (St. Exupery), Hamlet (Shakespeare), and Sense & Sensibility (Austen).

Preferred place to read: The floor or a comfy couch. (This explains my neck pains... And reminds me of THIS illustration)

Quote that inspires you: "...on ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux."

Reading regret: That I didn't keep up my reading habits from college. Granted, life (ie work & +school) gets 'in the way'...

Series you started and need to finish: Yep. Started Game of Thrones... and that's it. I was pulled into it but just haven't set myself to pursue it. Agatha Christie (Poirot and Ms.Marple) are also some I enjoyed and have wanted to read more of. 

Three of your all-time favorite books: The Little Prince by Antoine de St. Exupery, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee and Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov.

Unapologetic fangirl for: Hunger Games. There, I said it. And Neil Gaiman. And J.K. Rowling.

Very excited for this release: I was looking forward to The Ocean at the End of the Lane (Gaiman) and I'm really curious to read King's sequel to The Shining (x-years later!!)--> Have a look at this Article

Worst bookish habit: "Feeling the need to finish a book even if I'm not liking it. I need to learn to let go"- I hear you. I've only managed to quit one book in my life because I didn't get what the whole hoopla was about.**

marks the spot! start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book: So, from which bookshelf? Eenie meenie... Shakespeare: The World as Stage by Bill Bryson.

Your last bookish purchase: I was the happiest person on Earth a couple of weeks ago because I went to NYC; of course I stopped by The Strand. And I happened to buy a Great Gatsby sweatshirt and a Cat Tote (plus a magnet and some books, of course!)

Zzz-snatcher. Which book kept you up way late?: Nowadays, I can't stay up past 12am. It's physically impossible for me. Last time I was reading The Cuckoo's Calling though I kept saying "One more chapter.."- until I dreamt I was still reading and was making up my own plot line...***

It's good to be back.

*Yes. I'm back, classy as ever, 'singing' some Eminem.
** The DaVince Code. Bland prose if ever I read one.
*** This is why I don't pressure myself into reading at night. I tend to read-dream stuff up. It gets confusing.



I used to feel so alone in the city. All those gazillion of people and then me, on the outside. Because how do you meet a new person?
I was very stumped by this for many years.

And then I realized, you just say, "Hi."
They may ignore you. Or you may marry them.
And that possibility is worth that one word.

-- Augusten Burroughs

Source: nytimes.com via Mariana on Pinterest


la tu la tee la twaa

Watching a Chaplin film for the nth time always feels like the first.
The man never ceases to amaze me.

Here's a little reminder for the start of your week:

'A day without laughter is a day wasted' 
-- Charlie Chaplin


Life Lessons Improv Taught Me (In the Words of Tina Fey)

As I write this, I am in bed with the flu, so spare my brevity...

I took a couple of improv classes in school a couple of times and loved it. Although it turned out to be harder than I thought (not that I thought it was going to be super easy), it never ceased to be fun and educational in oh-so-many-ways. 

So without further ado, I leave you with Tina*.


The Rules of Improvisation That Will Change Your Life and Reduce Belly Fat
(Improv will not reduce belly fat)

The first rule of improvisation is AGREE. Always agree and SAY YES. When you're improvising, this means you are required to agree with whatever your partner has created. So if we're improvising and I say, "Freeze, I have a gun," and you say, "That's not a gun. It's your finger. You're pointing your finger at me," our improvised scene had ground to a halt. But if I say, "Freeze, I have a gun!" and you say, "The gun I gave you for Christmas! You bastard!" then we have started a scene because we have AGREED that my finger is in fact a Christmas gun.

Now, obviously in real life you're not always going to agree with everything everyone says. But the Rule of Agreement reminds you to "respect what your partner has created" and to at least start from an open-minded place. Start with a YES and see where that takes you.

As an improviser, I always find it jarring when I meet someone in real life whose first answer is no. "No, we can't do that." "No, that's not in the budget." "No, I will not hold your hand for a dollar." What kind of way is that to live?

The second rule of improvisation is not only to say yes, but YES, AND. You are supposed to agree and then add something of your own. If I start a scene with "I can't believe it's so hot in here," and you just say, "Yeah..." we're kind of at a standstill. But if I say, "I can't believe it's so hot in here," and you say, "What did you expect? We're in hell." Or if I say, "I can't believe it's so hot in here," and you say, "Yes, this can't be good for the wax figures." Or if I say, "I can't believe it's so hot in here," and you say, "I told you we shouldn't have crawled into this dog's mouth," now we're getting somewhere.

To me, YES, AND means don't be afraid to contribute. It's your responsibility to contribute. Always make sure you're adding something to the discussion. Your initiations are worthwhile.

The next rule is MAKE STATEMENTS. This is a positive way of saying "Don't ask questions all the time." If we're in a scene and I say, "Who are you? Where are we? What are we doing here? What's in that box?" I'm putting pressure on you to come up with all the answers.

In other words: Whatever the problem, be part of the solution. Don't just sit around raising questions and pointing out obstacles. We've all worked with that person. That person is a drag. It's usually the same person around the office who says things like "There's not calories in it if you eat it standing up!" and "I felt menaced when Terry raised her voice."

MAKE STATEMENTS also applies to us women: Speak in statements instead of apologetic questions. No one wants to go to a doctor who says, "I'm going to be your surgeon? I'm here to talk to you about your procedure? I was first in my class at Johns Hopkins, so?" Make statements, with your actions and your voice.

Instead of saying "Where are we?" make a statement like "Here we are in Spain, Dracula" Okay, "Here we are in Spain, Dracula" may seem like a terrible start to a scene, but this leads us to the next rule:

THERE ARE NO MISTAKES, only opportunities. If I start a scene as what I think is very clearly a cop riding a bicycle, but you think I am a hamster in a hamster wheel, guess what? Now I'm a hamster in a hamster in a hamster wheel. I'm not going to stop everything to explain that it was really supposed to be a bike. Who knows? Maybe I'll end up being a police hamster who's been put on "hamster wheel" duty because I'm "too much of a loose cannon" in the field. In improv there are no mistakes, only beautiful happy accidents. And many of the world's greatest discoveries have been by accident. I mean, look at the Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, or Botox.

-- Fey, Tina. Bossypants. New York: Little, Brown and, 2011( pp. 84 - 85)

If you're a Tina Fey/30 Rock/SNL fan I'm (almost) sure you'll enjoy this book.
I read it in two (plane) sittings, laughed out loud on various occasions and dog-eared many-a-page.
Who doesn't love Tina Fey?

* You know, my really good friend Ms.Fey...


The (Pre) Valentine's Day Post

I'm just going to keep this sweet & short.

Valentine's Day is nigh upon us.  
In Mexico*, Valentine's Day is called Dia del Amor y la Amistad, which translates to Day of Love & Friendship. 

So, from one (single) lady & friend to another (single or not),
Happy Friendship Day! 

Source: ebs.fm via Sarah on Pinterest

Source: r.ebay.com via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: weheartit.com via Sarah on Pinterest

Source: tumblr.com via Lindsey on Pinterest


* And I'm sure other Latin American Countries too.


February Skies (& More Room Goings-On)

Extreme skies in February so far.
One minute it was sunny & bright, the next- gray and rainy.
Then I noticed an unusual yellow-orange light filling up my room.


It proceeded to change colours: pink & blue.


Here's a time lapse of the craziness.
Mexico City's pretty awesome.

And just for kicks, another preview of a nook in my room as it is now...


A Room of One's Own (With a View)

I'm not sure what I meant with that either. 
What I do know is, I want - and, more importantly, need - a room makeover.
Maybe it's because the new year has finally dawned on me, or because I've had the same setup for who-knows-how-many-years; it's time for a change!

Only thing is, I'm not sure how to go about it.
I've book cases, a bed & boudoir and not enough walls to begin with.
I want new bedspreads. I want my round couch reupholstered. 
I also want a wooden floor (though the blue carpet is great for floor reading...).

I love colours. I love monotone.
I love coordinated. I love meshed.
I love classic. I love bohemian.
I love grown up. I love kiddy. 

I need to find the right balance.
This is where other bloggers and Pinterest come to the rescue.
Here are a few inspiring pictures I just felt like sharing (because who knows better about Interior Design than bloggers, am I right?)

Photo by Kate Gabrielle of Scathingly Brilliant; found in this lovely post of hers.

Micaela Hoo - of Drifter & the Gypsy- posted a fantastic set of photos  of a dream studio apartment that had me swooning.
This cozy & perfect residence belongs to Kara of I Just Might Explode.

Also, dream loft, much?

  And a few snaps of where I want to begin the makeover...This is what my desk area has looked liked for as long as I can remember.

I had this crazy idea of adding more pastel colours onto the 'spongy' wall. Lilac, yellow, mint green, pink, all come to mind...



Jimmy Fallon was a big deal for me when I was 13. And Gollum. And cats. And so many other things...

I'm trying to decide what to do with my iMac G4.
This + this is what I would ideally want it to be turned into.

And I'm also keen on a new printer/scanner  -  recommendations?

How often do you makeover your room? Where do you find inspiration?

I hope to report on great changes soon.
Stay classy.


Monday Musing II

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of
God that is within us.

It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others."

— Marianne Williamson


On a clear day you can see forever...

It's been cold these last few days- no snow around these parts of the world- but for us used to warmer days, temperature changes come as a shock. Layered up with scarves, sweaters, jackets and gloves (indoors too, in my case) leaves me wanting to cuddle at home, cat on lap. 
Isn't that what these days are for, anyway?

Here I am again, making a promise to myself to write more often, to engage you all in shenanigans.

In the meantime, I come with this.
Bon Iver-ish vibes, perfect for a Sunday like today: cold and cloudy.

I also leave you with the last of the 2012-2013 Holiday pictures... 


City Sidewalks, Busy Sidewalks: The Highlights

No more sounds of silver bells 'round most corners these days now. 
Being back at work (and back at school) makes me miss the holidays, if only because I wish I could spend everyday in pj's what with the cold front still lingering on.

Travelling here and there for Christmas and New Year's didn't leave much time for relaxing, but it did make for fun and eventful holidays.
This might one of the exceptions where pictures don't speak louder than words; don't get me wrong, I'm fond of the snowy pictures and I managed to capture some key moments on camera, but they're nothing out of the ordinary (way to promote yourself, Mariana...)

Having said that, may I (still) please take you along my favourite moments of the 2012 Holidays.

Christmas was spent in Michigan, where I was treated to snow by none other than Mother Nature.
This was just the Christmas gift I was hoping for.

A beautiful sunset at the Henry Ford Museum parking lot also made for a lovely surprise.


"This is what you shall do..."

This is what you shall do;

Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches,

 give alms to everyone that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy,

devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants,

argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people,

take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men,

go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families,

read these leaves in the open air every seasons of every year of your life,

re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book,

dismiss whatever insults your own soul and your very flesh shall be

a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words

but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes

and in every motion and joint of your body.

-- Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass preface