The Monster Within

The Sun’s blazing heat ripped through the clouds

It left your skin charred beyond recognition

Your soul burnt beyond repair

You no longer are the man I loved

You now were the Monster who shared my bed

©Valerie

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From White to Brown the Evolution of my Skin Color

I was reprimanded in grade school
for using the tongue I only knew

I was surrounded by the White world
un Pais unfamiliar to me

They marched in
and colonized la uneca piel that I had

My mother tongue was cut from me
and stored in a rusted jar in a cupboard

That jar grew thick ivy around it
cutting off the oxygen to the flesh within it

With each day my colonizers
murdered a piece of me

My skin color no longer
that from when I originally submerged from my mother’s womb

I was now what my colonizers wanted
me to be…I was now White

I wore this new skin with heartache

Twenty-five years later

I stood there watching mi gente
llorando over the casket of Bis-Abuela

The Mariachis played
canción after canción

As I saw her body be
lowered into the earthy grave below

I was rebirthed…
I traveled through my mother’s birth canal this time
claiming my Brownness

The rusted jar containing
my fleshy tongue was shattered

In those moments

My mother tongue found its way to my body

Where it was welcomed with open lips

Where it is to remain
until mi muerte.

©Valerie

A Vampire’s Release (Fin)

The crackling of the wood burning from outside paraded itself into my living room. I was forever frozen from the moment his iced lips made contact with my warm, sun kissed flesh. I was in agony. The piercing pain traveled down my warped ageless spine. I could feel it jackknifing from side to side within my uterine cavity. I wanted the moment to speed through as a car on an autobahn.

The gush of pink toned flesh and liquid gushed from between my legs. It began its descent from the nourishing sac it floated in for thirty-eight weeks and four days down the ridged flesh tunnel of my body.

He was born.

His blue lifeless body was placed on my chest. I was told “He just needs his mother’s warmth”. I cocooned his body within my fatty flesh. The sound of life never emerged.

I have had life taken from me, yet again.

©Valerie

A Vampire’s Release (part deux)

I awoke in a clammy state. I sat up and cupped both hands against my stomach as if securing what was growing inside. I walked slowly to my shower due to a soreness surrounding my knee and calf. Upon entering my restroom I looked down and saw many areas with dried blood on both my thighs and legs. I make my way inside my porcelain white tub and sit on the green IKEA alligator shaped tub mat. The water hits me with such strength as if lying at the bottom of Niagara Falls. I allow all my fears to wash away with the freshly watered blood spots. I rejoice in knowing I am safe within the walls of my home.
As I look in the mirror, I see the bite mark; a clear remembrance of the night before. Unable to erase it from memory, I accept my fate and begin to wonder how will I explain the growing belly to my family and friends. Who will believe in the fact the child growing within me is only half human?

I put on a loose turquoise and gold bohemian styled blouse and make my way over to the grocery store. I have been unsure if the cravings for medium rare steaks are due to my pregnancy or if the unborn has started to communicate with me. While trying to multi task in pushing the cart and strategically hiding my rounded stomach, I am approached by one of the elders in the town. “My darling, you must be careful in roaming the town streets during daylight in your condition” she said. I am beyond shocked as to her knowing. “Ms. Cordelia, I am not sure to what you’re inferring too?” I replied. “Child, I have visioned you with his child for many, many centuries. You were born to bring life to his child” she stated.

In that instance, I felt movement.

©Valerie

Liebster Award (2nd nomination)

I am so happy to have been nominated for my second Liebster Award. It truly is a great honor to have people who believe in my writing and who enjoy reading it.

This nomination came from Pooja over at WBG. Take time to visit her site and check out her work.

Since this is my second nomination I will not be nominating anyone but I wanted to take time to answer the questions that WBG had in place for this nomination.

1) If your hair could talk, what would it say to you?

This could be scary. 🙂 I would like to say that although I have “changed” the brown tones on so many different occasions my true self always reveals itself. In other words, the red tones will always make their way through and shine bright. Sort of like my personality.

2) 5 words that best describe you?

Loyal, Hard working, Motivated, Nurturing, and Aloof (at times).

3) Top 3 places you would want to travel to?

I would love to enjoy the scenery of India, Germany (again), and Colombia with my kids.

4) How do you deal with sadness?

That is very tricky. I am not sure I can honestly say I have mastered with dealing with sadness. I would like to think that when sadness occurs I try to encapsulate every other moment surrounding me which in essence would help me brave the riptides of the sadness within me.

5) What’s the first thing you do on hearing a happy news?

I text both my daughter and son and also my mother.

6) Are you an introvert or an extrovert or somewhere in between?

I am a little of in between. I have no problem mingling amongst a group of strangers by trying to make small talk but I do have a problem when I am the one who is in the front of the room with a room full of strangers.

7) Your spirit animal would be a ..?

That is a really good one. My daughter used to tell me when she was younger that my spirit animal was a lion. It was due to the ability of having a mild demeanor but when pushed into a corner my growl could emerge.

8) Why do you blog?

I blog because after believing in the faith my family had in me, I realized that my words had meaning. My stories were being born. I realized that the words which were housed deep within me could not longer be kept as a prisoner.

9) What does the world need right now?

Compassion! I notice that many around me lack that very thing. Take for example, a few weeks ago a single mother was driving home and was hit by a drunk driver. Her two children ages 10 and 6 were killed and she has been in a coma since. Instead of the community outlashing at the drunk driver (I might add some did) they were all shaming her for being out at 12:30 in the morning with her kids. I couldn’t grasp at how people could be so cruel. It was never known if she was passing through town, or if she worked second shit at a local hospital and was driving home from picking up her kids from a sitter. Even if she was driving home after a family function the fact being she was hit by a DRUNK DRIVER. A gofund was created for the burial of the kids and the comments that were written were absolutely horrifying. One commenter stated “why donate when the mother should have been home.” Being a single mother myself, I donated a few dollars.

Everyone is always so quick to judge until it happens to them.

10) Your fave politician? Hahah kidding. OK, your fave music artist?

I love all country singers! However; the one singer who left a lasting impression on me and on the Latina community was Selena.

A Vampire’s Release

I picked myself up and dusted off my jeans. The blood beginning to soak through random areas where the knife met the brown flesh which covers me. I could hear him walking behind me with his newly welcomed limp I had bestowed upon him. “I will not hurt you” he said. The beating of my heart going one hundred miles per beat could be heard across the swamp basin. I enlisted the help of the courage within me to walk faster to the road. The streams of blood making their way down my blanched face. My cries became louder. My fear became massive. The darkness of the swamp makes it harder for me to see what lies ahead of me. I hold myself up against every other tree of the Atchafalaya Swamp. The trees hovering over me like protectors of the swamp. The taste of metallic in my mouth causes me to spit out the blood that has accumulated from the second punch to my face. The drops of blood appearing faster than I can wipe off. I continue on this treacherous journey. Soon I see a light. “I will not hurt you, let me make you mine.” echoed through the trees. I run faster towards the light, tripping on roots of trees and swampy sediment. I smell the gravel nearing. As I prepare to take my final step, I am caught up in his arms. He holds me from behind and as he nears his mouth to my neck he places his hands on my abdomen and gently states I will let you free “but if anyone asks, tell them we’re fine.” He takes his final bite from my neck and releases me.

©Valerie

Making it happen

In the last two years, I have fully dedicated myself to my writing. I have spent restless nights taking pen to paper and writing every thought that came to mind. Some pieces have come to fruition and others are still half written waiting for the final words to finish it off.

I had to believe in myself. I had to stop listening to the voices within me that kept telling me “I was not someone.”

I am glad I did. I took the self confidence I had found in myself and in my writing and submitted a piece of poetry I had written at the start of this journey and sent it off to an online publishing company. I received word from the publishing company that the Editor in Chief enjoyed my piece and would like to publish it in an upcoming anthology.

Here is to making it happen and having long lived dreams come true. Here is another item on my bucket list being crossed off. 🙂

©Valerie

A piece of Our Bucket list marked off

This past week I surprised my lovely children with a trip to New Orleans, Louisiana. It was a milestone in itself as this was the first time we crossed state line as a family. My divorce decree with my first husband did not allow me to take my daughter pass state lines and because I did not want to exclude her from memories with her brother or I, I kept her brother from seeing the world passed our Texas state line.

New Orleans was everything everyone had stated it is. It was a bright and vibrant city. The people were kind and never hesitated once to help with directions or recommendations on a local spot to eat.

Life is all about memories and I am very glad I was able to give these two days worth of memories to my beloved kids.

Also, I would like to give a internet high praise to the motel we stayed at. The Crescent Palms was a nice place to stay. Some would state it is not in the nicest neighborhoods of NOLA nor it is in the French Quarter but the hospitality of the individuals who run it out-beat the location of it. So if any of my readers are ever in New Orleans and want a nice place to lay your head for the night think about The Crescent Palms.

©Valerie

Equality Recognition is not BULLSHIT

In response to the #trending Zoe Saldana articles circulating about her Husband taking on her last name, I just couldn’t keep quiet much longer. I came across a Facebook post that a local news station had written about the situation and since I myself have an “addiction” to reading comments my eyes began to make their way down the list.

One by one I read on until I came across this one.

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This was originally written by a WOMAN!  So the backdrop to her mentality is that every Woman should take on their Husband’s name upon marriage. She goes on to write that “we all have rolls, like it or not.” Rolls…what rolls, oh wait was she meaning Roles? I may have grown up in a traditional Mexican culture rooted home but my grandmother herself broke “roles” by being employed outside the home.

Was she privileged enough to have an actual Handbook of Gender Specific Roles given to her upon birth? If so, I would love to see it.

The equality recognition BS she states, has been going on for years. I recently had a conversation with an 86 year old Chilean Woman who said she pioneered for equality when she was younger. She worked alongside her husband in the Village they lived in. She told me how some mornings her husband would wake up and feed the older children while she nursed the younger ones. If these so called “roles” are paramount to our existence then according to this lady the husband of the 86 year Chilean woman was being feminized. I personally despise this term. Why should there be negative backlash on men who wish to hand over some of the wage earnings, yard work, and auto mechanic to their female counterparts?

I was super stoked to see a man chime back with his own personal take that Roles should not be gender specific.

I am Mother to a 20 year old daughter and a soon to be 13 year old son. During each of their childhoods I never instilled gender roles on them. My daughter was the first grand-daughter on both sides of the family…this in itself posed a problem within our Mexican culture infused parental homes. She was constantly being given dolls and such. I did the unimaginable.  One afternoon shortly after my daughter’s third birthday we had been invited to a family member’s home for their son’s fifth birthday gathering. This little boy received toy cars by the caseload. I gave him a cabbage kid doll. He placed aside all the “boy” toys he had received and carried his doll everywhere. By the end of the evening, it had become his baby. During this gathering something else was being birthed, the love that my daughter had for Hot Wheels. On our drive home, I stopped at my local Walmart and purchased a few. She loved playing with her cars. She didn’t put aside her dolls completely but she learned to incorporate both into play. She may not remember but all those years ago during her love for Hot Wheels she wanted to be a race car driver.

I immediately knew during my second pregnancy once knowing the “sex” of my baby that I would not instill these so called gender roles. Although he did have Hot Wheels, a make shift tool box center, and a power wheels four wheeler the one item he never parted with was a yellow stuffed Monkey. He named him Monkey…of course. He learned to be nurturing, empathetic, sympathetic, and loving all because we broke out of gender specific roles in our home.

So to the Woman who BELIEVES that this equality recognition is Bullshit…THINK AGAIN!

A Heart’s Journey-Chapter 5

The Movie Theater

He lifted me higher than the clouds. I took in every inch of his musk infused scent and reveled in it. “I have missed you” he said. I felt as if the crying dam had been infiltrated. An unsurpassed amount of tears fell on my face from his eyes. I comforted him in the only way I knew “I have had you in my heart all this time” I whispered in his ear. He gently placed me down on my feet when a stern voice appeared behind me “Mads, what exactly is going on? Who is this guy?” Tyler had stated. He never made himself out to be the jealous type then again I could not think of a moment in our relationship where I could have given him a place to be jealous. I guess there is some truth to the saying there is always a first for everything. Jealousy was not very becoming of him. Yet, I could see the unsettledness on his face. I turned to Tyler who was carrying a few concession stand goodies and made the introductions. “Ty, this is Bobby, we are old friends (emphasizing the word friends as to see if he would catch on.) We lived overseas together.”

Bobby reached his hand out as did Tyler and they shook hands “Nice, to meet you” Bobby took the initial introductions. “Same here, sorry Mads has never mentioned you before.” Ty stated. I think by this time Bobby could see the uneasiness I had on my face. It wasn’t as if I never had spoken of Bobby it was just that the one person who I did utter his name to was sworn to secrecy. She knew that my heart only had beats for him. I might have been dating Tyler but mi Corazon y Alma still belonged to Bobby.

The movie was set to start in ten minutes so Bobby and I hugged one last time in which I informed him that Jake was in town and that I had his number in my notebook at home. He politely asked one of the employees for a pen. “I am sorry Sir at the moment all I have on my person is a permanent marker” the worker replied. “Even better” he responded. He took the permanent marker and gently held my arm as he wrote the phone number to the barracks on my left forearm. I promised to call him when I had time with Jake’s number. “I hope to hear from you not just in reference to the phone number” he whispered into my ear. The shock of feeling his breath so close to me, near the one body part he knew was my weakness was so serene. I knew he could feel my body tremble through his fingers. His heartbeat was the only sound I could hear for miles.

Tyler and I took our seats a few seconds prior to the previews starting. I was on pins and needles because I did not want to have to indulge him in conversation regarding my past with Bobby. It was not as I felt he did not have a right to know, I just did not want to have to do it here. “So how close of friends were you with this Bobby character?” he asked.
I promised to apprise him with answers to all his questions later that evening. The silence was calm yet stormy. I knew he was unsettled seeing me in the arms of another male.
Silence bestowed upon us and I was eternally grateful that we were in a movie theater for the indignant behavior he was warding off would have eliminated my existence. I gently brushed my hand against his to signal peace. The gesture went unnoticed. A few minutes later, I tried again and again he shook me off as if I was a nuisance mosquito trying to make him my dinner. It was at that moment I knew to give him time and most importantly give him space. We are all guilty of needing space when we reach a moment of anger. The silence continued for what seemed like a century until the final credits of the movie appeared on the screen. “Tell me again why had you never mentioned him before?” he asked. I knew it was not in his character to over-look the current situation. I attempted to reach for his hand to help soothe him but he walked a few steps ahead of me. The walk to the car was empty. I had never experienced this type of hollowness from him. His persona took on a cantankerous demeanor.

The drive home was gloomy at best. As we pulled into my driveway he raised his voice ‘Tell me again, why?” “I never felt the need to talk about him because he is my past” I said in between the tears that had started to travel down my cheeks. “Please, do not be mad. It was so long ago” I stuttered. He was not having any of it. His despondent look turned from looking at me to looking forward at the circles of rain which had started to swallow the windshield. I knew we needed to talk more in depth about Bobby but I was not ready. I was not ready to bring to life what I had lost. “I know I owe you explanations just give me some time. I need time to allow myself to bring forth my past” I asked of him. “You take all the time you need” he sternly stated. He unlocked the door as that was my cue the night had come to an end. I stepped out of the car and as I turned to close the door behind me I gently smiled at him.

I sauntered into my room and threw myself on my bed. I grabbed my pink corded phone and called the one person who knew my life with Bobby, Rochelle. She answered on the third ring. “What’s up? How was the movie? Was it stupid scary?” she asked. Words never emerged from my end just endless amounts inarticulate sounds such as deep weeping in the company of tears. “What happened?” she asked. I started to catch my breath and I began to tell her of my evening. “You will never guess who I ran into at the theater of all places?” I asked of her. “No, let me rephrase that you will never guess who I ran into here in town?” I stuttered as I was attempting to compose myself a bit. “I ran into Bobby!” I said in an exclamatory tone. “What!” she replied in her high pitched voice. I was still ingesting the fact that he was here, a hop skip jump away from my front door sort to speak. “Yes, Bobby. I was walking about minding my own business when I accidentally bumped into someone seeing as you know I never truly watch where I am going. When I looked up, it was him.” I told her now having fully grasped complete composure of myself.

“It did not translate very well with Tyler as he saw Bobby lift me up into his arms and encircled me with his loving hugs.” I told her. I wanted to come forth with my own feeling of the moment but I did not want any type of judgment. Although she had never revealed any sort of judgment against me, seeing as I just encountered a first with Tyler I was not in a good state to experience a first with her. We talked some more and I answered all the questions she had for me and after about ten minutes on the phone with her, I finally had a calming effect to my stomach. I no longer was in tears and after placing the receiver on the unit again I knew I had to make one more phone call. I took a few minutes and headed to the kitchen to grab some water and made a stop to grab two aspirins. I was now experiencing the mother of all headaches. Stress and I never have been able to get along and needless to say today’s fiasco allowed me to give birth to what felt like an ulcer. I chased the aspirin down both at the same time; I had become a pro at swallowing pills after my bout with depression. I closed my bedroom door behind me and sat on bed with my back against the pillows. I puffed my pillows when I quickly realized one of them was a pillow I had gotten as a gift from Bobby. He really had never left my side.

Ring, Ring, Ring, Ring was the sound being heard as I placed the receiver on my ear. My calming stomach was now a memory. I had a burning sensation within me. I became nauseous. I enveloped myself with a small ounce of uncertainty. “Hello” the voice on the other end answered.

“Bobby…” I gently uttered into the receiver.

©Valerie