Diary of a Former Nomad: Adjusting Pains

Life happens pretty much whether you like it or not. It’s the worst feeling having to adjust to the same situation over and over again whether it be heartbreaks, disappointments, failures, and the list goes on and on. The hardest part of these events in life is what happens next. How we choose to pick ourselves up is what sort of defines us. Between you and me, my hearts been broken one too many times but I always seem to find my way back. It’s harder each time but I never imagined it would be any easier. It may be a New Year but for some people they are still facing pains and aches of the past and putting these pains behind  might be the only way to see 2017. If this is you here are 5 steps that I have taken when it comes to adjusting any to painful situation.

 

Step 1: Begin Accepting What Has Happened

You can never move on from any painful event in your life if you cannot accepted what has happened. The first step in moving forward is coming to grips with what has happened. Begin to pick up the pieces and accept the fact that what has happened is not something you can change any longer. Each day tell yourself that although it is hard it will not feel this way forever.

Step 2 : Build a Support System

Nothing in life is ever easy to get through alone. In finding yourself back to a better space and a better you it is important to build a system of people who support you and encourage growth within you. For those who are hesitant to opening up to friends or family now may be the perfect time to let them in and allow them to help you fix what is broken.

Step 3 : Avoid Reliving the Memories

Now is not the best time to be walking down memory lane. It is best to put the past where it belong and keep looking forward. Invest your time in making new memories and building a better you. Looking back will only keep you from seeing the great things that are possible for the future.

Step 4 : Invest in Yourself

After any traumatic event in life we are at our lowest point but we can only go up from there. When the grayness of the days have passed and you begin to see yourself for the strong person you are  take the time to pour more of your time into yourself. Put yourself first and never look back!

Step 5 : Learn From it All

Everything happens for a reason or so I’d like to tell myself. Whenever something disappointing happens it is important for us not to bury it away but take the time to learn from it. Realize why it went wrong and take the lessons learned and move forward with it. Remember don’t take the event with you but what you gained from it.

Diary of a Former Nomad: New Years Resolution–Don’t Have One!

Happy New Year Techies!

Every New Year since I could remember I have always set a resolution whether it be that I would eat better or study more, but every year I always fall. I would either lose steam by the time February rolled around or I would just give in to pure temptation. And every year I would in some small way feel disappointed in myself and let’s be honest that is no way to feel in a new year when all efforts are being poured into staying positive. So, for whatever reason it might have been I told myself that in this new year I wasn’t going to set a resolution because I just wanted to live and take life as I came to me.

Now you may be saying well that by itself is a resolution and in some way it is, but in another sense I am not setting myself up for failure. Every year I put a new creed into action and it never falls all the way through so this year I just plan on adjusting to life as it comes. Now don’t get me wrong this doesn’t mean that I do not have goals for the year which I do, but a resolution, no. I am putting my efforts into smaller short term goals that will positively affect my long term goals. Setting a goal for the week instead a year is more fruitful. Give yourself time to grow and give yourself the time needed. Life isn’t a race! I think we often forget that life is for living and its about making each moment count.

So in 2017 lets adjust to the idea that life happens both bad and good, and it is the idea of how we handle it that matters. It is how we treat ourselves that will in fact mirror how we treat others. Be kind, be thoughtful, be smart, and humble, and content with the fact that no matter how little you may have it is more than someone else might. Be proud of yourself for how far you have come  but realize that the journey is only half done. Take 2017 for the open book that it can be and be prepared to write the most epic chapter of your life. I know I am!

Diary of A Former Nomad: My Story, Part 3 & 4

Happy holidays everyone! As the year comes to an end so too does my story. For those who have been following me and reading each part of my story I hope that it has given you some hope, inspiration, or even gotten you through a day that you thought you couldn’t. Sharing this story was not an easy decision but I know that because of it I have become stronger. I know that I needed to let go of this baggage that I have been carrying around for years in order to be better for the coming years. I hope that you all have a great holiday season and the new year brings you happiness and success!

Here are the final chapters of my story. If you haven’t read yet read the first and second part click the links below.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

I returned home to my small battered village, a battered child. My emotions, self esteem and confidence were at an all time low. I returned to parents who seemed somewhat genuine and had flourished during my absence. The house was filled with much more but the stench of pain and sorrows still remained engraved into the walls. My mother was different. She was colder and less nurturing. My father was as before, standoffish and his eyes still had no light. I still remembered arriving home early that morning and being amazed of how monumental the house felt. I had my own room. It was pink and bright and everything I could have hoped for in a room. I had pets too. My life finally seemed to be what I could have imagined it to be. But soon enough the welcome home mat had been removed and it was back to the ways things used to be. My parents fought and pushed me in the middle to choose a side. I told my mother I chose her and my father I chose him. I couldn’t choose and as small as I was, I remembered thinking I shouldn’t have to. I had given up so much for them and yet they couldn’t give up fighting for me. Maybe it was now that I was older and could understand more that the fights seemed worse. Looking back now, I’ve shed more tears with my parents than laughs. They have been the reason for my birth and the death of many of my beliefs, hopes and dreams. As much as they have given me, they have taken away so much more.

 

I lost my innocence the day I saw my mother try to hang herself in our living room from the rafters.

I lost hope for my father the day he slapped me for standing up for my mother then emptied out the cupboards and left us hungry for weeks.

 

I lost faith in God after many more fights and nights of crying myself to sleep after I realized he had made my life this way.

 

I had lost so much but had gained something I never thought I would. I had friends now due to my father’s new and well-known name. People say money can’t buy happiness but in my case, it sure did. After the beatings and the blows I got money, a lot of money. The money did nothing but numb me even more but one good thing came from that money. I never knew her name, but she was about 5 years old. She had no money to buy a Popsicle and without hesitation I bought it for her. I bought it and a smile shined from one end to another on her face. Sometimes I remember this day and think of how much joy I found in that little girl and my ability to help her and my regret for not giving her more. I wonder if she wished she was me and had the ability to buy more and have more. I hope she didn’t. I had nothing or should I say nothing I wanted.

 

Before I knew it, it was time to leave again and a broken family was going to be broken once more. My father couldn’t leave with us and I question if my fight to wait for him meant anything to him both then and now.

When he did get his papers, we all packed up and I wished and prayed in that moment that my new life would be three things: permanent, happy and enough. Enough for my parents, hoping they would be content with whatever we had because we had each other, that we could finally be a family. A family who loved each other and appreciated one another. That I would be more to them than a bargaining tool, I would be someone they were proud of. I would be worth their love and appreciation without having to be someone else but their daughter.

 

I got on that plane and left again. I left behind hardships that children should not have to endure. I hoped to leave behind sorrow and all the pains. I would be living in a new place and no one would know how bad my dad beat my mom and punished us. No one would know of how damaged I was. I would be able to dream, grow and flourish into the person that the creator of the heavens and I knew I would become.

Part 4

This October makes 11 years since I made that wish. I can’t say that it’s been granted. My story has not been an easy one and I don’t think it’ll get easier but it has become one that I could manage. Life is fluid, it doesn’t stay still. It moves, grows, and evolves and by doing so we find ourselves, our purpose, our reason. What has happened in my life doesn’t define me but it’s given me many roads to determine my own purpose and my own reason. I can’t say that I wouldn’t change the things that have happen but I also can’t say that I would change how my life is now. I’ve had to chance to live freer than most people do their entire lives and it’s something I hold dear to my heart. My life, all 22 years has been trying to find the right place and maybe we never do. Maybe we find the best parts of all the better parts of life. Maybe it’s all one big trial and at some point in our lives whether we are aware or not we find that place. I’ll keep searching for mine.

 

Until then, I hope this story, my story; opens yours eyes to seeing that life even in its worst parts it just that. It’s just a bad day, a bad part, a memory. Life is just a trial subscription to many opportunities, many lives, and loves. So live and be open to the possibilities that no matter what happens someday and somehow it gets better.

Diary of A Former Nomad: My Story, Part 2

Last week I took a huge step in posting my story and I must say that it felt quite liberating. I had spent so much of my time hiding from who I was and all the struggles that I went through that I never took the time to realize that all the pain made me who I am. Each hurdle that I adjusted to and overcame mad me into a stronger, kinder, and patient person I am today. I know many of us see every obstacle as just that but sometimes we all need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. Not every day will be filled with frustration. So take your time and realize that theres always a rainbow at the end of every storm no matter how long that storm may seem. So as promised here is the second part to my story: A Trial Subscription to Life. If you missed the first part click the link below to read it. #YouAreNotAlone

Diary of A Former Nomad: My Story, Part 1 

It was warm and sunny day the skies were bluer, the air was crisp and was laced with the scent of salt. The sun seemed brighter– actually all the colors did. An island in the lower region of the Caribbean Sea is where I’d call home for the next two months or so I’d presume. My aunt and I went to live with another one of my mother’s sisters. My aunt was escaping a cold husband and I was being sent away from parents who told me otherwise.

 

I remember very clearly the day I found out the vacation I was told I was going on was a lie. School was starting and I kept wondering when I would be going back home. I was about five or six years old. The day will forever be imprinted on me. I received a uniform and books and was told I would be going to school. No one ever told me I wouldn’t be going home. And to this day no one has ever told me the truth behind this event. It would be years later that I’d figured out the truth that my parent’s separation was the reason I was uprooted. Everyone adjusted to the harsh way of life and no one said a word.

 

After this, the days blurred together–everything blurred together. Days became weeks and weeks became months and before I knew it, a few years had passed. The memories I had of my parents faded. And the person I once was grew colder yet more optimistic daily. I saw my aunts’ husband abuse her with words and knives and left her running for her life. I saw myself dwindle in size and character.

I felt unwelcomed and unwanted. I felt a deep pain within like I was a burden to these people. I had been dropped on their doorstep with a ‘help me’ sign attached. I felt guilt for eating too much, I felt stupid in school because I didn’t know much, and I felt trapped everywhere I went. There was no one on my side. I was bullied for doing the right or wrong. Even in school I was an outcast. I was the poor little beggar girl; I never had money to buy anything. Being maybe 7 and seeing everyone with candy and not having any is literally like being a kid in a candy store and being told that you couldn’t have any. Occasionally asking to try one got me labeled as the beggar. And suddenly I became the outcast. I played by myself. I had few friends but they too never wanted to be seen with me. My cousin who was the only person I knew there would leave me as soon as we got to the gates. I was left behind and left out. Through it all, I somehow never let that powerful sadness consume me, I tried every day. I tried and tried. I ran from bullies, both friend and foe. I tried to remember my life before. I tried to remember my parents, how they felt, how they smelled, even how they talked but it had been too long and I had been gone too long.

 

The years had passed and the vibrant island became washed out and smaller than ever. I was drifting and in the midst of it I felt change in the air and soon enough I was on a plane back to a distant home to start over yet again. Another subscription had expired and it cost me my childhood. I was cold and hurt and lost. I was betrayed and corrupted. But misery loves company and more of this was to come.

Stay tuned for Parts 3 & 4 of my story: A Trial Subscription to Life.

Diary of a Former Nomad: A New Home for The Holidays

The holiday season no matter what race or religion means one thing: family coming together and for those of you who may be alone for the first time this year, I completely understand your feelings of frustration, confusion and even depression. I remember the first time I spent the holidays by myself and it was the loneliest time for me. Eventually I found comfort in the city and the people around me. Adjusting to a new place and culture this time of year only makes you miss your own even more but luckily you have come to New York City– a place where you don’t have to forsake who you are but can be that person freely.

This holiday season, if you are adjusting to this new place here are 5 tips of mine that will help you see New York more as home and help you through what can seem as a grooling time.  

  1. Explore. New York City has so much to offer. Around every corner is a new adventure and has something exciting just waiting to be discovered. The holiday season is filled with great festivals, shows and treats. Take this time of year to learn about your new home, the people and the holiday culture. The holiday season in New York City is like no other. People seem to come together in ways that all year round is forgotten. Whether it is ice skating in Bryant Park or visiting the tree at Rockefeller Center, New Yorkers come together to celebrate the season and each other. Click the link below to check out various ways you can venture out this holiday season in the city. https://www.timeout.com/newyork/christmas
  2. Volunteer. As the holiday season is a season of giving thanks and being thankful for, we should remember that many of those who live here in the city might not have as much as we do. New York City alone has a population of over 60 thousand homeless people. In the city there are various shelters and soup kitchens that are always looking for people to volunteer their time to help with activities. Although, we should try to give back throughout the year, giving a little extra during the holiday season goes a long way and means so much those we help. For those adjusting to a new life here in the city, it is a great opportunity to open your eyes to all that you have even though it might not be clear to see. Click the link to learn more about organizations that need your help this season: https://www.newyorkcares.org/holiday-volunteering-referrals
  3. Travel. With classes coming to an end and a break coming up, it is a great time to take a few days off and see what else is out there. Being alone comes with its perks and this is one of them. Traveling out or around the country during the winter season has its rewards, for one flights and hotel stays are cheaper. Adjusting to a new place can be hard on the mind and body so if you need to take a little time and go home, or go see a new part of the world. Click the link to see the best places to see during the season. http://www.priceoftravel.com/5324/cheap-warm-places-go-christmas-new-years-season/
  4. Find what you love. The winter season may seem like a dreadful and boring time in New York City but in fact what may seem to be dull and dreary is a great time for you to get back to doing what you love. In the winter we are offered solitude and with an extra hour we can take up a hobby we forgot about. So this winter take the time to remember who you were and  find ways within you to adjust to your new life.
  5. Connect with people. Being alone in a new place only becomes easier by opening yourself up to new possibilities. By connecting with people you will feel less like an outsider, and will become less consumed with the feeling of being alone. You will become more confident in yourself and your place where you are if you build a support system. I know that meeting new people is not an easy task but each day try to put yourself out there. The holiday season is a great time to begin this because everyone is more open to connecting and if I do say so myself in a far better mood.

Diary of A Former Nomad: My America

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Silent Protest – Union Square NYC — Photo Caption: Samantha Pezzolanti

I had a blog planned for this week. I was going to tell you of my story and how I adjusted to my life being here in America but with everything happening now I don’t think my adjustment period is over. I think it’s just beginning. As a woman of color who came to this country searching for a permanent place of comfort and peace I find myself lost. I have so many questions, I am confused, hurt, angry, numb, and discouraged. I don’t know where I stand in a country which seems to stand against everything I am.

Those of us who wanted a different outcome stand dumbfounded because it seems that in the same week where we turned the clocks back an hour, we turned history back 200 years with preachings of hate and intolerance. It’s been one week since women, immigrants, muslims, people of color, and members of the LGBTQ community lives hang in the air. We stand in disbelief that we are once again being forced to fight for rights we marched, cried, and shed blood for. It’s been one week and we cannot adjust to the words. It’s been one week and we cannot adjust to the pain and ignorance. It’s been one week and we are still waiting to wake up and realize it’s only a bad dream– but it’s not and this is now the America we must face. So how do we adjust to this new reality?

I say we don’t. I say we fight. I say we care for each other like we never have before. I say we use our words and craft to stop these radical changes. I say we educate our communities and sign every petition we can. I say we stand by one another. I say we love each other, support each other, and remind one another that together we stand. I say we speak for the rights of each other. I say we tweet, comment, share, and like positivity. I say we be Americans because to be an American once meant to be the best, to be a leader, to be accepting, helpful, and strong. Let’s be that! Let’s not adjust to a hateful country. Let’s accept and grieve this period of our history, but let it be just that; a day in history that did not break us.

I advocate to everyone feeling powerless by this change to speak up. To share your story because no matter what may change, our speech is still a freedom they can never take from us. Remember that I am here for you. I accept and love every single one of you and there is nothing that could change that. Until next Wednesday remember to be kind to each other!

Blogging Events Effectively

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Last Tuesday, I attended the International Youth Leadership Assembly (IYLA) at the United Nations and the whole time I thought about blogging the event. However I felt I couldn’t create the post last week. Although I uploaded images on social media, I had to leave an hour early to make a meeting with charter school to be a possible affiliate for my organization. I really had to go and did not get to experience the IYLA event fully. And therefore I was stuck.

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Of course I could have just uploaded the images I took and wrote on the speakers I did see or parts I did partake in. However, I felt I would not capture it fully and effectively, being that I missed on on substantial parts. Of course I could have took it into a different direction and spoke on the IYLA organization that led the program and the message of “Moral and Innovative Leadership: Vision, Service & Entreprenuership.

Therefore (a week later), I am writing how to capture events effectively.

  1. Stay for the Duration: You should stay for the duration in order to capture everything with imagery and/or with notes.This will also give you a first hand look and ability to connect with what or whomever you need to.
  2. Bring a Friend: I know you may not be able to get two tickets or press releases but try. If its a free for all bring someone to accompany you. Two heads are better than one. While one person is taking pictures, the other is taking notes. While one person is networking the other is making announcements. While one person is bobbing for apples the other is capturing the moment. 😉
  3. Take Images: If a scene can not be found on the internet or its unique to the event, make sure you take your own image. If possible hiring a photography, lol, or just bring a friend. Its always best to have original imagery when speaking on events.
  4. Take Notes: Although you think you’ll remember, when its time to write your blog certain facts or instances will be forgotten. For example I had to try and look up the presenters at the past IYLA event and some topics before I could write the blog that didn’t get published. 🙁 Have a system on notes, try not to just write everything all over the place. Organize your notes.
  5. Have a Focus: What were the special topics that sum up the event. For example: was it about empowering or networking and what took place to show that.

A Blogging Tip I Want to Share with You

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Image Credit: Aquila Style

It was about five years ago when I was blogging for a food blogging community known as IReallyLikeFood (currently non existent) where I was on a team with bloggers like The Buzz, but I was specifically on a team of food bloggers and every blogger had their own original and authentic voice, background, and style.

At the start of my internship, I was going through a rough time in my life because my grandpa became ill and passed away two weeks after I started at this internship. I started out as an editorial intern where I was given a project for 2-3 months and I had to write 8 blog posts per week when there’s only seven days a week, but I did it. We also had an internal weekly calendar where each blogger had their own excel sheet and where they can copy + paste the links/topics for each post. Week after week, my stats and views were skyrocketing high to the point where I made the Top Contributor list on numerous occasions.

After I completed 2-3 months of my internship, I met with my manager over coffee where we discussed my evaluation and the progress of my blog posts. She had a couple of questions about my topics/ideas because it seemed like I was a machine of endless, fun, trendy, and cultural blog posts. I blogged about anything from a restaurant experience, Starbucks vs. Dunkin Donuts, my infatuation with Thai food, food photography, my obsession with clams, Chinese food and etc.

My manager was very impressed with how versatile I was and etc. The best blogging tip/words of wisdom I learned from her was that she told me to ALWAYS remember that I have an endless inspiring figures and inspiration where I can easily be inspired to create a blog post. She said it truly shared in my blog posts because I do share a lot of the dishes that my mom makes and there are instances where I always drive my blog post back to my Chinese and family roots.

If you’re a blogger and your reading this, I want you to ALWAYS  remember that the next blog post is at arms length or at your finger tips. You may not realize it now, but you will. Sometimes the simplest person, event, or things in your life can be the trigger to you creating the next blog post. DON’T be afraid of who or what is in your life and just be inspired by what you have in your life or what has happened in your life. NEVER  forget your biggest supporters, readers, and events in your life and always surround yourself with ideas, inspiration, and keep yourself abreast of what’s going on in your passion.

 

Pros and Cons of Blogging

A blog is information or conversation that is published online. Having been blogging since about 2010/2011, doing my beauty/hair blogs, as well as reading the blogs of others, I noticed some great things and some wow factors. Therefore, I have comprised my first list about the pros and cons of Blogging.

PROS

  1. There is a market for everyone: What ever you think about, hope to be, or have an interest in, can be the topic of your blog. There will be several other people who will be interested in that information as well. If you google cleaning with lemons, thousands (made up figure) of blogs and individuals asking the questions will pop up.
  2. Easy to start: All you have to do is go on Wix, Blogger, WordPress, Facebook, or have your own site and start writting. There are several free and paid avenues to start from. I started with Blogger and WordPress before publishing my own site and adding a blog to it. All were free.
  3. It is a great marketing tool: If you have a product or service you wish to spread to the masses, just blog about it. You can post video, reviews, comments and more. Share it on social media, advertise on craigslist, and/or post links and ads to your blog or the blogs of others.
  4. You can make an additional income: Speaking of advertising for other blogs, you can use the your blog to get paid and advertise for other blogs, services and products. You can get paid or get free products to review products and share it on your blog. For example, I was sent a hair product to review for my beauty blog.

CONS

  1. People have freedom: With freedom comes responsibility, or one would hope. Some people post Lies, degrading things and disgusting things. Either way, because there are no limitations, they have that freedom.
  2. It can be hard knowing who or what is credible: With the freedom to post, people try their best to decieve others. They may have fake facts, fake logos to make you think its a known site, and other ways of deception. Make sure before you take ideas you do your research.
  3. Without a following you can be your only subscriber: For sometime it may seem like you are the only one reading your post. You maybe, just share it and market your blog. You can become an affiliate of another company also and get paid, which I spoke about in previous post. You will eventually get some people to comment or follow you.
  4. Self-ran: You have to put in the work on your own, unless, of course, its a team of bloggers like THE BUZZ.

For help with your blog, advertising, or more email me at amonib.biz@gmail.com


QUESTION TO THE AUDIENCE: What do you think are pros and cons of blogging. ?

Every Blogger Has That One Place

This post is tying together two elements of what is important to me: blogging and food.

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I think all creatives/bloggers like me have this “place” where they feel the most comfortable in to do their blogging, writing, or etc. As a blogger, it’s important for me to be in a place I know I can concentrate. Unfortunately, sometimes making an effort to blog at home doesn’t seem to get me very far because of distractions.

Lately there’s a coffee house/franchise that I been feeling extremely motivated and inspired whenever I walk through their doors. If you’ve been around the city, you may have noticed a lot of Caffe Bene’s are popping up everywhere, but there are a lot in Queens, New Jersey, and Brooklyn too.

I’ve been coming to the Bensonhurst location on 18th Avenue a lot, at least once or sometimes twice a week. The atmosphere is cozy, comfortable, and has the local, neighborhood vibe to it. There’s always an abundance of seats and tables available and outlets available to charge your electronic devices. Most of the customers at this location are high school student – 50-60+ year old.

Besides enjoying the complimentary WiFi and air conditioning/heat (for the cold seasons), I typically like to come here to get my blogging and Yelp reviews done on the weekdays I don’t have plans. I feel extremely motivated to just write and blog here and the wonderful scent of coffee and tea keeps me up and going. Most of the customers here come with their laptops, iPads, tablets too or to get homework done. It’s also a nice place to do group studying as there are a lot of communal tables. I also like that they play cafe/coffee house music, but I always prefer my Spotify music instead.

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Caffe Bene has a lot of beverages to choose from, sandwiches, waffles, and sweets. I’ve recently been addicted to their Portabella Sandwich which is super crunchy, delicious and well I love mushrooms. The food and drinks here are a little pricey, but the quality is good.

All in all, I really like coming to Caffe Bene to blog and write my Yelp reviews. I feel I accomplish a lot when I am here because I can trap myself in my music and in front of my laptop. I don’t know anyone here so there’s minimal distraction and I feel my inner creative spirit really comes out on blogging and writing when I am here.

Do you have a “one place” where you feel you do your best blogging/work? If so, why is it your “place”?