Reflection at 24

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Throughout my life, I have been through ups and downs. I have come to do things and meet people that I would have never imagined I would speak with. Today I am grateful for all the experiences life has given me. As I have enjoyed I’ve also lost and mourned for things I could have done or could have changed, because although I’ve been high up I’ve also come crashing down.

Throughout the years I’ve learned that I can’t truly trust everyone around me, that the heart is sacred and that the only people that matter in your life is very few. I learned how to value quality over quantity, and to hold those who I love really close to me and those who do not, I just wish them well.

Throughout the years I’ve also learned to focus, which has probably been one of the strongest battles with my life. Alcohol and bad decisions have turned things around but they also have taught me valuable lessons. This may be true, I am not where I want to be, and that is okay. I know I will get there, once I take things step by step. Life isn’t always a party and I sure as hell know that for a fact now.

I have seen people giving up on their dreams because of betrayal, alcohol or lust, and although I have experienced all of these things, I’ve come to realize that life does not stop despite your hardships. That your worth is enormous and despite everything that we might hear or read in the news, there is always a new hope, a new beginning, a new day.

Don’t put yourself down because of lost opportunities, look for a better way there is always a better way. My dad has taught me that there is a solution for everything except for death. So while there is still life in me, I am still willing to fight and pursue my dreams and aspirations.

Although I’ve lost one and a thousand times. I’ve come to know my own worth and that is more than enough. With these thoughts, I speak to you my so kind reader. I challenge you, to follow your dreams, to pursue those things that you might think are impossible, and to guard your heart like a treasure.

Know your worth, much love.

Ustedes los Dreamers

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Es ostensible la tristeza
Entre papeleos y patrias
Entre el llanto y el miedo,
Son ustedes los más soñadores.

Son ustedes un regalo,
Una joya preciada,
Quien sin tener documentos
Son averiguados de arriba y abajo.

Son ustedes las personas más emprendedoras
Que haya conocido.
Son ustedes también, parte de mi historia.

Ustedes entienden,
El dolor que tanto callé
El miedo que tanto sentí,
Lo que nunca me atrevía a decir,
Hasta hoy.

Siempre he sido soñador,
Nunca fui dreamer
Pero sueño con el día
En el que vos estés tranquilo.

Con tu familia paseando,
De arriba, abajo
Sin miedo a las fronteras,
Sin ninguna barrera.

Los quiero,
Libres y sin penas,
Ya que son parte de mí.

Mientras corran por mis venas,
Memorias de Latinoamérica,
Serán ustedes siempre hermanos
Y más allá de ser latinoamericano
Se que también soy de acá.

No importa lo que diga el gobierno,
Si lo ponen de un lado o del otro.
Ustedes son de acá
Y se van a quedar.

Si no me entienden
¿Qué les digo?

HERE TO STAY.

¿Qué me enseño Harvey?

Jamás pensé que el huracán Harvey llegará a ser tan catastrófico. Estaba atravesando un periodo muy difícil en mi vida personal. Estaba muy estresado y muy asustado por el futuro que se me venía en frente.  

Mi familia fue muy prudente en tomar las medidas necesarias para estar preparados en caso de cualquier emergencia. Mi hermana esperaba celebrar junto a familiares y amigos su primer baby shower en el cual nos sorprenderían mi tía Susy y la esposa de mi primo, Stephanie con su hijo Oscar Fabian, también conocido como “El Canchito”. Llegaron de sorpresa el viernes por la tarde, en uno de los últimos vuelos con destino a Houston ya que, al llegar acá, las noticias informaron que los aeropuertos estarían cerrados y todos los vuelos serían cancelados. Mi tía Berta había llegado también el martes, 22 de Agosto para unirse a la celebración de mi hermana.  

Mi hermana también estaba a punto de mudarse a lo que sería su primera casa. Jairo, mi cuñado estaba ya pintando el cuarto del bebé y haciendo unos últimos arreglos para que se pudieran instalar en su nuevo hogar la semana entrante. Todos los preparativos estaban casi listos pero la noche del jueves, intentando instalar la lavadora y la secadora, la tubería del agua en la casa de mi hermana se explotaría haciendo que el agua se paseara por toda la casa.  

Mi familia de por sí ya estaba preocupada por los daños ocurridos en la casa de mi hermana. Llegó el viernes con Harvey, mi tía, Stephanie y El Chanchito. Todos en mi casa estábamos asustados y contentos por la llegada de nuestros invitados ya que siempre es un placer tener invitados, solo que llegaron en un momento donde se aproximaba una gran catástrofe. El entorno cambió completamente desde el viernes y empezaron las lluvias. El huracán Harvey llegó a Corpus Christi alrededor de eso de las siete de la noche, pero ya había precipitaciones de lluvia desde hacía unas horas antes del huracán. Después de venir con tanta fuerza y ser categorizado como nivel cuatro al tocar la tierra Harvey perdió su intensidad. A pesar de haber pasado a un huracán de categoría cuatro a una tormenta tropical Harvey dio un golpe muy grave.  

Harvey hizo un trayecto que lo llevaría a la ciudad espacial. Las inclemencias del tiempo se hicieron presente y empezó lo que se convertiría en un diluvio. Tenía una entrevista de trabajo después de dos meses de haber buscado, pero Harvey tenía otros planes. Aunque no se me concedió tener la entrevista de trabajo, no puedo quejarme de como Dios me ha bendecido en sí. En mi casa nunca se inundaron las calles ni entró agua a mi casa. En ningún momento se fue la luz, ni se cayó la señal del teléfono. Ver todo el sufrimiento en la televisión te hace apreciar lo que tienes un poco más y aunque mi vida ya era un huracán en sí, me di cuenta que aun como estoy de jodido (temporalmente) todavía puedo servir como una herramienta de ayuda para otras personas. Me di cuenta que la vida y las pertenencias se nos pueden ir en un abrir y cerrar de ojos.  

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Amigos muy cercanos lo perdieron todo y aunque no tienen hogar por el momento estaban contentos con el simple hecho de estar vivos. La casa de mi hermana por poco y se inunda, pero gracias a Dios el agua nunca tocó el interior de la casa. Las aguas llegaron alcanzar el garaje, pero no pasaron de allí. Durante los días lluviosos hice viajes esporádicos a la casa de mi hermana, solo para chequear que todo estuviera bien. En esos viajes vi como los vecinos de Medaow Hill Run en Spring, se organizaron para alejar el agua de sus casas. Entre todos cavaron el suelo para formar una zanja para que fluyera el agua. Entre quejas del distrito y analizando la logística de está zanja, la comunidad dejó a un lado sus diferencias para mantener el bienestar de sus habitantes.  

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Después de cuatro días de lluvia, el cielo finalmente se escampó. El sol volvió a mostrar su cara, pero a pesar de que las lluvias casarón, hay mucho trabajo por hacer en la ciudad. No escribo esta historia para vanagloriar mi estado, solo la escribo como una vivencia.  

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Aquí abajo dejaré un link por si les interesaría donar a aquellas personas damnificadas por el huracán.

https://www.click2houston.com/news/how-you-can-help-hurricane-harvey-victims

 

The Beauty in the Mind

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At times we might look at a person and admire their physical appearance, but as soon as they start talking we might start to find that person unattractive. Why is this? Why is it that despite their physical appearance we are taken aback by their words? Perhaps it is because “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”? And what does that quote mean?

 

This ancient Greek saying is expressing subjectivity in beauty. Since who are we to really set up what is and what is not beautiful? Are there really certain rules we must follow in order to be beautiful? Can the mind be attractive as well?

 

Being attractive is more than just looks. People are naturally drawn to confidence and personality. Our mind works like a magnet. A study by the University of Wisconsin-Madison made students in a classroom pick other students that looked physically attractive. As the semester progressed the study showed those students who did less work were found as less attractive than at the beginning of the semester.

Ancient philosophers like Plato would speak about the beauty of the mind, and how is it possible to fall in love with it.

 

“After this, he should regard the beauty of minds as more valuable than that of the body, so that, if someone has goodness of mind even if he has little of the bloom of beauty, he will content with him, and will love and care for him, and give birth to the kinds of discourse that help young men to become better” wrote Plato in The Symposium.

 

In other words, what the excerpt above suggests is that, once you find someone with a beautiful mind, his or her appearance is of no relevance. A great example of this is Pablo Picasso. Picasso had a total of 7 “muses” or lovers. He had two wives and four children by three women. Although Picasso wasn’t a Zac Efron or a Channing Tatum, Pablo Picasso did have a brilliant mind. Not only was he known as one of the fathers of cubism but also his art had great messages. Picasso’s piece “Guernica” which depicted the atrocities of the Spanish Civil war sent a great message of peace.

 

People like Picasso, have something that attracts us. Plato talked about knowledge in the allegory of the cave where a person spent most of his life in a cave. This person was tied to a chair and was forced to watch the shadows. After watching the shadows for so long and believing the shadows to be the ultimate truth, this person was released, to the station where people made the shadows. His eyes burned, but he got used to it, and he began making shadows for the people that were tied down. When this person got extremely good at making shadows he was sent out of the cave. Where he saw the light, the trees, and the water, which Plato would represent as the truth. But how does this relate to the truth?

The allegory itself talks about a society living in a cave, watching shadows, which can be things that distract the mind until someone opens up his/her mind, and begins to break free from the norms of society. That’s what Plato meant by the truth. Thus saying we can’t just see someone’s physical appearance and say they are beautiful until we really get to know the truth (who they are).

 

Another case that I see in daily life is that of singers. People are attracted to the ideas these individuals interpret through their music and lyrics. People relate so well to the situation the singer is portraying and they are immediately attracted to it. A vivid case of this example could be the salsa singer Marc Anthony who sings about love and even though according to the media he might not be qualified as one of the most physically attractive men in the world, he has the charisma and personality people are attracted to.

 

 

Therefore let us not be blinded in this world full of physical appearances, especially in the case of women. Throughout the years, people have set standards of beauty. Before 1915 it was okay for women to not shave their armpits until a fashion magazine named “ Harper’s Bazaar” came up with an ad depicting a woman with no armpit hair. Although not shaving armpit hair has many benefits like softer skin and fewer irritation women today still shave their armpits. A person shouldn’t be judged by his or her looks but rather for who they are.

 

In the words of Dr. Seuss “Today, you are you! That is truer than true! There is no one alive who is you-er than you!”.

 

With that being said, I think it is upon us to feed the mind. To see the beauty beyond takes time, but is not impossible. One is beautiful by the way he or she is, one just needs to expand the mind, and the right person will come along.