Friday, August 12, 2011

The summer i graduated college and worked for the Union

I graduated may 7th. Spent the following month applying for jobs and living in denial in our 4 bedroom shity ass condo on matchwood, that i love with all my heart. The week i moved home to live with my mother after 4 years of being independent is also the week i started my 7 week intensive internship as a union organizer. I went into it knowing NOTHING. i still know nothing, but i do know a lot more about myself.

while at APU i had yearned to see a community that loved each other across boarders such as class, race, sexual orientation, etc. but felt that the campus was far from it and even the students who also wanted to foster that only got so far before they were discouraged by either administration or their fellow students. At the union i saw organizers some of whom graduated from yale, some of whom were women, and some of whom came out of a union fight at their own work place and despite the language barrier became union organizers. Not only the interns, but the staff saw everyone. By saw i mean acknowledged their presence and celebrated. For the first time in my experience it did not matter if someone was profane in a staff meeting, if someone was openly queer, or if someone did not have citizenship in this country because we were bound by a common goal...the humanity of workers and the war on capital.

I had my challenges, many in fact. I was exhausted on a daily basis, and left wondering what i was really working towards and who these people were that i worked for. I had a lot of doubt and skepticism, from my own jaded mindset. I was discouraged by my own abilities, and put in uncomfortable situations, but in the end I could not believe I was lucky enough to be a part of such a revolutionary group of young people. I learned a new vocabulary. I learned a new culture. and most importantly I learned that change comes from the people at the bottom...the masses. if this country could see through the great illusion we've been placed under, that the same hand that feeds us is slowly killing us, we would rise up. But the nature of this country's so called "democracy" perpetually keeps its people asleep, inhibiting any revolution from ever taking place, and deeming the revolutionaries as insane. My blindfold is continually lifted, and i am grateful.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


The amount of exposure ive received and the actions ive participated in this summer constantly inspire me to share people struggles and stories with the cyber world, but that just makes me flood my fb page with articles and videos. So i am going to try from here on out (for the most part) to post most of that stuff here. However i know not many people will read the posts compared to fb. anywho, I hope this is a more effective outlet for the things im reading, experiencing and processing for a while.

so....this is an educational video on sustainable food, but...somehow it doesnt touch on food workers or food justice. How sustainable is that? give it a watch and tell me if you think sustainable food is something that is economically available to all, and if not, how do we change that?

Sunday, September 26, 2010

sticks and stones may break my bones but words...

I wrote this, i suppose it's a journal entry more than a poem, during class fall 2009 and then rewrote it fall 2010.

I'm grateful. Something woke me up.
How painful it is to know my luxury is connected to another's poverty.
or to repeatedly be made aware of my ignorance,
or to recognize that i can get married but some of my friends and family cannot.
And even more painful to feel that the more i know, the more i realize i will never know.
But let me clarify what kind of pain. it is the discomfort of pulling off the blindfold, and that is why I see it as a blessing.
Not the kind of blessing that God rewards good christians, but the kind that reminds me im human.
it requires me to SIT in the pain, it challenges me not to run from uncomfortable thoughts and situations.

Just when i want to put the blindfold back on and fall into a deep sleep,
just when i mistake my own thoughts for the ones i've been taught to think...
Relentless discomfort faithfully wakes me.
Not only does she wake me, but she says:
Reclaim! Reclaim the words that have been used to convince you femininity is objective,
reclaim the systems that teach our children to fear anything that threatens the white American dream,
reclaim the institutions that only support marriage if it's between a MAN, a WOMAN, and the CHURCH,
reclaim the notion that things are the way they are for good reason, and they always will be,
reclaim the lie that if we are all created equal then we have equal opportunity,
reclaim the media that convinces us Success looks something like a CEO, his trophy wife, and 3 children.
pardon me but, Fuck that-
I was raised by a single mother on welfare who not once, but twice, pulled herself off the streets and out of the underworld where those who've succumbed to selling themselves for crack, reside. (without a the help of a husband might i add)
THAT, is success.
it is the opposite of excess- it is doing much with very little and doing it with love.
How backwards our values can be!

So let us start by reclaiming the words that have been tainted and robbed of their beauty-
When i hear the word "God" i want to think of peace rather than patriotism.
When i see the word "Freedom" i want to remind myself that this country places freedom as a value above human lives.
When i hear the word "Community" i want to think of unity not uniformity.
i know you have words to reclaim too,and by that i mean...the words meaning is not held in a dictionary, but rather in people.
so Let us not just be a generation that just shakes our fists in defiance
-though there is a time and a place for it -
but let's also be one that redefines the truth, beauty, and goodnessthat has been robbed of our humanity...starting with the robbers.

Friday, August 20, 2010

itchin' for ink

"May my soul bloom in Love for all existance." -Rudolph Steiner
Rudolph steiner has shaped my life in more ways then i am aware of considering he created waldorf education. This quote is (at this point in my 21-year-old know-it-all faze) what i live by. Poppies are my favorite california wild flower, their color is incomparable to anything else, and i think they'd compliment this quote quite nicely as a tattoo.

My mom has worn this bracelet since she was my age, and for the last few years i too wear one. I'd love for us to eventually get this put on both of our arms permanently.

I have wanted a Mucha piece for a while now. She is by far my favorite because she is adorned with both wheat and poppies. if i were to commit to putting this lovely lady on my body, she would most definitely be a tribute to mama.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Here's to the in between's and i dont know's

Recovering has never been so numb, distant, new, confident, liberating, and haunting. i suppose that's because i've never experienced something like my 5 months in Nepal. I realize that description sounds contradictory, but if you're human you know well what it is to feel a range of emotion all at once. I cannot get myself to think, reminisce, or write about Nepal. I have (literally) swept it all under my bed because it's too much to process, so most of the time when people ask "how was your trip" i smile and answer "great." In actuality it was the longest roller coaster of emotion.

i wrote about how much ive changed, and how i wouldn't know how that change would manifest until i got home, well that change is becoming clear to me now. I care about my body, my health, my well being. I am much more skeptical of people. i am jaded. i am content with staying in one place. I am grateful something feels like home. I am realizing not everything that has purpose is for good. I am allowing myself to indulge in the aspects of America i took for granted. I am running from nostalgia. i am lonely, but i am loved. I dont have much of myself to give away. I am finally entertaining my creativity. I am facing my pain without asking questions like "why?" i am learning to forgive.

i must be ok with not knowing. i have to accept the ambiguity of my last year of college. Not only accept it but live in it and realize that when i'm 50 i will wish i could return to a time when my future was a giant question mark. Here's to the classes i have yet to take, the mistakes i will surely make, my future heart ache (im a poet?), the people i have yet to meet, and the dreams that have yet to come true.
(if a dream doesn't turn out how you'd hoped that doesn't mean it didn't come true).

Friday, June 18, 2010

The End is Near

I woke up in a cloud of mentak yuck today. possibly because i slept until noon for the first time in 4 months.
I leave here in less than two weeks, and as much as i try to savor it, or stay in the moment, i cannot fully fathom what im about to go through coming home.
However, i am getting more excited by the day. I miss my room mates, and saturday breakfast, and theological debates.
I am so curious to see how my heart and mind function in that setting again.

I made a summer wish list a while back, and i re-read it again today. I haven't quite realized it's summer since im still on my GLT. Be careful what you wish for. it was a wishful joke when i wrote "to fall in love" on there, and i certainly was not looking for it here, but it must have been looking for me. I'll spare the mushy details, because blogs are already cheesy enough, but love stories on blogs are even worse. All that to say, leaving is going to be that much harder and i have no idea what will happen. I can hear tegan and sara's "where does the good go," in me head, which im sure will only become more real to me once im home. For now i am enjoying every last second of it, and learning that love is much different than i thought it was in the past, especially when two people come from completely different worlds.

I guess ive come full circle. I look back and remember how alone and scared i was in the beginning. I have felt everything: depression, loneliness, adventure, God, anxiousness, ignorance, uselessness, belonging, friendship, change, romance, and love. so much love. Sometimes when i look out the window as we drive through kathmandu my heart feels so full that it could burst. That is a feeling i never want to forget. its human and divine at the same time. The lightening storms, the long bus rides, the hysterical laughter, the heat, spiritual experiences...Cat stevens describes kathmandu so well when he says "your strange bewildering time." It's true, one can get lost here, and many have. i certainly feel lost today and it makes me somewhat excited for to go home.

In all i am so grateful for this experience. it's been a 360, and my wish is that somehow all people could experience something so huge at some point in their lifetime. I can only hope to return and live here again someday. Living in a third world country has opened my eyes to how vast God is and how miniscule we are. Hopefully i will continue to feel smaller and smaller throughout my life, because it reminds me that me ego is not me, and that i am no more important than the next person.


Saturday, May 1, 2010

only in dreams

i have no idea what is real anymore.
when i think about azusa, my college life, and the contentment i felt there, it hardly feels familiar.
It frightens me and i keep thinking i'll wake up at some point and that'll feel like home again, but that hasn't happened yet.
At least i've learned that with enough time even the most foreign of places becomes familiar, so much so that i can't imagine life any other way. I guess thats what GLT is all about...learning to live, not just experience, somewhere that is nothing like home.
My heart is huge, and alive, and full of love. I have changed so much and i know that i won't fully realize to what extent ive changed until i step foot back on california soil. For now, i have to remember to be present.

I turned 21 a few days ago. this birthday felt different for many reasons, but mostly because it forced me to reflect on who ive become and what it means to enter into adulthood. Im not holding back. Im letting go of who i was according to what i'd done or hadn't done, and it's a beautiful thing. it's also frightening. I have moments here i find myself saying holy shit, i am so alone and im doing things ive never done. But that's what living is after all.

as im writing this i can here the maoists rallying in the streets, and im watching lightening turn kathmandu purple. good night.