Welcome to the first official blog post on my new domain! Wow!
I never expected to take my passion for blogging further by purchasing my own domain, but I did it! My supportive and loving girlfriend was part of the process toward believing in myself and taking that leap of faith…the Truth + Dare Podcasts have also been instrumental in me reaching this point.
All of my posts were uploaded from my free WordPress blog yesterday, and then I played with the design, edited my “about” page, and created an email and wham! here I am! I was super excited yesterday to see it all come to fruition…to be honest though, now I’m a little nervous.
Although I’ve mapped out some goals I have for this blog as well as some unique blog post ideas, I have no idea how to create an online presence. Yes, I’ve blogged on different platforms before but they had a social component where almost everyone else that viewed the site was also a blogger…so it was a supportive community. Now I feel like I’m on some island by myself, trying to figure out how I can get back the mainland when I have to create my own boat and/or bridge. I will probably have to get wet. By that I mean…I won’t succeed right away. I may have to do things that make me uncomfortable/nervous to reach my goals. I may even have to reevaluate my goals.
It feels cumbersome researching methods for marketing your blog to gain an audience, considering how I’m now doubting any previous success I’ve had with blogging before. I suppose I just need to refocus the intention of this upgrade.
Unzip These Lips’ Purpose
I blog to express myself; to put language to my feelings and experiences and to help me take action. I want to connect with people that can relate to this struggle as well as to my experiences and feelings. I would like to create a dialogue about issues and challenges we face. A successful blog would consist of several followers that communicate with each other and with me to share ideas related to the topics I write. A successful blog would develop a community. My blog is like a personal lifestyle blog but an intimate one…which makes me unique to other blogs. So I would connect with people through the intimacy I share to help them and to help me.
This is a very long purpose but for now, it is sufficient.
When I finished the second season of the Podcast, “Homecoming,” I played the latest episode of my other favorite Podcast called “Truth + Dare.” The Journey Junkie, who is my favorite online yoga teacher, produces it with one of her best friends. They are both currently live on a boat with their husbands, and I find them to be super inspiring.
Anyway…it was so ironic that the first episode after their break was about Difficult Conversations because I’ve been avoiding a difficult conversation myself. The conversation I’m afraid to have is with my sister, who is a year and a half younger than me, but for some reason, I have a very small backbone when it comes to addressing issues with her. The issue I am having with her right now is how I feel like she completely ignores my girlfriend most of the time. I always give her the benefit of the doubt because 1. I don’t want to confront her and deal with whatever that entails and 2. sometimes it seems like she does acknowledge my girlfriend! But I shouldn’t be like “oh, she said hi to her this time so everything is fine” because she should be showing common courtesy every time, not just when she feels like it.
The negative impact of avoiding a difficult conversation has been manifesting in my relationship with my girlfriend as well as in my overall mental health. My girlfriend and I have been discussing the conversation that I need to have at length, I went to therapy recently to talk about it, and it consumes my mind. I’ve been worrying in the shower that I will never be able to be my authentic self unless I move out of state, away from my family, and rarely talk with them. It’s gotten pretty ridiculous, but it was perfect timing for this podcast to be released!
I didn’t even finish the podcast yet but one of the messages that really resonated with me was a quote that they shared from Elena Brower.
“What you are afraid to say is the doorway to your freedom.”
This isn’t new knowledge for me by any means, especially considering how one of my majors is Women’s and Gender Studies and this theme is critical in our discussions. Plus, this quote closely aligns with my favorite Audre Lorde essay, which is the premise of my blog!
I suppose that being confronted with this specific message again at this time was just because I needed to hear it again. In my WGS seminar yesterday, we talked about how the different contexts for when you’re reading something affects the significance of what you’re reading. For example, if I wasn’t afraid to say anything, then the quote probably wouldn’t have resonated with me as much.
Unfortunately, I am afraid to address my sister and therefore, I am suffering. I must talk to her though because it’s causing so much toxicity in my life that can be avoided. So I’m going to go through one of my DBT worksheets I got from a group therapy session in the summer to think this through. Perhaps this model will be helpful to y’all too.
How to Liberate Yourself By Asking for What You Want
(Based off of DBT handout 5)
Describe the situation.
Express your feelings about the situation.
Ask for what you want.
Explain positive effects of getting what you want and/or the consequences of not getting what you want.
1. So…I will describe to my sister how I feel like she is not particularly courteous with my girlfriend.
2. I will say that it makes me feel uncomfortable when we’re all together and by ignoring her, it hurts me because she is very important to me.
3. I will ask my sister to be more courteous toward my girlfriend because everyone deserves that, and if she had a partner or a friend around, I would be considerate of them.
4. Then I will explain that it would make me more comfortable hanging around with her and like I have a more cohesive identity because she takes an interested in the people that I am interested in.
Some arguments that my sister may have may include that she doesn’t like my girlfriend, that she didn’t realize she was being rude, and/or that she is jealous that I spend more time with my girlfriend than I do with her.
I can counter by saying that it’s okay if she doesn’t like my girlfriend (although perhaps she should consider getting to know her more before making that rash judgment), I just want her to be more respectful and courteous. If she says she didn’t realize, I will ask her to please be more conscious of it going forward, because it upsets me. If she says that she is jealous of my girlfriend and that she wants to spend more time with me, I will respond by saying that…I guess this one is the trickiest one. Perhaps I can suggest negotiating this with her more but reaffirming that it is critical that she be more courteous.
I found this exercise to be particularly helpful! I want to ponder the last counterargument a bit more but otherwise, I feel a little more prepared.
Every Friday night, I vow I will not hook up with him.
I don’t want to hook up with him. I never cum. Because I don’t let him touch me. Because he doesn’t make me feel safe because he’s aggressive in a nonconsensual way. I also don’t want to enjoy it. Because then I will begin to actually like him. And I can’t like him because he doesn’t like me. And he’s too similar to my ex anyway.
Regardless, once the weekend rolls around and I’ve had enough drinks, I am all over him. And then I wake up naked and alone, feeling stupid.
Repost from 2012
I had never been so scared in my life. I watched my friend’s face contort as she read the rest of the letter that I had handed to her. She looked kinda pissed. But then again she always looked kinda pissed. I guess she looked extraordinarily pissed off as she read the letter-
“Wow,” she sighed, cutting my nervous thoughts off. She didn’t look at me right away, she just fiddled with the letter, her face twisted in thought. I looked straight ahead of me, watching the little kids draw on the blacktop in chalk. They were so cute and happy. I wish I were the same way.
“So everything is still up in the air? You don’t know what’s going to happen?”
She finally looked over at me, her expression cautionary. Evidently she didn’t know how to go about things or what to say. But neither did I.
I shrugged my shoulders, slumping a bit as I began to think of what this evil villain that I’ve created has dragged me into, thinking about how this villain, that was, but wasn’t me, has ruined my life. There was only one way to terminate this evil villain because I couldn’t be my own superhero, but those thoughts have landed me in this fucked up situation in the first place.
© 2015 Vic Romero
Three years isn’t a long time in the grand scheme of life, but at my age (I’m nineteen), it feels substantial.
Three years ago I was in high school, which is a completely different world in contrast to college. I was a minor at age sixteen and in the midst of my downward spiral of depression. I also lost my best friend three years ago. Not “lost” as in death, but “lost” as in, no longer friends.
I lost most of my friends three years ago, but only one of those losses wasn’t my fault. That loss hurt me the most.
Repost from 2012
I’m haunted by her laugh,
Her almond shaped eyes…
I still feel the smoothness of her hair,
I feel the heat from her dreamy stare
I miss her smell
Her soft skin
The way she used to hug me…
My shoulder is where she would rest her chin
I remember how we used cuddle
You always loved to snuggle
And we would watch a scary movie
Playing footsie underneath the table
When I grab you hand to dance
When we called each other nicknames
When we baked
Watched 80’s movies
When we laid in the grass
Went on the swings
Went to get crickets
When you picked me up after I had smoked weed
When you hugged me when I cried
When you never got mad
When we shared snacks
When you made me laugh
When we went to the pool or beach
The way that you dragged your feet
The way you just understood
The way your voice sounded over the phone
The way you listened to me bitch
How I never returned the favor
How I’ve become such a bitch
The way you stood me up
The way you’ve let me down
The way that you weren’t there
I was so unsure if you still cared
The way you became hopeless
The way you left the room without another word
The way that you never smiled anymore
The way that you sat beside me patiently waiting for me to notice you
The way you often cried
The way that you never said goodbye
The way that you didn’t believe me when I apologized
How I ignored that text
How she told me where you’ve gone
That you were sick
That you needed rest
How I never asked about you
How I never called you again
How I never sent a late reply text
How I’ve lost you as my friend
How I’m a horrible friend
I just do the same thing again and again.
© 2015 Vic Romero
TRIGGER WARNING: suicide
I’ve been training to be a sexual violence response advocate for the past three weeks, and it’s been very difficult. Aside from the material itself being upsetting, the training has triggered unpleasant memories as well. I’ve also had multiple nightmares about being drunk.
Saturday Repost from Fall 2012
“I’m reading The Perks of Being A Wallflower right now and a lot of it is really hitting home for me…it’s kinda scary.
This time last year, I was losing myself, I was depressed, and I didn’t care. As long as my grades looked okay, everything was okay with me…I hung out with the wrong crowd…But then it hit me: Why am I doing this? I’m miserable. I lost a lot of my friends. My “new friends” are shitty friends. They’re not even friends. They don’t talk to me unless I’m doing something stupid with them.
Then came the summer, I started putting my life back together.
I realized yesterday that’s it’s been six months since I’ve been in a relationship. It’s crazy how much has changed since then, and how much I’ve changed. I’ve become stronger and more self-loving after having accidentally putting my heart in the wrong hands. I now realize that the awful way I was treated had nothing to do with me. Despite knowing this now, it took me a long time to believe it. I spent that time beating myself up and dwelling on the pain she caused me. Now that I believe it, I still think about it though.
I think this is one of the longest periods I’ve gone without writing since I got into online writing forums about four years ago. I haven’t been too busy to write, nor have I not known what to write…the truth is, I have been causing myself unnecessary mental suffering and not until more recently, I’ve mostly overcome it through the aid of counseling, exercise, and meditation. This first year in college has challenged me academically as well as personally. The hardest part of college has been navigating the personal development and growth, including the experiences that occurred before college, which continues to affect me. The last three weeks have proved to me that I am, and will continue to be, okay. Actually, I will be great.
Last night really proved it to me…