Making Farming Moves

I am inherently impulsive. When I want something, I throw myself into it wholeheartedly and sometimes without proper preparation. Not this time, folks!

Some months ago, I voiced my desire to start a farm. I made outlines, plans, strategies, and more. Interviewed folks, spoke with people who made big transitions in their lives, bugged the farmers in my family and more. And then realized that all this was still not enough preparation. I know how to garden, how to raise enough food to feed a small family on a very small plot of land in the right seasons according to charts found on Google. These skills are good, I’m not going to knock them, and I’ve honed them well. I’m proud to say I am confident that I could be successful in the urban gardening community. But, that’s not farming on the scale of my dreams.

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One Day At A Time Made Me Feel Seen

Last August, I wrote a post called Where Am I? An Ongoing Conversation on Representation to try and deconstruct the importance of the #RepresentationMatters and why I will never stop pushing for the impossible dream of seeing someone just like me on television or in film. I highlighted how frustrating it was to have to seemingly break myself into different identities just to feel like I can properly relate to anyone on a screen. One of the characters I listed was Elena Alvarez from the critically acclaimed show One Day At A Time. The show streaming giant, Netflix, decided to cancel 2 days ago because there weren’t enough people watching the show. I would call bullshit, but I am just too exhausted to do anything but feel sad and irrelevant.

It wasn’t just the lesbian Latinx teen who was everything I wish I could have been at that age. It wasn’t just the adorable queer couple who was just trying to figure themselves out, giving me hope for the multitude of queer kids out there who need Elena and Syd (Elena’s Syd-nificant Other) way more than I do. It was also the loud, proud Latinx family with the immigrant matriarch trying to live their version of the American dream. It was also the struggling mom with depression/anxiety and PSTD; a conversation that is so hard to have in any family, but for my personal experience, especially in the Latinx community. It was the little brother trying to find his place in the world with a big sister placing huge, almost impossible, expectations on his shoulders (Adiel, I love you and you know I’m still trying). The Alvarezes were a representation of the stories in my family. They were me. Where am I now?

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What I Want in 2019

Change.

I want change. I need change. I am going to get it one way or another.

2017-2018 were hard years for me professionally. I was working with an association that had recently changed leadership. With the new CEO came culture changes that were hard to handle and deeply saddening. Harassment, racism, ageism, and a strong distrust of the staff are just the highlights of an organization that needed a fresh start, but instead was given nothing but rot. Content providers were terminated, or forced into quitting simply from the abuse of new bosses that had no managerial training. Not everyone suffered. Some people thrived with the changes, although I don’t think that is something they should be proud of considering what that shows about their character. About 20 people, myself included, have either resigned or were fired in a staff that was almost 30 strong when I first began working with the association in 2016.

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Saying No For The Right Reasons

luna and polar sitting on a deck

If there is one thing people notice fairly quickly while getting to know me, my mom is an important part of my life. She is the head of my tiny immediate family, and will soon be a very important matriarch in my extended family (technically, she already is but that’s another tale). Family drilled its importance into my head from a very early age, usually to my own detriment although I know that wasn’t the intention. But good intentions sometimes lead to bad decisions, and I freely admit I made bad decisions thinking about how it would help my family without thinking about how it would hurt me.

2017 has been and continues to be a crazy year globally, nationally, and locally. In my own personal life, it has been a year of learning and growth. After two weeks of practicing the art of saying no, the audience being my own self-control and impulse to buy the newest fountain pen or shimmering ink to match said pen, I am increasing my goal of saying no and putting a goal and purpose to it.

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I Am Scared

I have accepted that as an Afro-Latina who identifies as queer, asexual, and homoromantic/lesbian, I am a triple strike. Or quadruple or whatever the number may be. My name has always immediately identified me as other because Erisel Cruz is in no way a white name. But in reality, I am not scared for me.

I am scared for my brother who is Afro-Latino, and damn proud of his Blackness. I am scared because he used to be (probably still is but won’t tell me) stopped by the police for “looking Middle-Eastern”. I am scared because (God bless) he found his truth in Islam (and I could not be more proud, regardless of our “opposing faiths”). Because now he’s a “Middle-Eastern looking”, loud and proud Black man with a non-white name who worships the same God I worship but in a different tongue and style. And the only thing that might keep him safe is his uniform because to this country, at least he’s useful through his service but God forbid he tries to walk down the street in a hoodie instead of Army greens. Continue reading “I Am Scared”

January, where did you go?

Greetings and salutations!

I’m Erisel and I welcome you to the beginning of a new me. Now, knowing me before January 2016 is not a prerequisite, so don’t panic. You’ll learn plenty in the days and posts to come.

This site, I hope, will be the stepping stone for me as a web developer and writer. As of this month, I have spent 7 months honing my skills as the former and 18 years as the latter. Here, I will showcase my work with both and it’s my goal to learn and grow more.

January has flown by quickly but with a bushel of blessings. Biggest blessing: Becoming Web Administrator for Teh Lunchbox Publications, of whom I am a BIG fan. Some other blessings: being accepted into Southern New Hampshire University’s MBA in Information Technology program, beginning a Writing Fiction course that has been so much fun, and learning about FutureLearn.com where I am taking said Writing Fiction course and will be taking other writing courses for journalism and social media (for free!).

There are so many other blessings that I cannot list simply because I will be here for too long (I’m always looking for silver linings). But suffice to say, January has been a drive-by month of awesome and 2016 is looking shiny and hopeful.

Signing off for now. Remember to always look on the bright side!