Hope

I remember being in the dark.

Feeling hopeless, helpless, unwanted, unloved, unappreciated, insignificant and filled with anger and resentment.

I was furious at the hand I was dealt. Life was simply UNFAIR.

I was more furious at the fact that I had kept it. What in the world was I thinking????

And I was most furious at the thought that there was nothing I could do about it. I was stuck. Stuck in my misery and joy-less life.

I probably could have done something drastic but the outcomes were too risky.

I was NOT going to loose it all. I had already been close enough, I was not going near the edge again!

But it was too much and I prayed and begged and prayed and begged that my life would be taken.

I saw life as meaningless, pointless, purposeless and filled with pain and sorrow.

I felt that I could not bare the burdens that were placed on my shoulders. They were not easy burdens.

And yet after each prayer, after each pleading for death and an end to my misery of what I called “life”, a shimmer of hope flickered off in the distance.

I’m not sure how it started, I don’t know how many days or weeks or months had gone by, I don’t know what happened… But I do know this:

After a prayer and begging for death I waited for an answer. Thinking I wouldn’t get one, I feebly lifted up my head to see if anyone was with me and I stared into the deep dark beautiful brown eyes of my baby girl.

I didn’t see her eyes… I saw love. I saw compassion. I saw curiosity. I saw HOPE.

I saw staring back at me, a curious new baby in this world trying to figure out what her mother was doing. A woman she looked up to with love, adoration, and complete dependency.

I could not leave my baby.

I had already “left” my other two.

I wasn’t present, in the moment with them.

I was distant.

I was caught up in my depression, my sorrows, my woes, I was merely the woman they knew the longest.

But this baby was going to be different.

I was going to live and love and be the best I could be. Just for HER!

But it wasn’t enough…

It was enough to stay alive..

Enough to keep going…

Enough to pray for strength.

But I still struggled in my misery…

Yet embers of a dying flame of hope started to glow within me.

A year went by and we met Suzie. She introduced us to the Emotion Code.

It took me a few tries but I started to feel the difference.

I was becoming aware.

I started to feel again.

I started to think clearly again.

I realized I didn’t HAVE to be miserable!

But did I choose otherwise?? I sure didn’t!

I enjoyed being miserable!

I enjoyed being unhappy!

I enjoyed the pain.

I enjoyed the sorrow.

I enjoyed being hopeless.

And I stayed that way for another couple years…

And it would have stayed that way…

But God sent me another baby..

Another reminder..

Another set of eyes…

But these eyes I will have to wait to see..

For she is not here with me at this time.

But through these set of eyes I have seen HOPE.

Not a small tiny flicker..

But a bright flame brighter than the sun.

There IS HOPE.

There IS LOVE.

There IS JOY.

There IS HAPPINESS.

And it is through our misery, and sorrow, and pain, and agony and all things that bring us to our knees, that we are able to see the BRIGHTNESS of our future.

For who would appreciate the Rays of the sun???

A man on the beach day in and day out, basking the the sun all the days of his life??

Or the man stuck in his own cave of depression, despair and sorrow, who comes out and SEES the brightness of the sun after being in the dark all his life??

You can only feel love as deeply as you have felt sorrow.

My sweet friend…

If you have had pain…

If you have felt sorrow…

If you have felt hopeless, helpless and lost…

If you don’t know which direction to go, who to turn to or what to do…

If you are feeling that life has no meaning, no purpose, no LIFE…

HOLD ON… There is hope.

Christ is my hope. My center. My king. He is my advocate with the Father. And through Him I can see my sweet baby Maria again and look into those beautiful eyes of hers!

There is ALWAYS HOPE. And you can do this.

However bitter your pain is right now, or has been…

Imagine how SWEET your joy will be, if you but endure.

There are worse things in life that loosing a child… It’s loosing YOURSELF in the pain of it all..

Don’t go there.

Don’t be like me.

Learn NOW.

Life is as beautiful as you make it to be.

It is as sweet as it is painful. But the sweetness is so sweet, you won’t even remember the pain.

It’s been a couple years since that dark time..

I remember counting the minutes, the hours, the days, the months… And now the years.

And I am HERE TO TELL YOU TODAY:

You are LOVED.
You are WANTED.
You are NEEDED in this world.

And there is ALWAYS HOPE.

Keep going.
I believe in you.

All my love,
-Lala

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My Birthday & 25 Life Lessons

Today I’m 25! So here are 25 things I’ve learned throughout the years of my existence in this life:

1. Life is as beautiful as you make it.

If you think life sucks, life will suck. Those who are always looking at the ground miss the beauty of the world above them. And even if you’re looking up, you can’t expect sunshine if all you’re looking for is rain…

2. We all suck at life.

We all make mistakes. We are all imperfect. And that’s ok. Just get back up and dust yourself off. If anyone sees you fall, just know at one point they were or will be in your same shoes. Because we all trip and fall. It’s those who get back up and keep going that succeed.

3. Success is more than money.

Money is paper. When the dollar fails, people will be after food and resources and those who can DO things. And besides, who wants money without family, friends and fun. There are things in life you can’t buy… Loyalty, love, trust, kindness, time… Those things you have to EARN. And when you do earn it… You gain way more than whatever money could buy. You also gain self love, self respect, and the knowledge of who you are and what you are worth.. (And you’re worth more than all the money on earth!)

4. Jalapeños are hot.

And they burn like the fires of Mordor. I’m not kidding. Don’t eat one unless you are absolutely sure you can handle it. (Yes, I still feel dumb from yesterday.)

5. If kids give you candy… They are giving you a piece of their soul.

If a child offers you candy, TAKE IT. They either really love you or they are really nice. And either way, it is difficult for most children to give up THEIR candy and give it to you. So you take that sucker and enjoy the crap out of it because that kid just have you their heart in the form of sugar. At least it’s sweet.

6. Time is nonexistent.

You only have NOW. There is no such thing is tomorrow or yesterday. Only today. When you book an appointment or make time for something, what you are really saying is: I have to do all these things and take time for all this other stuff before I can get to that right there. So can you wait until I’m done with this person, this other appointment, this time frame, and THEN I will get to that. So don’t tell me your loved ones you “don’t have time”. No one has time!!! You MAKE TIME. Point blank.

7. Giving is food for the soul.

Whether it’s time, money, service, or a cookie, it doesn’t matter. Giving is seriously FOOD for your soul. It thrives on giving and sharing and loving and caring.. We were made for these things. And when you do give, it’s like your whole chemistry changes and you are happier, healthier, and you see the good in life. So give! And give freely without expecting anything in return.. Even though you get the greatest return of all.

8. Choose happiness.

Did you know you can CHOOSE to be happy??? You seriously can! It doesn’t matter what’s happening in the world, or around you, or whatever. If you WANT to be happy… You will find something to be happy about. So CHOOSE HAPPINESS!

9. You get what you pay for.

If you pay $1 for a burger, you get a $1 burger. Now it doesn’t necessarily always mean that if you pay more you “get” more. No. Something’s are more about personal preference than anything else.

For example, I will pay $1.50 for a toothpaste and be fine with that. While josh, my husband, gets some healthy, organic toothpaste for maybe twice the price. For me, it’s just toothpaste. BUT, if I want some mascara, I am NOT about to buy a $1 mascara. I am not about that life. I am getting the one that makes my lashes look the best.

Another example is a goal you want. If josh wants to get down to less than 10% body fat, he will eat rabbit food and work out everyday to “pay the price” for under 10% body fat. And if you saw my pictures you’d understand that I am not willing to “pay that price”. So paying the price isn’t necessarily $$$$.

10. Reading is good for you.

I love reading. And I know if you read daily, you will expand your mindset. New ideas, new ways of thinking, things you never thought about before… You just need to READ. And let your mind interpret and design. When I had read Harry Potter, I wasn’t skeptical to watch the movies because each person sees things differently. I saw the Chamber of Secrets differently but after watching the movie, that image of their Chamber of Secret is now stuck in my head. Which I’m ok with now. So just READ! And let your imagination work and expand your mind.

11. Margarine does NOT taste like butter.

And it doesn’t cook the same as well. If the ingredient says butter, YOU PUT BUTTER. This is true for lots of ingredients, and sometimes you can replace things just know it’ll be different… Most people can’t tell, but I can. And that’s because I LOOOOOVE butter.

12. People who you spend time with the most, are a reflection of you.

You tend to gravitate towards people who are like you. And you become friends with them because you have similarities. And when they say you’re a combination of the 5 people you hang out with, they literally mean it. Count your 5 closest friends and you’ll see that you are a combination of all of them.

This is important because they are either empowering you or disempowering you. And just in case you didn’t know, you get to choose your friends. So if ones doing you more harm, it may be best to find a new close friend. And if ones doing you good, it’d be wise to stick around that friend instead.

13. Is the best number.

I love that my birthday is on the 13th. It lands on a Friday once in a while and people panic. It’s funny. I love it. So it’s the best number.

14. Love is the key to all things.

You can’t beat war with war. But you can eliminate it with love. For who can be your enemy if you love all? I know I’m hoping for the impossible in this world, but people think you have to hate people because they’re mean or rude or horrid. No. You don’t. You can love them yet you can distance yourself at the same time. And that may be the most loving thing you can do for them. People aren’t searching for money or happiness or fitting in and acceptance. What they want is love… They just don’t know where to find it. And they can’t find it if you’re not willing to give it. So love. Love all things. Not like romance love, just have love. And be willing to express it.

15. Find joy in simplicity.

I like when my kids draw for me. It isn’t much, but it’s the fact that they thought of me and created something to give me. I also enjoy the color yellow. It reminds me of my Maria. As a child it had always been my favorite color. And you want to know why??? Because it made me happy. Simple things that create happiness means you can be happy when all you have are the simple things in life. So when I see a yellow daffodil, my day is 10 times better and I am happy 🙂

16. Forgiving is a state of being.

You don’t forgive someone, you ARE forgiving. Because it isn’t something to GIVE to them.. It’s something you CHOOSE for yourself. You are saying: you hurt me, you wronged me, you put me in a hard position… But I will be ok regardless. It’s really a gift to yourself. Because you have taken control of YOUR life… Regardless of someone else’s actions.

17. Find purpose.

If you don’t, you literally feel like Katy Perrys lyrics. A plastic bag floating in the wind. A plastic bag is meant for carrying things, being filled and used. If it’s floating around it’s not fulfilling it’s purpose and it’s being a nuisance to the rest of the world. Not that you are a plastic bag or a nuisance…

18. There is good in everyone.

If they choose it. And some people won’t. But that’s what they decide. Just know it’s there.. And if you are lucky enough, you might be the one person who gets to see it.

19. My business. Your business. Gods business.

My business are things in my control. My thoughts, my actions, my words, my choices… I can do something about all of those.

Your or their business, is someone else’s business. I can’t make my kids decisions. That’s their business. I can’t stop josh from saying unpleasant things. That’s his business. That’s what THEY decide and do for themselves. You can’t change people, they change themselves.

Gods business is the rain, the weather, the trials and experiences we go through. Things no one really has control over.

Why is this important??? Because you can only work on YOUR business. When you’re worry about someone else’s business, there’s no one to work on yours. So figure our today, what’s My business, Your/Their business and Gods business AND ONLY WORRY ABOUT WHATS IN MY BUSINESS. Life will be so much better and you will be less stressful. I promise.

20. Don’t make promises you can’t keep.

That includes yourself. If you say “I’m gonna wake up at 6am!” Then you better get up at 6am. The more you stop doing what you say you’re gonna do, the less likely you’ll keep ANY promises because you can’t even trust yourself. It becomes easier to say, “nope, I’m sleeping in” and lying to yourself.

21. Homemade cookies are the best because they are made with love.

Cookies bought from the store or bakery are great. They really are. But when you actually MAKE a batch of cookies, you are saying “I got all the ingredients, put them together, and waited for these baby’s, I took time out for you!” This goes for anything home made. (Now don’t go thinkin you can’t buy stuff, there’s nothing wrong with that! Some people are willing to take more time out and that’s ok. That’s your business not mine.)

22. You literally ARE your thoughts.

In case you don’t know about him yet, look up Dr Masaru Emotos water experiment on YouTube. (The videos are usually all the same.) But basically if you are thinking awful thoughts, you’re getting awful water crystals in your body. And you are 70% water. If you’re thinking good thoughts, then you have beautiful water crystals. So be careful about what you think around others. Your thoughts affect them as well.

23. Be kind to others.

You don’t know when you’ll meet people again. So be kind. You may need their help later on in life.

24. You are never alone.

We come in families for a reason. However your family may look like. But you are NEVER alone. And if you ever feel that way, shoot me a message and let me prove you wrong. I mean, help you out.

25. There is a God.

There is a God. And He loves you. And He has a Son, my Savior, Jesus Christ. You don’t have to believe in them. They will always believe in you. No matter what you do. There is always a way. He is the way. Even if you don’t see it now.

Thank you for letting me share a few things I’ve learned throughout my 25 years of life.

It hasn’t been easy… I’m always told I seem like I’m in my 30s.. Idk if it’s my kids, but I’ve been through a lot of things that have opened my eyes and my heart to a beautiful world of possibilities. Life IS beautiful. But only if you wish to see and believe it. I do. And I love every moment.

Enjoy life.

Embrace it.

And enrich the lives of others while you love it.

You ARE wanted.

You ARE loved.

You ARE NEEDED.

Remember that.

All my love,
-Lala

Remembering Our Culture

It’s that time of year again.

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We are starting a new school year, and a new year of ROC, Remembering Our Culture.

ROC started 15 years ago in Provo, UT, as a BYU program. After BYU decided they did not want to continue the program, the students asked the director, Michael Campbell, to keep it going. And he did.

ROC has begun their 16th year with Evan Bogden, a BYU student, as their president.

ROC represents 5 different cultures: Asain, African, Latin, Native American and Polynesian.

I, Heilala Garcia, am their Polynesian section leader. I was the section leader last year, as well, but will be dancing this year. Being due 4 days after our annual show, I was unable to perform. Though I was able to join ROC on their annual tour. We went to North New York and ended our trip at Washington DC.

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ROC shares the message that secondary education is very possible, especially to those students of these cultures.

Performing at schools, city halls, churches, the group shares numbers from each culture, and end with a song, story, and message that though different we are all the same. That a college education is very possible and that if we, as students of color, are able to achieve a secondary education, then they can as well.

Students who are in the group are required to maintain a 2.0 GPA and follow certain standards such as abstinence from drugs and alcohol.

Students come from the two main universities in Provo, BYU and UVU, while others are attending LDSBC and SLCC. Students also tutor at a local high school and perform firesides where they sing and share messages of faith and hope.

ROC is like an extended family for me.

I love the kids I dance with. (I say “kids” like I’m so much older lol. I’m married with kids so I FEEL much older than they are.) I have come to love each culture and their differences. Each beautiful and unique yet we all share the same standard of love and unity (and a love of food!!) The students are all amazing and talented in their own way. It’s so wonderful to see them all shine individually and to learn about them.

Michael and his wife Lluvia are an amazing couple. They love the kids they work with. They treat them as family and are very interested in their education and well being. They are both talented and share their love of music and performance in the group and strive to teach students how to perform well. Michael having been in show business and Lluvia a talented pianist and song writer, their talents are beautifully meshed together in ROC. It’s like they were MEANT to do this! (Which we all know.)

I am excited for this up coming year. We have 2 tours in the works and I will definitely be posting about them. But you can always check out their website: ROC THE PLANET.

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If you know any students who are in the Utah county area who’d like to join, feel free to email MSUcorporation@aol.com.

As a non-profit organization, you’re welcome to donate to the cause and help us and our students travel and perform.

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I do ROC because is love the message. I love the groups unity, even though we have students from different cultures.

As a biracial family, I know how hard it is to mesh two cultures together.

ROC has 5 main cultures, with their own separate cultures, 30-40 students who have to cooperate and dance together, lead each other and on tour, live with each other or sit in a van for 2 days STRAIGHT together.

It is NOT an easy feat.

But it is done, year after year, and the message, standards, quality of performance stays the same.

If you are a student in the Utah County area, join us at practice!

If you know a student in the Utah county area, send them our way!

If you are out of state, you can check our schedule or donate to help us.

I can answer any questions or you can email us at the above address.

All in all, I love ROC. It’s a great organization that I can share my own talents and culture with as well. So look out for more posts of where we’re going!

All my love,
-Lala

A lesson in Forgiving

I wrote this while I was pregnant with Maria. I was really hurting, suffering, miserable, depressed… all for nothing. Simply because I couldn’t let go. I didn’t have the guts to post it because in reality… I just couldn’t forgive. I couldn’t let go. If there is a lesson learned from my sweet baby girl… it’s to let go and let God. To live and move on. To forgive and find peace. She has helped me find that. So I’m ready to post this.

I like to write because it’s hard for me to express verbally what I’m feeling without getting too emotional. I get lost in my emotions and thoughts that I can never really “say” what I want to say. Writing allows me to share my thoughts and feelings in a way that I still get all emotional and cry baby about everything, but I can re-read, re-think, re-write and really FIND the words I want to express.

I’m going a little deeper than I thought but this topic is something that I really, REALLY struggle with.

Forgiveness.

Forgiving others.

Forgiving yourself.

It’s not easy. But it is worth it.

There have been times in my life where I just didn’t understand why certain things had to happen. I’ve struggled with “letting go and letting God” for fear of the things I’ll have to face in the future. If the struggles I’ve had have been as difficult as they have been, then how much more will I have to go through to reach the potential I need to be at???

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won’t feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in all of us. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” -Marianne Williamson

To reach our potential, to become the person we know we can become takes responsibility. Responsibility for ones self, our actions, our words, our thoughts, our whole being. That includes our feelings towards others.

I’ve played the victim card. I still play it all the time. It’s like my Ace. I use it every chance I get. It’s a mindset we’ve been taught.

“It’s not your fault, you’re poly that’s what you do.”

“You’re just like your dad.”

“But he hurt you. You have the right to be angry, mad, annoyed, ect.”

We are taught that we are a certain way and there is no way around it.

But is that true????

The greatest difference between man and animal is our ability to think beyond the “self”. We can separate from ourselves and analyze what we really think. Or to think if what we think is really what we think.

When an animal is acted upon it acts a certain way. If you get to close, it might run or attack. It simply reacts.

When a person is acted upon, we can act a certain way but we don’t have to if we choose not to.

If you hit a person, they might hit you back. They might stand there. They might run away. The biggest difference is that the person can also THINK about WHY they react and DECIDE TO CHANGE. We can reason with ourselves, with others and think about beyond what is happening.

Now what does this have to do with forgiveness and our potential?

Our ability to forgive others directly affects our potential.

How effective would you be if someone hurt you in a way that just hearing their name made you furious. Just thinking about them put you into a rage so menacing that you couldn’t concentrate on your work. The person isn’t even THERE and you have given them the power to affect you in a way that you become absolutely unproductive.

Or what if someone hurt you in a way that when you saw something that reminded you of that event it put you into a depression. Constant crying, self loathing simply because of a memory of something that happened maybe years ago.

“But they hurt me so bad…”

“But it’s not fair that I’m hurting and they’re not!”

“But why do I have to feel this way/go through this/ect?”

“WHY ME????”

I’m going to tell you straight up, that I have NO IDEA. I don’t know why the burdens you carry are the ones you carry. I don’t know why we have to go through struggles we face. I don’t know why people hurt others. I don’t know.

But I do know this.

Forgiving isn’t about saying “it’s ok”. Forgiving is saying “it happened, and I’m still ok”. I love the quote by Oprah:

“Forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could have been any different.”

Life sucks sometimes.

There’s nothing you can do about that. But you can change your perspective. You can change the way your react. You can decide how you want to be REGARDLESS of how the world is to you.

Victor Frankl, infamous Holocaust survivor. Went through unimaginable horrors, saw terrible things, yet realized that he had a power that NO ONE could take away, but himself. He had the ability to chose his thoughts. He didn’t just react and become bitter, angry, full of hate. He chose to let the past be the past and become his greatest self.

But that’s what makes life so beautiful. Like the song Let Her Go

Well, You only need the light when it’s burning low,
Only miss the sun when it starts to snow,
Only know you love her when you let her go.

Only know you’ve been high when you’re feeling low
Only hate the road when you’re missing home.
Only know you love her when you let her go,
And you let her go.

How much greater is your joy when you’ve felt sorrow?
How much greater is your love when you’ve felt pain?
How much greater is your success when you’ve been through failure?

I’m not suggesting that we have to beat ourselves up and take ourselves to the lowest low before we can feel the highest high. But what I am saying is maybe forgiving gives us the greatest pleasures in life because of all the sorrow, pain, hurt, anger, hate, ect that we have felt.

Maybe forgiveness is our way of learning that we can become our best self REGARDLESS of our past.

My past is not perfect. I’ve hurt a lot of people and have made so many mistakes I’ve forgotten how fearless I used to be.

To trust again takes courage.

To love again takes faith.

To forgive and forget takes more strength than a thousand army men.

I struggle with this on a daily basis. To forgive myself, my spouse, those who have hurt me, my family, ect. But each day that I do, I recognize that I’m furthering my potential, reaching my highest self and loving myself the best way possible.

I poured my heart out in this piece. Not because I needed a message to be heard, but because I needed a message to be learned. I needed it. More than anything else. Thanks for letting me share a piece of me with you.

Woo hoo! Im free!

WAY back in the day. When my biggest worry was what I was wearing to school the next day.

 

Repost: Fathers Day 2013 for 2014

This is a repost from my old blog I wrote last year. I was going to edit it but it’s not that bad so I’ll leave it as it is.

I have had the privilege of having amazing men in my life. All who have had a great impact on my upbringing. I know everyone believes that they have the best father/husband/whatever in their lives but for me personally, I know that I have been one of the luckiest girls on earth to be surrounded my extraordinary men. (I say girls because I’m not the only “girl” in their lives.)

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My dad. Half the time I don’t know what to write about him, and it’s always difficult to. If you know my family, you know that we’re kind of rude and sarcastic. Or at least maybe that’s just me. And my dad and I are so much alike I feel like I’m talking about myself half the time. Lol. But here’s my attempt anyways. My dad is a funny guy. He is kind of scary upfront and a bit too straight forward, but underneath it all, he’s a big softy. Growing up we kind of had a weird relationship. I think he couldn’t really connect with me cuz we’re just alike. Kind of like trying to raise your own childhood self. And I guess that’s what did it, because we were so much alike he knew I needed my space. I needed to learn my own way, and he let me do that. And I am forever grateful for it. People probably think he favored my sister, and in a way he did, but she’s a big cry baby and needed lots of love. He cared for me and treated me the best way that I needed, and I am so fortunate to have had that opportunity. He is the most caring and giving guy I have ever met. We butt heads a lot but that’s just because we’re both stubborn and hard headed. He is a determined, immovable force when he wants something and he refuses to take no for an answer. He loves to joke around and tell stories but be careful cuz he’ll tell it over and over and make the story better each time. He’s a big man with a big heart who loves unconditionally and I am eternally grateful to my Father in heaven for blessing me with such a man. I love you daddy!

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I have also been blessed with amazing in-laws! I know some people complain about their in-laws and yada yada yada, but I can say that mine are the BEST! My father-in-law is so wonderful! I think he spoils my husband a bit too much but I can’t complain cuz I’m his wife. LOL. Glen is such a wonderful father and grandfather. He has been so good to Joshua and I and to our children. We are so lucky to have him in our lives. Not only has he helped our little family so much but he helped raise my husband. There is so much of Glen in Joshua that I can’t help but appreciate all that he has done in his life. He is such a caring grandfather that it is doubt why Joshua is that way his is with my children. Full of love and compassion, he is always there for us and lets us learn on our own along the way. We are so grateful for all you have done for us and we can’t wait to spend more time together in the future! We love you opa!

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My Josh. Oh dear, where do I start with this man… I have such a love/hate relationship with this guy. I love him so much, I just hate it. LOL. This guy has put me through a lot. A lot more than I bargained at the beginning. Half the time I just want to punch him in the face! But I don’t. Because I’m not violent like that. I just don’t want the world to know how crazy I am about him. Joshua William Garcia. Probably the most loving and playful father I have ever known. He is SO good with our children. That I can’t deny. They absolutely ADORE him because he is so so SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO good with them. Always playing with them, patient and caring, he just loves them and they feel it. We have a little trouble with disciplining because you can just tell that they make him melt and he just can’t say no. It drives me up the wall! And I guess that’s where I come in. He is no doubt the best father for my children and I am so grateful for him. We’ve had our ups and downs and I can say that our downs have been worth the ups and it’ll just keep getting better. With God on our side, who is there to make afraid? I thank the Lord each day for having such a wonderful man in my life. I love you Josh. Xoxoxox

Happy Father’s day to all the father’s out there. And may we remember the Father of us all on this special day, our Father in heaven. Xoxox!

A shift in perspective

I just had an epiphany!! Extremely personal and such a shift in my perspective that I have to share! (Cuz I only share personal things on my blog. Lol.)

So remember “that place” I keep talking about? Well I realized that it’s evolved over the years. It’s never been the same “place” but there was always a “place” that would bring up heaps of emotions and I would freak out and it literally paralyzes me every single time. It has been there since I was like 5. Maybe even earlier.

I’ve always, and I mean ALWAYS, used it as an excuse to give up. Or like one of my mentors says, “to not take a swing”. Referring to baseball, he shares a story about his childhood. He was too afraid to swing so he never did. It was his crutch. If he didn’t swing then he would be right in the sense that he ‘knew’ he couldn’t do it but then he could also tell himself that he ‘didn’t’ try hard enough. It was a double whammie to his self esteem. He told himself be couldn’t do it, so he didn’t do it, but then he knew he ‘didn’t try his best’. How redundant does that sound???

But we ALL do that. We refuse to take the swing because we believe we can’t do it, and obviously we don’t (“you miss all the [swings] you never take”), but then we try to make ourselves feel better by saying “well that wasn’t my best”.

I do this a lot. Like A LOT.

For example, (and I’m gonna regret admitting this cuz I know some of y’all are gonna hold me to this, but that’s ok. I’m ready to be accountable. I think.) I can’t play sports. Or at least I tell myself that. I tend to hurt people or get hurt while playing. Growing up with siblings as talented as mine are, and being as prideful and competitive as I am, I refused to do anything I knew my siblings could beat me at. If you know my brother Fatso, aka Ofa, then you’d know how wickedly talented that kid is. Especially in sports. It was like he didn’t even have to try. So I decided not to. At least not with the best attempts (or attitude). I would fail or not be “good enough” simply because I didn’t “swing” when it came to my turn at the bat. And it developed into me hurting people (never intentionally) or getting hurt. Then I decided I wasn’t good at sports.

Here’s how I know that was a lie. Every time I would attempt or like half try (a little bit more than not trying) I was told that I had potential. ‘You’ve got a good lay up, just don’t pause before you go up for it’ or ‘you can set pretty we, you just need to practice and get used to it’ and even ‘your form was perfect on that high jump, why don’t you join track??’ Time and time again, I’ve been told that with practice I could play. I had the talent but not the skill to do it. But because I wasn’t as good as the girls who had been playing half their lives, I told myself I wasn’t good enough. I refused to even try because I wasn’t where everyone else was at, not realizing that they were in my same position or maybe worse off than where I was at before.

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Another reason why I know this is because of my sweet baby Maria. (Things have changed a lot in my head since her birth/death.) After I had her, I realized how short life really is. A year ago I got into a car accident. I crossed the freeway from the entrance and ran into the divider and rolled a couple times. I landed upside down and thankfully I was wearing my seat belt (I learned my lesson! That thing saved my life!) and walked away with a bruise on my knee. I was panicked and almost insane for a few days because I realized I could have died. I should have died. But I was spared. I was saved. After Maria it finally hit me that I won’t have forever to do what I’m supposed to be doing. Part of which is being alive. LIVING! Not just hangin around hoping death doesn’t come to take me before I do what I want.

So I decided to make a change. I started the 100 days of running (which I stopped because of New York and another program I’m doing). For the longest time I have been so attracted to the idea of being a “runner”. Mind you, I have not done anything athletic besides dancing. And that I always did half-kine anyways. I had asked for advice before and someone told me ‘you just start’. I was mind blown because I don’t ‘just start’ anything. I always wait for the perfect moment, with the perfect set up, and the perfect weather and the stars to align… Oh wait. That’s right. I’ve never started anything. Ha. At that moment I decided to run. And every time it would come up, I just did it. I didn’t think about it. I didn’t analyze. Sometimes I didn’t even prepare. Yes I paid for it with my side cramps and dry throat but I always finished my 30 min. Now I realize… I can be a runner if I want to. I just have to DO IT.

20140615-102224-37344290.jpg (my first mile under 15 min! Woohoo!)

(Wow this post is turning out long. I swear there’s a purpose to it, I promise!)

With these new ideas turning in my head, 1) I need to “swing” every chance I get in life, 2) I won’t know my best unless I actually try my best, and 3) make like Nike and Just Do It, I have had a shift in my perspective. (Or paradigm, if you listen to or read any of Stephen R Coveys stuff). That perspective has given me a whole new light on “that place”.

So this place I keep referring to is my pity party. It’s all the shoulda, woulda, couldas that I’ve had in my life. I shoulda done that and this woulda happened then I coulda had something else! Well these last few years, that place has had to deal with my marriage. It was/is humiliating, annoying, stupid, and just a whole lotta CRAP. Things happened that I completely overlooked and refused to see and when I finally did, I have been kicking myself in the shins for it. Actually that’s an understatement. I have been beating the living crap outta myself and totally hating myself. And today I found out why.

I read a post by the Reverend of Revolution today that talked about attachment. I don’t know who I was talking to but I was talking about women. I said, “women don’t ask questions to test you. They ask a question with intentions of not being attached but women are always attached and therefor they get angry and upset.” I am a woman. I’m more than a women. I can’t even watch movies without getting attached to characters. I get way too attached. Especially to my past. I let one moment of failure (in my eyes), one sad line in my whole book of life, determine everything else in my present and future.

With sports, it was not being as good as everyone else and half trying. With my family, it was cuz I’m not as perfect as my mom was. Or sister. Or every sibling at that. In my own fashion style, it was because my parents never had the money to buy the clothes that I wanted so I just didn’t care and never even tried. I’m still like that.

But out of everything in my life, my marriage has been the worst ‘half-kine swing’. I will be with this man til forever. I made that choice. I committed. Even after our drama and all the reasons I could leave, I stayed. We both did. But even now, 2 years later, I am beating myself up over the shoulda, woulda, couldas of our marriage. I am so attached to my past, I can’t enjoy the present or even hope for the future.

I was afraid of writing, afraid of becoming successful, afraid of having influence, because I didn’t want anyone to know about my past… About our past. I wanted to hide it. I didn’t want people to see that side of me or my relationship.

But I realized that if they can’t let go of the past and want to stay there and see me that way, they can. Go ahead. I’m not perfect. Never have been. I’ve made some stupid choices. And so has Joshua. But we all do. And pointing fingers and shaming people is just as bad as holding them to their past mistakes. That’s exactly what I’ve been doing. To myself.

I can’t change any if the mistakes I’ve made, or anything about the past. I can learn from it in hopes that it never happens again. I made tons of mistakes, some much of which I have been paralyzed with the fear of people using them against me or seeing me different. In reality, it doesn’t matter if they hold it against me. I, myself, have moved on. I no longer make those same mistakes or choices. I make different ones.

The shift happened when I realized that I don’t have to be paralyzed by that fear. I can swing and swing again until I hit my homerun.

Ayo they could never make me hate you
Even though what you was doing wasn’t tasteful
Even though you out here looking so ungrateful
I’m a keep it moving, be classy and graceful
I told ’em it’s no friends in the game
You ain’t learned that yet
All the bridges you came over, don’t burn that yet
People want respect, but people ain’t earned that yet
Self-righteous, and entitled
But they swearing on the Bible that they love you
When really they’re no different from all your rivals
But I still don’t wish death on them, I just reflect on them…

Yo, people will love you and support you when it’s beneficial,
I will forgive, I won’t forget but ima dead the issue,
Soon as you get out the peoples lives in when they start to miss you,
They see you doin good now it’s kinda hard to diss you,
People be sick when they remember all the bad they wished you,
People be mad when they can’t come and love lavish with you
But I sped off in the Benzy
I see the envy when I’m causing a frenzy…

(I usually don’t quote Nicki Minaj, but when I do, it’s practically her whole song. Lol.)

I love that it’s about forgiveness. I relate it to others and myself. I can’t be mad about my past or be afraid anymore. I can’t let it paralyze me from becoming what I know I can be. I also can’t do the same thing to others. I can forgive and love myself and allow others that same love and forgiveness. I admit, things sucked. I am still posses that certain things happen. I want to punch certain people in the face and I get all pissy if they come into my presence. But… I can’t expect love and forgiveness from others if I don’t love and forgive myself first. Yes, I didn’t “swing” when I should have and I coulda had a home run if I woulda just tried. I can forgive and I wont forget but I can dead the issue. My issues, their issues, his issues, her issues, everybody’s issues. I can hold others to the standard I hold myself. Obviously I won’t be stupid like nothing happened, but I can still love and forgive and move on and be classy and graceful. (Man that song is like the story of my life. Not the 1D story of my life but the story of Heilalas life.)

So what now? Now that I’ve learned and perceived differently, what happens next?

I swing.

You swing.

We all swing for… Home runs! Lol

But seriously, now there’s still the fear, the anxiety, the “place” creepin up, whatever it is in your case… You swing anyways. You do it. You just do it. Whatever it is for you, just do it.

I have been.

I’ve been runnin, I’ve been writing, I’ve been sharing about my energy work, just recently I got into a new business… That’s right, you just do it. Whatever “it” is for you… Do it! My past has been my crutch, my reason to not swing. I’m swingin every chance I get now.

If people won’t forget my past and decide to hold it against me, then they can be mad that they can’t come and live lavish with me. My life ain’t lavish yet, but I love every piece of my heaven on earth. My husband, my kids, our own families, my nothing-short-of-amazing friends, my church, my neighborhood, my everything in my life… I love. And I feel blessed to have. I’m grateful for my past and all that I’ve learned from it. I guess I have been making this shift in perspective for a while. The changes I’ve made just in the last two months have been crazy!

I know it’s Fathers day. It’s also the 2 month anniversary of when we buried my sweet little girl… Both Joshua and Maria have changed my life in ways I never thought possible.

For my Joshua:

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I love you. Sorry I’ve been a pain about our lives and the past and.. You know what I’m talking about. I love you. Thank you for being the best daddy for my perfect little angels. Happy Fathers Day..

And to you who is too afraid to swing.. If I can swing and blog about the personal things of my life, you can to. I DARE you.

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How he loves

I noticed I’ve been writing on hard days and when I’m upset or emotionally a mess and that kind of made me sad. I received a challenge to “give up” something, kind of like lent I guess. I decided on complaining. I’m the biggest complainer and I like to be justified and validated so I blog and tweet and every other type social media out there. Instead of a rant post, like I’m usually writing, I’m going to share with you my love story. Our anniversary is at the end of this month, Fathers Day is coming up, and since I’ve shared our unhappy days and how I get through them, this post is the WHY…

I met Joshua in the beginning of 2008. I was dealing with a break up at the time I met him. I had an amazing boyfriend whom I loved dearly at the time and was struggling. I went on a dating spree and just went out on dates all the time. I started at UVU and wasn’t used to all the attention I was getting. Well I guess I was used to the attention, I was just shocked at how much of it there was. Idk how to explain it but I didn’t know what I was doing. Lol.

I hung out at the Multicultural Center (MC) a lot and I think I was there more than I was ever in class. I noticed this miko (what Tongans refer to Latins as) and I was a little confused. His style was different, he had this presence about him and he hung out with polys. That last part confused me the most. I was like who is this dude??!! Well I got brave one day and went up to him and asked him who he was. Our convo went kind of like this:
Me: Hey what’s your name?
Him: I’m josh.
Me: Hi, I’m lala. Sorry if I forget your name, I’m so bad with remembering them. (because I literally forgot his name after he told me. Prolly because I was nervous. Lol)
Him: If you forget I’ll never talk to you again.
*cricket*cricket*
I was literally thinking excuse me sir, who do you think you are???
I saw him later that day and we exchanged numbers and well you can kind of guess the rest.

dating days

Our relationship after that was amazing. Until we got married. Then things got crazy like a roller coaster. It had lots of ups and downs and twists and turns. I’m not going to pretend that it was all a “bed of roses”. (I seriously don’t understand that metaphor. Unless it’s roses without the stems.) We had an awful start. I was pregnant, he didn’t really want to marry me, we were both scared and confused, I was young and didn’t know how to do anything at home, we were uncommitted and immature, man it was awful. But I knew Josh. We may have met, married and had our first child in one year, but I KNEW the man he was. And I was just not willing to let that go.

When we dated he was just the most thotful, caring, concerned, loving and sweetest guy. He would have like random “goodies” stashed in his car for me. (How is that NOT true love??? Lol especially if you know me. I’m ALWAYS hungry.) He wanted to do random things that I wasn’t used to. He helped me see past my own self and to question everything. He didn’t mind that I was on the speech and debate team was kind of a nerd. He knew that I was insecure and self conscious so he made me see myself differently. His texts weren’t the usual dating texts and he tried so much to help my family. He even paid the down payment on my tuition BEFORE we started dating because my family couldn’t afford it at the time. I would talk to him about my “ex” and he would hold me and tell me it was ok. It was strange that he would be so kind towards me yet didn’t expect much in return.

Yes we ended up having issues and he struggled with certain things and all wasn’t picture perfect like I’m making it seem but that’s who Joshua IS. That’s his personality. He just loves and loves and loves. But he’s also been hurt in his own ways. He’s had struggles different from my own. Some are similar but some I’ll never understand. My in-laws are divorced something I’ve never understood and could never understand. He made some not-so-very-smart choices and a lot of them I could never understand even if I tried. And vice versa. So yes he made mistakes before and during our marriage but so did I. And it wasn’t until we both realized that we could blame each other and point fingers and say who is at fault as much as we wanted but NOTHING was going to work until we both stopped.

So we did.

We put our acts together and began to talk. We had very hard, EXTREMELY difficult conversations. We still have them some days. We tried to understand each other as much as we could and decided that the past needed to stay in the past and we are not letting it happen again. We committed.

Joshua is the sweetest most amazing husband, father, son, friend, uncle, whatever, out there. I am not even kidding. Nor am I exaggerating or being sarcastic. (For those of you who can’t tell.)

He may not exactly have a way with words (that’s MY strong suit) but he shows love in every way possible.

He enjoys taking care of our home. Both inside and out. It’s kind of embarrassing because he would make a much better house wife than I do. Lol.

He likes to do little things for me. He buys me what I need without asking. He takes care of things in our home without me asking. He just takes care of business. If it needs to be done he does it. Without me asking.

He leads our family in scripture reading, prayer, learning, and playing. We don’t have a TV because my kids are TV zombies but he likes when they do ABC Mouse and Sesame Street and learning activities. He makes me go to the temple with him and if he could, he would just work on family history all day.

He always goes to visit his abuela in the rest home. When she first went in we went to see her multiple times a week. Even with his busy schedule now, he still tries to see her almost weekly.

When he gives gifts it’s never just anything. He thinks about it and thinks about it and thinks about it until he finds something that fits them or will help them grow. (Ask his ROC secret pals.)

He is always thinking of other people and how we can help them and how they can grow or what we can do to make them feel loved.

I know I’m totally bragging and I apologize but I seriously have such a good man. (Don’t worry, I know we’re equally paired. Even if no one else thinks I’m as cool as he is.)

It’s been almost 6 years since we got married. We’ve had 4 beautiful babies, 3 of whom we are so blessed to share our lives with and 1 we can’t wait to see again. We have had so many trials and struggles, it is seriously a miracle that we are still together. But I am so grateful to call him mine.

I know I’m not always grateful.

I complain a lot.

I like to hold on to the past and it’s so hard for me to let go.

But I stayed and I committed and I tried so hard to make things work because I knew what I would be missing out on.

I remember when I had mailed the divorce papers back and I kept thinking to myself how sad it would be if another woman came into his life and he blossomed into the “Joshua” I knew him to be. When I was deciding on whether to come back and to try and make things work, I just kept thinking about the sweet, caring, sincere, concerned and loving guy I dated 3 years prior and I believed and wanted to believe that THAT guy was Joshua.

honeymoon 2008

honeymoon 2008

Now, 3 years later, I know that I was right. He IS THAT guy and MORE.

We’ve had a rough beginning, an extremely rough beginning, of our marriage. Especially on my part. And I’m not saying it was ok. No, it wasn’t.

But I AM OK.

I choose to forgive.

I choose to love.

I choose to appreciate the good and recognize that there has been so much good. It can overshadow the bad.

I choose to love him regardless of his past choices.

And I know he does the same.

He shows me in every way that he knows how.

He likes to buy me things (even though none of our love languages is “gifts”, I think he just likes to feel that I am taken care of. And I am. He does a very good job of that) without me knowing half the time. Probably because I hate shopping and I’m never paying attention when we do. He just listens to what I need then buys. I don’t even have to ask him.

He likes to help me take care of myself. (If you’ve noticed I’m kind of a fat girl at heart and I seem to like everything that’s NOT good for me. Like chocolate, mcdonalds, butter and so on.) He makes me green (disgusting) shakes, we go to the gym (shocker, I know), he puts audiobooks on my phone, he makes me get up at 6 am (that’s a HUGE shocker, ikr??) to read scriptures and if I stink instead of telling me he buys me a new deodorant. (I told you he’s a smart man).

He still likes to do random things and if we could travel the world (which we will as soon as I get my passport), I know we would. He likes to take me places. And I love it.

It’s like I married a life long life coach. Lol. He bring out the best of me and helps to become better. He also brings the worst out of me and still loves me regardless. This is going to be our anniversary cake this year:

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Not because he only tolerates me but because sometimes I’m intolerable and he STILL loves me.

He may not buy me roses like most husbands do, instead he helps me plant them.

He may not buy me clothes like most men do, but that’s cuz he knows I hate shopping. Lol.

He may not buy me chocolate like most men do, but that’s because he knows I have a stash SOMEWHERE.

He may not take me on a luxury cruise like most men would try to do, but that’s because he knows I’m terrified and wouldn’t go anyway.

He may not want to celebrate the day of our anniversary or the day of my birthday (or his for that matter), but he lets me know each and every day how loved, special and cared for I am.

JWG, I love you. You are amazing. And although I complain all the time, I’d rather complain ABOUT you and not WITHOUT you. 😁

The reason why I stay committed, why I choose to love and forgive and everything else that comes with marriage, is simply because he is an amazing man, with an amazing capacity to love and I am amazed that I get to be the lucky girl who gets to have eternity with him.

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Be jealous. 😁

Or choose to see how amazing your love story can be.

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