Tuesday, November 30, 2004

The Trouble With Mothers

Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.

So el Cubano and I have political issues we need to work out. Fine. We are talking about that. The hard part however is dealing with the people outside of our immediate relationship and coming clean about a few things.

The trouble with mothers is that they never really like me, especially the mothers of people that I am madly in love with. An engagement when I was way too young ended because of my fiancee's mother (best thing that could have happened though). The few mothers that have liked me, liked me because I presented myself as something I am essentially not, a good stereotypical doting mujer who serves her man first at dinner. I'm really incredibly domineering, controlling, and expect my partner to serve me damnit (well not all of the time, just most of the time).

El Cubano's mother knows nothing about me. She may remember that one time, years ago, I spoke to her , well I asked her if I could speak to El Cubano. She asked El Cubano who I was. Of course he said I was a co-worker because well you see he had a steady girlfriend at the time that everyone in his family knew about (I did not).

So now all of a sudden el Cubano is going to tell his mom not only that I exist , but that he is in love with me, and that I am going to move to California with him and my seven year old daughter.

El Cubano's mother is the one person, in my opinion, who has the strangest hold on El Cubano. This comes from an abusive history between them and his desire , in spite of himself, to please her and take care of her. She also has a horrible triggering effect on his moods.

So I have resigned myself to the fact that she will dislike me. She will dislike how we met. She will dislike that I was the other woman (which in my defense I didn't know), she will probably dislike that I am a single mother.

Oh well none of these are firsts.



Monday, November 29, 2004

The Political in the Personal

I'm sure you all must be bored to tears with my talk of El Cubano my relocation plans so here I go getting political on your ass but maintaining the personal connection.

This article found its way into my email inbox today and it made me want to cry and scream at the same time.


At 19 I found myself in Chile, pregnant. When I told the sperm donor, I mean my boyfriend at the time that I was pregnant his response was quick,

" Go to the United States where abortion is legal and get it taken care of,"

I stood in the Temuco bus depot crying. I didn't want to return to the United States. I wanted to stay in Chile (with or without that fool) but I also wanted to option to continue my pregnancy or terminate it. It didn't help matters that Chile had (and still does have) some of the most fucked up family laws regarding unmarried women and the babies they birth.

That same night I returned to the house where I rented a room and sat in the living room with some of my housemates to watch television , while I contemplated my next move. Coincidently (or not) there was a news story about women who sought illegal abortions. I watched scared and sad and one of my housemates began to cry softly on the sofa. She confessed that she once had sought an illegal abortion and the stigma still weighed heavy on her.

I returned to the United States, privileged to be able to leave and exercise the right to make decisions about what happens with my womb. I went to an abortion clinic. I did not have an abortion. I decided in the end to continue with the pregnancy. I would however have an abortion later in my life.

As a woman I worry about getting pregnant, not being able to get pregnant, being able to afford birth control, not wanting to fuck with my body too much, and being able to access a safe, legal, and affordable abortion as well as being able to find safe and affordable childcare and healthcare for the child I do have and the children I may have in the future.

Some of our sisters in other countries don't have as many options as we do, which is why we have to fight to ensure that we continue to have options and choices in regards to our bodies. If my daughter decided one day to return to her native Chile, I want her to have the same options.

Sunday, November 28, 2004

Baby Steps

I had a private student in the apartment when it started, the usual fighting between my sister and my mother. Quickly it was twisted into something about la MapucheRican and me, about how inutil I am , and my sister's jealousy towards my daughter. I shut the door to the room where they were fighting so I could teach in peace and so that la MapucheRican didn't have to hear the fighting. Too late however, because my 7 year old wrote me a note saying how unhappy she was here and how she wanted to run away.

Don't all 7 year olds say they want to run away? Not if they are happy , content 7 year olds they don't and it just killed me to see that my mother's and sister's behavior was beginning to effect my daughter. Hmm wasn't it at about age 7 that I began to feel myself change. My father had left, my mother tried to kill herself and I had to care for my sister. I need to leave here.

I don't want it to seem like I'm using el Cubano or Los Angeles as a means of escaping. I don't want a place or a person to be a savior to my daughter and me. Only we can save ourselves, but maybe just maybe it was divine intervention that put el Cubano and California in my path.

El Cubano love la MapucheRican and me. But sometimes I worry that his love and concern go too far, into the realm of controlling. I need to leave here yes, but I need to do it in the least disruptive way possible. El Cubano asked his father to take la MaoucheRican and I in before the big move, because well el Cubano is enraged with the shit la MapucheRican has to see and hear and endure. And I appreciate that but moving in with his father seems like an extra step that would complicate matters in terms of la MapucheRican's school and my ability to work and save money. I know that el Cubano is working and thinking in the best interest of us, really, but something about the ideas of moving in with his father and their family seems inappropriate. No se. And me saying that and writing it has and will piss el Cubano off.

The depression finally hit me on Saturday. Triggered by the fight between my sister and mother, exacerbated by watching a film about Sylvia Plath (really what was I thinking watching a movie about a poet/mother who offs herself). I still don't have tix to LA for the holiday break and am miserable thinking that I can't afford to get la MapucheRican and I out there. I worry about El Cubano's patience and ability to deal with me when I refuse to accept help and when all I want to do is wither away. He said he wouldn't tolerate self- destructive behavior that also harmed him. He needs to be self protective as well. What if I cross that boundary.

This is the fear setting in but I've begun sending out resumes for jobs out there so I'm not completely paralyzed.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Beds, Birth Control, and Boyfriends

Just two things that I haven't had to discuss with a man in a while. Well ok maybe I have told a man within the last few months to put on a condom in bed but I haven't had the opportunity to pick out the bed or really discuss long term birth control and suddenly here I am on the phone having to think about long term birth control and being asked my opinion on beds.

He wants me to go on the pill. I was on the pill twice before. Kind of hated it for a number of reasons so I have to start looking at my other options. I'm a smoker and the pill is supposed to be bad for smokers. I am vain and horribly scared of gaining weight. And most importantly , the idea of filling my body with more chemicals and hormones doesn't thrill me. I admit to having been way careless with my fertility throughout my sexual life, so now I have a chance to do it right again, in a real relationship and it's kind of baffling. How ironic coming from a woman who has a child, has had a miscarriage, and an abortion. Ok obviously not that ironic huh?

El Cubano sends me a picture of a big ass bed he wants to get for the two of us. This is the fun part no? Thinking of things I will need for an apartment, like beds, and bookshelves ( I need lots of those) and a new bed for la MapucheRican and a desk for me because I will need space to write. Oh yeah this is way more fun then the hard reality of figuring out what about my attitude towards el Cubano's politics I need to be more mindful of, and how much money I need to save up to make the minimum monthly expenses of living out in LA. What do they say , that when you move somewhere new you should have a cushion of enough money to be able to live for a year? God I have to work my ass off.

But timing is everything and my mother, exarcerbated with my 24 year old sister's temper tantrums told me that she wants to sell the co-op in which we all live so that I better start making plans. Of course when I tell her I already am, she freaks out.
Ay sabes que even if this specific thing with el Cubano doesn't work (and I think it will) I need to get my ass in gear and make a truly independent life. My mother and sister and their triggering behavior are just bad for me and I've known it since well forever and sadly la MapucheRican knows it's bad too. So this is all a good kick in my Rican ass. Sucks that today , five days after leaving the West Coast, I had a break down . You must break down sometimes though to break through and that's what I'm going to do. I'm determined.

So now that I got el Cubano to admit in some way that yes this is a long distance relationship I also got him to admit that yes we are a couple. Boyfriend/girlfriend sounds high school. Lovers isn't profound enough and I sure as hell don't want to be someone's woman (too thugish and machista) we got something and that is more than good enough for me.

Mala's to do list:
Work and save lots and lots of money
Call la MapucheRican's zoned school in LA and find out transfer requirements
Start sending out resumes for LA school gigs and other types of gigs
Find places/connex in the poetry/performance scene in LA
Go to Dr. and figure out some sort of birth control
Figure out health insurance
figure out what I will take and what I will leave (how do I move 27 years of my life?)
tell my family I am planning on leaving
finalize itinerary for next month's tour of la con la nena
Plan holiday dinner that I will be cooking in LA
holiday shopping/gift giving

Holy shit I'm an adult.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Clarifications

So I've been looking at jobs in the LA area (I'm pretty confident I can find something. I always have) I've been looking at apartments in LA (that I'm not so confident about). There is no timeline set to this move , el Cubano has things on his end he needs to take care of , and I have things on my end I need to take care of, but it's clear that this is something we both want very much. In order for me to gauge how real all of this is I began asking el Cubano about how hard it is to find a place. That's when he told me that la MapucheRican and I would be living with him, of course. Of course nothing. Like I should just know all these things! Ha. Wow...hmmm, yeah. Perfect. Of course I'm scared as all hell well because um hello I've never lived with a man before (save the time in Chile with the MapucheRican's sperm donor- but there was no real love there). I think my fear has to do more with process than with reality. El Cubano and I have known each other for years , I've loved him for years but we never really traditionally dated. There was also some deception involved. Yet el Cubano really knows me and I really know and understand him. Of course as with any relationship it's a work in progress. But aren't you supposed to date someone before you cohabitate with them? One thing el Cubano and I both agree on is that it all feels so right and all seems to be falling into place on its own without much effort on our part. We both are spiritual people that pay attention to those things.

One big outstanding issue is my politics. Not that el Cubano is opposed to my politics he just disagrees with some of them but I must say that he has accepted me how I am completely and wholely and has never made an attempt to change me or how I feel. His concern is that I may not be so open and accepting of his positions. He may have a point there. I need to sit back and think about that and then sit back down with him and hammer that out.

I guess this is the moment when all secrets must come out no?

Now I've begun discussing the idea of moving with la MapucheRican. I haven't specifically said Cali. Well because she has no concept of what Cali. is. but so far her biggest issue is not moving away but what will happen to our cat. Go figure.

I still feel like the happiest woman in the world and the luckiest woman in the world.

Monday, November 22, 2004

Los Angeles I'm Yours Vs. Autumn in New York

Yesterday I went for a walk in my hood and everything looked ugly. Maybe it's just because it's cloudy and not 70 some odd degrees. Maybe I just miss crawling into bed with el Cubano. Maybe it's that getting away from my family is something that I have been wanting to do for a long time and it feels like maybe for once if I set my mind to it I could, and that doesn't even have to mean me moving to the West Coast.

I'm sad but not depressed in an imobilizing kind of way. I'm weighing the options but then again I am a crazy risk taker. I jump into things sometimes without looking because it feels right. Sometimes I fall flat on my ass, sometimes it all falls into place. I have gotten more responses to my blogging this week than I have almost ever and yeah in Cali. I don't have anything right now except for el Cubano. ok I have another ex out there - whom I have not had contact with since the summer when he was here and who I have written off because of his flakiness. I have a girlfriend or two there. Can I get a job there? Hmm I sure as hell hope so. Of course my best girl is here in NYC. I can go to school there. All my family is here however and oh how I have relied on them, but isn't it about time that I try and do something truly on my own? no se? No se. None of this is happening overnight if it happens at all. It is all long term, looking ahead, planning. I am researching and thinking. Pero te digo one thing, I'm happy. Content. I feel safe and calm.

My sister and el Cubano are having a mini- battle because el Cubano defended himself and protected me from her abuse during a phone convo when I was in LA. So now my sister hangs up on him, lies to him about when I am home and when I am not.He is angry and adds fuel to the fire with his anger. Sigh. I need to get my cell phone back so I have more control over my communication methods.

I managed to get more $$$ out of a private client if mine which means more $$$ on a weekly basis and my big assignment for the month, the thesis I have been working on has more work that needs to be done so that will be a nice little lump sum. I'm going to try to get my tix for navidad en cali this week.

Ha. I forgot that el Cubano reads this blog every once in a while and that he used it as a way to keep in touch with what I was doing whenever our communication with each other was less than consistent.

No mixed messages. It is all very clear.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Questions Upon my Return

Do long distance relationships work? I mean really work, until one gets up and packs his/her bags to be where the other one is? Sht I haven't been in a long-dstance relationship since I was 18 and in college and let me tell you that didn't work. It's clear that although there is no name for what el Cubano and I have, it is a long distance relationship. It only has taken us 3 and a half years to realize that despite our resistance to that label and reality.

So now I am actively planning to return to LA for the mapucherican's christmas break and el cubano last night comes clean as to what he realized he really wants. He wants la mapucherican and I to move out there with him. Wow. That's heavy stuff for me to hear at 2 am. Am I insane to even consider this as an option? We're both certified , true, but could it work? Of course all plans require the Mapucherican's approval, and el cubano told me also not just to do it for her or because he loves her and treats her so well (he does). He wants me to do it because I want to be there, and be with him as well. Of course there are details, financials, schooling, work to consider, but it doesn't hurt to think about it does it? How much time do people realistocally need to transplant their lives from one coast to another?

Or is all that is happening just a manic episode on his part, and a self-destructive pattern recreating itself on my part?

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Returning

I have returned back to the east coast, a day later than originally planned, well because I just couldn't bring myself to leave the West Coast and el Cubano on Thursday morning as planned.

I arrived last night, and el Cubano's dad drove me home. Already el Cubano has me planning my next trip out there (looks like Christmas) and this time la MapucheRican will be joining me. The trip solidified my relationship with el Cubano as more than a passing fling although what more still is confusing. He says he doesn't want a long distance relationship, but gave me permission to date other people here in NY (huh???)He says he's on a journey of figuring things out and he's unsure where I fit into that yet as we drove through parts of LA he asked me what I thought the MapucheRican would think about going to school out there. Every conversation has been filled with I Love You's , and those conversations continue. Can you see why I'm confused?????


Ay where to begin about my trip...How about from the beginning . I got my period while waiting to board the plane at Islip (yes el Cubano had me fly out at one of the furthest airports from my house). That pissed me off. So I was feeling gross the whole plane ride to Phoenix. It didn't help that I got stuck sitting next to the fucking chattiest woman who kept insisting that I was going to get married in Vegas. When I finally arrived in Phoenix, I called el Cubano telling him that I would be arriving on time. He responds telling me he's all stressed out because he was suspended from his job at the luxury car dealership where he works because he did something (I told him not to tell me what, to just let me get to LA first) and that he could lose his job. A trip that I was excited about had the potential of turning into a disaster based completely on el Cubano's mood (damn maybe this is good for me...um maybe dealing with mood swings like this gives me an idea of what it's like to date me!!!! ha ha)

I arrived in Burbank to find el Cubano waiting for me all smiles. We drove around a bit where he showed me all the beautiful houses and the view of the city from the many hills of Los Angeles. We went to the supermarket, where we bought some things for the dinner he was going to cook for me. At his very messy apartment, he cooked me a welcome dinner of lobster, shrimp, scallops, and crab legs. He gave me a massage and we had great sex (apparently el cubano wasn't going to let a little blood stop him). We also had a big argument about him being in Los Angeles and his self destructive behavior.

Friday, November 12, 2004

Off I go

I am off to Los Angeles and Las Vegas till next Thursday night. I don't know if I will have a chance to post ( I doubt it) but I promise to keep good handwriiten diaries and post all the dramatic details and not so dramatic details upon my return.


Peace

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

A Safer United States

That's because over 2 million people in the U.S. are incarcerated.

"Alfred Blumstein, a criminologist at Carnegie Mellon University, said one of the most striking findings in the report was that almost 10 percent of all American black men ages 25 to 29 were in prison.

Such a high proportion of young black men behind bars not only has a strong impact on black families, Professor Blumstein said, but "in many ways is self-defeating." The criminal justice system is built on deterrence, with being sent to prison supposedly a stigma, he said. "But it's tough to convey a sense of stigma when so many of your friends and neighbors are similarly stigmatized."


What the NY Times article fails to raise is why this is so. Sure it's easy to blame it on mandatory sentencing laws which carry longer prison terms but that doesn't go deep enough to look at how such laws are unjustly applied in people of color communities.

Sigh

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

No I Will Not Let It Go

Monday, November 08, 2004

Bush, Watch Yo Back in Chile

There isn't too much in my personal life to write about. I'm still sick, still working, and still planning my trip to Los Angeles/Vegas.

My hijita is half Chilena but now I have another reason to love Chile.

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Who Knew Trip Planning Could be so Hard?

It's been so long since I've been anywhere that I forgot all the work that goes into planning a trip. What makes this trip to Los Angeles and Las Vegas so much more stressful is that it is all happening at the last minute and I am scrambling from finding flights that fit with el Cubano's work schedule (so he can pick me up and take me to the airport), making sure I bust my ass working so I have enough money when I'm out there, and most importantly having the arrangements for the MapucheRican all set tight.

I haven't been on a vacation without my daughter , since before I gave birth to her. I imagine I will miss her like crazy but it is ok to be totally delighted with the idea of having days of me time, of cheesy sightseeing, and lots of great sex.

I am ignoring the meaning of this trip. I am ignoring that fact that el Cubano calls me everyday at least once. I am ignoring the attention and not paying attention and not getting attached. Everyone else, including my family is reading into the meaning of this trip and I refuse to. I can't wrap my brain around it .

I am worried about el Cubano's moods and living with them for a few days in a row in a place where I am pretty much dependent on him .

But I'm also incredibly excited and happy and damnit if I could just stop coughing.
Anything I absolutely must see while in the Los Angeles area???

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Election Day

The MapucheRican was excited. Not only did she get to go vote with me but she went to go vote with my sister too. Pobrecita didn't want to go to sleep until she knew the election results. I didn't either and I last until 3 am thanks to some of my mama friends from across the country. We had a drunken election watch chat happening. I also spoke to el Cubano late that night and we had a heavy conversation about how back in the day when we were dated how I never felt threatened by his aggression but rather was embarrassed of his displays. Now I sort of take it all in stride.

What I didn't take in stride were the election results. I don't understand how Kerry could concede without all the votes being counted and without the allegations of fraud being investigated. his, in my view, premature concession, shows what the fuck is wrong with the dems, they are weak. Now mira, I'm no democrat, I am far to radical to be a liberal and kerry is just another rich white man in power but he wasn't Bush.

What really has me pissed is the number of Latino voters who chose Bush because of his morality (like his position on abortion and gay marriage) and um yeah because war is so fucking moral too huh? To me it was the equivalent of selling your own children down the river to secure your own ass.

I wasn't gonna perform at the Wends. tertulia because I was so sick but I was so angry that I threw together a little something calling out all the latinos besando culo gringo. It was very well received but also criticized mostly b/c it was misunderstood. I attacked the use of Jesus my politicians not Jesus but people are all sensitive about that shit. I was also called an ungrateful American for not being thankful for all I have here. I admit I have a love/hate complicated relationship with the United States. Guess what? It's called what it feels like to be a colonial subject, living between borders etc. Deal. I do.

California Dreamin

So um it looks like I'm going to Los Angeles (and Vegas) next week.

Can anyone tell me anything about what to see and do (besides hot colombians?)

Friday, November 05, 2004

El Cubano's Last Day

I apologize for the backlog and days without updates, not that anyone out there is waiting anxiously or losing sleep thinking, " hmmmm what is la Mala up to?". El Cubano took up so much of my time , then Halloween. I've been swamped with work and writing, then the elections came and went and fucked up my head big time. To top it off I have a horrible cold/flu thing happening with a disgusting cough and my body feeling like it's been beaten up.

Last Saturday the MapucheRican and I woke up in el Cubano's father's house in Nassau county. Despite having to pack and a million other things, he insisted on making us his famous French Toast. This involved him running off to the supermarket to get maple syrup, the MapucheRican and I missing an early ride back home, and el Cubano having a fit of rage when he realized the white bread that his father had was Italian style with little seeds. But the French Toast was delicious.

Then El Cubano proceeded to invite his Aunt, Uncle, and Grandmother over so that he could say goodbye to them before he left that afternoon. He also had made plans to meet with his mother for a short while. How he planned to pull this off was beyond me but he said he had it all worked out. Hell we even got to fit in some goodbye sex.

While he showered I tidied up the house for the guests. His Aunt, Uncle, and Grandmother arrived. I knew his Aunt and Uncle already, in fact I was best friends in 7th and 8th grade with their daughter. El Cubano had to leave his guests to meet his mother. When he returned an hour later, we had some time for some political discussion, which I mostly stayed out of since it turns out that el Cubano's family is entirely pro-Bush (puke).

Then the rush began. El Cubano began packing and arguing with everyone in the house. It became obvious that I would be accompanying him to the airport. The highlight had to be when he called me into the room he had been staying in and he told me to bring my pocketbook. I meet him in the room and he hands me a tanga telling me his father found them. Problem was that they weren't my underwear. Turns out they were his sisters and had been hidden in the room for god knows how long. I made el Cubano tell his father that they were not mine.

Finally we were off to the airport. El Cubano wanted to make a stop at a bookstore to return some things first. I was a human pillow in the backseat of the car with the MapucheRican asleep on one side and el Cubano on the other.

Once at the airport, el Cubano left me his cap and we kissed goodbye. I told him I loved him , he said he did too. It wasn't a big huge dramatic deal though.

Once back in the car and on my way home, el Cubano's father, stepmother, and I all let out a sigh of relief. Then I had a very revealing conversation with el Cubano's father about el Cubano and the root of his behavior. We exchanged phone numbers to keep in touch, something I wanted to do anyway just in case el Cubano drops from sight as he sometimes does.

I'm sad that he is gone but amazingly not depressed. I have spoken to him a few times already since he left and we've had some good conversations. I want to go out there to visit him if I can scrounge up enough money I will. But he will be back for the Christmas holiday , so I will probably see him then.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Locos y Putas

I'm behind in my blogging, so apologies.

Have you voted today? Please do if you haven't. If you have, good for you!!! Now the waiting begins.

Now on Friday night, while I was out in Bay Shore having dinner with El Cubano and his family, la Fea went to la Oveja to see el Boliviano's band play. I heard the band played wonderfully.

La Fea felt quite torn between el Boliviano and her EcuaRockero she's digging on, despite the fact that she told el Boliviano that they could only be friends.

Well el Boliviano flipped out on her, calling her on her cell over and over, calling her of all things the whore of la kueva and saying her rep there was shot. Hate to say it but I told her so. Yes yes it was a certain twinge of jealousy that motivated my walking out on the two of them making out last week but also he's flipped out on me before (and yes for clarification purposes, I did have sex with el Boliviano, and boy do I regret that!!!). He, like most artists, is slightly um shall we say mentally unbalanced. and I'm being generous. I could just say he's an asshole.

By the way have you voted yet????

Monday, November 01, 2004

Save a Pussy -Vote out a Bush

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Not so Surprises

I don't know why el Cubano always manages to take me by surprise. I should know that everytime he visits I will be called at the last minute to join him somewhere out in Nassau County to have dinner with his family. Sure enough as I tutored on Friday afternoon he calls me , telling me to be ready by 6 so I could catch a 7:14 train to Deer Park to have dinner at his uncle's house. Of course the MapucheRican was to join us as well.

EL Cubano and I met on the LIRR train as it pulled out of Jamaica. I had met all of El Cubano's family two years ago, when I and they found out at a New Year's party that I was el Cubano's other woman for years without knowing it. Ha and for years I wondered why he wouldn't commit!

Dinner as expected was lovely. The MapucheRican played with El Cubano's young cousins. El Cubano played the guitar. I caught up with El Cubano's father and stepmother, whom I hadn't seen or spoken to in about a year and a half. We didn't end up leaving till about 1 am with boxes of things el Cubano wanted to take back with him to LA. In the car the MapucheRican slept on my lap and el Cubano held my hand.

El Cubano had said he would drive me home after the dinner but as I watched him fall asleep as his father drove to Mineola. I knew that the MapucheRican and I would continue a tradition, spending the night at el Cubano's parent's house.