In Stillness, I Am

I am on a journey to heal, to learn to forgive, to open my heart, and to discover who I am.  The more my heart opens, the more I  have the courage to be.  My journey started long before I knew it, and now I have finally awakened to all the gifts that life and God have

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“If you don’t breather through writing, if you do not cry out in writing, or sing in writing, then don’t write, because our culture has nouse for it.” -Anaïs Nin

bestowed upon me.  I’ve created this blog to narrate the experiences, the people, the places and the ideas that have shaped my heart.  I write for me and share my soul through what I write. If I’m lucky, maybe I will inspire a few to find their voice.

I write for women in celebration of women.  I write for men who love their women strong.  Through writing, I break down my walls of fear and explore my raw, authentic emotions to find the space to forgive and accept myself.  I search for the places where I’m honest and probe in the places I’m not.  I write about sexuality, womanhood, motherhood, poverty, oppression, liberation, education, love, spirituality and everything that has been part of my creation.  Writing breaks my heart [open] as I learn to release that which I am not, and embrace that which I am.

I write for my daughter, so she can be fearless and fierce in discovering who she is, even during her moments of most doubt.  I hope that she sees my attempt at courage, and is inspired to continue to live with courage, because that is the only way that one reaches his/her authentic truth.  I want her to tell her story, so she never has to feel ashamed or worthless.

I also write to continue to connect to my beautiful grandmother’s spirit whose legacy continues to live through me and Carmen.  She loved us more than we could ask for, and poured her life into us, so that we could find the essence of who we are. Within the confinements of her life, she found the freedom to be.  She didn’t take shit from anyone, and yet she took a lot of shit.  She was abused, silenced, and overpowered, yet she was resilient, loud, and powerful.  No matter how difficult her life experiences, she never succumbed her spirit to the suffering. As she became older, her spirit was no longer buried under the mud of oppression, abuse, guilt, and expectations.  I saw her transform into who she was meant to be.   For all of this and more, she inspired me to find mi Alma de Colibrí.

Let me tell a few things that can give you a sneak peek about me.

I don’t take myself too seriously.  I once almost burned down my classroom.  I brought in candles and served cheese cubes and apple cider to recreate a gathering of the mind a la socratic seminar.  I wanted students to get the full effect.  I’d blown out all the candles except the one on my desk . . . yes, I know – What the funk was I thinking!  In my usual dramatic way, I collected the students’ notes and was praising them for the discussion.  I UNINTENTIONALLY (disclaimer) placed the stack of papers on the burning candle.  Before I knew it, my desk was in flames. I started screaming, “Hay Dios Mio!”  The students just watched the flames behind me.  To add insult to injury, I thought that if I took a folder and fanned air toward the fire, it would actually blow it out.  Fortunately, once students saw their teacher’s incompetence, they all jumped out of their seats, swiped the papers off the desk, and began stomping, all while the fire alarm was already snitching on me.  These are the stories that remind me to laugh and to always live in the moment.

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Our real legacy doesn’t come from how much money we make or how popular or powerful we become. Our legacy comes when we create something that manifests our soul.  My personal legacy first began when I created Carmen.  But it’s not her physical attributes that are my legacy, it’s the incredible human being I was a part of shaping.  Her passion, compassion, love, and deep sense of social justice are already making a mark on the world.  My second legacy is having loved every student I have come in contact with.  I have no control over their personal circumstances; I can’t take their pain away; most of the time I have no control over the severely failing education system they inhabit; But what I do have control over, is how much I can love them every time they walk through the door.  My third legacy is one that I am exploring at this moment, writing.  Writing has become cathartic for me.  I want writing like I want my first cup of coffee in the morning or the way I want to flirt with my husband inconspicuously in public.  I need writing the way I need to breathe and love.  When I write (create) I feel an immense sense of peace and joy overwhelming my heart.  I feel my heart opening into spaces I never knew existed.  And sometimes I can touch my soul.

I like things that are free (dom) – the sun’s kiss on my cheeks on a crisp Sunday morning, the singing of the birds in my back yard, my husband’s silly laughter, the sweet scent on the back of by daughter’s neck, riding my bike alongside the ocean, spontaneously dancing salsa in the middle of the living room with my husband, getting a thank-you note from a student, telling someone I love how much better my life is because of them, having amazing and inspiring girl friends, hanging out with family on warm leisure summer days, dancing until my feet feel like they are flying, going on hiking adventures with my daughter, baking something new and sometimes screwing it up, laughing until tears roll down my thighs, writing.

I’m a  work in progress, at times complicated, so I will add a little ABOUT me at a time, as I feel inspired and think of those things that reflect the different components of my spirit.

5 comments on “In Stillness, I Am

  1. ellen hohenstein

    This is fantastic Cristina!

  2. oh my, oh my. All this since last we met? Just saw this today! I LOVE IT!! So proud of you 🙂

  3. Cristina, I am speechless – in awe of your courage, grace, and beauty! Author! Author! 🙂

  4. I enjoy your pieces. I’m glad I found your blog!

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