I woke up feeling great!

I woke up feeling great this morning! I’ve been sick over the last few weeks. and I’ve been stressed out with certain situations. And I was becoming a bit of a bitch saying I don’t like living in London as I am homesick!

But today I felt energised when I woke up! I didn’t wake up and feel fatigued and I didn’t feel depressing! I think I cause my own depression! Too much thinking and less action will do that to you.

I made it to the gym today. I crushed my workout. And I returned a lost £1 coin to the gym as it was jammed in a locker. Hopefully the person gets it back as I know there are a lot of poor people int he area.

I bagged the leaves in my yard/garden. I’ve been meaning to do this for a while but since I live in a London flat I don’t like going in my yard/garden as my neighbors above me can see me. I miss America when I can be outside and nobody sees me. But my neighbors work from home and literally never leave the house.

I also did the dishes which I know my husband really appreciated. I try to do as many as I can but we have a funny sink and it fills with water fast and has poor drainage.

My husband is collecting a table and chairs for our garden. We have lived here for 2 years and haven’t done much with the space. So we are trying to change that this year. I hope I will go outside more but my neighbor is always saying how she doesn’t like Americans to her partner. So it puts me off from enjoying my space that I pay for.

My cat Harley has been super cute today. I put a video of her on TikTok!

Also I got to explain why I love twitch streaming to someone.

I can’t wait for my husband to come home and see I did the yard/garden. And that I washed the dishes. And that I cleared a path for him to get the table and chairs outside.

But I decided to stop at this point. I don’t want to overdue it. And I also feel productive writing a blog post. Blogging makes me happy. I like expressing myself. I like helping people. I wasn’t sure where my blogging would be going when I originally started. But I guess I kind of write about anything and everything. People are always going through something and more of a range I have the more I can help people.

Anyways thanks for reading my blog! I am always really appreciative of everyone who stops by. I love that you do and I also enjoy getting back to your comments! So thanks you!

Facing Fear – Revisiting the airport where I was sexually assaulted by security. (Stansted Airport)

So I am going to be going back to Stansted Airport where I was sexually assaulted by the security/TSA during a pat down. I’ve had so many times where I have bursted into tears since this has happened because of what I experienced. When I reported to the airport they didn’t really care. And when I lost my very sentimental hat because I was going through shock they didn’t even offer to replace it.

But I am facing my fear of going back there as I can’t let one bad person ruin my life. Since speaking up there have been a good amount of people that have said similar has happened to them. And not just at airports but by security at concerts as well.

I have been sexually assaulted as a kid and even raped. The amount of trauma this airport visit has caused me has been extremely intense. Not only did I cry after security throughout the airport and the entire flight. It ruined my vacation wwhich was meant to be a happy time. It caused me problems at my job. It caused me problems in my marriage. And it still causes me a great amount of PTSD!

I truly believe the airport security needs to find better ways to handle these situations. I find it unacceptable for staff to be unprofessional during these searches and abuse their power. The problem is the airport will always deny that their employees have done anything wrong to keep them from getting sued.

Less than 24 hours until I have to face my fear. I will update when I feel safe enough to do so.

Okay so we missed our alarm clock this morning

The race to the airport was on and trying to escape Notting Hill Carnival!

We arrived at the airport and luckily enough a nice man signed off on my boarding pass as I am not EU and need a stupid check.

Our fast pass wait time was less than 5 minutes. Then the scary moment happened the beeper went off. I didn’t even wear a belt! I question the lady and she said it beeps to do a random checks not because of metal or anything that set it off.

I got scared as I went to the other line as last time I was sexually assaulted. But they did a scan and didn’t touch me. Because what I learned from last time is when I was quiet they didn’t care. So you better believe this time I would be screaming if it happened again.

But apparently my mini bottle of body spray needed to be scanned. There was more staff at the airport and they seemed friendlier.

This experience was a lot better than last year. I am so glad I was not assaulted this time.

……

Upon my return to UK my entry was fast. American electronic passports can now be scanned at the gate. It felt nice not having to show my Visa and get my fingerprints done. Maybe we can think Sparkle Markle for this for hor marriage to royalty! Just kidding!

I’m going to be real with you… Asking for help is brave!

I am going to be real with you. My life has never been easy! I was sexually assaulted as a kid by the boys in the neighborhood. I kept it in and didn’t speak about it because I was afraid they would kill me if I even spoke up about it. So I always tried to hold everything in and then people would wonder why I would just burst.

I mean the signs were there. I was questioned at times about what was happening. But I lied because as a kid I feared for my life to come forward. All of the other boys were bigger than me. When I was older I only went to the police about one of them. I never came forward about all of the other boys. But I decided not to press charges as I didn’t want to ruin this persons life like they all did to me. Maybe I should have come forward with all of the names but I didn’t.

And because I came forward about the one person I feel this person has done everything under the sun to make me feel like I am the crazy one. Never accepting what he did was wrong and never apologizing to me and everyone involved. He is just delusional and lies about it saying I made it up for attention and that I am crazy.

Well maybe I am crazy because of what was done to me. And being female I obviously don’t have a voice. I don’t matter in this world. I will never be anything or do anything with my life. I had so much as a spunk as a kid in so many situations. But this situation has always scared the shit out of me and it still does.

I have now been married for 6 years and I am terrified to even be romantic with my partner. I still get flashbacks from my childhood of everything that happens. When people ask me why I don’t have kids yet.. I can’t even explain to them everything I have been through. I just have to try to shrug off the question as I don’t want to have to drag them into my drama about my past.

Most of these people that hurt me have kids themselves. And it kills me to think how they are raising their kids with what they did as kids themselves. Like where did they learn this stuff from. Did something happen to them as well so then they did it to me? I just don’t understand where other kids learned sexual things from to try it out and force it on me. It is disgusting. And I thought I could brush it off for so long.

But then when I finally came out about it I did feel supported about it. Other women told me it happened to them too. But as I look back there were times I spoke up about it. But the thing is when I did it continued to happen and I think that is why I stopped talking about it. As I spoke up, it still happened so I felt like there was nothing I could do to make it stop. So much pain it caused me.

If I wasn’t sexually assaulted as a small kid I am sure I would have done better in school. I would have so many flashbacks in school and I couldn’t concentrate to learn. There were police officers that would come to our school and talk to the class but I never had the guts to speak to them. I had a friend come forward when I was in 6th grade about something that happened to her. But after seeing how it was dealt with I felt like I could never come forward as it felt like she was the one that was punished and not the person that hurt her.

I was proud of her for coming forward and getting help. But I realized it happened to a lot of girls in our school district. And everyone that came forward it was always her that everyone talked about. Made to feel like such an outsider nobody ever mentioned the guys.

Sometimes I wish I could go back and live my life over. But, this is something we can’t do. We can only continue on with our lives. So if someone wants to tell me that I am crazy than go for it. But please understand why people are trying to put these labels on me. Why are they doing everything in their power to make me seem like I am the bad one when I was the one that was the victim. Because speaking up means you have power and you have a voice. And they are scared for their own reputation.

There was one time my neighbors pulled my pants down in the woods. I ran back to my house screaming and crying. And that time my dad took me to the neighbors to explain what happened. The parents made their kid apologize but they beat that kid so hard. I could hear him cry and being hit from my house. I felt glad he got punished but I felt bad that me speaking up caused him pain.

But the one that seems to get away with calling me names is the one that was never properly punished. He’s been able to get away with accepting what he did. He was never punished by his parents.

Since leaving America I can say I haven’t been sexually assaulted. I feel more empowered being away from an environment where that was happening to so many young girls. Those kids from my childhood weren’t the only ones that sexually assaulted me. I was also assaulted in university. But this was because after my mom died I started drinking to cope with all of the pain. I would drink my life away because I was sexually assaulted as a kid, bullied a lot and went through losing a parent at a young age.

To the young girls and women out there. Please stand up for yourselves. If it gets ignored keep fighting for yourself and don’t give up. You are important and you are valued. You can change it. You can try to go on like it didn’t happen but eventually it will catch up with you and it will break you. Stand up for yourself and speak up. Get out of the situation. You deserve a safe upbringing where you aren’t harmed and you are loved and valued. Don’t ever think you don’t matter because you do. You are everything.

You need to empower yourself so you can inspire others around you. You never know who is going through sexual assault or went through it. Speak up and stand together. Be there for each-other and help each-other through it. Life can get better and you can change the situation around. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, if they don’t listen ask again. And don’t just ask one person. If your parents don’t listen ask a teacher or a doctor. Just keep asking for help. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Asking for help during these situations is not cowardly it is bravery! Never be afraid to be brave.

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My freshman year of high school my English teacher had us read the book Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson. I really connected with this book and this teacher became my hero just having us read it. I was glad she wasn’t afraid to overlook what we could be going through and had us read it. I will never forget reading this book and watching the movie in her class. It was nice to feel like I wasn’t alone and that I could get help if I would only just to Speak up.
Click to buy. ~~> Speak

 

2 Nights in Toronto

Hey Good People,

I do apologize. It’s been a while since my last post. Sarah had to get on my tail. And hey, to be honest, sometimes we need a little push from our friends. Sometimes we need to hear from our closest friends “you should do that” or “you deserve this” because let’s face it, sometimes we don’t know what we need.

This past July 4th holiday, I had another friend of mines encourage me do something for myself.  I had just gotten back literally the day before in the wee hours of the morning (I think around 1 AM).  I traveled with my dad and his wife to my cousin’s wedding in the Dominican Republic. I’d had no cell service (only wifi) but I wasn’t complaining. The wedding was beautiful. The weather was amazing, and after getting over my initial jitters, everything turned out excellent.

Well, the day before we were to return home, I get a wifi call from a relative crying that she’d gotten my car towed. Not only that,  she was afraid that I wouldn’t trust her again because of it. Of course I was upset but, me being me, I didn’t get too upset because I let her use it and well, what kind of person would I be to just blow up on someone who’s crying? I’ve been manipulated for so long I automatically take fault and feel guilty for something I didn’t even do. But I digress.

Upon returning home, I stayed over my dad’s house for the night, my house keys being with my car keys with the relative who has fallen asleep by the time we land. Rightfully so, it is 1 AM. So, come the next morning, my dad and I, take this family member to work and also have to babysit because they waited to late to get their child to day care. I get a ride to the impound and not only do I have to pay for the tow, I have to also pay for the other tickets that this same family member got on another car that they never paid for. Over $400 dollars later, I ride off the lot and thank God, my dad treats me and the little one to breakfast, because who knows when I last ate.

Later that day I pick up the relative from work, she pays me half for the tow, and drop her and the little one off. (He’s really no trouble. He’s amazing might I add). I go straight home and pass out. The next morning I sit in bed, exhausted, depleted and feeling not like myself. I won’t say depression exactly, because I do deal with that a lot, but it was something else. I felt like I didn’t have control over my life anymore. With a birthday right around the corner, it seemed as though I hadn’t done anything to celebrate how far I’d come since a year ago.

Talking to a friend of my on the phone explaining these feelings, he finally asked me: “Where do you want to go?” “Canada, Toronto” I say. “Well, go to Canada!” He says, all matter of fact-like. “Yeah, OK.” I’m thinking. I’d just came from an out of country trip and I just came off $400, and here I am about to go on another trip?

He looked up some hotels and found one, right in the heart of Toronto. I checked it out. It looked nice, but really? Go to Canada? Solo? Hmmm. The more and more I thought about it, the more and more I could see it. I could feel it. The exhilaration, the feelings of freedom. I had no responsibilities. No engagements, no one to answer to. I first thought about who I could ask to go with me, but honestly, I knew I was meant to do this alone.

I went on a walk up my street, trying to clear my mind. Was I really going to do this? Upon returning home, after looking at the hotel listings and the area surrounding it, I’d say probably close to 100 times, I booked it. Sure did. Pulled out my sad little credit card and booked it. I. Booked. It. This is a huge deal for me. I’m making the moves, I’m calling the shots. I’m doing what I want to do. No one else’s trip. No one I have to answer to. Just me. For so long I’ve heard people say “oh, you don’t need all that, it’s just you,” or “girl, what you complaining for, it’s just you” so damn it, that’s right: It’s just Me.

I’ve never unpacked and packed so fast in my life. I sent out a quick text to a couple family members on how long I’d be gone and the address of the hotel. I was on the road and down 90 east highway within 2 hours. The sun on my back as I rode and jammed out to some of the most inspirational tunes. Lizzo, Eve, Jessie J, just to name a few.

And I did it! Passed through the border, and hit Toronto running. I checked out the art museum of Ontario, Queen’s Quay, an amazing vegan spot Planta, and a chill-ass jazz club, The Reservoir Lounge. I did what I wanted, didn’t have to ask anyone if they wanted to do something or how long they wanted to stay, and I even talked to some local people who gave me ideas of where to go. I was in control. Those two nights in Toronto were the most time I’d spent alone in a long time. I actually asked myself what I wanted, and I did it without regret.

So I encourage you, whatever it is that you’ve been wanting to do for yourself, do it. Be it a trip, a spa day, or even reading a book that’s been on your list for a while; do it. You deserve to do something you want to do and not feel guilty for it. Other people do what they want to make them feel better. And you, like me, may be one of those people that are always doing for said people. I’m not saying you should never do for others, but sometimes, and a lot more than that, you have to do for yourself. You can’t pour from an empty cup. Fill yours to the brim, and let it overflow. That way, you’ll have more than enough for yourself and for others.

Peace,

Ari

CRUSHING IT by GARY VAYNERCHUK

So it’s 4:30am and I have just read the first 62 pages of his book. And I am loving it! I usually need a break from reading at 20 pages. But it has been really easy to read and interesting.

I have to say I always felt I lived my life differently than others. As I feel I voice my true opinion more. This book is just encouraging me to be even more of myself.

I have 1 complication in my life right now. But because of this book I am going to work around it. This book is telling me to be me so I’m not going to be held back anymore. Maybe this complication is someone else’s complication after all being projected onto me

So from here on out. I am going to give myself goals to take back my life and continue on my journey to follow my passions!

I know what needs to be done but I can’t let other people’s fears hold me back. That is their fear and their problem. Life is literally ticking away at this very moment. I don’t want the regrets of not going for it and not trying.

I know I am a hard worker. I’ve outlasted and outworked everyone I’ve ever worked with in the conditions we were put through. And I have been efficient with a great attitude! So if I can slave away for others then I need to slave away for myself!

I have so much I want to share with the world! I’ve always been creative but my problem was having a voice that is listened to seriously. So I am going to make some waves with this!

Earlier this year I started steaming on twitch! And I didn’t realise how much goes into it other than gaming and connecting with my audience. I absolutely love my followers and glad I can be personal with them. I love that we trust each other and have an open and genuine relationship. It’s a wonderful feeling.

The side of streaming I didn’t know was the branding. I enjoyed learning to use streamlabs with a capture card and green screen. And I love working with a designer to bring my vision to life with my logo, badges and emoticons. Next is my GIFS! I am also in talks with a musician for some bits as well!

Doing this has made me feel so empowered! I’ve been teaching myself or I’ve been learning from other streamers.

I really want to have a shirt made for me for my stream. So this will be a new goal for me to find a company that can make my image on a nice quality shirt!

Before I moved to England I used to network a lot. I knew people that did everything. But now since I moved I know nobody. It seem that once again I will be going to get myself out meeting people and networking again.

Find people that have passions that set their souls on fire! That have similar interests and we can help each other work together!

I will probably add more to this once I read more if his book. But just had to get this written down!

The link is posted below if you would also like to buy this great book!

Crushing It!: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence-and How You Can, Too