I’m an ENTP – Deal with it.

“You’re a Robot” – Most Ex-Boyfriends (2003- until I die)

“You’re Emotionally Gender-Queer.” – Anonymous Good Friend with a Mental Health Background (2013)

I haven’t posted in over six months. I’m disgusting, I know.  I’ve even taken ANOTHER San Francisco trip in between this time. My life has been like a snow globe that has been cracked open with shards of glass everywhere. I’ve steadily put the pieces together, and I haven’t felt like blogging this year. This is some real talk. God/The Universe/Oprah decided to throw me in to the ocean of uncertainty, and punctured all of my floatation devices. I survived, and in the process, I learned a lot about myself.

For instance, there has been some crying. The fact that I am admitting this is a big deal because I hate crying almost as much as vomiting. Both happen sometimes after drinking, and on a few occasions, both have happened in one night. Seeing me in tears is rare. If you order your meat rare and it’s still breathing, that’s how rare it is. After dipping my toe into my emotions and pool of tears, I realized that it’s not so bad. It’s like you’re a microwavable dinner, and you have to cut a slit into the plastic to let all the steam flow in and out once in a while.

During these past six months, I have been open to a lot of self-work and figuring myself out. I  took several online Myers Briggs Personality tests, and found out I am an ENTP. What this translates to is: I’m Extroverted, I am iNtuitive (abstract-thinker when processing info), I use my Thinking (decision-making process), and I Perceive (adaptable and keep my options open). Of course, I’m not a 100% of either of those items, but I am more inclined to be these things. Put together, I have the personality of an ENTP. Through this, I found my strengths and my weakness:

  • Innovative
  • Very creative; full of ideas
  • Excellent conversationalist
  • Enjoys debating topics with other people
  • Places a great deal of emphasis on knowledge
  • Dislike schedules and routines
  • Good at leading others
  • Does not like to be controlled
  • Very logical

I also found out several fictional characters have my personality type. Below, you can see that I don’t have the personality type of any of the beautiful and dainty Disney Princesses, but I have the personality type of Ursula, the sea witch, and Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean. Willy Wonka and Urkel are in there too. I found this on Tumblr, so these are scientific facts.

Maribel’s Spirit Animals

I’d also like to add, that after extensive research, I found out that Chandler Bing from Friends is also an ENTP. I admit, this makes sense because I make jokes when I’m nervous. I can also talk to a wall if I have no one else to talk to. Could I be anymore amazing?

The last time I took the test, it revealed something very interesting: I am on the fence of Feeling vs. Thinking. It means that I now consider my feelings when making decisions. Me. Feelings. Can you believe that? I certainly can’t. I used to get confused between my gut-feelings and nausea, now I get it. My goal is to access and assess my feelings. To “go with it” – even if that means I jump into things with my eyes closed and use any ounce of trust to believe I won’t die. I’m tired of being logical and using my brain. My heart is thawing out, and the icy exterior is melting rapidly. Blame it on global warming because this is an inconvenient truth. Damn you, Al Gore.

Even when I’m trying to be serious, I end with a joke…oh well.

 

 

“What can I get you?”

One of my favorite things to do is sit at a bar for hours at a time and just drink and chat.  I’m not down with “bar hopping” or doing any sort of “crawl.” I love the randomness that life brings without me moving.

Bar interactions are everywhere from charming to annoying as hell.  If you are a white guy telling me how you were with a Puerto Rican girl once and how you know “Latin Women”, I will roll my eyes so hard I’ll lose my sight for a few minutes. (Based on a true story).

As I transplanted from Portland to San Francisco, I noticed a very specific kind of bartender when interacting with brown ladies in Portland. Portland is growing into a hipster hub. I just spent the holiday back home and frequented too many drinking establishments and did some unofficial research.  Therefore I drank for the blog. You’re welcome.

These bartenders are your average “white guy” but with access to the latest “I don’t care” fashions.  How can hipster dudes be so anti anything when they all look like Goodwill’s version of Justin Timberlake’s hair with a full beard?  Throw in a mini-beanie that rivals a yamaka and trunk full of American Spirits, and you’re so at the next MGMT concert.

According to Urban Dictionary, which is where I get all my knowledge (and grad school I guess), it says this about hipsters:

Hipsters reject the culturally-ignorant attitudes of mainstream consumers, and are often be seen wearing vintage and thrift store inspired fashions, tight-fitting jeans, old-school sneakers, and sometimes thick rimmed glasses.

When you’re in an establishment of mostly white folks, you’ll stick out. I stick out, which is great when I’m trying to get a drink.  I swear the bartenders come up quicker because I look all “ethnic.”  They seem confused that I know the words to a song by Architecture in Helsinki but I speak secret Spanish to talk about others to my homegirl. I feel the bartenders get their “cultured” beanies on and try to act all modern and worldly.  Dude, I don’t care.  But a free drink maybe? Cuz my parents crossed 2 borders, sooooo…

Here are some great exchanges I’ve had with hipster bartenders:

Bartender: So where are you from (most famous question of my life)
Me: I’m from Oregon, but my parents are from El Salvador
Bartender: Oh nice!  I love going to Nicaragua to surf, it’s amazing.
*Because that’s the same thing, not 2 different countries or anything*

Bartender: What can I get you?
Me: Can I get a Tecate please?
Bartender: *looks confused* he was taken aback my correct pronunciation
Me: (repeat) Tecate please?
Bartender: Oh ya, TECATE (I think he busted his insides by trying to pronounce it with an accent).  Right on!
*Truth talk, he said right on*

Bartender: Would you like another drink?
Me: Sure, same thing please
Bartender: Whiskey soda with lemon?
Me: Yup
Bartender: Oh that’s a cool bracelet (*I have a bracelet full of Salvadoran flags that I got from El Salvador last year*)
Me: Oh ya, thanks
Bartender: Oh is that Honduras?
Me: No it’s El Salvador
Bartender: Awesome! My best friend is half Guatemalan
Me: That’s nice

These are just a few examples of the sea of interactions I’ve had being “othered” hardcore. But I don’t sweat it too much, I like people trying for my approval and if I can get a free guilt drink in the process…my bank account ain’t mad.

Things That Were Hard for me as a Brown Girl

My cultural identity is on a  constant Kinsey scale  continuum–some days I’m exclusively American, some days I’m exclusively Mexican (*Some of us, like my friend, who I’ll call “Tiffany News”, are not Mexican. Tiffany is Salvadoran*). One day, I’m all about listening to Selena, and the next day, I’ll say something super-white like, “hell yeah, I love 80’s music.” Truthfully, the whitest things that has ever crawled out of my mouth has been, “Yes, Frasier is funny.”  Culturally, I’m always DTF…Down To Fluctuate.

Although I am able to stand my ground as an adult, it was hard for me growing up. I’d try to pick up a hobby, or like certain music, and I’d be accused of being, “too white,” or “too Mexican.” There was no winning! Weird Brown girls that love Dawson’s Creek and Telenovelas get no love!

I’d like to also note that there was an underlying class issue here. My parents were poor, therefore, I was poor. I didn’t have access to many things because of this. For example, I get accused of being too white for being into yoga.  Yes, people practice yoga in Mexico, but of course just like yoga here in the United States, people with money can afford yoga classes. Yoga is a luxury. I just hear George Lopez white-voice saying, “OMG, LMAO, BFF…”

Venturing into unknown territory is extremely frightening. I would throw myself into things without knowing anyone who may have pioneered the way before me. Various questions run through my head like, “Am I going to look stupid if i fail miserably?” or “Do they see me and automatically think about how different I look?”

Below is a list of things I have forced myself to conquer, regardless of what anyone else thought– including myself:

Yoga

I’ve been practicing yoga sporadically since I was 18 years old, but it wasn’t until about a year ago that I decided to get a little more serious. Since I’m still a beginner, I had to self-talk myself into taking a class in the Pearl District. I was afraid of walking into a class full of ripped housewives that took yoga and pilates classes on their husbands’ dime. I remember standing in front of the yoga studio, taking a deep breath, and thinking, “You are privileged enough to do this for all the weird brown girls that can’t.” And I did it. It was like pulling a mental band-aid. Sure, I walked into a class full of hard-bodies that casually said, “Oh, I’m taking this class as a warm-up to my Ashtanga class after this,” but I was there to do my thing. Namaste, mija.

Sushi

I was introduced to sushi in high school. My best friend at the time really enjoyed it and taught me how to eat with chopsticks. Of course because I was a newbie, I ate wasabi like it was candy and instantly regretted it. It was like eating 1,000 jalapeños at once.  I didn’t know what wasabi was, but now I know what to do when I want my sinuses cleared.

Red Lobster

Since we are on the subject of seafood, its only fitting that I incorporate the Red Lobster story. Stefanie  Tiffany and I were extremely broke after college, and were collecting money to leave her sister’s house.  One day, we decided to splurge on some makeup and a delicious meal. Neither of us had been to Red Lobster, or had lobster, so we decided to boldly go forth into the world of fancy seafood. Because we are both wound up like corkscrews, we both began to panic because we didn’t know to actually eat the lobster. My mind raced back to an episode I had watched of Queer for the Straight Guy; the one where the straight guy looked like a moron in front of his lady friend as he used pliers to eat lobster.  When we sat down to eat, we YouTubed “How to eat Lobster” on our phones. True story. Below, you will see a how to eat lobster, because I love you enough not to make a pendeja/o out of yourselves. I like how the guy in the video calls the lobster cracker, “ubiquitous.” He’s like, “Oh, this old thang? pfff no big deal. I ate lobster Gerber as a baby. I’m about this life.”

College/Advanced High School Courses

My only window into the world of college was the show Felicity. I was twelve years old, and I thought that everyone’s college experience must be universal. Everyone gets a job as a cool barista in between classes, right? Her biggest problem was switching from pre-med to art, and going back and forth between two guys (Team Ben), sign-me up! What I didn’t realize was that Felicity was a white girl with money. Felicity didn’t have a dad with a pick-up truck that helped her move into her dorm, and a passerby never called her a “country bumpkin” as she was moving her shit into her college apartment. Nope, that didn’t happen to her, but it happened to this girl.

Felicity had the luxury of looking like her classmates, and partaking in the collective cultural atmosphere. It is the loneliest feeling in the world when you notice you are the only person of color in your classroom. It’s like being dropped into the sea with only your floaties. Unfortunately, the journey to actually get into college was so daunting, my classes then intimidated me. I figured if it was so difficult to get in, the classes must be hard! Nope. Everyone’s kind of an idiot. I always had to self-talk myself in class sometimes before I realized: I am just as smart as everyone else, and I have a lot to contribute. By my fifth year (See, felicity didn’t even have a fifth year) I was not contributing my opinions in class, I was barking them. It was very DMX, not so much Felicity.

DMX

Traveling/Airplane Etiquette/Fancy Hotels

Stefanie and I will forever be the two old ladies that arrive way too early. We’re like the two old muppets, Statler and Waldorf. When we would travel in a big group, we’d be the ones on time before anyone else, with our purses on our lap like viejitas. Everything has to be perfect to avoid delays, missing flights, and looking like a total idiot. Our parents immigrating to the United States doesn’t count as “jetsetting,” or “globe trotting,” so we don’t know how to travel without having our butt cheeks clenched the whole time.

My favorite part of traveling with my friends is the reveal of the hotel. Its like we were all part of the Make a Wish Foundation and our dying dreams came true. Immediately, one girl will be taking in the view, another will be walking around with a plush white robe for no reason, and then there’s one girl who will ruin it with, “you guys, I have to go to the bathroom…”

As you can see, I dive in head first to these new experiences, sin miedo. I’ve had to adapt as best as I could.

Bye Portland, I’ll miss you…

Portland OR and I broke up.  After 9 years together we just didn’t “feel” each other anymore.  Coming from a small town to Portland when I was 18 was the one of the best decisions I ever made.  I found myself as a young adult and really learned life on my own.  After so much time though, I felt as though I got all I could out of the place.

downtown-portland-and

The next adventure in life has always been grad school, so since I am not getting any YOUNGER, I knew time was ticking.  I still have no ties to hold me down, I still have the opportunity in life to pick up and bounce, to figure out  this new phase of life.  So where am I going?!?!!?

San Francisco…you win.

sf

I’m going into grad school in SF and couldn’t be more excited but nervous as hell.  I don’t really know many down there, so I’m really going step out of my comfort zone and go all in.

Living in Portland I had my share of  “hates” but as I make this transition , I shall share little bits of my life in Portland I’ll miss…

Driving

I feel the most at peace when driving around.  Not only do I have full control (of the car that is), but I have an opportunity to listen to my music at an obnoxious volume and cut people off to feel good about myself.  Plus, I knew ALL the routes and parking  situations in most areas like a boss.  My parallel parking skills were off da hook.  INSERT ALL THE BRAGS HERE

My “home”

This particular “crib” was my first post-college, single lady pad.  It was unique and carried a lot of memories.  That place saw a lot…positive, negative, regrets, celebrations, barf, etc.  Just the neighborhood, it had character.  Front stoop sitting and drinking…the best.  Packing that bitch up was a truly emotional and sad experience.

Holiday time

Portland is beautiful, peaceful and lit up with lights left and right during the holiday months.  The days/nights that it doesn’t rain, the coldness mixed with a hot drink (hot chocolate or hot toddy, your choice) just feels perfect and picturesque.

The regular drinking spots and getting beyond schwilly

These evolved over the years, but a staple here and there that stayed true.  It’s nice having a regular joint, you know what you’re getting into and you know what you’re drinking and who might be there.  This can also serve as all negatives too, but now that I think about it…having comfort like that is nice.  By the end of my days in Portland, I just watched people like a hawk in the corner with all the judgements but got hella twisted.  My ride or die homies right there to save my life.  Building up friendships like that are tough…

Portland Summer Nights

Some of the most beautiful times have been had on Portland summer nights.  There is something in the air when the night time feels warm that makes Portlanders just go crazy.  I appreciate that.  Shenanigans ensue!

That’s all I can really think about right now.  I think more time away I shall revisit this post and will have much more to add.  Or I can make a new post that is more like “Portland sucks and I will never want her again, SF is the baddest bitch and I mean baddest as in she’s better.”

To my family and friends in my Oregon home…Imma miss you so much!!!!

 

Back To School for Marbles

My first day of summer classes creeped up on me, and I couldn’t have been more nervous. I felt like I was five years old again, but without my kitten sweatshirt and fresh box of crayons. I was so nervous, I had to call both of my parents. It was my way of breathing into a paper bag.

I didn’t realize how physically being back on campus would affect me; these memories I had, good and bad, flooded into my brain. In typical Maribel fashion, I started to freak myself out. I felt old. I felt like I should have one of those backpacks with the wheels on it. In a flash, my knowledge of computers was gone. What’s e-mail? What’s Facebook? My legs went numb and I needed my Pops to tell me, “Good luck, Mija, tu eres esmar (smart)”

Me during a lecture in class. #selfie

If there is one thing I live for (aside from gay approval), its the approval of my professors. When someone tells me I am right, or they don’t like to argue with me in class because I know my shit, I get drunk with power.  I was nervous that I would miss some minor detail and somehow fail in my class, and in life. I am dramatic, I know this. However, I am learning a new subject I never studied in my undergrad, so of course I was scared.

Even though I felt old initially, my past work and life experience ended up being useful. Although I may have looked like Dora the Explorer with a backpack on (Mora the Explorer in this case), I was a grown up. There was an instance in class where everyone surrounded me to ask me questions about the real world. “Is it really that hard to find a job? Did you end up working in the field you studied?  Yes, it really is hard out there for a pimp, and no I didn’t work in the field I studied. I worked in a profession that sparked my interest in urban planning, I’m not out doing anything media or communication studies related. However, both disciplines are very useful and intersect sometimes in my world.

Some things to note if you decide to go back to school past the age of 25: 

  •  Wearing a backpack regresses your age by five years.
  •  …or wearing a backpack can make you look like a loser that lives in their mom’s basement
  • Keep your mouth shut unless you are sure of what you are about to say or ask. If you start talking about something unrelated to the lecture, you’ll sound like you’re exhibiting symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Most of the good looking guys in your class were probably born between 1990-1994, or whatever year the Lion King came out.
  • People still get married between the ages of 19-23. They have a maturity I can’t comprehend, but my Friday and Saturday nights are way cooler.

Overall, my experience was a good one. Homework still sucks, but I do enjoy the subject matter. I recently finished my first summer term class, and in case you are wondering, I received an “A” because that’s what boss bitches do.

Then & Now

My last post got me nostalgic.  I can’t believe how old I am sometimes.  When I say my age out loud, I’m like “when did that happen?!”  I just turned 27.5 last Friday.  So in celebration I drank til I could not function anymore.  Celebration or sadness?  Hmm whatever.

27.5 years old…WHAT?!??!

2013 marks the 9th year of me being in Portland.  9 YEARS.  That’s a 4th grader.  I remember 4th grade, we watched the OJ Simpson verdict in class.  I’ve grown to really love this city…it feels more like home than my actual hometown (Roseburg where you at?!?).  But Portland becomes small over time.  I’ve called it such a horrible thing as Roseburg #2.  By the time I was a senior in high school I was just so ready to leave and go to the BIG CITY.  As a child, I only knew Portland as the place we’d go to see the immigration lawyer or immigration hearings.  It was a scary place in general for me.  So as I was ready to pick my college of choice, I knew I had to go to Portland.  Make that city mean something different to me, also a place where they had Starbucks!

I’ve been having that “small town” anxious feeling the last year or two.  My future isn’t set here, I’ve outgrown this place.  I know this place like the back of my hand, I run into someone I recognize all the time, some people I DO NOT want to run into.   I always say that I lost that sparkle in my eyes; that”wide eyed big city livin” charm I used to have as a youngin.  I need to channel that feeling more.  I need to appreciate that I didn’t stay in my 20,000 people town.

So let’s take a look back at Stefanie 2004-2005 to Stefanie 2012-2013.  LEGGO:

Let me preface this era in my life.  Throughout high school I actively tried to be “different,” rejecting my default settings.  So I was “trying” during this era of my life.

Age: 18/19 (JUST MOVED TO DA CITY!)

Music Favs: The Strokes, Tegan and Sara, being about that “alternative music lifestyle”.  I was at a show once or twice a week.  The Crystal Ballroom, Roseland, Wonder Ballroom, I thought I was soooooo cool in my chucks in the all ages area.  Also, strategically made a playlist on my Myspace to show you how indie I was.

TV Favs: I have no idea what I watched.  I think I watched Smallville a lot.  And I wouldn’t go out until I watched SNL.

Coffee drink: I didn’t drink coffee until I tried to make a new friend in one of my freshman classes and she suggested coffee.  Up until that point I only drank those coffees that were basically birthday cakes.  I ordered a cappuccino because I heard that on TV. I wanted to throw up in my mouth the minute I took a sip.  But this is the city!  I gotta look cool.

Fashion: Jeans, t-shirts, hoodies, chucks (I had an array of colors).  I barely wore jewelry, tiny earrings if any at all.

Hair/Makeup Favs: What?  I didn’t do that.  I had my super curly hair for days and my makeup consisted of mascara…and that’s about it.

Car: I didn’t have one…I lived downtown and got lost on a bus a few times.

How’d you party tho: I went to many random parties with all the friends I met at shows or in class (mostly white).  I drank loads of PBR in tiny studios.  I’d walk home alone because people got white boy wasted and left me.  But this was all in an effort to be more “open.”

School activities: I tried to join a couple of organizations with other brown people.  I never had brown friends before so this was a big deal.  I entered their meetings and/or offices and was welcomed with death stares and eye rolls.  So I was done with that…

Portland Homeless moment: I was waiting for a bus in SE, and I heard weird “struggle” noises and I turned to my right and a dude was shitting into a plastic bag.  I’m a child from Roseburg and I thought I was going to die.

Food: There was a Mexican spot right on campus, Cha Cha Cha.  By the time my freshman year was done, Mauricio my homie, always said “Hola Cruz!  Los nachos?!?”  Yes homie, the nachos.

—INSERT 9 YEARS HERE—

Age: 26/27 (How I look each day doing the same shit)

Music Favs: A diet of E-40, Tupac, Dr. Dre, super gross misogynistic jams and anything 90s R&B

TV Favs: I watch way too much reality TV and Netflix

Coffee drink: Now if I don’t have coffee, I get a horrible headache right above my eyes.  I’ll drink coffee with regular cream at work.  Or if I’m out to by one, a vanilla latte.

Fashion: Dresses and skirts for days.  Easy to wear.  I don’t really like wearing pants, I feel manish.  I wear ridiculously large earrings to work or play, don’t matter!

Hair/Makeup favs: I try to put myself together with makeup each day to look alive.  My eyes need help because I look high if I don’t.  But fill your eyebrows in!  This is great for my face.

Car: I have Nissan Sentra, 2005, my mom’s ex car I bought from her.  It has a cleft lip since I slammed it in a wall during a post work anger-fest.  But it gets me around!

How’d you party tho: At this point in my life, I will drink until I am dragged home.  I will drink and keep drinking and even buy you drinks at the bar.  You’ll say you’re done, I will buy you one more.  Have fun with me. I drink sitting down and will down vodka and whiskey.  You all want to get some fries?

School activities: I don’t do that anymore.

Portland Homeless moment: Working downtown this happens on the daily, interaction with homeless folk. Nothing new.  Haven’t seen such a great shitting situation after my first experience.

Food: Nachos til I D-I-E!  I like to get my nacho game on at any establishment that offers them.  I’m kind of a nacho foodie now.  #dealwithit

So You’re Going Gluten-Free…

I try to live my life as gluten-free as possible. Before you write me off as a pretentious douche-bag, you need to know that I am doing this for health reasons. My immune system is kind of a jerk, and gluten is like the final tequila shot that sends it over the edge. Lupus is a disease that really likes to mess with me, and I do everything I can to keep it in check.  My approach to treating this illness is through the naturopathic route. I’ve been on various types of medication, and even the most benign ones have awful side effects. My amazing doctor has me taking fun stuff like b-12, vitamin d, and other natural things to keep me going. Unfortunately, she told me that there is a link between the immune system response and eating gluten. She also mentioned that the human body isn’t meant to consume this much gluten to begin with! The first question that flew out of my mouth was, “is there gluten in vodka.” She looked at me sympathetically and said, “I’m afraid so.” This diagnosis was cruel.

Initially, I was embarrassed to be associated with this trendy and expensive diet. Did that mean I could only buy my groceries at Whole Foods and start driving a Volvo like all of Portland, Oregon? I felt I was too cool and too poor to be indulging in the gluten-free lifestyle. However, the idea of feeling better and not being in so much pain seemed nice. I began the process of getting rid of gluten…

Did you know vodka was originally made with potatoes? Americans, being the wheat-loving nation that we are, started to distill it from grains. I now drink Monopolwa, a potato-based vodka made in Poland. Every time I go out, I specifically request this with club soda and lime. I won’t lie, it’s pretty harsh if you don’t squeeze that lime in there. It kind of tastes like gasoline, but I go with it because that’s what champions do. There was an instance when someone was trying to lay down the mack sauce on Stefanie, and this guy decided to be smart and buy BOTH of us drinks (side note: always charm the friend because she is the gatekeeper). After she told him my drink order, I overheard the guy say, “oh god, she’s one of those people that doesn’t eat gluten?” Stefanie, even in her semi-buzzed state said, “it’s for health reasons,” which translated into: “don’t be an asshole.”  Thanks, girl.

I gave up on sliced bread. We decided to go our own ways. Giving up toast and sandwiches has been difficult.  I bought a loaf of gluten-free bread for $7 and it was the worst decision. The slices of “bread” (it’s not bread, it’s garbage) fell apart in the toaster or while I was spreading avocado on it. It was such a disaster it looked like I was performing in a bad infomerical.

Gluten is in a lot of things. It’s even in soy sauce! I have to think twice before consuming anything! Although it seems like a miserable existence having to monitor what you eat, it’s not so bad. I’ve learned that if you eat your greens, your fruits, and a lean protein,  you should be good. It’s almost like eating a low-carb diet, except I try to eat things that are as close to nature as possible. Not all the time, but I try. I will say that if you want to be almost 100% gluten-free, you have to do some serious meal planning. After leaving my job, I will definitely focus more on the planning part. Here are some things I have learned:

  • Rice and beans are your friends
  • Most Mexican food involves rice, beans, and corn tortillas (stay away from flour tortillas, those delicious bastards)
  • Most Asian food involves a lot of rice
  • Gluten-Free pizza is only good on a CORN-base
  • Rice pasta and rice-based anything is disgusting
  • Rice pasta turns into glue if you overcook it
  • Potato is the homie (fries, taco de papa, mashed potatoes, tater tots, the list can go on…)
  • If you find there is nothing to eat when you go out, you can’t go wrong with a garden salad and a side of fries.
  • Tortilla chips should sponsor my life, but I should really quit those for a little while.
  • Gluten might be in salad dressing
  • Gluten is found in: wheat, durum wheat, rye, spelt, oats (UNLESS they say gluten-free), barley, kamut, semolina, and beer.
  • Polenta (corn-based italian food) can go sweet or savory.

Personally, I just feel so much better when I adhere to being gluten-free.

  • Weekly monster migraines are GONE
  • My joints don’t feel so achy
  • I can get out of bed much faster
  • I feel lighter on my feet
  • I feel much more “present” and mentally intact.
  • dropped a pant size (but let’s keep it real, I still eat fries and tortilla chips and there is NO gluten in ice cream)
  • makes you conscious of what goes in to your body
  • makes you conscious of how you treat your body.

Dealing with gluten is like talking to that guy you know is bad for you. All of your friends are like, “girl, stop!”, but you answer the texts, the phone calls, and secretly hope that he remembers your birthday. Oh, he’ll show up to your birthday, but he’ll be super drunk and disorderly. You’ll end up crying in the bathroom the whole night. But lord, gluten is so delicious, sometimes its hard to say no.

I’m on a mission to live my life as gluten-free as possible. It will be difficult, but I think I can do it. If you don’t need to be gluten-free, then don’t. However, if you choose to, I’m here to support you. I have to do it because I like living my life free of medication and lupus complications. These were the cards that were dealt to me. If you don’t have these cards, then eat your cake, boo.