Why You Don’t Have To Like Me

like, me, why, mean, nice, respect, heart, humanity, demand, love, accept, journey, advice, life, success, relationships, grow, growth, 20s, 30s, learn, change,When I was younger, I always wanted to fit in. Like most other kids, I wanted to be accepted and liked. I wanted to have cool friends that I could always hang out with.

I never really fit in anywhere. My culturally diverse background left me neither here nor there. I was never white enough or Mexican enough. I still tried to fit in, though.

When I got to high school, I said F*** it. I am who I am, if people don’t like it then that’s too bad. So I became a mean girl. Why?  Well, because I just could.

I had awesome friends but I was never too awesome myself. I didn’t care about anything or anyone. I was bitter and angry at the world and my only friend was oftentimes music. Lyrics got me. Lyrics accepted me.

I learned to find the balance between being too nice and being too mean somewhere in my 20s. I am who I am. I am sarcastic but have learned to be sweeter. I am rude but have learned to be well-mannered, well, most of the time anyway.

Now that I am closer to 30 than I am to 20 I realize no one has to like me. Those that matter are simply three people, mom, dad and my sister. They’ll forever love me unconditionally. I can count my friends on one hand and life is awesome this way.

If you don’t know me yet, you don’t have to like me. I am very opinionated so I would honestly be surprised if you did learn to like me. I have a pure heart but it’s often very guarded. And with good reason. Like many people, I have been broken and I have put myself back together.

I don’t demand you like me but I do demand respect. I respect all people who have love in their hearts. Even if it is hidden, I respect you. I respect all people who have talent and who have a set of strong values like integrity. I even respect people who don’t know any better because they might be a product of circumstance.

If you and you hate my guts, that’s fine. Just show me respect to my face. Maybe you don’t like what I say or how I do, but what better reason to respect others than for their differences.

I have had many situations where I judge books by their covers. I mean, haven’t we all? I then find the humanity within their hearts and forget all ill-conceived notions.

I believe in mutual respect among all mankind. We are on a certain journey together and most of us are simply trying to make the best out of this fleeting moment we call life.

We don’t have to agree or understand those around us but I do think it is necessary to respect. Respect beliefs, respect views, respect space, respect possessions, respect journeys, respect cultures, respect differences. We don’t have to be best friends with our neighbors but mutual respect goes a very long way.

Choose love. Choose acceptance. Choose respect.

Love Deeply and Forever,

Karen

Why My 20s Are The Best And Worst Years Of My Life

best, fast, brain, 25, time, irony, naive,worst, 20, 30, 20s, 30s, life, grow, learn, limits, death, rock, bottom, test, age, time, lessons, know, knew, human, love, integrity, wrong, young, heart, I remember being 16. I remember being 11. Anything before that is a complete blur. And after 16, I just remember turning 20. At 20, I knew it all. I was invincible. I was all that and so much more. If someone called, I never answered. If someone wanted to tell me otherwise, I never listened.

21 was always near death. I was testing every and any limit. How much alcohol could my body take? How fast could my car go? How much abuse could my heart handle?

Thinking back, my early 20s were pretty horrific. If pain is glory, then my early 20s were pretty glorious. I didn’t know who I was or who I wanted to be. I had a plan I thought would one day magically come together but I was doing everything to keep that from happening. Ironic, huh?

My early 20s were full of irony. I was full of naivety.

At 21, I hit my rock bottom. By 22, I was trying to piece my life back together. I was more lost than I had ever been before. I wanted to meet rejects like me so I did. I hung out with them night and day and thought I was just like them. I was living a double-life as if I had learned absolutely nothing from my troubled past.

By 23, I was still stumbling. I kept falling like baby Bambi.

They say by 25 your brain stops developing and your values become set in stone. It’s true, by 25, I wanted life to hurry the f up. I was tired of making mistakes and decided it was time to settle down. My mind and body felt older than they ever had before. By this point, I knew who I was. I had become a person filled with love, happiness, and integrity.

How did that happen? From 23 to 25 I had grown up. I was still working at my kid job, but there I was, putting in my time and dedication. I learned that inconsistency was a thing of my past and that if you ever want to be respected you must be consistent in everything that you do.

One thing is for sure, I have never loved myself as much as I do today. I am now officially in my late 20s and so proud of my journey. I am proud of every one of my scars. I am proud of all the things I didn’t know that I eventually learned. I am looking forward to learning so much more, about not only myself but humanity in general.

My 20s have been turbulent, to say the least. They have been more beautiful than I ever thought they could be. They have taught me who I am and who I never want to be. They have shown me I am valuable, special and loved.

Above all, they have proved to me that I still have so much more to learn. And so much more to see, feel and listen to. And while I might think I have it all figured out now, I am sure my 30s will prove me to be extremely wrong.

Love Deeply and Forever,

Karen

To All The Harvey Weinsteins Of The World

Harvey Weinstein, sexual, assault, harassment, harass, abuse, physical, psychological, pain, universal, story, past, relationship,Ashley Judd, Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie, Léa Seydoux, Cara Delevingne, me too, heart, love, worthy, change, broken, friends, family, after, strong, strength, women, men, change, power, strength, strong, intelligence, years, allow, toxic, toxicity, you, withinI decided to post “Me Too” on my Facebook page the other day. I got a whopping two likes I believe. In comparison to my cat posts, it was surely not in contention for the most likes on my feed.

People were not very interested in knowing I have been sexually assaulted or sexually harassed in my past. The good thing is I am glad about this fact. My harassment goes far beyond a trivial Facebook post.

I can honestly say I really don’t care about this Harvey guy. I do care about what he represents. Well, of course, I do. I have been looked at for reasons other than my intelligence.

As a veteran of the used car business, it is safe to say this happened to me often. Wearing dresses shouldn’t ever be an issue. It always was and I never cared. Why? Because dresses are cute and comfortable! I always do my best to dress modestly but it doesn’t change the society we live in.

After thinking long and hard about this one man, I realize I was giving random people too much power regarding this issue. When I think Harvey Weinstein, my thoughts have definitely shifted.

I am now associating the name with an emotional and physical abuser of my past, or the many “Harvey Weinsteins of the World.”

Have you been in that horrible relationship?

The one that was clearly horrible and painful for you yet you stayed because you thought you could never start over? Did you date that one person people begged you to leave for one too many days or years?

I did.

Not only did I allow harassment in my life, I allowed it for years on end. I allowed psychological and physical abuse because I simply did not love myself enough. I did not love myself at all.

I am not afraid to speak my truth. I will share it with you if you ask. I don’t revisit it unless it is to help others. Just like all the “Me Too” posts, I hope someone is out there reading this and can relate. Not because it is something I wish upon anyone else, but because we are all in this together.

We can all learn and lean on each other as pain is universal.

Many of us have hit our rock bottoms in life. Many of us have allowed toxicity into our precious hearts. No matter what type of doctor or friend you tell, there will never really be a clear a cut reason for why we sometimes feel we don’t deserve the very best around us.

I allowed someone to break me. However, it was only temporary. That situation did not and does not define me. What defines me is what came after the fact.

I picked myself up and made myself better. With the help of friends and family, I rose up stronger than ever. I rebuilt my foundation with love and support and vowed to never allow such abuse within my life again.

If you have or are currently going through similar pain, remember, you are not alone. I have been there as have many before me. It doesn’t make you weak. It doesn’t make you not worthy. You have the power within to overcome this painful moment and demand change.

You are worthy of love. You are worthy of respect. You are worthy of valuable relationships. You are worthy of the very best treatment at all times.

I am glad to see change is happening before my eyes. And though I know it will take many years, I understand I can definitely spark a chain reaction with my story. A story that is too often told. A story that I wish was never written. A story that we can alter the ending of TOGETHER.

Love Deeply and Forever,

Karen