In the last two weeks, my world has been a huge roller coaster. I experienced my highest of highs and my lowest of lows. I would have no idea that November 2016 would have such an impact on the rest of my life, and we are only two weeks in!
On October 31, my world was flipped when my godmother passed away. Although Zarina (“Z”) was not a formal godmother from Confirmation or Baptism, she was like my fairy godmother. She was the cool big sister I always wanted. Z was always loving, had a great smile, and never said no when I needed help with something. She was the first person I told when I lost my virginity, and she did not judge me at all. Rather, she showed understanding and offered guidance when she saw how lost I was (Catholic guilt ran strong at the time). Z always encouraged me to become “all of which woman is capable.” Although she never moved beyond a high school education, she always asked about my endeavors while I worked on my bachelor and master degrees. When I finished my MBA last year, she told me, “When I grow up, I want to be like you.” The truth is, I learned so much from her, about how to love, how to care, and how to be a great godmother, which is what i hope to be to my goddaughters. Rest in peace, my beautiful nina.
After this low point, my life flipped again – but this time for the best. On November 6, my boyfriend proposed to me. We have been together for almost two years now, and I have known since about the three-month point that he was THE ONE. For many years, my past was filled with, well, let’s say not-so-great guys. M has been nothing short of wonderful. Although we had been talking about getting married, and I sensed that he was going to propose soon, he completely surprised me, and arranged to have my parents, my best friends, and his family present for the proposal. How all these people knew, and I didn’t find out baffles me. Now I’m totally that girl – the one that I would roll my eyes at – posting pictures of my ring and talking about MY FIANCÉ! (I can’t help it, I’m so flinging-flanging excited!)
Then, we had the next turn of the roller coaster on November 8. The longshot won the race. Yes, I too was a Hillary supporter, a proud Nasty Woman. Like I mentioned before, I was raised believing I could become “all of which woman is capable.” I worked my ass off in college, while working full time. I worked my way from a receptionist position to a management position in less than 5 years. I bought a house by myself at age twenty-six. I supported Hillary because I believe in shattering glass ceilings. However, like Hillary, I too have been passed over for a promotion and it was given to a male with less experience and education.
It has only been a week, but family and friends and I have been conversations about how we are worried about the future. I am embarking on a new chapter in my life, but hold on, wait a minute, now I am actually worried about the future because I have a real future in my hands. There are thousands of “what-ifs?” Even though I was born and raised here, in fact, I’m a 4th generation Mexican-American. Do I need to start carrying my passport with me to prove that I belong in this country? M and I want to travel through Europe for our honeymoon, should we only speak Spanish abroad so as to not identify ourselves as the “Americans”? Should we hold off on Europe and go to Hawaii, or the Caribbean, someplace where the hostility against Americans is not as great? I can hold off on having kids for four years, but what if he gets re-elected? Can I wait eight years? What will happen to women’s healthcare? I work in the healthcare industry, although Healthcare Reform has not exactly been good for business, what will happen when Obamacare is eliminated and we lose that share of patients? Will I still have a job?
All of these questions are valid, but like I said, it has only been a week. I cringe to hear his name and have not been able to “rest easy,” especially when I hear that a known White Supremacist has been appointed as Chief Strategist. We cannot stop living, but we also cannot predict the future. I guess we just need to buckle up and see where this roller coaster takes us.
Cover image property of: The Dusty Rebel