Bailamos!

Bailamos!  Or as we say in english, let’s dance (we dance)!   I don’t know about you but I love to dance!  Sure, sometimes I may be a wall flower or you can find me chair dancing, but put on the right song and forget it, you will have to drag me OFF the dance floor.

This week I have been obsessed with Bachata.  For those of you who don’t know, bachata is a latin dance style which originated in the Dominican Republic.  If you have never seen it you can check it out here.    There are several musical artists who are popular for their bachata music, especially Romeo Santos and Prince Royce.

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So, you may be wondering why I know about bachata.  Well, I first learned the basics of bachata a few years back in my (Puerto Rican) friend Dawn’s living room.  It was just another friday night of us gals hanging out bored and she decided to throw on the music and show us how it’s done.  I have since practiced here and there with various friends on different occassions, but it wasn’t until my son got into it that I really became interested in the music.

I was driving my son home from work one night when he said, “Hey!  You gotta listen to this”, and put on some music.  What blew me away was when he started singing along with these songs AND he knew all the lyrics!  So how is this?  Well, my son is in his 4th year of honors Spanish but, his girlfriend is Bolivian.  They have been dating for over 2 years now, so he is around her family a lot which means he can pretty much understand Spanish fluently and they listen to a lot of Spanish/Latin American music.  I love watching him sing and dance to the music and I love that he has learned so much about the Bolivian culture, .  In fact, I love learning all about other cultures and making friends around the globe.

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I love the sound of bachata and have several favorites that my son has introduced me to.  I have been trying to learn the lyrics to many of the songs but so far the only one I have down is Promise by Romeo Santos and Usher .  It’s half in Spanish and half in english and I can actually sing both parts (and know what I’m singing!).  Some of my other favorites are Odio by Romeo Santos featuring Drake,  Te Extrano (I Miss You) by Extreme,  Solo por un Beso by Aventura, Tengo Un Amor (I Have a Love) by Toby Love and one of my favorites Corazon Sin Cara (Heart without a Face) by Prince Royce.  Most of these songs have such sweet and romantic lyrics that sound even more beautiful in Spanish to me. But don’t be fooled, not all of these songs are about love! I should have known by the title Propuesta Indecente, or Indecent Proposal, this was not a love song, it just sounded so romantic until I read the lyrics.
Regardless of the scandelous lyrics, it’s still a favorite of mine.

In case you’re wondering, I’m not fluent in Spanish, but I did take 4 years of it in high school and I remember enough.  When it comes to bachata I have the basic dance steps down and I will admit that if you ever snuck in my house on a Saturday morning you may find me dancing to it while I clean.

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So next week I may be back listening to India Arie or some R&B, but for this week I am on my bachata kick.  I wake up with songs in my head and can’t sing all the words but the music plays away.  One of these days I will learn all the lyrics to my favorites but for now I will just hum along and move my hips bachata style.

Full Moon Reflections

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One of the things I love about where I live is the fact that the ocean is only minutes away.  I have always lived here, near the ocean.  There is something so peaceful about the sounds of the water.  There is nothing quite like the air and breeze coming off the salt water.  It is so refreshing, except on a night like tonight when it’s more like that I can’t feel my face kind of cold.  Some nights when I am feeling restless I will hop in the car and drive down to the sea wall where I can either take a walk, sit on the wall or just sit in my car and listen to the natural rhythm of the waves like music to my ears. 

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Sea wall at night

But on a night like tonight,  I especially love to go down to the beach and see the full moon, as it illuminates, glistening on the water.  To me, there is nothing more beautiful than the way the moonlight dances upon the waves, lighting a path along the water.   Like a stairway to the heavens.  The sound of the waves crashing upon the rocks, like the beating of a drum or the clashing of symbols, nature’s perfect music. 

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The full moon often makes me restless.  I know not everyone believes it, but I definitely see the effects the full moon has on people, especially at work.  Things always seem to be extra crazy and chaotic around the full moon.  Didn’t you ever notice that the word lunar refers to the moon?  Which may explain why lunatics and lunacy seem to be heightened around the full moon?  Luckily the moon doesn’t stay full for long, although they say the side effects can last three days before and after the full moon.  It peaked on the east coast around 1:20 pm today so it will be decreasing or waning for the next two weeks. 

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While sitting by the water watching the light of the full moon reflecting on the waves, I did some of my own reflecting.   I thought about how the moon increases and decreases similar to our hearts when they fill with love.  Some days our hearts fill to the brim with love for our significant others, our family and our friends.  Other days they may feel void and empty and we struggle to show our love.  This isn’t a bad thing,  it’s just part of nature.  Everything must move in cycles and change to create balance.   In fact, even our love for ourselves can fluctuate.   Today I felt so crabby I didn’t even want to be around myself, let alone anyone else.  Taking some time to go down by the water and take in the sounds of the ocean and the sights of the moonlight were just what I needed.  Some quiet time alone to reflect. 

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I feel blessed to live near the ocean and I’m not sure what I would do if I didn’t.  I’m sure there are many bloggers who do not live near the ocean, where do you go to relax?

For Always and Forever

You will be my Saturday Love…

“When I look at you
Memories of love
Like no one before
You stay on my mind”

We all have that one person like this.  That one person that maybe you always had a thing for but it never quite worked out.  Maybe the timing was off.  They were single and you were taken, then they were taken and you were single.  Or maybe you did date them, maybe it was a first love, a young love, or just a Saturday love. 
Mine was actually more of a Sunday love.  Ok, it wasn’t really love, but I sure was crushing on him.  We would go to the same spot every Sunday and I knew I would run into him there.  He was a bit older than me and there was just something about him.  Maybe it was the eyes, or the smile, or the way he would rearrange the tables in the middle of the room to create a dance floor for us on a Sunday afternoon.  It could have been the way he made me forget my cares and who was watching and just act a fool in the middle of the bar.  It could have been the silly jokes and faces, the way he made me laugh, and the fun I always had when I was around him. 
I’m not sure how we fell out of touch but then again, we never really had anything more than those Sunday afternoons.  Years later I would run into him and find out the truth.  That I was young and naive and he had a love the whole time.  A love of addiction to drugs and alcohol.  He had turned his life around but I knew he had really never felt for me the way I felt for him.  And maybe I never really felt for him, but more for the idea of him.  The idea of who I thought he was and who I wanted him to be. 
Every now and again I wonder what he’s up to and if he is still around.  I looked him up one day not too long ago to see he is now married.  In my mind though, For always and forever, he will be my Sunday love. 

Alexander O’Neal and Cherrelle knew all about that.  Why, just check out the video here of Saturday Love.  Rather fitting, isn’t it?

(But my real Saturday Love is my girl Chanel.  She is my son’s and She was my roll dawg back when we were younger and would go out.  Had to throw that in)

And as always see the lyrics below.

Going to see you again
See you haven’t changed
It’s good to see you anyway

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love

When I think about you
My feelings can’t explain
Why after all this time
My heart still feels pain

When I look at you
Memories of love
Like no one before
You’ll stay on my mind

(Special feelings, special time)
Always so special
(I was yours and you were mine)
Made for each other

(All the good I won’t forget)
You will stay on my mind
(Saturday, the day we met)

For always and for ever
You will be my Saturday love

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love

When I think about you
My feelings can’t explain
Why after all this time
My heart still feels pain

When I look at you
Memories of love
Like no one before
You stay on my mind
(Special feelings, special times)
Feeling so special
(I was yours and you were mine)
Made for each other, girl

(All the good I won’t forget)
Staying on my mind, girl
(Saturday, the day we met)
Girl, you know I can’t leave you behind

There’s never any question
You will be my Saturday love

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Thursday, Friday, Saturday love

When I look at you
Special feelings, special times
I thought we’d always be together
But sometimes things just
Don’t work out like we planned

Life goes on and people grow
Out of things that fit before
But Saturday remains the same
And I hope it’ll never change

For always and forever
You will be my, you will be my
You will be, be my Saturday love
Let’s sing it together

Never on Sunday, Monday’s too soon
Tuesday and Wednesday just won’t do
Thursday and Friday, we can begin
But our Saturday love will never end, sugar

lyrics found here

Knowing Your Worth

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What is speaking the truth?  Speaking my truth?  Speaking your truth? It’s all different.  What is true to me may not be true to you.  But what matters is that we are true to ourselves.  To our true, authentic selves. 
I was out the other night, for drinks and really wanted to go dancing.  Once I got out though, I started to get this anxiety.  I saw different people, some I’m not fond of, and realized that I immediately started hearing voices in my head.  Their voices.  I was imagining what these people were thinking of me.  Whether I was right or wrong, I was imagining them all judging me.  I started looking around the room, I started feeling small, like I wanted to hide away.  Crawl into a corner.  Me!  I always seem so calm and confident.  I am the one who will go to a bar or restaurant alone to enjoy a meal.  I don’t care what people think.  WRONG!  I realized I was sitting here thinking all these people were judging me in some way.  Feeling uncomfortable.  Feeling Insecure.  I started feeling like I wanted to run and hide. Then I talked to myself.  I stopped for a minute and said, “Elissa!  What the hell do you care???? Really?  What if they do think those things??”  I looked around the room again, observing.  Changing my thought patterns.  I started asking myself these questions, who are these people?  How much do they matter to you?  What do their opinions matter? Are these people you want to base your self worth on?  All of a sudden I felt empowered,  for many reasons.  First, I just didn’t care.  If these people were actually thinking these things of me, the ones I had made up in my head, who cares?  They obviously don’t know me.  Who were they to judge me? Then I took it a little further and thought, why am I even here? Yes, I came to meet my niece for a bit.  Yes, I wanted to hear some good music (old school 80’s and 90’s r&b) but really, are these the people, in this room, that I want to base my worth on?  Is this what I want to be doing a week, a month, a year from now?  NO! 
I looked at my just finished drink.  I looked at my tab.  I looked at my surroundings and my situation and thought HELL NO!  This is NOT where I want to be.  This is not how I want to invest my time, my money, my thoughts, my feelings and my energy.  It was like a wake up call.
Now don’t get me wrong, there were people in the room that I like.  People that are very nice, that were just out with a group of friends.  Overall, I do enjoy to go out and dance.  I love going out with my girlfriends and shaking it on the dance floor.  But, in the grand scheme of things, I want so much more out of life!  I could be spending my time and money so much better.  I could be home in bed all cuddled up with…my journal. Lol  Honestly, this is where I would rather be.  In fact, that’s what I came home and did.  Here is a glimpse of what I wrote:

Sometimes we need reminders of where we don’t want to be.  Where we came from.  To let people think what they want to.  Stop caring WTF people think!  Today is my day to say I’m done!  Done with small minds and simple living.  Done with not knowing my worth.  With placing my worth in someone else’s hands.  Done with focusing on a number.  A scale.  Who the F cares??  These people are not important in the grand scheme of things.  Not worth energy or thoughts.  I have so much more to worry about.  To focus on.  Put my energy into.  I can’t be bothered with pettiness.  I want so much more in life.  I need to focus on what I want and need in my life.  I have been so blessed already.  

I realized that I want to do something with my life.  I don’t want to live the day to day, ho hum, everyday 9-5 life.  I want to live!  I need to make a plan to get out!  I need to do something meaningful in this life. Put my time, money and energy into what I love.  Into writing, into people, into making a difference.   I need to stop focusing on losing weight.  Stop focusing on my weight at all and focus on DOING something!  Who cares what I weigh? Move more.  Eat Healthy.  Do things you love!  Dance, Sing, Write, LIVE!!  Let go of the made up critical voices in our heads telling us we aren’t worthy.
I only share this because I KNOW I am not alone.  I know there are plenty of people, (I’m guessing everyone of you has had this experience) with the voices in your head feeding you negative thoughts.  STOP!  Take back your power!  Know your worth!  Start putting your time and energy into you and what you love.  Don’t worry about anyone else.  Just be true to you.  

PHOTO CREDIT:  I do not own the rights to this photo it was found on the internet