Tag Archives: study abroad

Today is my birthday

1-25-2016. I’m another year older. Another year clueless. But, I have a more tangible insight as to where my life is going and how I’m getting there. 2015 was not glamorous by any means (besides my trips to the Philippines and to Baltimore with my girls). In fact it was probably one of the worst years of my life, if not the worst. Contrast that to the previous year, 2014, which was undoubtedly the best year of my life. The year of travel, freedom, soulful luxury and wholeness. I felt more sure of my identity than ever before. My end to 2014 and beginning to 2015 were magical. I was able to spend time with some of the people who mean the most to me. For my birthday last year, I got to see some of them in the same room interacting with one another, meeting each other. I love bringing brilliant people together. People I believe in, people who believe in me. After they left I thought about what 2015 would bring; I never felt more unsure in my life. Regardless, I was elated by them caring enough for me to come together and celebrate.

In 2015, I experienced an arduous job searching stupor (still kind of am) which featured very promising interviews and interactions, but outcomes that were only semi-fruitful and not enough. I often felt choked betwixt the layers of reality and fantasy. Doubtful about choosing the necessary evils that would ultimately help me reach my dreams. For the record, I still plan on pursuing an acting career. Where and exactly when I will actively begin my journey is unknown to me (currently leaning towards NYC, who’s with me?). However, I am super close to paying off my student loans and once that happens, I immediately plan on saving enough money to seek the life my soul aches for.

Other things happened last year that I don’t wish to disclose as I don’t wish to reflect on them any further. But I’m praying to God that 2016 is much better. Please God let it be. I now know though, that we’re all on a journey together. I’ve come to realize that I need to constantly work at being who I want to be. It’s not a dream anymore. I’m not a kid in school. It’s become my concrete reality and my youth is gliding on the ice. One of my resolutions for the new year is to say yes to things, invitations, people, I normally would say no to. My world has been too controlled by me thus far. I want to broaden it and my experiences, the depths of my senses and relationships. You never know who you’ll meet or what you’ll learn.

Studying in Jerusalem taught me the importance of being open to opportunities. When I went to my first ever strip club in Tel Aviv, I initially refused because it wasn’t how I imagined my first experience to unfold. I was with two friends and we had just come from swimming in a gym pool- my hair was dry and unkempt, I was wearing the most basic jeans and a pull over hoodie. This was not how I wanted to feel or look entering a strip club for the first time! But I was convined to stay by one of my friend’s friends. As he introduced himself to me, he looked me right in my eyes and shook my hand, he kept his eyes on me and didn’t let go of my hand. I complained to him how crappy I looked. “You’re hot. You should see how the other guys look,” he replied. My jaw dropped on the inside and all of a sudden I felt ready to go 🙂

I guess this birthday blog post is basically about me using lessons I learned in 2014 and 2015 to guide my 2016. Which actually means I should relinquish some control. This year I want to work harder and stay more focused, but it’s time to let things happen! Let happiness happen. Let simplicity happen. Let love happen. Let friendship happen. Let boredom happen. Let it all happen. But then deal with it. Analyze it. Move on. Start over. 12 months to go. I hope I’ll see you there. xo

Fantastical Girls

Leaves of Havana
Blessing skin in the morning
With the breeze and sunlight
Feeling free to touch.

Bells chime and signal
The turns of the sea
And the ending pages of summer.
God promised we were safe.
I believe.

Romantic failures subside. We get by;
There’s still more promise
In the fruits of the garden.
Bewildered, breath stolen,
In each other’s arms.
Lost in the streets in adoration
Of the magic that could transpire at night.
Moments that we least expect
Reflecting off of Rhinestones and Remedies.


You are the girls I’ve been waiting for.
Praying as if children,
As if drunken,
As if in love.
Romance radiating in our vibrating voices.
Collecting in pools,
Blue and grey.
Swirling throughout theories of misery.
Diamond eyes and sincere smiles
Never fade but the songs we listen to.
We forget the kind gestures of strangers at bars, who stare
Whimsically within what we present as our souls.
Be they enlivened and feverish from the nocturnal essence
We evoke. Hallucinatory yet not absinthe or leaves of grass.
But bitchy and Vogue, urban and glamorous.
We are free people,
But we choose the party and deny the cars.
Because only once in a while do we give real chances to people who don’t understand,
Nor could ever dance to our rhythms
Of who we are and what we want.

Never Been A Passenger

Today is January 18, 2015. Exactly one year ago I was packing my shit to leave for Israel.

Last December 2013, I was in the TV lounge of my dorm, crying to myself in the dark while watching the Britney Spears’ I Am Britney Jean documentary on E! It was the last day before we were all kicked out for winter break. As I watched Britney undergo grueling preparations for her Las Vegas residency, I knew she would understand my wild flux of emotions. She’s someone who’s been through it all: from feeling wholly loved and rejoiced by the world, to feeling desperately alone; both polar emotions swirled in my head as I sat among the empty chairs.

I was finished with finals, my room was emptied and I was packed up. I wanted to hang with friends until my parents came to pick me up. A winter stream of uncertainty rushed through me and I needed to be alone and not alone at the same time. I waited to go home at the bitter end because I am used to it that way; I am a sentimental person who is usually never ready to say goodbye.

My thoughts were comprised of the future: flying to Israel by myself, studying and living in a land where I knew no one. I was scared to leave the home I embraced as robotic and repetitive at times because it was all I knew. I pondered my blessings and the people I met and worked with who shaped my life and molded me into who I was in that moment of strange solace. Anxiety blossomed within the cavities of my doubt as I wondered how my life would change abroad without the people I loved.

A few weeks later on the way to the airport, I texted my closest friends my final farewells, wishing they were accompanying me and my family. One of the texts read “Good luck! Have a safe trip!!! May God bless you! Write as often as you can please keep in touch! And enjoyyyy my love! Xoxo.” Perhaps it was the simplicity of it all that made me start crying. Nonetheless, it felt like God had dumped a bucket of love on me that he carefully collected from all of my dear ones. The night before, I stopped for a moment as I was packing and asked myself “Am I ready for this? I don’t have to do this. Can I do this?” The fear was silly but relevant. Was I truly prepared to embark on this journey alone, knowing all that I did? My heart always knew the answer, but the way it greeted me that morning just hours away from my departure was gorgeous and unforgettable. The Verrazano bridge gleamed bright as the tears fell fast and quiet; I tried not to make a sound so no one would know I had become a fountain of tears and snot.

After six months of living in Israel and traveling throughout the country, I look back at that moment of isolation in the basement older and wiser. That fear has long peeled away and I have never felt more of an adult than I do now. I am beyond proud of myself for doing the things that I’ve done and extremely grateful for my parents for working tirelessly to provide for me and my family and friends for being there for me whenever I need them. Thank you for all the love and support. Now let’s see where I go in 2015.

Intro

My reason for creating this blog as I’m sure is the reason for many, is that I have a lot of stories to tell. I studied abroad in Jerusalem at the Hebrew University last year from January 2014 – August 2015. I miss my experiences every day, I talk about them every day, I read about the happenings, I speak with my friends, I simply think about it every day. As a writer, I figured having a blog would be the best platform for me to share my stories and thoughts. There are many things I have not shared with my loved ones that I will write about and post here. This blog will get political, it will get personal, it will be unfiltered, sometimes filtered, but always genuine. I will share my pure thoughts. I will question a lot of things. I will speak out. I will scream. I will relent, repent, forgive, remember, forget. Regret. This is my space and you are looking inside of it.

Since I returned home in August I’ve been posting a lot of news articles and writing little captions with my opinions on the events in Israel and Palestine. But rarely do I ever get to fully explain myself because they are Facebook posts, meant to be brief and to the point. Furthermore, this blog will not only explore the plagues and the light within those regions, it will also be a place of reflection for my entire study abroad experience, from start to finish. Additionally, since I am a writer, I also plan to post my creative works and general reflections on life on here as well. Some of them related to the conflict, most of them not. I live my life as a gigantic sponge, soaking up every piece of time, living my life within the bubbles of the moment. I like to talk about things. Personal, universal, gigantic things and small matters. Beyond the politics, the sex, the drama of life, I think it’s important to get to know one another. And through this blog, I aspire to show you who I am.