Room of my soul,

I just finished reading Inés of My Soul by Isabel Allende and I am the giddiest person alive right now.

If any of you have read the book and are thinking there must be something wrong with me because “giddy” is not a feeling you’d expect the book to leave a reader with, you are absolutely right.

I am giddy because I am in my favorite place, doing my favorite things.

My room is my serenity. Literally everything else outside of this room could be shit and falling apart, but as soon as I’m in here nothing else matters. Well, order matters. Last night wasn’t the best night for me in my room because I hadn’t finished unpacking and organizing my life.

BUT now that the unpacking and organizing is done, I am basking in the joy that my room brings me.

A few hours of my day were spent reading in my bed, and I gotta say, I was quite content. I also started a puzzle and jammed to some music, but reading was definitely the best part.

Reading has the power to transport you to a different world, and the safest place to get lost in a different world is in my cozy bed in my peaceful room.

Throughout the story, Inés recounts tails of love and courage, and all around being a bad ass woman. I aspire to be the bad ass woman she is.

Her character goes through a tremendous amount of challenges, but never gives up or backs down. I want people to one day think of me in the way they would think of a strong character like Inés.

I don’t need money or fame, I don’t need popularity or for everyone to love me, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t wanna be knowing for being a boss at life.

I am going to be a boss like Inés and one day instead of having just a room of my soul, I’ll have an apartment and then a house of my soul. If walls could talk my room would have a lot to say. It has played a huge role in making me who I am today. I know that sounds kinda silly but it’s true.

I’ve cried, laughed, danced, studied, workedout, thrown concerts, cried, and learned so much about myself in this room. I’ve had the greatest of epiphanies while lying on my bed staring at the ceiling .

And tonight, I’m starting my second book of the summer. I am hard at work expanding my Latinx book collection and I’m really excited for this next one because it’s written in Spanish.

So this Latina goddess is gonna head back to basking in the serenity of her room and read a little more before she calls it a night.

Cue JT..

It’s May.

If you haven’t been singing “It’s gonna be May” for the past week then your a square or a child.

It’s May 1st and I’m scheduled to walk across that stage on May 6th. Just two final exams stand between me and that day and I can’t believe I’ve made it.

I’m excited, so excited, like I’m not going to be bringing my nerd ass right back to this corny campus in the fall.

I’m ready to go (as in, on to the next chapter of my life) and never look back. That’s what my cap says, it reads :

“Nunca mires pa’tras” – “Never look back”

I was going for the keep moving forward, “Siempre pa’lante no mires pa’tras” – “Always forward, don’t look back” vibe.

Now, is it okay to look back at some things? Absolutely! Positive memories are important, but boy am I ready to leave everything negative behind.

I’m so pumped to keep moving forward and to keep exploring my passions. Everything happens for a reason and I am going to make the most of all of my life.

Everything is falling into place and I couldn’t be more excited. Watch out y’all, here I come.

Issa Identity Crisis

Today I high key, low key had a mini identity crisis.

Well, really, it’s an ongoing one. One that I’ve written about in essays for both my undergraduate and graduate applications, one that will probably plague me my entire life.

I don’t remember exactly when I started defining myself as Afro-Latina, but it was definitely in recent years. Every once in a while I freak out because I feel like an imposter.

My life is s never ending series of feeling like an imposter in many different ways based on all my identities , in fact. I’m too Black for White people, too White for Black people, and not Latina enough for Latinos. I know both what it means to struggle financially/ live in a household that gets by basically paycheck to paycheck, what it’s like to stay in a luxury hotel outside of the country. I know what it is to attend school whose population is mostly minorities, and attend one that is predominantly white.

All in all, I’ve experienced a lot and am not easily defined. I’ve always sorta just considered myself to be in the middle of everything.

The only problem is, sometimes being in the middle means being lost. If you ask some people I’m “dark for a Puerto Rican” if you ask others, I’m too white. My hair is curly but my curls aren’t as tight as my mom’s. I’m a solid tan, even more so with the tiniest bit of sun exposure, but my skin isn’t as dark as my mom’s or my brother’s.

Not having those two features phenotypically play out on my body as prominently makes me wonder if I can even claim to be Afro-Latina. It’s seems completely ridiculous to boil down an identity to just hair and skin tone, but unfortunately many people do. This is why a lot of people would see me as a fraud. But, if my mom and my maternal grandmother are Afro-Latina, I am too right? My dad’s family has some Afro-Latino roots too. So why am I struggling?

The honest answer is because society is screwed and all my life I’ve been fed all sorts of mixed signals about race and ethnicity.

So like, I know how crazy this all might sound, but do you wanna know what snapped me out of feeling like a fraud?

First, I searched #afrolatina on Instagram and found beauties of all shapes, colors, sizes, hair textures etc. Then, I compared myself to one of the two biggest Latinas that everyone in the media sees as like the Latina mold, Jennifer Lopez.

I’m talking I scoped through her insta, took a screenshot, and put our pictures side by side. And guess what?

I DONT LOOK ANYTHING LIKE ONE OF THE ONLY LATINA FIGURES I HAD TO LOOK UP TO GROWING UP.

That’s not a total surprise to me, but for whatever reason, it helped confirm my identity. I feel awful even saying all this, and thinking all this, but I think my story is a reality that a lot of people face.

I’m an Afro-Latina goddess, and more than just my skin and hair goes into making me one. I am an Afro-Latina goddess and I’m not a perfect one. So if this blog post offends you in any way please reach out and tell me, I’d love to continue the convo. If you just wanna chat or have questions, you can hmu too 🙂

Here’s the deal,

I don’t typically write statuses on Facebook, in fact, the only thing that is really on my timeline now are my blog posts.

Today I felt compelled to write a status for a few reasons, but before I tell you about them, here’s what the status said:

“I just want everyone to know that I’m literally never going to stop talking about how I’m graduating with my Bachelor’s Degree because something like 15% of Latinos in the U.S. ages 25-29 have one. I also won’t shut up about grad school because somewhere around 5% of Latinas go on to complete a Master’s Degree by age 29.

So if you have a problem with it or find it “obnoxious” you can exit stage left 🤷🏽‍♀️”

The “obnoxious” part was specifically in reference to the fact that some White Fox News anchors decided to negate a young Black boy’s accomplishment of getting into 20 colleges/universities by claiming it was obnoxious for him to apply to so many and take up so many spots that kids on the waiting list want.

I don’t think I really need to explain how utterly repulsive and ridiculous this is, but I will say a few things. I promise none of those anchors or the people who agree with them would have made it into half of those universities. Kids who make it on the waiting list are 1) likely to turn out just fine 2) should be praised for having been qualified to make it to the waitlist just as this young man should be praised for having gotten into 20 schools. Point blank period.

I applied to more schools than recommended, some that I knew I would never go to but had to prove I was good enough for. I got into some of the most well known schools in this country, and like this young man, Michael Brown, had to deal with haters.

Never in my life did I think people would legitimately chalk up my success to affirmative action, boy was I wrong. I worked my ass off in high school, did amazingly on the SATs, was super involved in extracurricular, but people wanted to say I only got where I was because I’m Latina. They’re right, but not in the way they think they are.

I wasn’t chosen for acceptance over some White kid more qualified than me. I was not given hefty scholarships because I live with my mom who is a severely underpaid teacher. LOL nope, you best believe those big schools asked for my dad’s financials and those didn’t warrant much aid.

I got into those schools, and have succeeded swimmingly over the past four years because I’m a badass Latina who believes in herself, knows her worth, and works her ass off.

No one will ever be allowed to take my accomplishments from me.

Sigo siendo yo

I speak better Spanish when upset.

No.. it’s true. Like it’s legit.

I’m currently coming down from the highest level of annoyance (with the help of the love of my life Marc Anthony).

The easiest way for me to tell my Little about what was annoying me so much was in Spanish.

I know, you’re shook. Yo también.

Es que, hay cosas que me sacan el español. Típicamente esas cosas son cosas felices, pero hoy estaba furiosa.

(It’s that some things just bring the Spanish out of me. Typically those things are happy things, but today I was furious)

To be honest I’m still coming down from it, like I said.

Sometimes I’m just too black and white about things, but to be perfectly honest, I don’t think that’s ever gonna change. After all, I am my father’s daughter.

Essentially, if you don’t respect me, if you don’t fuck with me, you better act like every part of me doesn’t exist. Don’t look to me for anything, not even something as simple as borrowing my fucking stapler. Like if I’m not worthy of respect or an apology, whatever the situation calls for then please act as though I don’t exist, which one thousand percent includes not using anything of mine.

Sounds silly, absolutely. But shouldn’t it be generally understood? I just can’t.

Through it all, I make very clear who I am to everyone. I own my mistakes when I make them and I try to be as rational of a human as possible. There are some basic (I feel like) things that rule how I interact with people and how I feel people should interact with me. If not, I don’t need them *shrugs*

And I’ll continue being me, like the title of this post says.

Back on it

Being back on my bullshit feels great.

For those of you who don’t know what that means, you might wanna consult Urban Dictionary, because I couldn’t give you a coherent definition if I wanted to.

Basically, I’ve been feeling more like myself. I told everybody that Miami sun would revive me and was I right or was I right?!

Literally though I feel great. I feel a little bit like a slacker because senioritis has hit full throttle, but I feel great.

Your girl is blogging consistently again, she’s reconnected with some amazing people, she’s working out again (well sorta, but she’s trying), and she even read a few pages of a book for pleasure today.

Happy, thriving Vic is back and here to stay.

Part of the reason she’s back is kinda sad though. I’m in all these social science classes which have shown me just how screwed up the world is. I wanna do my part to solve all the problems that I can, but I know realistically I’m always going to be upset about the way some population of this world is treated or forced to live.

So I’ve decided to channel this energy not just into helping solve the world’s problems, but also not letting my own problems get me down. What in the hell do I have to complain about when I’ll have my first college degree in 46 days and start my second one in the fall?

I know I still have a lot to be rightfully upset about as an oppressed person, but I’m going to take active steps to also count my blessings.

I’M TOO BLESSED TO BE STRESSED. (Another false cliche, but for right now I’m going with it)

I’m back to only caring about the things that truly matter in life. I mean, I’ve always been that way, but do you ever feel like you lost yourself for a bit and need to refocus? THAT’S ME.

I probably sound really manic right now but I promise you I’m laying in bed just waiting on boys to stop being stupid and contemplating what I wanna day next lol.

I’m just really excited to get back to it, and show the world what this goddess is all about. *insert smiling purple devil emoji*

Looking Good, Feeling Great

Tragically, I didn’t blog as much on my spring break trip as I thought I would. It’s okay though, because my time was spent doing more social things (shook because I’m definitely antisocial).

This trip to Miami did a few great things for me. Firstly, it gave me a hella nice tan. I love being tan, it’s my favorite.

But most importantly, it reminded me of how dope I am. Sounds cocky, but I’ll explain.

You see the photo up top? Not only do I look amazing in that photo, I felt amazing in it. I feel amazing looking at it now.

I’ve come a long way from nitpicking my “flaws” all the time. Though I adjusted the brightness a little, everything else about this photo is untouched. I’ve never really been one to edit photos, but I see how today’s society sucks people into that vortex.

I’m grateful that over time I have become confident with who I am inside and out. It feels good to say that and mean it. This Latina is taking on the freaking world man.

Despite all the bullshit I’ve been put through I’m killing it. I’m a freaking goddess and no one can take that from me.