Beauty Products I Live By...

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel

I've been using this moisturizer for almost 6 years now - LOVE IT! It does the job of moisturizing my face, while not making my skin too oily.

Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily SPF 30

I don't venture out much when it comes to face moisturizers, however, this moisturizer is the only other one I'll use (other than Clinique's Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel). It has SPF 30 but it's not so heavy - most with SPF feel too oily for me.

Too Faced Primed Poreless Face Primer

I've only been using foundation primer for almost 2 years, since starting, I doubt I'll ever go without! I've used this particular brand of primer for almost 3 months - I swear by this primer! It can be worn with or without foundation. It smoothes and preps the skin, making pores unnoticeable. My foundation lasts longer and I never go without it - when I do, I can see/feel the dramatic difference.

BareVitamins Prime Time Foundation Primer

This is the next foundation primer I like. I started using this particular product when I started using primer 2 years ago. It works well with the foundation I use but I noticed my face was oilier during the summer months, other than that, I like this primer for the most part.

Benefit Boi-ing & Eye Bright Duo

This concealer/eye brightener duo is the best I've used so far. I don't have severe under eye circles, but it comes handy after a long night.

BareMinerals SPF 15 Matte Foundation

I've been using BareMinerals for almost 3 years. I'll probably never go back to regular liquid foundation. It provides enough coverage for my skin and comes closest to my skin color than any other foundation - without that cake-like feeling. BareMinerals Matte is fairly new, I used to just use the regular foundation but now that it's available in Matte, I swear by it! It helps with shine and makes my makeup last longer throughout the day.

BareMinerals Multi-Tasking Well Rested

This is another concealer I use every so often. It's not as heavy as most concealers but definitely keeps up with the best of them. I use it on the days I feel extra flushed and redness can be seen around my nose and cheeks. It works as a great under-the-eye concealer as well.

Bare Escentuals Mineral Veil: Loose Powder

This is the perfect setting powder that can also be used for touch up or shine blasting! I love it! I currently bought the Bare Escentuals Hydrating Mineral Veil to try it out, so far "it's okay" but the original mineral veil is better because it feels less chalky. The mineral veil can definitely be used alone, I envy those people that can use it by itself for light coverage...

NYC Brush-On Brow Powder with Grooming Wax

I have eyebrow hairs that are thick but I don't have a lot of them, if you can imagine how that looks haha. I also have a scar on my left eyebrow so I have to use a powder and wax to make them lay in the direction I want them to go. This brow kit does everything I need it to, and it's more than $20 cheaper than other kits. I started using this product in 2004 and I've started using it more so in the past year. Love it!

Too Faced First Base Eye Shadow Base

This is one of those products that I have a love/hate relationship with. Too much can look like a muddy mess, yet, if applied only on the lid; it looks awesome! When applied in small amounts, the base's iridescent shimmer really brings out any eyeshadow in any color. I save this for when I wear really loud colors like magenta or turquoise.

MAC Eyeshadow - Nylon

Nylon is perfect for everyday wear. I use this eyeshadow as my all-over eye color. It is fantastic to wear alone with some eyeliner, or blended with just about any other eyeshadow color!

Urban Decay Eyeshadow - Midnight Cowgirl
I love the texture of this eyeshadow and how it accentuates the brow bone. I don't use this particular eyeshadow everyday because it's quite shimmery and glittery, however, it's been a fave for almost 5 years!

Urban Decay Eyeshadow - Polyester Bride

This is just like Urban Decay's Midnight Cowgirl but the shimmers and glitters are not as gold. Both look amazing when dusted anywhere on the face or shoulders, I use them for whatever needs a little shimmer!

Coastal Scents Makeup Palette (88 Pc.)

These highly pigmented shades are amazing! First of all, I bought this 88 eyeshadow palette for less than $20! They are VERY much comparable to the more expensive brands, such as MAC. I love color and this has to be my best beauty buy of 2009!

Clinique Powder Blush - Precious Posy

I've used Clinique blushes since I was a teenager and just haven't strayed. There are probably better blushes out there - I really wouldn't know! I'm so fair complected so their caucasian shades of pink work I guess haha. This blush is gentle enough for my skin, doesn't cause breakouts.

Rimmel Natural Bronzer - Sundance

I fell in love when I first experimented with bronzer this past summer! This bronzer would have to be my 2nd best buy of 2009! I have no idea why I never used bronzer until just recently!

Stila Sun SPF 15 Bronzer

As excited as I was about bronzer, I happened to buy several. I go back and forth between the two bronzers I have listed. I like this one because it is about a shade darker than the Rimmel bronzer. It's great for the summer months when I'm slightly tanned, and also it has SPF :)

Too Faced Pink Leopard Bronzing Powder

This is another product I have a love/hate relationship with. It's okay for days when I'm wearing nothing but lip gloss and mascara. However, if I'm going for a much bolder look, I can hardly tell I'm wearing this product. Kudos for the packaging and the little kabuki brush it comes with though -- I'm a sucker for marketing :-I

Stila Illuminating Finishing Powder - Gold

Awesome finishing & highlighting powder! When I actually remember to apply it, I dig how it makes me glow!

MAC 'Penultimate' Eye Liner - Rapid Black

This is thee best liquid eyeliner EVER! I'm a huge fan of liquid eyeliner, it stays on longer and looks clean. I've always preferred a felt tip marker when it comes to liquid eyeliner, however, I had yet to find a good one that didn't dry up after a few uses. When I found this one - my life was complete! It's easy to apply, doesn't go on super thick, and doesn't dry up! This is my 3rd best beauty buy of 2009! I've been using this product for almost a year, I'm a fan.

NYX Felt Tip Eyeliner - Jet Black

I just recently discovered this felt tip eyeliner at an Ulta Store. I really like NYX eyeshadows so even though I'm pretty faithful to my MAC liquid liner, I thought I'd try it out. The verdict: it's VERY comparable! Save $10 and reach for this one! Either or, they're both dope!

Clinique Lash Building Primer

I've been using this product for almost 5 years. As you can probably see by now, I stick with what works! This works! It primes my lashes for my mascara and leaves my lashes thicker and more stacked. I have a few favorite mascaras but honestly, as long as I have this primer, any mascara will do!

Clinique High Impact Mascara - Black

I've tried them all and this still remains on top, after 5 years of using it. In my opinion, this mascara is one of the best on the market. I love the way it glides on my lashes. My eyes look bigger, as my lashes are so defined. It never clumps, stays in place all day, and is easy to remove. I don’t have any complaints about this mascara, even the price is reasonable for this high quality product. This is the mascara that I always come back to – it’s reliable and effective.

Maybelline Great Lash Mascara - Black

This is my second favorite mascara. I try to keep a tube in my makeup bag at all times, just in case I want to go over my normal mascara, for that extra bold effect. This mascara works, it's award winning and our mom's used this crap so it has to be good right? Haha :)

Alba Pineapple Enzyme Facial Cleanser

Where was this cleanser when I was a teenager?! I used to breakout as a teenager and everything I tried was too harsh for my skin and the stuff for sensitive skin did nothing to help. I've been using this product for almost 3 years now and I'm sold! The pineapple enzymes remove all of my makeup, without stripping my skin. This is thee best facial cleanser I've ever used!

Clinique 7 Day Scrub Cream

I've been using this scrub for about 5 years because it meets all my standards. It's not "grainy" at all - that's important because grainy irritates and inflames my skin. This is the perfect scrub, not harsh, yet it gets the job done! I use it 1-2 times a week.

Proactive 3-Step System

P. Diddy and Kelly Clarkson were right, this stuff works! Haha :) I'm selective as to what products of this system I like. I love the Revitalizing Toner, use it everyday before my makeup. It's so gentle and has little to no scent, plus it actually feels like it cleanses your skin without any tingling effect. Next, I use the Repairing Lotion on the days I'm prone to breakouts (PMS) -- it's gentle enough for my skin, yet it has active acne fighting ingredients. Lastly, I really like the Refining Mask! I use it 1-2 times a month. It smells like a fart but it's awesome for de-clogging pores and keeping your skin firm! I don't like the Renewing Cleanser. I might have liked it but the few times I've used it, it left towels and clothing bleached and discolored so that kind of freaks me out - not trying to put that on my face! Other than that, awesome system for that one week out of the month!

Johnson's Baby Lotion - Original

I've used this lotion since I was a wee little Dre! It works, smells good, and doesn't irritate my skin! It's less expensive than the other smelly stuff too. Sometimes, I sneak a few drops to maintain my crazy Spanish hair frizz :-I

Burt's Bees Coconut Foot Cream

First of all, it smells delicious! The product is so thick, awesome for after the shower! This product is a must have for any desert living, sandal wearing person!

Frederic Fekkai Brilliant Glossing Hair Collection

I fell in love with this collection 2 years ago. The main ingredient - olive oil - fights frizz and leaves hair shiny and glossy! I use the shampoo, conditioner, and styling creme.

Biolage Strengthening Shampoo & Conditioner

Since I've cut all my hair off haha, I have to be careful not to overload my hair with products, yet, I have to have something to fight this Spanish frizz. Soooo, I go between the Fekkai Collection and Biolage's Strengthening Formula. It's conditioning enough, yet, not as heavy as the Fekkai Shampoo and Conditioner. I'll go between the two until my hair grows back.

Burt's Bees Avocado Butter Pre-Shampoo Treatment

I haven't had to use this product since I cut my hair. I swore by this product when I had hair to repair. I used this treatment once every other month or so, and I recommend it to anyone with long hair. I still keep my tube around because I'm growing my hair back!

TRESemme Heat Protective Spray

I use a flat iron now that I have short hair - not often, but more so when I first chopped my hair. I use this heat protective spray before I apply any heat to my hair. It doesn't smell bad, doesn't leave any residue, and makes my hair feel soft. It's not expensive and it gets the job done!

Garnier Fructis Style Fiber Gum Putty

This is another product I've used for over 5 years haha. It works well with wet or dry hair. I have a lot of frizz and flyaways that I have to maintain, and this works. It doesn't flake or make your hair stiff, plus it smells good!

Herbal Essences Set Me Up Hairspray

I'm not super picky about hairspray, if they still sold Rave, I'd use that! Haha. This smells good and holds my hair without getting stiff. It's awesome for braiding hair and keeps the baby hairs in. I buy a can every 6 months or so, I don't use to much.

Big Sexy Hair - Volumizing Hairspray

This is an awesome spray for volume! I spray my hair before blow drying and it accomplishes that full look. I also use it before teasing sections of my hair - I recommend it to those in need of big hair :-)


Master Cleanse - DAY FIVE

When I first decided to do the Master Cleanse this time around, I knew from the beginning I would only do it for 5 days. I travel a lot, and it's not convenient to fast when food plays a big part in my social interaction with others haha. This past weekend was full of social eating, therefore, my cleanse was planned to end on a Thursday (Feb. 18th). Sorry for the late blog, I was on the road and busy with family and friends this entire weekend.

Day 5 was good. In fact, Day 4 and 5 were completely normal. I wasn't hungry and I felt perfectly fine. That morning, I woke up and salt water flushed as I normally would. I drank my lemonade throughout the day - even as I drove down to Phoenix. I met with friends for that "first meal" that evening. I eased into dinner with a glass of orange juice, then dug into a medium bowl of egg drop soup and a side of ginger sauteed vegetables. I was half way through the meal when I started to feel my stomach turn, my food was already digesting haha! It was good to eat :)

Nothing else really happened on Day 5, worth writing about, except that I tried on a new pair of Size 4 jeans -- THEY FIT!! I can't remember the last time I wore anything in Size 4 haha! I think the smallest I can remember wearing is a Size 7/8 in junior high! Needless to say, I felt good...

Taken two days after the Master Cleanse (2/20/10)

Today, three days after finishing my cleanse, I feel good! I've had more energy lately. I skimped on sleep for the past week or so, but I feel really good. My skin feels great, my hair feels livelier, and I feel lighter on my feet. I haven't eaten any meat yet, think I'll try to keep it like that for the most part. I'm quite satisfied with myself actually. This has been another goal obtained, I feel empowered to take on anything. There's much to be accomplish this year, and it feels good to make that conscious decision to make sure my body is up to the challenge!

Be blessed...

Day 5 by the numbers:
Lemonade consumed: 64oz

Pounds lost: 1.5 today, 11.25 lost total
(bust, waist, hips): 36 in. x 27 in. x 37in.
Energy level
(1-10 — 1=dead weight, 10=olympian): 10
Hunger level
(1-10 — 1=poster boy for famine, 10=fuck food): 10


Master Cleanse - DAY FOUR

Holy sheep! I got through Day 4 with no problem at all. I'm convinced that Day 3 is theee hardest. I did everything like I should, it's become such a routine! No more sinus congestion! I do sound like I am getting over a cold though, my voice is a little raspy from all the drainage. Other than that, I felt normal today! I'm sure I smell lol and my tongue still feels bleh but I'm bursting with energy. There's not much to report today :) On that note, I wanted to chit chat a bit before I sign-off to prepare for Day 5 tomorrow - my final day!! :)

Today I woke up to a lot of inspired Twitter friends, wanting to start their own Master Cleanse :-) I encourage anyone to start it, the benefits are endless. I know that the losing weight can be a motivation to start the cleanse. I don't discourage anyone with this motivation from starting it, you will lose weight. However, its the overall cleansing that will help put you on that road to healthier eating and living - this was my experience with the Master Cleanse. Importantly, I can't stress enough to people thinking about trying it - do your research! Read the book - I have it if anyone needs the PDF emailed to them. Also, the Master Cleanse and Master Cleanse-Raw Food website are very informative during the actual cleanse. I found the forums on those sites helpful during my first few cleanses. Nevermind what Beyonce says, lol do your own research.

Today, I also heard a few people say the Master Cleanse was "wrong". I live a pretty healthy life I think. I'm active and eat good, yet, I do these cleanses when I feel the need to clean from within. I'm happy doing so, it's become another thing I do to keep healthy, IN and out! I've come to realize with my own body that I need a combination of things to keep my temple dope. I used to play college soccer, I know a lot about physical exercise. However, I also know that you can run marathons but if you aren't right with your nutrition and digestion... it won't mean a thing! I do me and you do you...

Soo, I'm really excited for those that are starting this cleanse soon! I wanna hear the stories and details! It really will change your path to healthier eating. All your hard work during this cleanse will be your motivation to upkeep those insides lol. Clean colons save lives people! Haha! Good night lovers...

Be blessed...

Day 4 by the numbers:
Lemonade consumed: 64oz

Pounds lost: 3.25 today, 9.75 lost total
(bust, waist, hips): 36 in. x 27 in. x 37in.
Energy level
(1-10 — 1=dead weight, 10=olympian): 9
Hunger level
(1-10 — 1=poster boy for famine, 10=fuck food): 10


Master Cleanse - DAY THREE

Soo... I'm still at it! Today was the hardest of all days. I was beading until 3:30am this morning and woke up at 7:30am. I woke up because I felt like crap! I felt so congested and the sinus pressure was pretty intense. I can't take any medicine during this cleanse, however, I really avoid medicine already. Anyhow, I got up and knew that I needed to salt water flush stat! I always feel better after a flush. The salt water flush today was like all the others. This flush wasn't as solid as the others but it was just as gross. I fell back asleep shortly after I was finished flushing.

I slept until 2:30pm. I was really tired. I slept hard, yet, my dreams have been pretty out there. I already have some weird ones sometimes, however, these were more vivid and I kind of felt outside myself during these ones. I woke up and needed to shower because I swear, I felt like there was a thin layer of residue all over my body. Not only that, I was starting to smell a "dead roses" smell! Haha, not sure if that was me but I wasn't trying to find out :-I A super hot shower helped clear out my sinuses and I scrubbed extra good! Following the shower, I noticed a rise in saliva production in my mouth today. Brushed my teeth for like the 4th time today, and that was the moment I noticed the thick white layer of crud on my tongue.

All of the above symptoms are normal and expected. My body is definitely detoxing and excreting the grossness within. It's disgusting but it's awesome to know it's getting done! My hunger level is still manageable. My tummy was growling at the beginning of the day but everything else is mental. My family had Kentucky Fried Chicken for dinner... I have no interest in that garbage anyways so it was completely okay. I haven't had KFC for over 4yrs... I don't dig depressed chicken, no thanks!

I'm still trying to finish the rest of this lemonade right now, then I'm heading to bed. Sinus pressure is my biggest complaint today, I almost feel like I have a cold? I know the feeling of "skinny" during these detoxes and I don't feel that yet haha. I can keep this going without feeling the need to eat my arm...

Day 3 by the numbers:
Lemonade consumed: 64oz

Pounds lost: 3 today, 6.5 lost total
(bust, waist, hips): 37 in. x 27 in. x 39in.
Energy level
(1-10 — 1=dead weight, 10=olympian): 5

Hunger level
(1-10 — 1=poster boy for famine, 10=fuck food): 7

The Master Cleanse - A Photo's Perspective

Before Master Cleanse in 2007 (Santa Monica, CA ) - Pic 1

Before Master Cleanse in 2007 (Santa Monica, CA )- Pic 2

Hello all! It's DAY 3 of my Master Cleanse and I thought I'd start this with a few "before" pics. As I have mentioned in previous posts, I started my very first cleanse back in November 2007. I was so unhappy with my health and weight back then. I look at old pictures now and it's obvious how unhappy I was. I think I had been 155lbs at my heaviest. I know that's not THAT bad but it felt bad in an unhealthy way. That first cleanse changed my life to say the least...

1 week after Master Cleanse in 2007 (Skydome Powwow - Toronto)

I had lost 17lbs in that first cleanse. After, I gained back half of that, however, I was on the road to better eating. I cut down on a lot of the foods I never could before the cleanse - SUGAR! I just didn't have the desire or craving for all the sweets I had previously loved. I loved the way I felt :-) It really changed the way I thought of food. I consciously thought of how processed food would ruin all that hard work. I had clean pipes lol, wasn't going to mess that up with bad foods.

Soon after the cleanse (about 3-mos or so later), I went through life changes that brought me face to face with how I really thought of myself. I was still determined to be healthier. I cut a lot of meat out of my diet. I did this for several reasons: 1) I lived near a few dairy & chicken farms - those cows & chickens were not normal. 2) I began to really research the process of meat - from farm to table... disgustingly alarming to say the least! 3) Lastly, I started to notice how much longer it took for meat to digest.

Digable Planets Show - November 2008 (Tempe, AZ)

I did The Master Cleanse a few more times in 2008, continued to eat less meat, and kept healthy. The picture above is myself at my smallest - taken almost a year after my first detox in November 2007. This is another one of my faves! Yeah it's awesome that I had lost over 20lbs in one year, but the fact that I felt healthier was what really counted with me. Health and weight go hand in hand. I've learned that if you make "health" your driving force, you can lose a lot of unwanted weight. However, if you constantly obsess about extra weight, you attract more of it...


Master Cleanse - DAY TWO

I had a late start today. Was up late beading so I slept in. I woke up congested. My sinuses are definitely draining! It's a good thing though! After my first cleanse back in 2007, I saw that I never had allergy problems following that. These past few months, I noticed the allergies coming back so I knew it was time for this detox.

Anyhow, I did my SWF at 1:30pm. It flushed me out as planned. It never fails to gross me out how much STILL comes out, despite not eating anything. Bleh, buildup! Been to the bathroom more than 4 times, enough said, you can imagine the rest haha.

I continued to drink my lemonade today, felt good! I'm so better than I had expected, not sure if this means I'm less toxic as I have been in previous cleanses. I'm in need of more lemons, I have enough to last me until tomorrow. I use about 2 lemons per 32 oz. of lemonade...

The cravings for bread came later in the evening. I only crave bread (pizza, buttered bread, & pasta). This is expected, I experience it with every cleanse I've completed. I'll remain strong because... well, I'm invested now lol! I've gone 2 days without food, no turning back now!

Day 2 by the numbers:
Lemonade consumed: 64oz

Pounds lost: 1.5 today, 3.5 lost total
(bust, waist, hips): 37 in. x 28 in. x 39in.
Energy level
(1-10 — 1=dead weight, 10=olympian): 7

Hunger level
(1-10 — 1=poster boy for famine, 10=fuck food): 5


Master Cleanse: DAY ONE

10:00 am
It's Sunday, February 14th and I really wanted to start the detox today so I could get more days in before Friday, the day I plan on ending it. I drank my Smooth Move herbal tea last night (Feb. 13), although, I knew there was a chance I wouldn't start until late afternoon today. I had prior plans to eat at IHOP with Karmalynn - I like IHOP in small amounts lol. However, I overslept because I was up late painting. Sorry Karm!

Anyhow, before I let my ADD get the best of me... the Smooth Move Tea doesn't taste awful. The closest I can describe it would be to say it tastes like, umm, probably drinking hot water with black licorice in your cup. Haha, I don't mind it. The point of the herbal laxative tea is to loosen up all the "gunk" in my bowel/colon/ intestines, so it can be flushed out with the salt water flush today. It can cause mild cramps but nothing major worth writing about. In past experiences with doing this detox with people, guys tend to have a hard time with the cramps. Yes boys, that's nothing compared to menstrual cramps - be blessed you baby!! Haha...

1:15 pm
The salt water flushes are so NECESSARY! That's how you keep from getting too symptomatic and it's how you get rid of whatever stored up junk you have in your body. While doing The Master Cleanse, I prefer using liquid containers with capacity measurements on the container. I normally gather up all my Nalgene bottles - using one for the salt water flush and two separate ones for my lemonade for the day.

32 oz. of water and 2tsps of sea salt later (that's teaspoons not tablespoons, you'll be sorry if you make that mistake lol), I completed the salt water flush (SWF). I recommend "pounding' it because it's not the best tasting drink. I was in and out of the bathroom for the next 30 minutes after finishing the 32 oz. of SWF. It's not pretty in no way lol but it's not THAT bad! It's just awesome to know it's all coming out lol. Btw, I'm gonna talk about my trips to the bathroom and other body secretions throughout this cleanse, so if you consider me to be somewhat attractive, just leave this blog this instant!!! Haha ;-)

Ok back to that nitty gritty BM talk... after the SWF, it's like peeing the entire 32 oz. from your crap hole! Nothing clear in color, like diarrhea but not diarrhea - get me?? lmao. But it only lasts for that 30 min. after... and it's not like you're running to get to the bathroom or anything, you just know when it's time to go. I'd suggest for those that wanna try this cleanse, you wake up 30 min. earlier each morning, so you can get this flush over with before having to go to work. It's pretty simple, then again, maybe I've done this enough times to know what to expect... or maybe I have no problem talking about digestion and crap haha.

I was able too drink my lemonade today with little fuss, tastes good! Although, my first 32 oz. was mega spicy because I put too much cayenne pepper in it haha! My cravings were at a minimum, I wasn't so really hungry, yet, it was in my head that I needed to eat the moment I smelled what my sister and mom were cooking up. My sister just ended her detox the other day and I cant help but feel jealous :) Today was a chill detox day, lets see how tomorrow feels.

Overall symptoms:
My sinuses started to drain. I'm not sure if the cayenne pepper overload was to blame haha or if it was because of the detox. Past cleanses, sinus drainage was the first symptom. Next, I did get a mild headache. This could be due to caffeine withdrawals and/or being dehydrated coming into this cleanse. I was craving fruit at the beginning so I suspect dehydration. Lastly, my legs began to ache not too long ago. Normally, my legs ache when I'm way too tired and up past my 18hr mark, I haven't been up nearly that long yet, so I figure it's the detox.

Day 1 by the numbers:
Lemonade consumed: 64oz

Pounds lost: 2 today, 2 lost total
(bust, waist, hips): 37 in. x 29 in. x 40in.
Energy level
(1-10 — 1=dead weight, 10=olympian): 8

Hunger level
(1-10 — 1=poster boy for famine, 10=fuck food): 5


Message to SELF: I Forgive You...

I find peace in writing about my dreams. In some way, I believe we all have to write our own personal revelations and life testimonies. Writing about my dreams and the deeper meanings to them fall into what I'd like to call "my AHA moments" in which I've learned something or I've reached a higher level of enlightenment.

I dream of the past a lot , more so lately, and a lot of my dreams are about certain things that, subconsciously, I haven't entirely let go of yet. The dreams vary in situation. Lately, one thing that really sticks with me is the overall feeling throughout the dream that "I did something that hurt ... and I need to forgive myself". For example, there's this one photograph I took back in 2006, that I appears in my most my recent dreams. I was living in Los Angeles at the time and had attended a day of events at the South Central Farms in which, activists were protesting the bulldozing of farm plots. As I was walking out of the gates, I remember looking towards Downtown LA and I couldn't help but wonder how a farm had lasted this long in the middle of that chaotic city. Just then as I turned towards the fence, I saw a pink flower poking out from behind the fence. Back then, I felt like that flower at that exact moment - fenced in. I look back on that moment now and I don't even know that girl anymore. As I continue to dream of this photo, I find that I'm mad at myself when I wake up - for not getting up and leaving my situation back then. In my dreams, I'm left wishing I had claimed to be ME back then and not what someone had molded me to be.

Different dreams, different details, but same story... and it leaves me thinking of how necessary forgiveness is, especially when it comes to myself. There is no one it is harder for us to forgive than ourselves. It took me about a year to forgive a certain person that had molded me into something I wasn't, taking me further from who I was and who had hurt me immensely at the end--- Yet, it has taken me almost twice that to forgive myself. More than two years of trying to forgive ME for putting myself in a unhealthy codependent relationship, for compromising what I really wanted just to keep that person in my life, for passing up great opportunities for fear of losing them, for begging them to love me at the end, and for lying to myself about the truth of our relationship.

It's so important for every woman to be aware that when she doesn't forgive herself, she carries around a whole lot of unnecessary, and frickin' heavy pain. And when she does utter those words and means them -- "I forgive ME!" WHEW!! such a huge load is lifted and an awesome feeling of freedom is achieved.

Forgiving ME is a process, unfortunately there is no magic pill, although I think some of us have tried that route. I really believe that it starts with just plain admitting that we have something to forgive ourselves for. Admitting that we are mad at ME, that we let ourselves down, that we f**ed up, that we put ourselves in a bad situation... we just literally need to throw up those words, expel them from our being, so that we can feel the pain that's there and let it go... so that finally we can be clean and clear to have the space inside of us to love ourselves to the other side.

Be blessed...