The last month in California, was the hardest month of my life.   I would sit in that apartment, pacing and stressing about what the fuck I was going to do?  How was I even going to eat?  I called out the company I was freelancing for, who in turn, terminated me.  I was a subcontractor and self employed so I couldn’t collect shit.   I was getting kicked out of my apartment, which I was ready to leave anyway because I knew I couldn’t afford it at that point.   I remember one particularly hard day and I was talking to my aunt, crying, and I said to her, I never remember a time in my life where I felt like I was just out of moves, but I felt like I was out of moves and I really had no clue what the hell I was going to do.   I remember my aunt said to me, Stacy, there’s always a move, you just got to find it and she was right.   There are times we feel like we have exhausted everything and you just want to throw in the god damn towel and say, “ok life, I give” but the saying life can turn on a dime is a true statement.

My mom said she would help get me back to New Jersey, but even through realistically I knew I couldn’t stay in California at this point, I wasn’t ready to go back to New Jersey and the thought of it, kind of killed me inside.   But I was out of options, so I was going to take my mom up on it until I talked to one of my old dear friends, Patti, who now lives in Texas with her 2 sons (the third is grown) and said Stacy why don’t you come stay with me for a while, the job market’s strong and she had a room that just needed to be finished that I could stay in, plus we haven’t seen each other in over 20 years and spending time together, seemed like another plus.  And as I thought about it, it seemed like the right option, so here I am in Texas!  I’ve only been here about a week and half but already things are really looking up and the stress of it all is gone.   It’s funny how you can not see someone for so long but when you do it’s like you didn’t miss a day,  that is true friendship, that is family.  The kids are great and so much fun, and for someone that’s never had kids, it’s almost a novelty..lol I’m enjoying the whole thing.   I have a job interview tomorrow, which I’m feeling optimistic about and I hired lawyers in California before I left to go after the company that screwed me over and things are looking hopeful.

I don’t know yet, if Texas is where I’m going to stay or where I’m going, I’m just taking things as they come and keeping my options open, but I do think that Texas was the detour I needed!

Dave Matthews Band – Where are you going?

 

 

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Give me a T for Texas – Lynyrd Skynyrd

I spent today packing.. since I got to California, I just haven’t been able to get an traction at least where I’m at.   I got royally screwed by the company I was freelancing for, which I’m pursing trying to make them rectify the situation, but time will tell.   Since I got here, I’ve been looking for work and when they say California is tough, you don’t quite get it until you come here.   The other factor is people don’t like outsiders and I think they see I’m from New Jersey with an Italian last name and probably have an image of me already.  People also say whatever you plans you have, forget them because they never work out and that is another true statement.   I saw a homeless man one day with a sign that read, “Will verberally abuse for spare change”, well, I was ready to join him with a sign “Will compliment for spare change”.  It’s rough, so I need to do something, I’m not ready to go back to New Jersey. but I can’t stay here, I need to get working asap!  One of my old dear friends lives in Texas and she knows I have to travel through, so she suggested that I come stay with her for a while, the job market there is strong and I can get my footing back, so tomorrow, I’m supposed to be renting a U-Haul and heading to Texas!  I’m hoping to get working and than maybe come back to California after I find a job here, or maybe I’ll love Texas, who knows, I’m just going with it and seeing where it lands me.  My friend, put it best, she said, “Maybe this is the just the detour you needed”.

 

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My friend made this picture of me and I thought it was too funny!

thanksgiving-cornucopia

Well today is my first Thanksgiving without my family and friends.  I thought I would be filled with sadness and a bit of jealousy of everyone with their friends and family having their grand dinners, while I’m alone.  But two days ago, some friends back home tragically lost their 19 year old son in a freak work accident and today they are grieving.  I think of all the people not at home, either military or even the refugees, some not having a place to sleep or even food to eat.  I think of all the people battling an illness or even an internal battle within themselves and it makes me feel blessed.

My life is far from great right now, yet the less I have, the easier it seems to be able find gratitude within my life.   I’m grateful, I have a place to sleep tonight.  I’m grateful that I have a family that loves and misses me and that my sister and I can still laugh at each other’s jokes from so far away.  I’m grateful for old friends and long talks that helps put things in perspective.   I’m grateful for my pets who are comfy and happy.  I’m grateful for my health and my life. I’m grateful I know who I am and don’t have to hide who that is.

So today, instead of feeling sadness as I thought I would be,  I’m filled with gratitude and love and my hope is that everyone that reads this is as well.   Namaste’ and Happy Thanksgiving!

Chris Cornell – Thank you

 

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I dedicate this blog to Andy, who tragically lost his life this week

One of the first pictures I took when I got to California, was the below.   I had no idea what he was doing or what was going on, but I knew it was significant so I took the picture and figured I would figure it out at some point, which I did!

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Before I came to California, I had freelance work all lined up and I was good to go, but as I said in my last blog, that pretty much went to shit.  I’m doing some work for the one, but it’s crappy pay and not consistent and definitely not even close to enough.  So I’ve been hitting the pavement, so to speak, now a days it’s more like hitting the internet, hard!  Now, I’ve been self employed in real estate for the last 15 years, I’ve been doing office work since I was 16 my first job was doing the billing for an attorney, no gaps or blemishes on my resume.   I can do any office work, plus I’m a certified yoga instructor and Reiki practitioner and I can’t even get a call back. My friend Dawn, put it best, “shit my dominos guy has 2 bachelor’s degrees”… great!   I landed one interview and the woman had a stack of resumes the size of War of Peace… to say getting a job is difficult is an understatement. I found out I can’t even qualify to be an egg donor (it was worth the inquiry) but it’s that tough here and people do what they have to survive which brings me to the picture above.

About a month after I got here, a local that I know, says, you know about the recycling here don’t you?  Of course being from New Jersey, we put it in a special bucket, they come pick it up and that’s it.  He says, it’s worth money here, so keep all your recycling.  Well, I like to recycle anyways, so that’s what I did.  I started putting it in bags on my back patio, after I had 3 tall kitchen bags full (about a months worth), I decided to try my hand at the recycling center which is right next door.  I get there with my bags and I look at the guy and I said, that is my first time and I had no idea what I’m supposed to do.  There was another gentlemen standing there that started giving me the rundown.  You can either separate your recyclables in the cans and they weigh them out or you feed them through the machine.   I asked the difference, but that part he seemed a little unclear on.  The machine looked fun, so I opted to try that.   Anyone that has ever used a vending machine has experienced the dollar spitting back out at you, over and over and over and over… well, that’s basically this machine!  I was like 2 cans in, and I look at the guy and say why won’t this work?!  and he laughed and said you need to learn patience, you want to learn patience, use this machine…  he laughed and walked away cause he could see my frustration and I had just started.  Three kitchen bags and 1 hour later, I finally finished, I literally had sweat coming down my back from this machine!  You than get these tickets, which work like Coinstar, you take them to food store and you can use them or get the cash back, my big payday was about $10..lol ugh!  But I have to recycle and I got $10 off my grocery tab, so It was all good, although next time I probably won’t use that machine or perhaps I will keep using it, to keep practicing the art of patience, which that machine taught as well as any yoga class.     So if you ever want to practice patience and make a few bucks, I suggest going to your local recycling center in California!    I’m trying to put that patience practice to work in the hunt for a job, but I’ll admit it’s not easy.   I was naïve to think I could start a business, I can’t even get a foot in the door, but eventually there will be this little crack that I slip into!  Or at least one can hope.

My recycling center

My recycling center

My recycling money!

My recycling money!

Some young ntrepreneurs

Some young ntrepreneurs

 

This morning I was up really early, scrolling through my facebook news feed, when I saw an article that caught my eye. After reading it, it confirmed when I knew was true but didn’t want to face, for the last 3 years or so, I’ve been dealing with a narcissistic abuser.

http://www.elephantjournal.com/2015/10/understanding-the-language-of-narcissistic-abuse/

This article was almost a play by play of what my life has been like. Add to that, a slowy declining into nothing business, having to sell my home and that was the hell I was living in and felt like I couldn’t get out.   I tried and tried but they don’t let you.

I knew from the start he was trouble and I always kept him at a distance but than he found his way in and after that my life became dealing with his world and slowly I started to lose my own.  I stopped doing yoga, I wasn’t seeing my friends or family, I was crying most of the time.  When I was going through my teacher training my teacher always knew when he was around me, it changed my whole demure and she was always right. Even the universe tried to help. I felt compelled to help someone through reiki and it turned out they told me things, I knew to be true and all of them showed who he really was and that’s when I stopped truly being blinded by it and wanting to get away from it.   Than it was like the light went off when my friend asked why I lost my sparkle and I knew it was because of him. I wanted my sparkle back, I wanted me back but he wouldn’t leave me alone.

Once I put my house on the market and I had no business, I didn’t want to fall into the spiral that would have ensued if I stayed. I knew the only way I could get away and find myself again was to leave and the further away the better!   He has since been out here twice, the first time I knew he was coming. I was in my apartment for 2 days and he was already ready to attack, but when he got here, I basically flipped out, because I came here to get away from him and now here he was, so I immediately took him back to the airport. Than a month later, he calls from one town over and needed to go get medical attention, which I took him, he recovered and left because he could see I wasn’t buying the bullshit nor did I want him here.

I’ve only told a few people about this, he likes to threaten a lot. Today he did just that when I told him I was going to write this, so I could forever release myself and move on with my life.   To him it’s about airing laundry he doesn’t want aired, but that shit was stinking up my home, so to speak, so threaten, embarrass, try to make me a victim again, but you can’t, because in writing this, I take away all your power and I become empowered.  One of my friends thought I should include more specifics of the things he has done, but to me that isn’t the point, I know, letting everyone else know is just feeding sensationalism which isn’t my goal, my goal is to free myself.

I’ve never been so out there without a net before as I am now. I’m scared and struggling, but it’s still all worth it, because slowly I’m finding Stacy again.

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So I’ve been here in California, Ventura to be specific, for about 3 months now and I can tell you, when it comes to life, the only thing that goes as planned, is nothing goes as planned.   I ended up getting my own apartment right away, most of the job stuff fell through, although I’m finally doing some property tax research during the day at my apartment and I’ve been job hunting, so we will see how that turns out.

Life is so ironic and unpredictable.  When I decided to come to California, I really was tormented about deciding what to do with Honey.   Honey, I’ve had since she was a puppy, my ex boyfriend gave her to me as a birthday present one year and she’s almost 12 now.   When I sold the house, that was my last tie to him except for Honey.  I thought perhaps she wasn’t meant to be in the new chapter, plus she tore her one ACL about 3 years ago and her other one was ready to go and she has a huge tumor on her neck (not cancerous) but I would never get rid of my dog or have her euthanized unless it was her time.  When it’s time to put down a dog, you can see it in their eyes, they are just tired, but Honey still had a little spark.   Than one day I was on facebook and I saw a video where they took their old dying dog on a trip across country and when I watched that I was like she deserves that! (and of course I cried through the whole video).   My friend Sunny, helped me get my head on straight about her and it was like as soon as I decided she’s coming, I don’t care if she was a present from an ex, or if it made it tougher on me to bring her, or even if she ended up not making it, she was going!    It was a rough time for me before we left and maybe she sensed it all and she was depressed too, but as soon as we left the house, which I thought she would hate to be anywhere’s else, its like she filled back up with life and I knew I made the right decision.

Since we got here, I ditched her Rimadyl, which was her pain management for her legs.   It’s just like our pain medicines, it kills livers and my Lab developed ulcers from the stuff and I started Honey on medicated coconut oil instead, which I put a tsp in her food a day and she’s been awesome.    Today, we had a first vet appointment here in California and from all the walking and beach time, my Honey has lost 20 lbs that she gained from her leg injury and went from 95 lbs to 75lbs which is the best thing ever for her legs.

It’s ironic that a dog I thought wasn’t going to make it here, has since been thriving and happier than ever!   If that ain’t worth driving 3000 miles for, I don’t know what is?

PS:  The cat, Gypsy, loves it too, she loves hanging out in the pool area with the other cats in the complex.

After today's vet appointment!

After today’s vet appointment!

Me and my girl <3

Me and my girl ❤

She loves the beach!

She loves the beach!

Loving life!

Loving life!

Honey and Gypsy on the way to Cali!

Honey and Gypsy on the way to Cali!

Leaving for Cali!

Leaving for Cali!

Honey after her ACL surgery

Honey after her ACL surgery

As a puppy.

As a puppy.

Well I left New Jersey on Tuesday with my dog and cat to drive across the U.S. to move to California, it’s now Thursday and I’m in Oklahoma (which is crazy hot!) passed through the Gateway to the west yesterday.. Here’s my pictures so far, I’ll be adding as I go.. Although my mom doesn’t like me driving and taking pictures but it’s a long drive lol

 https://www.icloud.com/sharedalbum/#B01GWZuqDGTf7Xm