Tag Archives: Lisa

Up Until Now

Tomorrow is my 30th birthday.

I don’t feel thirty. I hardly look thirty. Yet, I have a lot to be thankful for at my age: loving boyfriend, family, friends, a house, car, cat, and a fairly stable job (as much as one can have one working in the arts).

There are still a lot of things I haven’t done with my life: traveled out of the country, finished my bachelor’s degree , found a better and more stable job. These things may seem small in retrospect and I’ve done fairly well without finishing college, but in order to get further in my career I’ll have to eventually go back and finish what I started. Unfortunately, with only me working full-time I can’t afford to go back to school any time soon.

On another note…at the end of last year my boyfriend and I finally decided to plan and save to travel to Spain in November, using his mother’s time share. Luckily, she’s also offered to pay for his plane ticket so we’ll only have to save for mine, which is AMAZING! Now we don’t have to worry about saving for two plane tickets AND spending money. One more thing to check off the list of stuff to do this year.

This year started with such a shitty kick to the teeth that it’s hard to stay positive sometimes. It’s been hard to stay focused, relax, and not get bogged down by inconsequential things in life. For example, this evening before dinner I had a sudden urge to reorganize and move around furniture in my living room for my birthday party this weekend. Why? Because some how in the back of my mind changing hunks of furniture makes me feel like I have some sort of control over the things in my life. I have rearranged furniture in this living room several times.

Organizing, cleaning, planning, managing; it’s how I cope for all the things that have happened in my life that I can’t control. Usually smoking helps me cope with these anxieties, but lately I haven’t been partaking in any vices since my friend’s death. No coffee, no alcohol, no smoking, no sugars (Update: had a cup of coffee for breakfast and it was totally worth it! A birthday donut from my co-worker, also amazing. I’ll start abstaining again on Sunday… Maybe…) Mostly due to being sick and not wanting to press my luck, but also because I wanted to see if I could. I will probably pick up smoking again since it helps alleviate my migraines and neck/shoulder tension. Trust me, smoking has helped me tremendously in handling my stress levels. I’ve always hated taking too many pills to help stop the pain, and most prescribed medicine for either has never helped me long-term like smoking has. While I was still in college I had carpal tunnel in both hands from going to school full-time, working part-time, doing theatre work on nights and weekends,and in between working at my college newspaper, and commuting from East LA. Popping pills like crazy and trying to eat healthy was just not happening. Smoking was the only thing that kept me from doubling over in pain everyday. I, of course, over extended myself, but I’ve always wedged as much as I could in to my schedule because I never wanted to miss a moment. I don’t do that any more.

Now I’m too old (at least feel too old) to go clubbing, stay up past 2am, and go to a different bar every weekend. Nowadays I prefer to have friends over for dinner, throw potluck parties at the house, have brunch with friends, host craft nights, and spend quality time with my family when I have time off from work. Maybe it’s because I’m getting older, but mostly I feel like I’m too tired to please everyone. I have a hard enough time pleasing myself and living up to my own expectations.

Look bitches, just give a girl a call for her birthday, or swing by the house for my party this Saturday and all will be well.

Love moi. ❤

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Everything’s a Blur

Since last week life has been a bit more hectic than usual.

Everyone is jumping in to help organize different events in Lisa’s honor, which has been amazing! There’s an art show being organized, a club night being finalized, I’m working out the bugs in the slide show that will be presented at the funeral services with the family. No pressure. Everything has been working out so far, then I ran in to a bit of hurdle when the video software didn’t want to recognize the music we selected….dammit! After running into the video problems last night I wanted to smash the computer, and kept running through ideas in my head about how to go about fixing the audio problem (we have a solution, no worries), but everything seemed futile at the moment. It had just been working fine, right before my friends got there for dinner, and just before I tried to show them the video it decided to stop. Great. Well, we’re working on it, and should have it fixed soon.

I’ve also had this knot of stress building in my left shoulder since last week and it has been coming and going. Some days I want to stab my shoulder in hopes it will destroy the knot, other days I just pop a few pills and try to make it go away. Usually when this type of stressful knot appears I go to a professional massage therapist to have it dealt with, but sadly the funds are low, and I have no time to spare until AFTER the funeral. By then the knot will disappear and act like it never happened, like a bad one night stand that gave me herpes…or something like that.

Last Friday I had a mild break down after I got home from work. Work is a bit of a soap opera at the moment, so when I arrived at the house with the sounds of a busy kitchen, video games, and music, all I wanted was some quite. My boyfriend had to leave for work soon and I suddenly had a feeling of utter and complete dread. I couldn’t function on my own some how. I felt suddenly compelled to hurt everyone within spitting distance, and expel them from my home. I realize they had done nothing wrong, or hurtful, but I wanted everyone to disappear so badly it hurt. I ran away to my bedroom and tried some breathing exercises and stretched my shoulders because I was still in excruciating pain. When the boyfriend came looking for me he tried to help me out and I shunned him. I didn’t want other people touching me either. He politely reminded me he was leaving soon for work….and then I lost it.

I started crying and complaining that I wanted to be alone, I wanted everyone out of my home (it didn’t matter that they lived there too), and I wanted peace and quite.

He sadly sat there in silence and rubbed my shoulder while I whined and cried at the same time. This week was a blur. Every day that’s gone by since Lisa’s died has been hard. Photos, music, video games, knitting, TV on my DVR, talking, drinking, smoking, having dinner with friends, and nothing seems to be able to make me feel better.

I keep trying to remember to “Be strong, that’s what Lisa would do,” but then my shoulders crumble in a ball of pain and all I can think about is smoking another bowl and popping a few pills.

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In Honor of a Good Friend

2011 has started with a big slap to my face.

Besides the usual financial and car trouble I usually have this past weekend I was shocked to find out an old (very old) friend of mine died. Her name was Lisa. To write a small tribute doesn’t do her justice. She was vivacious, loud, positive, aggressive, and sometimes (with love) violent. She loved to bite the ones she loved (a trait I picked up from her), and we all took her love willingly. I was in shock when I first heard the news while I was at home. I didn’t want to believe what they were telling me, and I was in denial for a while until I got a second phone call from another friend confirming the news. I won’t go in to details about her death since it is still very painful for all of us to discuss it, and we want to respect the families wishes and not fuel the flames of idle gossip.

I met Lisa while I was in college at CSULB. I had already been working at my college newspaper, and some mutual friends wanted to check out the new Anime Club on campus. I was a bit nervous at first, because I secretly didn’t want to be outed as an Otaku. Then my friends told me it was tons of fun and I should come with them, just once, and see how I liked it. On my first visit to Anime Club I met a group of friends, now dubbed the LB Crew. From that first day onward all of us were inseparable. We did everything together. We had lunch, went shopping, went to the movies, watched anime, played video games, you name it we did, together!

We spent so much time together we all memorized each others school schedules so we knew who was available for lunch dates or movie outings. Our friend Ryan was the only one of us who didn’t live at home at the time and had an apartment in Long Beach not too far from campus. Thus began the LB Crews unofficial home base. Didn’t matter if Ryan was working or in school, we were at his home. Cooking, cleaning, planning, and having fun. We had marathons of Puzzle Fighter, Tetris, and Bust-A-Move instead of doing homework. We had our own Sushi and Prom themed parties where everyone did shots and took pictures with one another. We even helped pack all of Ryan’s things when he had to move out of his apartment! Everyone was there placing things in boxes while he was at work. By then it was Ryan, Shaun, and Lisa who decided to move in together in to another apartment in Long Beach. Her mother was NOT happy about her only daughter moving away from her parents, and we all knew how protective her mother was. She would warn us of her mothers wrath, but we all knew she loved both her parents. She was dedicated to her family and visited them every weekend, no matter what. She never talked about her father much, but some of us knew he was around and that she had two loving parents.

I was still living at home in ELA at the time they moved in together, but it didn’t take long before we were all meeting up at their place again. It was like a second home, a family of friends. We spent almost everyday, every weekend, every birthday together. It all seems like a blur of good times trying to remember all the silly things we did together. Lisa and I began to get closer, gossiping, chatting about our boy problems and trying to figure out our goals in life. I have one vivid memory of us walking to our respective classes together when she was lamenting some problems she was having with her boyfriend at the time, and I told her they would get through it together. I knew how much she loved him, and how much he loved her, and told her how sad I would be to see them breakup. I confided in her that she was one of my best friends and I wanted only the best for her, and I would support her no matter what. She seemed surprised by the revelation, but I meant every word.

I told her everything. As did a LOT of people. She loved to be there for people and listen to their problems. Lisa always had nice and positive things to say, and she never looked back, and encouraged all of us to do better. She was feisty and never held back her opinions on anything, and she had strong opinions on a lot of things. She loved fashion, design work, art, movies, and in my opinion, helped pen the term “Fashionista.” She used this term a lot before I heard it used any where else. Lisa lived with Ryan and Shaun for quite some time before she ventured out on her own and found another apartment two blocks away from the boys. At the time she planned to move in to the new apartment was also when she began to gain popularity with a group of online friends penned Otaku Booty. I was part of this online community for a little while, but Lisa and our other friends were all very popular on the site. Thus began her venture as an online socialite. She was amazing. She knew everyone, and I do mean everyone! Lisa was a multi-tasker. She could have five instant messaging conversations happening, two work projects going, and STILL keep talking to the person in the room with her. Lisa made friends easily, and began to help organize events which led us to gain more friends. They were dubbed (to us at least) the San Diego friends. Lisa never hesitated to visit our SD friends and would drive all over Southern California for all kinds of people she knew. From this online group of friends we made we all began to gather together (in real life) at parties and events where everyone was invited. And our circle of friends grew…

When Lisa found her new apartment one my other best friends named Melody also moved in with her, as well a friend she had made online named Umair, and unknown to her parents her boyfriend, at the time, Saul. The four of them made the place lively and comfortable. Lisa was always mad at Melody for saying they were roommates, not friends. I had brought Melody into the group of friends, by force, and she was immediately welcomed with open arms. I had also become closer to another friend from OB, who happened to be living close by in Long Beach, his name is Julian. With Lisa being busy with work and school, I began to get closer to Julian and Umair. I was also in the middle of a horrible breakup with a boyfriend, and needed to be around people and out of my house. I had already moved out of my parents house by then (a long side story on that later), and lived in Long Beach as well, a few blocks from everyone else. Lisa and I began to grow apart because we were both busy with school, life, and other diversions. I got closer and closer to Umair and Julian.

Then Julian moved to Seattle to live with a cousin and seek better job prospects, and shortly after his move all of us began to split apart.

Lisa loved being the center of attention, and since she was busy with school she began to get jealous that her housemates were hanging out with me, at her home, a lot. Now, in retrospect, I was there too much. However, I wasn’t working a lot, or in school, since I had run out of financial aid and couldn’t afford to attend college any more. I was also going through a rough time with my boyfriend at the time. Life sucked. So it hurt when suddenly Lisa banned me from the house. I knew it was bound to happen eventually, but it felt like I was banished from my second home. I tried to stay away, and not fuel the fire, but I couldn’t keep myself away from them for too long. I loved them. All of them. And especially Lisa. Even though I knew she was mad at me I couldn’t stay away. She was like a drug I couldn’t be without, and when I was away I felt alone and confused and didn’t know what do to with myself.

My friends were like my family.

Shortly after she had a falling out with Umair when he moved out, Lisa and I started to clash. Our spitfire personalities didn’t allow us to take a moment and realize what we were doing to each other. Some harsh words were written, exchanged, and passed along to others until finally we were no longer on speaking terms.

I was alone. Lost without my friends, and without my confidant. Sure, Melody is my best friend, but Lisa was there, everyday, up until we stopped talking. It was the beginning of the end.

I kept my distance because I didn’t want to cross paths with her wrath, our friends kept us separated because they didn’t want to take sides or see us fight. In the end what really kept us apart was our stubbornness and pride. I regret not sucking it up and confronting her with our issues so we could move on as friends. I regret not being there for her when Saul and her broke up. I regret not seeing her graduate from college. I mostly regret not being there for the last birthday she celebrated without me.

Over the last two years I started to reconnect with my old college friends and LB Crew, and every time we got together I felt she should be there as well. I even had thoughts of reaching out to her in hopes of having her at my 30th birthday party next month, and now she’ll never get to celebrate her own 30th birthday.

These past few days have been hard on us all. Each of us is coping in their own way. I will always miss and love Lisa no matter what, and I hope I can live my life to the fullest like she would have done. She never looked back and worked her hardest to be the best, and I hope I can do the same in her honor.

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