Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Gift of Timing

Timing they say is everything. You can be the right person in the right place but if its the wrong time - it just isn't going to happen. Some times you have to speed up to hit the right time & some times you have to hold still so the right time can hit you. However it works out for you - timing is every thing.

This past year taught me to see timing on a larger framework. To see my choices & the consequences that originate from my choices on a longer timeline. Not just here & now but there & then. Some times the smallest things have the biggest impact.

Sim is getting ready to go on his mission this coming year. This push to help him meet his mark & to be the right person at the right time for the right purpose has consumed a greater portion of my life for the past two years. He has literally 11 months to become physically worthy to serve an honorable full time mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. His time is dwindling & he must be ready to go. He hovers precariously between wanting to grow forward to his future & staying in the safety of his childhood. I understand that. Its hard to leave the safety & comfort of one's home & hearth to make your own way & timing.

What he doesn't know is that its part of my job as his Mother to boot his ass out when the time comes so he can learn to fly instead of flounder. He doesn't like it & is resistant. Which is okay with me. I excel at doing things the hard way. His Do It or Die time is coming quickly. There are people who are counting on him to be in the right place at the right time to do the right thing.

Writing this past year is also something that had to happen in its own time. I was ready & resilient enough to write now. I had so much to tell that taking photos couldn't do. I think some times that each of us has a story to tell that bubbles up & bubbles up & if you're lucky & brave enough - it keeps on bubbling up until the only thing you can do is let it go & see what it writes for itself.

Letting go of my hair & history with my EX was also something that had to happen in its own time. I grew my hair out for him & kept it long in the hopes of some day having him run his hands through it. The time was now to cut the hair off & really & truly set myself free. So when he called a week or so ago making noise about reconciliations ~ I could honestly & kindly tell him that no, that will never happen again ever. The time for that passed already. And I didn't say it or mean it in a bad way. Only that our time is done. for good. Timing really is every thing.

Another timing is everything thing is I had $10 left in my bag. I still had to buy cat food & mail off the children's card & present for their father.

Kennedy Katzu & I went out for ice cream last night & decided to stop off at the local library to see what they had to offer. I love books. I'll spend money on books before I buy food for myself. (but not before I buy food for the kids & the cats of course)

Came across a book called God always has a Plan B. It was $2.00.  With $8 left, I'd only have enough for maybe 1 can of cat food & mailing the man's stuff off. I bought the book & wouldn't you just know there was a $5 bill tucked into pages? Talk about good timing & God's providence. I got my book, the cats got their food & the father of babies got his card & gift.

God is good all the time!

As LDS as I am, one of the things I've enjoyed is reading inspirational literature by other denominations. I find that it doesn't decrease my faith in Mormonism rather it increases it. It edifies it.

All things happen in God's own good time. Whenever that is. However that is. Sometimes I don't really like how God's time unfolds because I want what I want right now! But I do understand the love & the logic behind the timing - some things that look good right now won't be good for me when I look at in the framework of eternal happiness.

And 2011 has been all about understanding timing & the much larger

perspective that my timing is set against. There are roads we just have to travel on to get to the place we need to be at. We have to be on that path at that time so we can learn to love deeper & clearer & truer.

This year brought people into my framework that couldn't have appeared any sooner. I just wasn't ready for them & the lessons they gifted to me. Some of these people I love truly & deeply but my time in their stories is done for now. I miss them. I wish them well. I continue to pray for them even though I don't talk to them every day several times a day the way I used too. Some other people I don't want traveling my road with me, so I've pre-empted their time in my story. They need to go figure out their own story & mark their own time.

Then I have those fellow travelers who's paths frequently cross mine, who I find a great joy in meeting & saying Hello! too while I'm making my way. We swap stories, recipes, life experiences, pictures & scriptures.

God Bless them! They're great company on the broken road! Lots of laughing, lots of joking & lots of crying too sometimes. But they give me hope to keep on going when my what I really want to do is sit down & play dead.

No, I'm not always a happy journey traveler & I can testify that this road & time isn't what I had planned.

I can't tell if I'm living God's Plan A or B. It seems all the same to me.

And as I close out 2011 I look back on the past 12 months with wonder. How in the world did I survive & thrive in all of that chaos?

The answer always comes back the same - only by the grace of God.

As I leave this year behind & look forward to the new adventures of 2012, I thank God most of all for the love & care & patience He's shown for me. I am not an easy person to deal with. I am not even a nice person to deal with most of the time. But I am a good person & more importantly ~ I am a Child of God and that makes the difference in everything.

May you & yours have a wonderful 2012.

With Love & Good New Years Wishes~

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

KokoSamoa Cupcakes ~ an interesting Foodie Adventure

KokoSamoa Cupcake w/Vanilla Bean & KokoSamoa Frosting

I love KokoSamoa. I love it dark, strong & sweet. I love the little nuttiness that gets caught in my teeth when I sip the steaming chocolatey hotness.

I thought it would be wonderful to blend my favorite drink with a cupcake!

So one morning, I brewed up a pot of kokosamoa using double the amount of koko I would normally use. I wanted the liquid to be extra strong & dark when I used in it the cake batter.

I expected a dark chocolate taste.

What I got was a smokey coffee taste.


With love & Koko Samoa Cupcakes~

Friday, December 2, 2011

Anger, another ______ emotion

Angry face
Anger has to be the deadliest emotion for me. It can consume me, drive me, burn me.

I've done more things because I was angry than I have anything else.

I've had more sex with more people than I can remember because I was angry. I've eaten enormous amounts of food because I was angry. I've spent thousands of dollars I didn't have because I was angry. I have cut off yards of hair because I was angry. I have run more miles on the pavement & the treadmill because I was so pissed off I couldn't sit still.

Anger can make me do horrendously stupid things like having a public bitch fest just because I can, start AND finish a fight just because I can and worst of all ~ hurt deeply the ones that I love the most.

I've struggled in the past 10 years of my life to get a grip on my temper - to master my anger so that I am the boss of it and it is not the boss of me. To act in anger is to admit that one is not in control of ones self, that one is ruled & held hostage by ones appetites.

No one can truly be free to make a conscious choice when they are always enthralled by the whims of their appetites.

My dad used to say that to me. That I'd never get anywhere as long as I let my stomach tell me what to do. I used to resent that a lot. Until I got older & really thought about what it was he was really saying. He was telling me that I had to learn discipline, so I could discipline myself & make myself strong enough to be truly free to believe the things I do.

It isn't enough for me to discipline my anger. I have to know what the source of it is. So I can get to root of it & weed it out before it consumes me.

I've been angry with someone who considers me a dear friend. That anger led me to blocking this person out of my life for years. And why was I angry? Not because he got married & is happy. Not because he was a coward for most of our time together. Not even because he was still having sex with someone else(s) while he was with me. No, none of that seriously ticked me off. That kind of stupid happens & I can understand it & forgive it. We're all human.

I'm angry because he had the damn nerve to tell me to my face that he'd told his wife-to-be that all I was was just a fling.

A Fling. Ten years of my life & love. A wrecked marriage. And he could only define me as a FLING.


And Mister if you're reading this right now - I'm still angry about that. You could've told her (& me) the truth  - that I was your friend and your lover and something else more complicated that you don't have words for. You could've even said I was your cousin which although very embarrassing - is also true.

But a fling?


Well okay then. And that's why (idiot) when I left Samoa, I refused to see you or speak to you or have anything to do with you. Its the reason why when you were looking for me, I made sure there was no one left to tell you where I was. Its the biggest reason why when you moved here, I made damn sure you couldn't find me until you did, one day when I wasn't paying attention.

And what did you have the nerve to ask me after not seeing my lovely curvy ass for nearly 8 years? I think your litany of questions went like this: Who's baby is that? Did you think I forgot you? Did you think we weren't friends? Do you know how long I've been looking for you?

Oh? Really? Whatever for are you looking for me for?


Let me clue you in how angry I am about that just in case you missed it because you're a man after all & I can understand how testosterone clouds your logic - that was over 10 years ago.

And here you are asking for my FRIENDSHIP?

Like we're friends? Like I ought to care about anything you do or say?


Yeah, I'm angry about that one thing because how the hell are you going to dismiss all that you & I ever were to each other with that one word: Fling. Every single minute & second I spent in your arms, in your bed, in your mind - nothing. Because it was just a fling. Every kiss, every laugh, every hug - nothing. Because it was just a fling. All of my tears, my smiles, my letters & phone calls for you - nothing. Because it was just a fling.

FLINGS aren't friends, Mister. Flings are temporary f*cks that one forgets as soon as it happens. Flings are what you do when you like someone well enough to bang them but not enough to ask them their first name. It's a WhamBamThankYouMa'am. Flings are what I do when I catch someone else's thongs in my car seat/bedding covers.

(Had I known then what I know now, I never would have given you as much time & thought & love as I did. It would've been better for me to have poured my love down the sewer drain because at least then the rats could feast on it & be happy.)

Because if I ever loved someone, I loved you. I still love you because if I didn't love you, your dumb ass would so be dead right now. If I'm going to go to jail for murder it ought to be for someone who I thought was worth becoming a lesbian for since that's all I'd been getting in the slammer.

If I loved you even one shade less than I do right now - you wouldn't be safe from me.

*breathing in slow & deep*exhaling through the nose*repeat*

Angry. Is just another word for hurt.

And no I haven't forgiven you for it yet. Obviously. Since even after this whole long post, what I want to do is call you up & cuss your ass out. Which I will not give you the satisfaction of hearing me do because that wouldn't be a fling does.

With love & delicious anger,

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Happy Birthday to my Russell

Who Me? Yes Me! It's my birthday today!

Today is my nephew Russell's 13th birthday. He'd be mortified to know that I have baby pictures of him on my blog for the whole world to see!
3 days old

(Oh yes. I am that kinda Aunty! Yay! Happy Birthday Russell!)

Although I made all my sisters Aunties - it wasn't until Russell's arrival that I became The Aunty! and wow! did I sure love being an Aunty.

I often say if Russ hadn't been so damn cute, I wouldn't have succumbed to baby fever & went out & made my own baby! (Tafilele thanks you by the way!)

When my sister & brother in law let our family know that they were expecting a happy blessing soon - we were all of us, excited & nervous. It's been 6 years since Simalei was born. We were all of us - ready for a new baby to join our fun!

The night before Russell was born, my sister & I were sitting in our family living room with my parents joking about life. She decided to eat my bowl of chili & I told her - you're gonna give yourself indigestion!

What it gave her instead was heartburn that was really labor!

My dad called me at work later that morning to let me know that Russell had made his debut & to please stop off at Laufou to pick up some nice baby things for the new baby & food for the new mama. (I remember telling my then boss who shall not be named least he sue me for any number of imagined offenses - that I was leaving immediately for a family emergency. I love it how one can do that when employed in Samoa!)

When I got to the hospital & I saw him for the first time - I couldn't get over how WHITE he was & how cherry red his lips were. He was like a little Snow White! (I know Russ - you're cringing but as your Aunty it's my duty to embarrass you like this!)

Russell is special to me because he's such a stalwart soul. Really. There is right & then there is Russell. He's stayed solid throughout so very many trying times in his young life. He's been his Mother's rock & his Father's testimony. He's been his sister Robyna's best friend & his younger brother Kajey's trailblazer. He's been KennaNoa's cuddly bear & protector. So very many things on such young & capable shoulders. He keeps on going when other's are ready to sit down & cry. He has an incredible faith that everything is in God's capable hands, so what are we so worried for? I love it.

I love you Russell. The best is yet to come for all of us.

With love & Delicious Happy Birthday Wishes,

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Regrets, I have a few...

Debris left at Castle beach 2011

So I was listening to Old Blue Eye's crooning My Way on the radio this morning & that one phrase of his caught me,

                               "regrets, I have a few but then again too few too mention..."

And it got me to thinking about what regrets I have. What do I regret?

Regret is such a useless emotion. It does nothing but mire you down in the pain of the past.
(unless you learned your lesson)

All the I wish I couldawouldashoulda's do nothing except for hold you back from moving forward.
(unless you learned your lesson)

There are  some things that just have to BE so that the today you have right this minute can be what it is.
(that would be the part where you learned your lesson)

(Ahh! but I do have a few regrets that I do want to mention if for no other reason than to un-burden myself & practice some moral acrobatics)

There are somethings I do regret because I caused someone else pain.

More than likely they've forgotten all about me or don't recall the incident with the kind of clarity that I do. Mostly because from their point of view - it's done & over with. That's one of the perks of regret - you get to relive it over & over & over again. Sort of like Groundhogs Day on crack.

One of the things that I regret in my adult life is attempting to do someone a favor by telling her that she was behaving like a total bitch & that's the reason why her friends were blowing her off. Of course I was young (18 years old) and self-righteous (goody2shoes) and ignorant ( there are so many ways to exemplify my stupidity here).

I still remember her face as I told her what her friends were saying about her. She was shocked & hurt & fighting back the tears that were welling up in her eyes. She only said,"Oh. Okay." and then left our table.

I felt great! I had done her a good deed by informing her of what others were saying & that if she wanted to keep their myriad of friendships - she'd have to stop with the bitchiness. I wish I could have slapped myself a good one.

The point is I didn't know what was going on when I told her this little nugget of information I'd gleaned while listening to the Hive talking about her. Later on, I found out the day I chose to take her to lunch & tell her her friends were sick & damn tired of her bitching was also her birthday & the day she found out her parents were getting a divorce.

Talk about I SUCK big time. That regret haunts me.

I wish the Me Now could time travel back to that day & tell Me Then to shut the hell up & mind her own damn business & that if she wanted to be a "real" friend - then just offer her a hug & a sandwich & say "Hey, how's it all going?"

To that girl, I'd like to apologize again. I was a total asshole. I can honestly say I've never made the mistake of attempting to be some one's friend by telling them all their friends think such & such a thing. What other people think is also none of my business. What I think is my business. Lesson learned.

Another thing I regret is saying another photographers work was absolute shit to a former editor. It was totally un-professional. His work speaks for itself - as does mine. No one needed me to say what everyone could already see. It's no joke that I earned my spot as that girl who is not a team player. I'd like to believe I've spent the last 10 years learning to correct that mistake & to recognize the value of being a team player. Go TeamBellaLu! Lesson learned.

I'm sorry Mr. Pro-Photographer in the Making for the things I said about your work. I really hope you didn't take it personally. My only defense is that I was stupid.

Yet another regret, is that I railroaded over & rudely disregarded the seniority & hard work of people who had been in the game much longer than I had. They earned their places by their own hard work & by just showing up. I regret that I didn't acknowledge their contributions & their talents because I was so totally focused on my own (arrogant) wonderfulness. Yes I was talented. Yes I was fast. Yes I had a good eye. But all of that means shit because at the end of the day ~ Talent is lovely. Talent is grand. But talent is no damn match for consistent hard honest work.

I apologize to my former editors for not being more humble & teachable. You were right, I did & still do have a lot to learn about being in the business & I was very fortunate to be mentored by you all. Lesson learned.

I also regret the not quite honest way that I left one of my apartments. I could attempt to shift blame to another group of adults - but the real honest truth is that if I had stood my ground - I would not have left they way that I did nor would I have left it in the condition that I did. I don't care that there were 2 of us on the lease - I'm a responsible intelligent adult. I know how to give 30 days notice - not 3 days notice. I know that we didn't complete all the promised renovations. I also know that there isn't anything I can except for apologize & hope my former landlord has forgiven me. I deeply regret that and have made sure that I've never ever again left a rental unit that way again. Lesson Learned.

I regret that I didn't do the horizontal hula with that lovely Military Man way back in the day because I was worried about my friend being all by herself if I left with him. Yes, I do regret it because I absolutely know if I had gone with him, it would've score somewhere in my top 5 best encounters ever. EVER. I never made that mistake again - that's for sure! Lesson learned.

I regret eating that blueberry napple 2 nights ago. Let me tell you, if you're going to ingest an ukubazillion calories of nutritional nothingness you ought to at least make it worth it.

I don't however regret very much else. I've made many mistakes in my life & I've tried my damned best to rectify them. I've moved on from most of them. I don't regret any of my 'encounters' because I chose them & accepted the consequences there of. I don't regret the lifestyle I have today because it was my choice to live this way. I am content with the consequences there of.

With love & deliciousness ~

Friday, November 25, 2011

Eat, Pray, Love:Part 1 Eat or What's Eating Me

“I crossed the street to walk in the sunshine.”
― Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

This one is for Lee, whom if ever I was going to call someone to come get me off the bathroom floor - it would be you. Because you're You.

It was Lee who came up with the idea that the three of us would each take a section of Elizabeth Gilbert's book Eat, Pray, Love. Cynthia had already gotten Pray & that left a toss up between the 2 of us for the remaining sections.

I attempted to pass the buck by graciously offering Lee the chance to pick first so that I'd take whatever section was left over.

She "graciously" declined to pick for me. What a pal! Only a Bestie will catch the ball & pass it right back at you when you're too chicken to take the shot & slam dunk it.

(I'll admit right now, when I claimed Eat as my section, I'd forgotten that EAT came before PRAY & LOVE. That means that I have to go first. First means Now before the other sections can be done & posted. )

In re-reading EPL (thank you Goodwill for my fifty cent copy!) I had been banking on EAT being something that I knew something about. I know how to eat. Everyone alive knows how to eat. Basically you see food, you stick that food in your mouth, chew & swallow. Some of us have to liquefy our food & drink it but the basics are still the same.

So what could possibly be hard about writing about Eat?

But the EAT part of book isn't so much about what Elizabeth was eating during her travels in Italy. It was  about what was eating at her, how that whatever it was - was also eating away at her. Devouring her sense of self & being with the voraciousness hunger of the possessed.

Reading about the EAT section has been tough for me. I've been there. I've done that. I've buried & moved on. For me, I've already crossed to the other side of the street. Her pain is something I can relate to. I know what it is to feel so desolate & crazy & disconnected & all the other things that she said.

“Deep grief sometimes is almost like a specific location, a coordinate on a map of time. When you are standing in that forest of sorrow, you cannot imagine that you could ever find your way to a better place. But if someone can assure you that they themselves have stood in that same place, and now have moved on, sometimes this will bring hope” 

And it was deep grieving for me. Deep moving swirling cacophony of grief. Deep whirlpools of sucking grief.

To understand the kind of grief I'm talking about let me give the context for which all of this occurred.

In the space of one year I had changed jobs, changed lovers, gotten pregnant, gotten married, moved in & out & back into my childhood family home, went back to former lover, filed for a TRO & a divorce, changed my mind, negotiated the sale of my family home, had my sister & her family move, had my 2 younger sisters also get pregnant & then dealt with my own high risk pregnancy & delivery & then my father became very ill & had to taken to Hawaii for treatment.

Our family left to Hawaii to be with  my dad during his final days. I had a house to pack up & people to move & things to take care of. I also had to find a new home for my family as we had been staying at Castle Medical Center while my dad was there.

My husband at the time tried the best he could to be there for me while dealing with his own trauma of being married & a father to his infant son & instant son who were not with him. After finding nearly $3000.00 missing from our joint bank account - we had a huge argument with the gist of it being I was his wife & although that $$$ was mine - it was his because he was my husband, my family should figure this mess out on their own (this was a repetitive whine) & that I need to bring myself & the children home now.

So I booked a flight home w/ our baby because what else was I supposed to do? I said goodbye to my father for the last time in this life. He gave me his blessings, he blessed my son. We said our goodbyes & I left for Samoa enraged that my husband couldn't just behave during this stressful time.

When I got back to Samoa, my husband picked me & our infant son up at the airport. He made love to me tenderly & passionately & dare I say it - gratefully that night. I remember clearly thinking, this is new, this is different. It would be the last time ever in our marriage that he would ever love me.

The next day, I got into my parents car & I went home. Home to the only man that was ever home for me. This is scary to say out loud. I don't really know that I'm ready to see what that means. He opened the door to me & saw my grief & wrapped me in his strong arms & let me listen to the clickclickclick of his heart while I cried.

I can't tell you the rest. It still cuts deep at me. A thousand million bazillion sorries doesn't erase it. It just is what it is. We all move forward.

By then I had lost my sense of direction, I lost my true north on the compass in my soul. I lost my mind, myself, my love. I lost my girlhood & the womanhood that threatened to eat me alive with every breath I inhaled terrified me.

I wanted to leave my husband. I wanted out. I was still desperately in love with someone else.

I had lost my best friend, my confidant, the man who's eyes I borrowed to see myself.

My whole world was crumbling to crumby pieces. I needed him like I needed air. God! Even all these years later - just thinking about that time stirs up deep things in me. My father was dying, would be dead before I saw him again. He was all I could cling to in the dangerous waters of grief. So many things had changed so fast. He was still the same for me. Always always always the same.

My dad died while I was in Samoa sorting out & settling our house & my marriage. We flew back for the funeral. My dad resides at Laie Cemetery. A little bit after the funeral, I returned to Samoa with my baby. My husband had told me don't bother to come back. I went back anyway. Guilt.

Guilt is awful. I'd rather be pissed off any day that be eaten alive by guilt. But I had to try to make it right.

I cried. A lot. I screamed. A lot. I ate food to fill my body. A lot. I remember getting on a scale at the Dr's office at LBJ Tropical Medical Center. It said 308 pounds. I couldn't believe it. Neither could the nurse. The scale might as well have said 508 pounds the way her eyes were threatening to pop out of her skeletal blotchy face.

 I wanted out of my marriage. I did not promise to marry him until death do him part - what I said was until I can divorce you. There is a slight difference. I also refused to promise to be faithful till death do us part. What I said was I promise to honor you. Its a slight technicality but one that I like since he's thrown that in my face many times.This mess of a marriage wasn't what I signed on for.

I married him because he wanted me. He kept me safe because he was strong enough to pick up all the pieces of me that someone else shattered. He wanted me - that's what made the difference & because the man I had wanted more than breathing did not want me badly enough to keep me. In all fairness, he also never truly believed I would ever get the strength to leave him.

Surprise. Surprise.Surprise. I not only left him - I thrived without him.

“When I get lonely these days, I think: So BE lonely, Liz. Learn your way around loneliness. Make a map of it. Sit with it, for once in your life. Welcome to the human experience. But never again use another person's body or emotions as a scratching post for your own unfulfilled yearnings.” 

I was desperately crazy in love with someone who wasn't my husband. Have you ever been desperately crazy in love with someone before? It's like being on drugs - hooked on a feeling - hostage to an emotion that slips & slides precariously.

Let me just tell you, death will happen for me before I'll ever EVER ever go that way again.

I wasn't happy. I just wanted out & away. He clung to our marriage like the last life boat leaving the Titanic.

I was in the midst of grieving my lost love, my father, my home, my child who moved away from me, my career ambitions & I thought that if I lost my marriage, my life would come back into focus clearly again.

That was not to happen.

After yet another late afternoon holed up in that dungeon of an office ~ I was tired of finding myself on the bathroom floor of my boss's office crying & sobbing & wishing I could drink a bottle of Clorox. True Story. I am ashamed & relieved to be able to say that out loud. Ashamed because I know what people think about people like me who are so far out in the dark lands that death is a welcome reprieve. Ashamed because I'm one of the strong ones & if I can be brought down so low that drinking a Clorox cocktail is a good thing - what does that mean for everyone else?

“I’m here. I love you. I don’t care if you need to stay up crying all night long, I will stay with you. There’s nothing you can ever do to lose my love. I will protect you until you die, and after your death I will still protect you. I am stronger than Depression and I am braver than Loneliness and nothing will ever exhaust me.” 

I hated that I was not doing what made me truly happy. I hated that I was watching my husbands star rise on the backbreaking sweat of my work - that in order for him to succeed in our profession he had to do it piggybacking on my trail. His star was rising at the expense of mine & my star was dimming to the point of being extinguished.

I hated that I couldn't even at that point answer a simple question of What Makes You Happy? Even seeing the words Happy on Happy Birthday made me want to vomit & spew chunks of hatefulness at all the bitches who I was sure were plotting deviously behind my back while smiling at my face.

(I'm not paranoid. Time has revealed who my true friends are & who the haters are. Better than all of that, God has worked His miracle on me & showed me to myself. Who knew I could be so beautiful & powerful & delicious? What a gift it was! I no longer need his eyes to see myself.)

Unlike Gilbert's experience in the EAT section where she heard what she could only assume was God talking to her while sobbing on the bathroom floor as her husband slept in the other room, I didn't hear God.

There was no voice of God speaking at me but rather God Himself moved me away from the toilet where I admit I'd contemplated sticking my head in, hitting the ultimate flush button & drowning myself. I would have except for that I was sure the EMT on the scene would be some bitch my then husband had banged who would only be just too happy to see me in such a sad state of being.

Those were dark difficult days. Knowing for certain that if I didn't leave that place & the people & even my husband - that I would surely be dead- worked its magic on me. I had to get out or die. This is literal not figurative speaking. I would be leaving 2 very small children alone in this world with only their ambitious capricious father left to care for them. That's a lie - what their father would do is make one of his girlfriends take care of our children.

I don't mind telling you that I will never ever ever in my breathing life ever allow any one of his girlfriends or flings to ever think about raising my boys. Ever. If they are reading this - know that as I live & breathe you will never ever ever ever x's a bazillion evers raise my boys if anything happens to me.

Getting ready to leave, telling him I'm leaving, pregnant with our youngest child & desperately bitterly ANGRY that not only was my then husband stealing my creative endeavors but also that he felt entitled to it. He expressed himself many times that my intelligence, my thoughts & the writing  pieces it produced were his to exploit & disseminate.

I chose him. As default for the love I could not have at the time. I was angry at myself for not choosing wisely. So I ate to quell the angry raging monster in me. And wow! was it an angry raging unforgiving taskmaster that slashed at me if I wasn't diligently attentive to it! If I tried - back in those days - to forgive myself for the mistakes I made, it doubled up on me with more & more crap that I couldn't escape.

(Life did this to me. He did this to me. Its all someone else's fault. I'm not good enough. I don't love enough. I deserve this shit. This is what happens.)

Instead of not eating as Gilbert did during her dark days, I ate everything to satiate the anger in me at the consequences of my choices.

I ate to bury the violence I wanted to do to myself without then recognizing that what I was doing was even more violent to my sense of being. It would've been much kinder to myself to have shouted my anger instead of eat it. It would've been much wiser to realize that I had no one to be more mad at, more angry at, more violent towards than myself.

I recognize fully now that  - that's what it was. The consequences of my choices. Life didn't screw me over. God didn't screw me over. I screwed myself up, over & over again until I was just sick & damned tired of being screwed.

I chose this misery. And the moment I learned that I could freely UN-CHOOSE it - I took that moment and ran with my children all the way to Hawaii where the great Pacific Ocean and an International border gave me space from the chaos that threatened to eat me until I was all dead.

“They flank me-Depression on my left, loneliness on my right. They don't need to show their badges. I know these guys very well. 

...then they frisk me. They empty my pockets of any joy I had been carrying there. Depression even confiscates my identity;but he always does that. 

-Page 47” 

When I got to Hawaii ( my version of Gilbert's Italy) I began to set aside the things that had been chasing me. I cut off friends who only delivered gossip & bad news to me. I stopped calling people who fed the insanity monster by telling me I could always come back to what I'd left behind. I deleted msgs from everyone outside of my circle of safety.

I had moved from the chaos but somehow its brother Crazy found me & hounded me here. During those first days in the chaos free life - I spent many hours smoking Black Durum's (clove cigarettes) on the back porch of our home in Hauula. I'd put the baby to bed, tuck in my toddler & then make sure my oldest one was asleep. I'd light one up & stare at the stars, talking to God & thinking about corned beef from a can sandwiches mixed with mayonnaise ( only Best Foods will do!) & a bag of Cheetos.

So I ate & fed my anger so that it would shut up. Sometimes it yelled for chocolate ice cream with whipped cream & double fudge brownie crumbled on top with walnuts. Sometimes it begged for Sour Dough Jacks & bacon potato cheddar wedges. I am not ashamed to say I had many midnight runs to drive thru's only to eat my purchases greedily in a dark Safeway parking lot.

I gained 60+ pounds during this time. I was really pissed off to find myself separated with three small children on welfare while my estranged husband was busy fucking his way through my former friends & current enemies. This was not the way I had envisioned my script running.

This was also the time that I started turning into a clingyneedywhineybabybitch who spoke the words of reconciliation with the husband I'd abandoned but made no concrete effort to follow thru. I would call him many times a day & tell him I loved him so that I could feel human. He told me he hated me.

I told him I would move home with the children many times until one day, he decided he was tired of hearing my lies. He stopped taking my calls & I stopped calling him. In retrospect, I don't know how he could stand me during those yo yo years. It's true.

I've learned now that not everything is his fault. A good portion - most likely half - of all the mess is mine.

Whatever. It happens. And while its happening to you, the only thing you can focus on is eat it away, eat it calm, eat it to forget it.

Moving to Hawaii was only geography. As I learned over the span of the next 3 years - the anger I'd eaten myself numb from had yet to be dragged out into the light of day & seen for what it was... regret, grief, disappointment all based on false assumptions & mostly just a lot of anger.

It took he & I five years to get to the point of getting divorced. It then took another year or two to actually process paperwork to be divorced. He filed on me to get his freedom from me because he was tired of living alone. (The truth would be he was tired of telling people he wasn't married when legally he was) He wanted to start his life over with someone else who wasn't me. The night he called to tell me he was ready to make a break from me was a tough one. We spent 2 long hours talking & surprisingly - laughing about the bad times that had gone on before. It was good & it was time for me to let it go.

Ironically enough our divorce was finalized 8 years to the day that we got married: Valentines Day. Could it have been any better than that?

“Tis' better to live your own life imperfectly than to imitate someone else's perfectly.” 

No one else had or has the right to my life. I have the right to my life. It is mine until the moment God calls me back home. Until that moment - no one has the right to make me live my life for them, through them, about them.

And then the light went on in my head. I make my life what it is. If I want it different - I'm the only one who can make it different for me. I can learn to see myself - the absolute best of myself- without having to borrow his eyes to see me.  I can - like Gilbert says she learned in Italy cross the street to the other side.

When I got to the other side of the street - I inhaled the sweet sunshine in to my soul & smiled. This goodness? This is only the beginning & it just keeps on keeping on getting better!

With love & deliciousness sun on this side of the street~

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thank You

Today is Thanksgiving & as my family & I crowd into our kitchen to pile our plates with heaping servings of turkey, cranberries & assorted yummilicious foods & then search for where ever we can find space to squeeze into - we want to share our gratitude with you.

Our table is filled with food & laughter & music & children & family. I am blessed. This year has been kind to us.

Our turkey

Thank you for being here with us.
Thank you for sharing your love & prayers & good wishes with us this past year.
Thank you to our friends new & old for your delicious thoughts & feelings.
Thank you especially for trusting us with the things that have humbled & hurt you.
Thank you to our military families who sacrifice for us.
Thank you to all the people giving up their time/food/clothes so others can have this holiday.

We love you. Yes YOU. We love you.

We pray for your well being & thank God for the things He's put in your way to bring you closer to Him.

My children & I thank God for all the delicious things He's put on us this year. We thank Him that we have each other this holiday season when we know others that we love are without their loved ones. We thank Him for the food we are blessed to partake of each day, the home that shelters us, the vehicles that transport us to work & school. We thank Him for the people He's brought into our lives & for the people He's helped out of our lives.

We thank Him for a house full of love & laughter & that we have more people than chairs this season.
God is good to us. We thank Him for it all.

Our family @ the Laie Temple August 2011

With love & blessing to you & yours this Thanksgiving~

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

More than my ...

Me & Tafi

I am more than my hair.
I know I am.

I'd better be more than my hair or I'd be very disappointed in me. After all, its just hair damn it. I can BUY fake hair at the store now if I want too. (apparently so can everyone else these days)

After all the women's lib and independent forward thinking that I do - to be brought low by my hair?
That's just...
well that's just almost inconceivable.

Except for that well...
I'm still human you know. And I'm still a woman. And this is my hair!

*sigh* I grudgingly admit my hair & I have an 'interesting' relationship going on.

My Ex before the EX seemed to understand this hair thingy much better than I did. After each & every nasty tear filled screaming argument, his first question before even saying Hey Honey! was

"What color is your hair AND God please tell me you didn't cut it?"


Oh yes I did & you know what? I'm pretty sure you did too at some point in your life where you just got sick & damned tired of the man & his nonsense about long luxurious hair. And out popped the big kitchen kill the chicken with it shears.

If you are a mature person in possession of a mature personality, that's the point where you put the chicken shears back in the drawer & run like the hell to the nearest salon to beg a certified hairstylists to cut it for you.

Even when the salon artiste is ready to cry because she has to cut it - you tell her either you cut this damn hair off or I'm going home to get those f*c*ing scissors & do it myself.

(I have not always been that mature or patient.)

What is it with men & long hair? And not just any long hair!

They want that long soft healthy bouncy shiny wrap their damn fists in it hair. They want it long & straight. They want it long & curly. They want it long - like down your back past your ass kinda long. They want that kinda hair that when they stick their faces in it and inhale that Suave Strawberry scent that I guess makes them go a little nuts.

Well? Now its not that long. In fact its pretty damn short! Guess what? You can stick your snout at the back of my neck and inhale that good clean hair free smell of yellow Lux soap.

I grew my hair out the past 3 years because I wanted my EX (yes that EX) to see how beautiful I am with long hair. It got long down my back & then I'd trim it a bit. Not too much. I kept my hair out of pure vanity - I wanted it long so some man could run his fingers in it & say ooooohhhhhh....

Well some man didn't happen. Neither did any man or that man or even whatta man. There's just no damn man for me right now. (Which is my choice not circumstance just in case you're wondering) Life continues ~ man or no man! (I'm laughing because I'm sure you feel sorry for me since I have no man. How can I possibly even breathe without one? I should be dead already.)

And that means what the hell am I holding on to all this hair for? I don't like long hair. Its hot, is heavy, its thick. I got that big Samoan kinda hair that once set free from its confines - that big hair is BOSS!

So I cut it yesterday. Oh yes I did. I cut it & set my inner mullet free.

With love & delicious haircutting~

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Things to think on

Haleiwa Beach Park 2007 Watching the Sun go down

It's always interesting & entertaining for me to interact with people I haven't seen/heard/spoken too in many years. Because of my choice to disconnect from as many people & places in my history - when they do finally catch up to me, I'm not always what they thought I would be.

And it shows on their faces when they register that what they thought & what I am aren't the same thing. It's almost as much fun for me to watch as me telling people who my Ex-husband is!

(I have proof people that I was legally married to him & am legally divorced from him too!)

For example, my sister was telling me that she was re-counting to another old acquaintance a few months back about  how I am a current LDS Temple Recommend holder. Now while that only means to me that I have an additional obligation to fulfill in being & living more Christ-like, for others of our faith its a symbol of spiritual worthiness. The acquaintance was shocked & rather speechless.

My reputation for salacious & scandalous living had preceded me.

There's a good amount of awkwardness for people from my past to meet the me that I am now. Awkward because as I was then - I am now - breaking the norms, taking no hostages & no holds barred. Except for then, I was gungho on exploring the dark side & all its delicacies to its fullest extent. Now? I'm all about living happy & clean & free.

(At least, you can thank God that I've learned to keep my opinions to myself. Unless of course you ask me & then I'll give it to you as honestly as I can without being brutal. Because really? why does honesty have to be brutal? Why can't honesty be beautiful? It always irritates me when people start off conversations with Can I be brutally honest? No damn you  - you can not be brutally honest. How about you be compassionately honest? There. Try that one on & see how it fits.)

This isn't intentional. It's just the way I am. It's one of the many things I'm told makes me a very scary woman to deal with. I actually had to call & ask people why I'm so scary. One of my sisters told me its because   "you don't f*ck around with the truth". Another sister said, "because you can see through all their bullshit & smoke."

Which is just fine with me. I'm me & you? You're you.

I like you as you are but please don't give me a fake you. That's just going to piss me off. Tell me you don't want to talk about it. Tell me its none of my business. That's fine. But don't lie to my face. That will not be fine for any of us.

One thing that hasn't changed about me from then to now ~ is that I'm not going to put on a personality to make you comfortable. Either you take me as I am, as flawed as I am or you're not going to take me at all. I'll wish you well on your journey & hope that our paths intersect once again. But I am not going to let you tell me who I am.

With love & delicious sunsets ~

Friday, November 18, 2011

Lumpy & loving it

Why Thighs do you not just be not LUMPY?

On my workout playlist are the following songs:

1. Bulletproof
2. Where does my Heart beat now
3. In the Ayer
4. Someone like You - Shape Remix
5. Purple Rain
6. Let the Music Play
7. FlashDance
8. SongBird - Fleetwood Mac
9. Good Life
10. Set Fire 2 the Rain - Adele

I love my morning workouts. I love them after the first five minutes of my workout. I love them all the way through the hour that I'm in it.

But for that first five minutes as I'm waiting for those fabled endorphins to kick in & kick my ass up - its hard to slough through it. My first song has to keep me enthralled enough to get through the first five minutes when I'm certain that getting up & getting to the gym is the worst idea I've had since forever.

Only in the past five years, have I gained a knowledge & appreciation for physical exercise. I remember clearly when walking a mile took me 45 minutes. Then it took me 37 minutes. Then 30 minutes. Then 22 minutes.

Last week it took me 9:46 seconds to run my mile. I wanted to take a picture of that readout & email it to everyone I know & then blow it up as a wall print. That may be my personal best time. ever. I may never run that time again. seriously. (I can tell you honestly that the next day it took me 20 minutes to just walk a mile & then when I tried to run it - I got wobbly legs & called it.)

For most of my life, I was a bookworm nerd. You know the one who did not ever break a sweat on a run or even smelled the inside of gym or attended an aerobics class. In high school, I gave my PE teacher a hard time, telling him it was a violation of my constitutional rights to force me to participate in physical education when it was not considered a standardized method of measuring one's physical fitness. (Yeah. I was 15 years old. I got sent to the VP's office & then later to the Principles Office & basically told that if I didn't complete the class I could fail. I didn't like F's back then so I did it)

I also didn't play basketball, volleyball or softball. I didn't even play tag. My idea of physical exercise was hauling home a bunch of encyclopedias.

As an adult, breaking a sweat back in the day meant 30 minutes of tantra sex after a night spent getting wasted at a no name no care bar somewhere.

But back to the here & now: On alternate days - after 30 minutes of cardio - I head into the weight room to try my body at pumping iron. I don't know what it is about that room full of metal that intimidates me so. But it does. But that doesn't matter because I'm made up my mind to keep on going in there even if all I can is walk to the back wall & stare at the weights as I go by.

Why do I do this every day Monday to Friday ?

Because I remember what its like to be so fat that I couldn't fit into the regular bathroom stalls at the store. Because I remember what its like to be so fat that little kids would walk past me & say she's so fat!
Because I remember how desperate I was to not be so fat - that I consented to have my guts cut up & re-routed in the hope that I could finally get my weight under control enough to finally run.

I will never ever ever be that desperate again.

And its also about the way I feel after I totally kill a workout: I feel free & I feel strong. I feel like no one in the world can bring me down. I feel like I could run for miles. I feel like the best kind of warm sunshine falling on my face in the afternoon. To say I feel good just doesn't cover how I feel when I get it done during a workout.

So when I head into the gym this morning & I feel a little slouchy - I remember waking up in the hospital certain I was going to die as a result of having cut my guts up. I remember literally dying to be thin & I swear to God, I will never be that desperate again.

I will walk farther & faster. I will run like my life depends on it. I will move those iron weights.
Because my life does depend on it.

With love & delicious sweatiness~

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The ManCode from a Woman

Good Man!
You want to have a good woman?
The kind that doesn't cheat on you with all your hommies?
The one that has your back? The one that has eyes only for you?

Then be a Good Man.

To be a Good Man is rather simple.

Here's the rules:
1) Don't be a dickhead.
2) Don't be an asshole.
3) Don't be a bitch.
4) Don't be fooled by bitches either.

What this means is that if your ass got played its because you were thinking you could play it.
Every single player gets played out eventually. That's just the way it works.
If you don't want to get played out, don't play.

And if you're a good man getting played out by a bad woman - ask yourself why in the hell you picked her in the first place. Because YOU PICKED HER. No body forced you to tap that ass & get you a little sumsum. You wanted to get a little taste of what all the other guys get. You wanted to show all the other big dogs on the corner that you - yes good nerdy churchgoing YOU- could score a hot prime piece of sass.


Have you paid enough for it yet? Do you feel used & abused? Have you hurt enough yet?

Good for you. Now learn your damn lesson & pass on the bitches & hoe's & little girls & focus on what you really want. A Good Woman.

A good God fearing woman who knows who she is & isn't waiting for your money to make her secure. She's already secure in herself. She not only knows who she is, she isn't going to take advantage of where she comes from to get ahead. She's already there. She's the woman who when you're freehand rockwall climbing up a sheer face - you thank God that she's the one spotting for you & climbing with you because she can and will hold her own. You don't have to worry about her - although you'd better anyway because she's yours AND you're a good man- She's the kinda gal that handle it.

Not every male is cut out for a woman like this. They may think that's what they want & then they pull little bitty boy antics that prove they aren't as ready as they thought they were. A Good Woman knows when to send the little boys back to the sandbox & keep on going. No hard feelin's & especially no slashing of tires or sugaring the gas tanks or cutting up the clothes. She just lets it go with goodness. She also lets it go with finality. The second second second chances are done.

She knows that the universe with take care of you & all the hurt you've inflicted on her can't compare to the hurt you've done to yourself.

I know Good Women like this. They are strong, smart, sexy women. They're educated, intelligent, spiritual women. They have layers & layers of love & power in them. They are fearless & funny all in the same breath. They are also single at the moment because there is a precious shortage of Good Men out there in the world.

It isn't a lie to say there aren't very many good men left in our generation.
Where are they? Jail. Homeless. Un-Godly. Whoring. Married. Dead. Gay. Damaged by Divorce. Addicted  to substances. Trolling the internet. Still trying to get over their Ex. Waiting for Miss Perfect.

And if by God you're a bad man preying on the love of a good woman because you're just predatory & that kind of hunt gives you joy - I hope your... well, I'd better not say it.

I hope that you shape up & get Good soon.

With love & delicious Man-Codes,

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Samoan enough or what?

Photo Courtesy of James Toma. Taupou carving from Samoa 2009

Ethnically, I am Samoan, Tongan, German, Dutch & Chinese. (If I am something else, I don't know it because I haven't done my own homework to find it.) Its an interesting mix to be.

(If you're going to ask Who I am it might be best to start off with well, What are you? Are you Samoan or what?)

Culturally, I am white American. I speak English. I wear American clothes. I vote liberally. More importantly, I vote INDEPENDENTLY. I read American books & generally think out loud in the American concepts of freedom of speech, press & dress. I also prefer American food: hamburgers, hot dogs, chili. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints - that while it is a global religion - is also essentially American too.

Where is my Samoa-ness? That thing that makes me Samoan?

My parents are essentially Samoan. I lived in Samoa for most of my life. I married a Samoan. I gave him a couple of nine pound Samoan babies at the very Samoan facility LBJ Tropical Medical Center. I went to school in Samoa & graduated from Pavaiai Elementary School, Tafuna High School and the American Samoa Community College. I divorced a Samoan man. I worked in Samoa. I cooked & ate Samoan food. I dressed in Samoan clothing appropriate for my gender - a puletasi. I hate having long heavy hair. (There was a time when I was younger & my hair had gotten long past my back. I took a big kitchen shears & hacked it off. My mother cried. I didn't get the big fuss. Its hair. It grows back.)

I have Samoan blood running through my veins compliments of my many generational Samoan ancestors. But does that make me Samoan?

I don't speak my language. I have never been able to master more than the fundamental cuss words. I don't read my language because I don't speak it. I don't write in it. I don't think in it. I don't dance the Taualuga. I have never ever been able to make my body graceful enough to dance it. (I get stiff in the arms & legs like a pipe trying to bend. But never mind I can kinda hula)

I don't have an appreciation for Samoan art of tattoo. Mostly I just don't like tats at all from any where or any culture. A man with a pe'a does not & will not ever turn me on or out. (which is interesting considering my EX has a pe'a).

And while I love the concept of communal property, I also believe there must be a balance with individual responsibility. That in order to form the WE that makes up our communal -ness, there must be space for ME that does not upset the status quo.

I think tapa is lovely to look at but I don't own any or have any or want any. I read other people's glowy praise for Samoan writers, I think that's lovely. But I don't read them. I cheer whole hearted for our Samoan rugby players - the fabulous Manu Samoa. Not because I like rugby because I don't. But because my friend Monique is a die hard true blue Manu fan.

My friends are all Samoan of mixed Samoan descent. If I have a friend who is purely Samoan, I'm not sure what his/her name is. (I apologize Samoan Friend - email me. We have a lot to catch up on.)

But it comes back down again to what's Samoan? There are people without a drop of Samoan blood in them who claim to be Samoan because they've lived there, they speak the language, they love the people. So am I not Samoan because I moved away?speak English as my first language & only on occasion do I love our people up close & personal? (my preference is to love Samoan people from a very safe distance.)

Am I Samoan enough?

A conversation a few weeks ago challenged the concept of Samoan-ness & Communal village property & geography. His personal belief (that I've heard echoed by many others) is that once you move away from the island - you're done. Don't expect that if or when you come back to Samoa - that you're entitled too or have any right too or are able too have any piece of it. You left. That also means you left your Samoan-ness behind. Never mind that you still contribute in some way or form to family faalavelave's. You left. It doesn't matter that you left to find a better life or make more money or receive better health care.

You left.
Case closed.
Next please.

I don't understand that.

Isn't Samoan - ness something you carry inside of you? That all it takes to claim your place within the communal hierarchy is one single drop of blood that ties you both to the family & to the land it originates from? Does more blood make you more Samoan even if you were not born there or raised there or whatever? If I am a Caucasian from Russia who got off a boat in Samoa 4 generations ago & did not marry Samoans so that none of progeny have Samoan blood  even though they were born in Samoa - does that make them Samoan? As equal enough to a 4th generation person of Samoan ancestry born in America? Who's the Samoan there? Both of them? Neither of them?

I've been told by Samoans in Samoa & in America that I am to Faapalagi & Faafia poko & Fia kanaka in my thoughts & writing & behavior. I ask too many difficult questions. Ha! That I even ask is not within the norms.

I've been told that what makes it hard for me to deal with true (gasp! yes that's the work that was used) Samoans is my understanding of ME & WE. When someone says to me WE are going here, what I ask is Why? What does that have to do with me? What do I have to do with that? How am I going to help? The WE's don't ask - they just do.

Here's a sample conversation from back in the day:

We: Go & do this & go over there & give them $$$ & clothes.
Me: Well, why? I want to know.
We: What do you need to know for?
Me:  Because I want too.
We: You don't need to know because I'm telling you so.
Me: And who are you?
We: I'm the Chief.
Me: Chief of ?
We: Chief of everything. Chief of You.
Me: And that makes you qualified to tell me how to eat/live/breathe?
We: You're too faapalagi/fia poko/fia kanaka. You're gonna get in trouble you keep asking questions.
Me: Oh well, that's just how it is sometimes.

I have no natural want or desire to melt into the WE & become a faceless nameless blob ebbing & flowing on the currents of someone else's river. I understand the strength & the safety that being part of the WE gives. But I also like the silence of myself without the crowds of communal relatives.

There must be some balance somewhere.

I want there to be an US, to not be separated in my Samoan-ness  or lack of it, to be part of the whole & still be apart.

With love & delicious We's, Me's & Us~

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Simalei not quite a year old Tafuna, American Samoa 

Sim 1st grade Pavaiai Elementary
 Yes. Yes I did. I did what every son hopes his crazy Mother will not do on their birthday - put their baby pictures on blast for the whole world to see. If I could find just one of him butt ass naked, I would have sure put it here for you to see too!

I want the whole world to ooooh & ahhhh with me when I tell you he was a fat brown little butterball of love!

He was born the smallest of my babies. He was 8 pounds 14 ounces of squealing cuteness. He came out into the world, not with a cry or a wail like other babies. Sim came out to the world saying, "Hey" and a smile.

(I promise that's a true story. You can ask my mom & the nurse & the doctor. I, on the other hand could only mutter a grateful Thank God.)

He didn't like nursing. He loved Enfamil. He loved taking baths. His first mobile was one that my dad crafted from coke cans he cut up & placed on twine & sticks. He didn't have a cradle or a crib. He had a converted tool cart that we pushed him around in. The top part was high enough to fit a baby mattress & keep him from falling out while the bottom part kept all his gear (diapers, wipes, bottles, clothes & blankets) all neat & ready. You know those pop umbrella's we use to cover food on tables? We used that over him to keep the bugs out.

(Can you just see Sim squirming in his seat right now? I do love you son!)

Sim is my oldest son. He's the son that has had to tolerate my evolution to Motherhood. He's the son that has had to be the most patient with me as I gained & lost & then captured my footing in the world. He's my awesome fantastic too smart for himself go with the flow sonshine.

To say I love him doesn't even begin to frame the emotion I have for him.

Sim Junior Prom 2008

There isn't anything in this world that I wouldn't give up to give him what he needs to be.

For about 8 years, Sim was an only child. The whole birthing experience had traumatized me so very deeply I swore I would never ever ever have any more children.

But if there is one wish that Sim has had on every birthday he's ever had - it was that he would have his brothers. He hated being an only child.

His cousin Russell was born about 6 years after him & Sim couldn't get enough of him. Well, we all couldn't get enough of Russ.

When my sister & her little family moved away to pursue their own destiny, Sim was heartbroken & couldn't understand how his brother Russ was leaving.

(He hadn't learned yet, that moving is just geography - its just space. The ones we love who love us aren't ever very far from us.)

When Tafilele was born, Sim was already 8 and our world was changing rapidly. My father has passed away in Hawaii, my family had moved to Hawaii to be with my dad while he was sick & then stayed there. My husband & baby were still in Samoa. Sim, it was decided would stay in Hawaii with my mom & sisters &  brother.

I wish I could go back in time & tell the me in 2001 to just take both of my children home with me, that everything would work out in the Good Lord's way. But I hadn't yet learned how to live by faith. I was too busy living by my ass. I was scared for my son & wanted him safe in Hawaii because I wasn't sure yet where we would be living or for that matter if I was still going to married. (that's a different story)

They were supposed to be doing homework
A year later, I went to get my son from my mother. I told her he's mine & its time for him to be home with me. My mother wasn't going to let Sim go unless she was absolutely sure I was going to be his Mother & not mess up things I couldn't un-do. Her fears set aside, she gave me her blessing to take him home to Samoa with me.

Sim was 9 years old by then. As we caught our flight back to Samoa, he asked me if I was ever going to leave him again. I said "No, baby. We're in this together & I'm never ever ever going to leave you again. Whatever happens, you'll always be with me." I live by Faith now. I know that God will do what is right for us.

So far, I've kept my promise. I intend to continue keeping that promise.

As we left Samoa in 2003, I had to make a very difficult decision. Should I leave Tafi with his father & take Sim with me to Hawaii to start over again? Over the space of many months as I begged & pleaded with their father to make the move with us, I decided that Tafi needed Sim & that Sim needed Tafi at this specific time in their lives more than either one of them needed their father. He refused to move with us.
Me & Sim @ Kakelas 2010

Eight & half months pregnant with my 10 year old & 3 year old sons - we got on a PolyBlue airplane & said goodbye to our homeland. Katz was born a month later in Kahuku, Hawaii.

I know that I made the right decision then & stand by it now. The boys are stronger together than they are apart. The time will come (sooner instead of later) when they'll each have to travel their own road but for now, while I can - I can give them this time to be with each other & to be children.

Simz anchor to the world is his brothers. They give him hope & happiness & bring a light to his eyes. He is the most happiest when they are here with him. I know his brothers feel the same way about him too.

I love you Sim & thank you for picking me to be your Mommy. Happy happy happy birthday!

With love & delicious sonshine!

Monday, November 14, 2011


FastieCakes 2011

This is my FatsieCakes. Well, he's really Katzu's FatsieCakes. Katzu was deathly afraid of cats until my sister gave us her KrackyKitty.

Kracky was skittish crazy cat, who then had a wild love affair with the ManCat of all ManCats here in Kahuku - the Dutchman. ( Seriously, this ManCat has a scratched up face & he looks like a pirate). Fatsie was born on March 4th 2010 along with his 2 sisters & BlackieCat.

Fatsie was the fattest orangest kitten in the litter. Katzu fell in love with him immediately. As soon as it was safe to do so, Katz hauled Fatsie with him everywhere like a little baby doll propped up on his shoulder. He tucked Fatsie into a little bed next to him. He made Fatsie ride in the back of his yellow dump truck. Fatsie was such a good sport about all of it.

Blackie in the meantime became Tafi's companion.

You've probably heard me talking about him before. I go on & on about my Fatsie. He's cat as you can clearly see. But he doesn't know that he's a cat.

Fatz thinks & believes he's a boy. And that as a boy, he's entitled to specific things that boys are entitled too. Like a place on top of our dinner table. If his corner is crowded with stuff, then he'll pee on it so you know that this is his place, not your place & to move your crap off of his spot.

And Fatz is particular about Katz being home when it gets dark. As I've learned when I've taken Katz out past dark - Fatz will wait on our driveway until I bring Katz home & then meow at me his displeasure. Who ever heard of getting scolded by a cat? *sigh* Yes, that happens to me.

 Let me just tell you that Fatz has a mind of his own. And when he's not happy, he doesn't want anyone else to be happy either.

But he's patient & loyal with the ones he loves. He always comes to our room to look for Katz & lay down next to him. He stalks through our home to make sure everyone is where they need to be before he takes off to see whats going on in the neighborhood.

He - like Katzu - loves to visit our neighbors homes. He invites himself in to their homes & eats their food & plays with their kids & hangs out. There's been quite a number of times that as I'm driving up to my home through the cul de sac when I've stuck my head out the truck window & yelled at both Fatsie & Katzu to bring their asses on home already!

(Yes it is rather strange to find myself yelling for my cat & kids to come home in one breath)

I don't know what kind of cat Fatsie is except for to say he's a ManCat sort of cat.

His daddy is a Pirate Cat & his Mommy is KrackyKitty.

Whatelse would they have except for a FatsieCakes kinda cat that eats cupcakes till he pukes & then demands I give him akule & salmon?

I am not a pet person. I don't like pets. And after mocking the pet people who are fanatically attached to their pets & shop diligently at places like PET CO ~ I've found myself also shopping there & pondering the isles comparing one brand of cat food versus the other. Fatsie as I am learning doesn't like Friskies Pate.

According to Katzu, Fatsie like the Friskies that look like noodles.

(Oh what the hellokitty?!? and do I even care what my CAT prefers to eat? I won't tell you then that yes I did go to the store to buy the noodle looking cat food. That's just too embarrassing. My kids & cats are the boss of me!)

But how come in this year alone I've had Fatsie, Blackie, Piggy, Louie & now Bunbun? Blackie & Piggy have gone over the Rainbow Bridge but I miss their little faces pacing my kitchen & hallways.

I am always happy to see Fatz. He makes me smile because he's just so FatsieCakes.

I love you Fatz. You're such an ass of a cat. But your pretty awesome as a friend.

With love & delicious cats~