24 9 / 2013
so my last year at UCLA is around the corner. i transferred there just about a year ago and i exceeded beyond my own wildest expectations. i thank many profe’s, T.A.’s, fellow students, parents, family, friends, and kind strangers that pointed me in the right direction.
however, with applying to grad school, full time load, working part time, and an internship - i really hope i haven’t bit off more than i can chew. that is, ive told myself (specifically this past Spring 13) that i would never overwhelm myself like that again, but i feel i might be doing that again this quarter. i just look at my syllabus for this Environmental Studies class and it looks like that takes the grand prize for an eloquent amount of work (field work + pop quizzes + 6 papers + surveying) in just one fucking class. i tell myself that i can pull off another productive quarter and succeed again, but who knows. i know i cant possibly be burning out this early in my college trajectory, but i hope i come across some good people who I can support and vice-versa, build that community in these tough times and classes coming up.
i also feel guilty since i will be taking a hiatus from an organizing space ive dedicated a good 2 years of my life to. i hope i dont regret stepping away and i pray they dont see me as a jerk/selfish fuck for stepping out while i try to figure my own stuff out. ill do my best to help when i can.
i have to remember to always take care of myself and remember to smile and appreciate the moments when someone takes 5 minutes to talk with me or invites to lunch or shares a laugh with me.
good luck to anyone starting a big part, continuing a significant part, or ending a phase in your life. paz y abrazos from east el lay.
22 9 / 2013
"You need to realize that the way you are feeling now will not be permanent."
20 7 / 2013
Well today was productive.
I volunteered at a leadership conference for my community organization that im interning at, East L.A. Community Corporation, they focus alot on community preservation, helping folks in the community buy homes, supporting tenants, informing them of their rights, and my personal assignment - fighting gentrification.
the leadership conference was mostly older folks, all Latina/o - mostly those who spoke Spanish. As I talked with these older people, these folks are those who you quickly dismiss on the bus or walking as those people who “are on their way out”. but they’re not, they have so much knowledge and are aware of community cultural wealth that exists in the neighborhood.
They also know wassup when it comes to inter-ethnic racial tensions, this one woman described her reactionary experiences in MacArthur Park where there’s a lot of Salvadoran-Mexican animosity and how they clashed alot when different ethnic groups would compete for space in order to sell their food (street vending) and make a living. If these people had been given their rights in their home countries or here in the U.S., the right to an education of literacy and writing with a diploma, they can straight up solve some of society’s problems. it just made me proud to come from where I am, Boyle Heights, and never to dismiss someone’s experiences, because chances are is that they can teach you street smarts and enlighten you on lived experiences that will effectively frame societal circumstances way better than your white professor did in that 3 hour lecture.