A Lesson

Back in February, I tried on a shirt at the Urban Outfitters in FiDi. It felt as though I was being hugged by the luscious, soft jersey knit fabric–at first, I dared not dream of taking it off. Yet I awoke to the reality of the price–around $45-50, a lot of money for a meezly little shirt. Additionally, it was snug–a little too snug. Usually mediums are foam fitting on me–but not this one. I needed a comfortable shirt, but refused to spend a lot on something I “wasn’t 100 with.” I put it back.

Flash forward two months later–April. On a quiet Thursday, I decide to go back. The weather is better, and I feel mightier, balanced, and reborn. Amazing how things as trivial as hair color impacts us, isn’t it?

Anyway…

I returned to Urban Outfitters and did something I, as a New Yorker, never usually do–I spoke with a person on the floor and asked for help. Now although I did not buy this shirt, I kept a close eye on it for a month. After I gave up, I was browsing for sales one day, and up it came–down to $29.99. I debated for about a week or so before deciding that this simply was an offer I couldn’t refuse. So on a quiet Thursday, I take an early lunch, and I go back. I’ve come prepared with a picture on my phone of the outfit online so the poor hipster I ask for help knows what I’m talking about.

“Oh yeah,” he responds. “Go up the stairs to the third floor, and you’ll find it in the corner in the sale area.”

Thank you!

I go upstairs, and turn into the sale area. I begin browsing the racks until I find the shirt. Before I arrived, I checked the reviews online one last time to make sure I didn’t fuck it up. One thing that all eight people agreed on–the shirt ran a size big. That meant that it’d be best to buy a small, which was a good thing–small and extra small were the only sizes that they had left. Another thing I noticed was that the price on my tag had again gone down–to $19.99.

To make sure that it was worth the buy, I tried it on one last time. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that it was also in a different color, but that was a good thing–it was million times more comfortable, form fitting, and just, well, me, then the last one had been, along I loved the way it looked and felt. After embarrassingly locking myself in the dressing room, and got out in the nick of time before the poor girl on duty went to check up. I thanked her, and went downstairs to pay.

February–Sized Medium, a bit big, overpriced

April–Sized Small after learning how the fit for the shirt works, perfect fit (and not too tight!), price is just right

The moral of the story is that the universe has perfect timing–just go with it. Whether it’s a stupid shirt, the love of your life, getting your license, going to school, buying a car, that iguana in Mexico that would dash around on the beach at the resort you stayed in seven years ago, or something else, let it go, and trust that all will work out in the right time. It might not be same guy–it could be an identical shirt or iguana–whatever. When your desire dawns on you again, have patience, and do your research. At last when the time is right, strike your match–and you’ll be amazed at how perfectly the flame takes, and know in your heart that waiting for the good and finally getting it was the best action to take.

The secret of getting things done is to act. Yet sometimes, doing nothing is when the flame ignites or something better crawls along.

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Where the Duck Have You Been?

Hey y’all! If anyone’s reading this, as Katya Zamolodchikova said last week– the bitch is back. Not just Katya, but anch’io, me too. Like Katya though, I’ve taken a break for awhile to focus and recover from a few things. My situation is quite different, but I took a break from screenwriting, posting on this blog, and just about writing in general outside of work to get things in focus.

Unfortunately, I haven’t been as happy this year so far as I was last year. I’ve been battling a seasonal depression that started as soon as winter did. For anyone who doesn’t know how the East Coast’s been fairing, let’s just say that it’s April and still snowing–I’m serious, we got bombarded this morning!

Along with the crappy weather, my life has been in a tough situation. Know that thing I was trying so hard to manifest last year? Guess what–it didn’t happen. In life, eventful moments usually come in threes–deaths, births, weddings, breakups, fast food outings, trips to Smashburger, etc. I was so pumped and ready for my big three mid-last year. I exited 2017 with two of them–new job and new home–but the third didn’t come around. It involves renewing contact with someone who’s been out of my life for years again, and it didn’t come through. I don’t know what’s worse–that this person most likely no longer has a cell phone, that last ditch efforts to reach them through their mother were in vain, or that he fudging got my message on their damn house phone and never contacted me back.

It didn’t even really hit me till about two months ago how much this has truly devastated me–so much so that I threw myself back into the tenth dimension of hell, aka online dating, to cope. Additionally, that also did not turn out as planned–not that I have faith in online dating anyway, but still🙂🙃

In life, we must accept that we only make things worse when we try to replace someone–even if they’ve been gone for six years. We’re all different and beautiful in our own way, and I’m finally, officially giving it up to God. I tried too hard to do an Anastasia and “Journey to the Past,” and then I attempted too desperately to meet someone new that I’ve had nothing but conflicting energy. I love New York City, but hate how everyone is constantly on their phones. It makes it nearly impossible to truly meet anyone! Yet, I must accept the inevitable, and by that, I mean throwing the white flag in on my date altogether. Good show, ol’man–good show. God, Jesus, the Universe, whichever bastard took away RuPaul’s Drag Race being free to watch on Amazon Prime–make my life better. Send me a miracle and big, positive change in my life. Please? Grazie Mille. Namaste and amen🙏💗❤️

By the way, things have sucked, yes, but not everything has been bad. Here’s some good news:

  • I worked my first huge event at work last month, and it was awesome. I can’t wait to do it all again next year, and all inside the fanciest hotel I’ve ever been in! It’s like Art Deco meets the Palace of Versailles!
  • You may not be able to tell from here, but my writing has vastly improved, and gets stronger each day.
  • My sister and I are going to San Francisco in late May.
  • One of my best friends gave me a framed photo that she designed as one of my Christmas gifts, and I cried tears of joy–I’m always blah, and am realizing that I’m afraid of everything because of the abuse I endured as a kid in a backward Catholic school where I was discriminated against for my body image and ethnic origins. I didn’t belong to the ethnic group where I went to school for nine years, and was always singled out for it. I couldn’t even say I’d pass for it, since my naturally dark hair gave me away. This is why I love being in diverse places, like my high school alma mater (also a Catholic school, but more liberal and open minded), my university alma mater (where I also work), and New York City so much. In fact, I get more aggravated by the businessmen on the Metro North going home then wannabe artists on the subway (some of them are awesome!). So this is a big deal for me!
  • I officially start classes for my Master’s degree in May two days after my sister and I get back from San Fran.
  • I’m learning how to read auras–this is fun!
  • I took advantage of a great sale at Wayfair and bought a new bed with lots of storage. My new room is small, and I lost my desk and bookshelf, so the fact that I can now stack things under my bed helps a lot!
  • I’m blonde again😍😭💁‍♀️I know hair color isn’t supposed to make a difference and blah, blah, blah, but I’ve never felt myself with any other color as I do this one.
  • Most importantly, I started groundwork about a month ago on my novel–no, not one of those side projects that I dabble with that never get done, I mean the novel, the one that is making me famous as soon as I publish it. It’s nowhere near completion, but Chapter 4 is a good start. And I’m only letting my mentors and closest friends see it when ready–call me paranoid, but I don’t want to post publicly about it until it’s copyrighted and out there.

So that’s about it for now. Namaste everyone–please wish me luck, I truly need it! I’ve missed writing on this, and wish you happy reading. Love you all💗❤️

By the way…

The featured image is a meme I made going to a conference downtown💁‍♀️I past this building when I got off the subway, and couldn’t resist.

Awake

I am finally learning the difference as to why

we are led to paradise and astray by people’s

stories, who are they, and where they came. A wise

person at last explained it all, telling

me this–Victims can be good or

evil. Whether you are Sissi or Stalin, we

have all been there–outcast,

used up, misunderstood.

Something is always amiss–I

am awake.

– Julia St. Clair, © 2018, 8:08 p.m.

Isabel of Portugal, Day 1 — Mamae

In this expert from one of the several projects I am currently working on, Isabel of Portugal reflects on her late mother, Maria of Aragon, and the impact that her parent’s loving marriage had on her and her siblings.

“I miss Mama.”

Little Henrique cries almost every night since she passed. Mamae. The queen whom birthed us. Mamae. The woman who raised us. Mamae–the wife who advised her husband, the mother who sought equal education for their children, regardless of gender. Mamae–the first of the last surviving daughters of Isabel and Fernando to follow their mother to the grave.

Maria of Aragon was the fifth child and third daughter of those great rulers of Spain. Their union united the Kingdoms of Castile and Aragon, and she and her siblings were living embodiments of that merger. Despite growing up in the shadow of her prettier sisters and sole surviving brother, they all adored Mamae, and she felt the same way. That love would be tested by the bonds of time, fate, and tragedy, as two of Mamae’s beloved siblings, Juan and Isabel, would beat their parents to the grave, and their children with them. These tragedies set off the power keg between my grandfather and Philip of Habsburg, my aunt, Queen Juana’s, husband that would drive the formidable Catholic queen into an early grave. While one might not know how my unbalanced, foolish aunt might have fight, I know for a fact that Mamae and her youngest sister, England’s Queen Catherine, were heartbroken.

The world forgets about this daughter of Spain, but the Aviz family and Portugal do not. Mamae was the perfect woman, wife, mother, and queen to Papa and me. Elegant, radiant, calm, composes, patient–the exact opposite of the madness that haunts Queen Juana. Although the marriage was arranged by politics rather than personal choice and a previous engagement was called off, Papa and Mamae ultimately married, producing an army of children started by my brother, Joao, and I. I am the second child and eldest daughter–therefore, when Mamae died, it fell upon me to assume her queenly duties and serve as Father’s foremost companion and advisor until he takes another bride. But poor Papa cannot fathom that at the moment, for he continues to reel everyday from the consequences of having lost the love of his life.

Although they married to maintain alliance in all the kingdoms held within the Iberian peninsula, my parents fell in love, deep, passionate love. This love bonded them forever to one another, and conceived myself and all of my siblings in it. Mamae bore 10 of us–Joao, myself, Beatriz, Luis, Fernando, Afonso, Henrique, Maria, Duarte, and Antonio. Out of the 10 who were born, 8 of us survived, as the unfortunate babies Maria and Antonio died at birth. This was a huge accomplishment for Mamae, Having provided Portugal with an heir and many spares was the ultimate success for Mamae, who, like Queen Juana, was viewed as the paragon of fertility. Sadly, their childbearing was the polar opposite of Catalina, Queen of England, who bore 6 children, most of them stillborn or dying in infancy. Only one, a girl, my cousin, Mary, survived past birth and the basic infant months. How terrifying it must be to bury a child! My parents went through it twice, the last one having led my beautiful mother to her early grave. I, therefore, cannot think of Tia Catalina or her husband’s anguish, and I pray to never suffer as such.

  • Julia St. Clair© 2017

    *Image is of Blanca Suarez as Isabel de Portugal in TVE’s Carols, Rey Emperador

“Set in Our Ways” – How Ambitious People Are Different From Everyday Folk and Why We’re “Better”

“To thy own self be true.” No one puts it better than Polonius [from Hamlet]. Many like to tag and quote this piece, but few seem to realize its true value more then those who are ambitious. Ambitious people are different from ordinary folk; they’re not content with staying in the same place, doing the same thing, maintaining the same habits their whole lives. They don’t lie about everyday wining and complaining about their ho-drum lives; they take action. They know what they want, and they go for it; they don’t let anyone or anything stand in their way. They fall off the horse and leap back on, taking off faster and better than before.

Being ambitious takes has taken me far in life; I graduated summa cum laude with my bachelor’s and landed a full-time job at my alma mata ultilizing the thing I love most, writing. I wanted to work in Manhattan, and my ambitious heart helped get me there. I enjoy my 45-60 minutes to and from work everyday via subway and the Metro North because I am where I love most — la citta. Ambition and maintaining my pride also helped me get rid of fake friends and realize and hold onto my true ones. It showed me also that most of us have the virtue of success in common, some moving faster than others, some in different career fields, and scattered throughout most of our locations. If there’s one thing most of us have in common, it’s pride.

Yet not everyone has that. Some people are content staying home all day doing nothing. Some would prefer the solitude of the inland more than the hustle and bustle of the big city. Sometimes they never get the passion or drive to make something of themselves and leave their ho-drum lives. In some cases, they’re happy staying stuck with they are forever, or making themselves get stuck someplace us. These are the everyday folk; they’re much different than us. That doesn’t make them any worse or better; we’re just different. At least ambitious folk recognize the difference and respect that; everyday folk do not.

“Regular” people don’t view our ambition as a driving point. They label it as “dreaming” and “living in ‘fantasy land.'” They try to discourage and taunt us, saying that we’re being “too thick headed” and are “set in our ways.” To them, we’re haughty, rude beings who think we’re better than everyone else. They don’t view our differences as a good thing; they view us as “bad, picky people who they need to stay far away from.” However, the only “bad, picky people” are the regular folk themselves, and it’s simply for thinking this way, and most of the time, they aren’t even bad people; they just are “set in their ways” of defining what we should do to “settle” and “remain calm.” Yet they’re not hurting us — they’re hurting themselves by putting slits into the belt that unites us in our relationships.

A perfect example is myself — I am a ambitious, driven woman in her 20s. Most of my friends are successful men and women in their 20s and 30s. Some are ambitious, others are not. One of the “everyday folk” and I are at odds, and now I may be on the outs with another one. One views me as “set in my ways,” and I won’t argue her about that; the other is glimpsing into the same. Ma perche — why? Perche — because — I refuse to settle in “love.” O Cesar o nothing — its Caesar or nothing; I’d rather never marry before I compromise my soul and my life for settling for second rate men. But I know it won’t come to that; true love will find me again, and I’ll be with my “Caesar” in no time once I let go and open my heart and mind to who’s out there, what I want, and most of all, what God/the universe thinks and knows is in store for me.

Long story short, I’ve had encounters with friends of friends, both in person and online. Those people are male, and they are romantically interested in me. I, however, have and show no interest in them. They are not on my level; boring, both physically and internally unattractive everyday men who have no ambition or motive in life besides merely getting by. You’d get more laughter from a raindrop then these fellows. I’m not interested — don’t ask me why, I am not. Actually, they should know that I’m not because I both kindly and frustratingly asked time and time again not to be set up with people and not to pressure me into situations with men I don’t want. Sadly, they don’t get it; they just don’t understand. They criticize me, my hopes, my ambition, my dreams; they don’t understand or sympathize with how far dreams can really go. They’re not bad people; they’re wonderful. We’re just stuck in different mindsets, and I have, and show, no shame in living in mine. Time is something precious that we can never get back; why waste it with the wrong one(s) who we already know that we’ll never be attracted to and some whom we’re physically and emotionally repulsed by, just all out creeps. The best part of all, what some “everyday folk” fail to understand is that they are not one to judge us; some are where they are because of their success and pride in certain areas, especially with guy/romantic partners. So why pressure me into being with men as dry as toast when you have handsome/beautiful, successful, and, for some, ambitious partners yourselves? Therefore, they have no right to judge.

The best part of it all is that these everyday folk view themselves as “normal” and us as “different” and “strange,” and they are wrong in doing so. Yet there is no such thing as “normal;” that is a conception in reality that doesn’t exist. This is what makes ambitious people better; we see and share the comparisons, contrasts, and joys and embrace in it. In fact, these are our playgrounds. They share the joy in being different and strange as we are, too; they’re just so stubborn to realize it. And how joyous and ironic it is in life that the ones who preach normalcy are the least “regular” of them all.

Namaste, everyone. Have a Happy Wednesday and get home safe! 🙂

 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Let us always meet each other with smile, for the smile is the beginning of love. - Mother Teresa

Separate Ways

Two little girls sit one by one, two

little girls; only one is the star. A star

of a show of her brand new life, while

little one falls on her knee and cries. Now

she climbs, she rumbles, getting herself

back up. As she rises, that little one comes

tumbling down. And like God and Adam, they

reach their chubby little fingers towards each

other, one to help the other up, until both little

cherubs like Zeus in Alexandria are standing

tall. But soon the path widens, and one little

girl with indifference cries, while the other

packs up, says her goodbye. “Fare thee well,

sweet sister, fare thee well,” she replies. “We

are on the same journey, but different roads. We’ll

meet again, as time due flies.”

  • Julia St. Clair, ©2017, 4:40 p.m.

Growing Apart

Day by day, hour by hour. Time

sits patiently yet races like a

thoroughbred all at once. And our

lives slip from each other, growing apart.

Single vs. married, homeowner vs. wanderlust,

Homemaker vs. writer, Settled vs. figuring out,

 

You pressure me so — to swallow my pride, settle

for less. How many years have our lives intertwined

and you still think I must accept second best? You

advise not to look at appearances, but your spouse is Khal

Drogo, so from experience you cannot speak. For

you above all know though the spirit is willing, my

thirst for pure flesh is weak. I lost myself, surrendered

all pride for a man who I loved years ago — why force

what isn’t there with losers and sigh?

 

And there it is again, you chastise me. But sorella mia,

do you remember not what I told you year ago? Don’t

set me up nor force me to settle; do not stir the pot,

make haste not to break the kettle.

Don’t you see I am a bird who refuses to be

caged? And yet you make me feel guilty for being

true to myself, day by day. So I accept this distance,

this growing apart. We will always have each other,

we’re just at different points in our lives. We possess

opposing characteristics, conflicting outlooks, different

hearts.

  • Julia St. Clair, ©2017, 1:09 p.m.