Brown woman rage and a heart attack: the month of June

Earlier I was thinking this month had been a set back. But then I reassessed. I feel happy to be alive and grateful for my mom, my dad and my siblings. I reaffirmed my love for my husband and my babies.

I wasn't going to share this publicly because I am still in denial but the second week of June of this year I had a heart attack. WHAT? Your only 27! How can that happen? 

Well, it did and I couldn't believe it myself. I was in the hospital, and when I was released I had a heart monitor that was strapped onto my chest, I had to wear it for 2 days. The attack was stressed induced and I also have a long family history of heart problems. I know it wasn't my time because I didn't want it to be and I was reminded of the power of love and the strength of motherhood. 

When I came home I rested and had to work the next day. I also started a second job a week after. There are many other things that have happened in between, bills to get paid, engine to be fixed, walks to and from work, Trax rides but over all I've been maintaining my positivity. (Well except when I blew up on Issaac and threw a cereal box that sprayed everywhere the other night.) 

OH OH! Gotta brag:  I also lost 7 pounds without trying.

I'm happy to say that being a woman of color I know I can endure much and will continue to endure more. I grew thick skin when I was young.

This month has been hard but I know I have been through worse 

Because I choose to remember my blessings I wanted to openly thank my friend Chantilly Patiño for posting about the Un-Fair Campaign.

Check out the posts and video I listed below. 

I felt this genuine hope in honest conversations on the effects of racism in the lives or real human beings. Even though some may feel I'm exaggerating or I need to get over the race talk. It's something that causes physical stress on my body and heart. It's something that affects my children, my family, my friends and I will not drop it. 

I also choose not to let it affect my professional life. By understanding systems of oppression I am choosing to have the power to navigate them and protect myself and my loved ones. Why wouldn't I choose to know where the pits are so I can avoid them?

Today, I was accused of being a reverse racist (for posting about the un-fair campaign) which was the cherry on top of my cake of crappiness this month. I usually ignore these types of misguided, desperate attacks but I had an "espinita que me queria sacar" (a pea in my shoe) and I went for it. After I was portrayed as an angry, irrational brown woman, which I'm used to hearing when these discussions start going south for people... this is one subject I've studied and experienced enough to hold my ground. I hadn't done this in a long time and I felt that it was empowering and helped me learn so I decided to write it down. Thanks A, for walking next to me on that one ;-) And thanks for helping me stay sane!

Ashley and Lili thanks to you too for listening to me! And my sister, Elena, you don't know what strength it gives me to have you close. Love y'all.

I know bad days, weeks, months, years happen and I am happy for them because they help me grow and appreciate my life.

I hung out with my mom a lot more this month. We had a beautiful evening private party for her. It was French style, lol: at least we tried cause my mom's a traveler and that's one of her favorite places. I love her, and am so proud of her accomplishments. 

Next week my dad is coming for the holiday and I can't wait to give him un abrazo! We missed him for Father's Day cause he was being fatherly, he never rest :)

This month I was also so happy to see pictures and updates from one of my great friends Jodi. She just had her second child, a beautiful baby girl. In August I get to photograph them while they are down in Utah visiting! 

I got to hang out with my sister several times. I experienced my first community newsroom. We heard some promising news for the Venceremos student newspaper. I filmed and photographed another quince, did the videography for Elevated Elements launch party, the Daddy Daughter ball and had a month full of photo shoots, work and learning.

My backyard garden is amazing! Our community garden plot at Jackson elementary is thriving. I am so proud of our little family for overcoming incredible hardship and I can't wait to take on another year of life. My birthday is in 10 days and I'm going all out! 

Thank you heavenly mother and father for the strength you flow into my heart. Gotta keep it moving! 

Here are some more adventures:

Garden at Jackson Elementary :) 

Gas bill we forgot about :-/

The view when I'm walking to my car from work. I never realized you could see the whole city from President's Circle!

With Sonyia getting my car to start! Lol.

 Daily reminder! My living room wall :)

Elevated Elements Launch Party!

Stuck on the side of the freeway for the second time in a month, sucked! :-) 

BUT nothing can bring this girl down ;-)

Un-Fair Campaign Links: 

From Spillerina: 


Flor Olivo said…
From my FB wall: I like to look back on these and smile. Thank you family and friends.

Leimomi Cronin Hey lady, i am happy that you are feeling better. You are definatley an inspiration to women and how you always keep it movin and always in a positive direction. You are an outstanding wonderful chica. I am so happy that I know you, it makes me happy that i have people in my life like you- my friend garden is lucky!!! Pushin thru all the weeds :) You are amazing!!!!! :) hugs - now we definatley need to make time for a date LOL sheesh woman! P.s. I expect you to come to zumba with me and your sis - :) hugs
11 hours ago · Unlike · 1

Alissa Skinner ♥
10 hours ago · Unlike · 1

Alicia Rodriguez Wow friend...I would have never guessed a heart attack. Glad you are feeling better
6 hours ago via mobile · Unlike · 1

Alicia Rodriguez Let me start by saying my service sucks, cell does a force close and sends incomplete messages somehow! Anyway, love you tons and thank you for sharing something so personal and scary. You are a badass person and can get through anything!

6 hours ago via mobile · Unlike · 1
Richard Sigala Flor, you're not only an inspiration to women, but to me and the all people going through the struggle right now. I respect your dedication, hustle & grind mentality, and your strength to persevere in the face of adversity. Keep up the the great work and don't let the detractors stop you from achieving your goals and keep fighting the good fight for the People. With much respect & admiration -R.J. Sigala
40 minutes ago · Unlike · 1
thepascuas said…
I was sad when i read this. I am so glad you are okay, you have always been a strong woman ! Please take things easy. I love ya
Glenn Robinson said…
Glad you're feeling better Florecita. Did you mention what stress caused the heart attack in a previous blog, or is it something you didn't want to make public?
melanie said…
Wow, just wow! I hope that you are managing your stress. Just another reminder to everyone that we need to think of ways to manage our stress and not let all that negativity out there in the world bring us down. Take care of yourself!
Liliana M said…
I just read this! and You don't know how proud of you & everything you do. I'm so glad to have you as a friend and know someone who is so strong and wonderful. Remember to take breaks in between and that there's a lot of people who love you!!! ;D
D. on the Spot said…
Flor!!!! Wow, YOu been through so much in the past month, all i can say is I admire your strength, thank you for sharing....i hadn't been around for a minute. But i am happy you are doing better. May God bless you and keep giving you the strength you need to keep changing the world for the better!
Flor Olivo said…
More notes from FB I want to save :)

Di Filizola-Abalos Flor you'd better take good care -- the world needs more people like you. I can't tell how much I admire you!
June 30 at 6:07pm via mobile · Unlike · 2

Chantilly Patiño Omg amiga, you are breaking my heart! ♥ I'm so sorry for the month you've had and at the same time, I know how humble and grateful we are in those moments and I would say that you are very blessed to have had such an experience that could allow you to reflect on all that you have, despite what you're still working for. Please take care of yourself and yes, stay strong! You have an amazing heart and mind that cannot be replaced and would be missed so, so much!

Saying a little prayer for you and thinking of you this weekend. Happy early birthday! Make it a good one hermana and enjoy the time with your familia. They are the reason we keep on breathing. ♥ Lily's birthday is July 3rd...I'll eat a slice of cake for you. :)

Cuídate! ♥
June 30 at 7:48pm · Unlike · 1

Tara Prater Castillo Wanted to chime in and let ya know I'm thinking of you and I hope you are feeling better. You are such a strong and amazing woman! ♥
June 30 at 8:47pm · Unlike · 2

Linda Fonseca Perez well what doesn't kill you will only make you stronger! take care of yourself, the kids need you healthy and strong and if I can ever help with anything don't hesitate to ask!
Flor, I'm in shock. I'm praying for your continued recovery and hope that you're finding the strength and focus to mind the priorities and let the inconsequential fall by. You've been an inspiration to me from day one, young lady. A big hug to you and your beautiful family.

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