Despite some really good bonds I have had with friends over the years, I am actually pretty secretive about my current and past life. I tend to only mention things on a need to know basis. It falls into my social awkwardness. So when I was tagged on instagram this morning, I thought that this would make a good blog post. (Since I am on an IG break anyway.) And although I have done these in the past, I thought I would make a real effort to include things that few know about me. Hopefully some might find interesting... so ready! set! go!
1. I am a second generation Italian American. Some people know about my Italian heritage, but what they don't know is when my family migrated here. They came in the 1920s. My grandmother was 8 when her family came to America. My grandfather was 3.
2. Most of my ideas come to me when I am in the shower. I am so blessed to now have a water proof phone because I tend to grab it whilst soaking wet and leave myself little voice notes to try and remember things.
3. I was reading Agatha Christie books in the second grade. I first picked one up when my mother left, and I urged my grandparents to buy me five more books to read that summer.
4. ADHD is the reason why my spelling and grammar is sometimes (ok a lot) terrible. I think faster than I can type. By like... a lot. I also have to blurt things out at people during conversations as if I don't, I will forget what I had to say because my mind just keeps working. It never stops.
5. I was recently diagnosed with social anxiety which probably doesn't come as a huge surprise to anyone. Haha.. but the surprise part is the fact that I actually got into therapy and am working on it. I was also diagnosed with PTSD and moderate depression which are linked to the passing of my father. I am not on Rx medications for it at this time, although I am open to the dialogue in the future. Right now I am doing talk therapy one on one and group grief consoling online. In addition to a bit of alternative medicine through meditation and yoga.
6. The first thing I ever said to my husband was "shutup". Seriously... that was our magic. He left a comment on a social media post I had made talking about Japanese culture and Anime. His words annoyed me, I went right to his private messages and said "Shutup!". Here we are 7 years later. Have you seen our adorable baby girl Poppy Marie?
7. I don't kill spiders. Some might actually know I don't kill spiders. But I don't talk about the reason why. My mother had 4 children. Two of which had passed away. My oldest sister died before I was born at the age of 4. And my mother used to tell me Spiders were my sister's favorite thing in the world. She couldn't say spiders, so she called them "yiders". And that whenever I saw a spider, it was my sister watching over me. Amazingly enough, 30 years later I see spiders and wonder if Amber is there. This is one of the odd spiritual connections I have held on to over the years.
8. I sometimes..... sometimes think a higher power gave me three extra days with my father. I had a blog post about this before, but then it got deleted when I redid my blog. I actually plan on rewriting it along with some fascinating information I learned about the "rally".
9. I google everything and I do it well. It makes me a bit of a know it all because of all the weird random facts that I know. In arguments you will often hear me say the phrase "google it". Yeah, I'm that gal. Sigh... sorry.
10. I cry a lot. A LOT. I would say at least once a day is not an overstatement. I am working on my triggers, and I do know a lot of them. But sadly knowing them doesn't help stopping them. I joked with my therapist "but what do you do when breathing is your trigger". I joke, but seriously.. a lot of things in my every day life causes me to break down. And I know this is part of my PTSD. But it's been hard to accept. I went from 0 to 100. Being an unemotional person to wearing it all out there on my sleeve.
11. I am very anti-smoking. I do not like being around people who smoke cigarettes and in summer 2016 I announced that I would no long allow smoking at my shoots. I have stuck to my guns. Also, I have encouraged and helped 27 people quit smoking over the past two years. If you are reading this and thinking about quitting, email me! I would love to help you track down resources in your area aide you in your smoke free journey. But I am pro marijuana. Even in smoke form. It doesn't contain all the deadly chemicals that cigarettes do and has endless health benefits.
12. I have synesthesia! You're probably like what in the heck is that? In simple terms...I can hear colors. Or when I hear things, they have colors and shapes. Certain sounds in daily life trigger this as well as music. If you've never heard of synesthesia, it's worth a google. Some people view their synesthesia as a handicap. Where as I see it as tool to inspire my creativity.
13. I enjoy life a lot more at 35 than I did at 25. I actually don't mind aging. The only thing I don't like is knowing I will only have so much time on this Earth. There are a lot of things I still want to see and do. But for now, I am loving my 30s.
14. I have been playing World of Warcraft since 2010. I not only enjoy the regular game play, but I have several toons on RP servers. Each of my characters have a deep back story and personality of their own. Dorky, I know. But I love it. I play both horde and alliance and have maxed toons on both factions. I main horde and enjoy pvp / wpvp. I will never roll a human race. Playing a human is so boring and uncreative in my honest opinion.
15. In September 2018 I will have one daughter starting college, and another starting pre-k. If that isn't a terrifying thought, I don't know what is.
16. I secretly enjoy singing country music. And I am actually pretty good at it! I don't know why I can't hold a tune in any other genre. But throw on some brooks and dunn... well I am going to town!
17. I was a very much science dork as a child. I had a microscope and would constantly take samples of things like water from a lake, insect wings, dust etc... oh and I once even paid my friend to pee in a cup to investigate that under the microscope. Looking back I could have just peed in the cup myself, but that would have been too easy. Sometimes the lake water samples I brought home contained mosquito larva. They would hatch out and bite us in our sleep. I must have really drove my dad and sister crazy.
18. My sarcasm and humor get me in trouble sometimes. Same with my over honesty and unwanted opinions. I guess this falls into my social awkwardness. I could be a lot to handle when you're first getting to know me.
19. Although I don't think I will ever get back into it, I really miss working with animals. My dad was a vet tech and I fell in love with it. I got to stand in and watch surgeries on dogs and cats as young as six years old. The experience also taught me a lot about life and death. And how animals to some were as important as people. Like they were a part of their family. Fun fact... My first job outside my dad's vets office was at a kennel in Utah called "Cowboy Kennels". I lasted 3 whole days.
20. I still love doula work, but don't ever think it will be a regular part of my life. I think I would maybe want to take on one client a year to go with my birth photography projects because I love bringing new life into this world. However, besides my photography, I think my passion in life is helping people and their families prepare for end of life with hospice and grief support. I think I have been able to help others in what is my opinion to be the worst thing we will ever have to go through.
21. As my Midwest move inches closer, I am already thinking about what's next. I want to let Poppy-Marie and the boys experience a childhood with a big family, especially their grandparents. But it will not be my permanent home. Eventually I would like to end up in California. I want a tiny home and minimalist lifestyle by the beach. Close enough to Utah so I can take winter vacations to have some fun in the snow.
22. I was married before. For almost 11 years. I got married very young at the age of 18. We got divorced and are on great terms. You could even say we are friends. We work together and co-parent. Admittedly it wasn't always easy, but we are in a good place now. We do most holidays together as one big family unit.
23. My Pennsylvania friends call me Mags. And I um... kinda hate it. I don't know who started it, or why... but I never felt like it was me. Mags? Who is that? My childhood friends call me Margaret, Momo, or Maggie. Thinking about it now it's probably a deeper reason why I have never really felt at home or welcome here.
24. I got to see three front row broadway musicals in my lifetime and they were all before I turned 7 years old. I saw Starlight Express in 1987 or 1988. I really really wish I was older. I don't remember much but really cool lights and costumes. Plus they were on rollar skates! I saw The Secret Garden, in 1991 and CATS in 1992. I had NO idea the value of front row broadway seats. Back then they went for $500 - $800 dollars depending on the show. Now they can be well over $1k! We got to go because a client at my dad's job would give him 2 tickets as a tip when he would board her two poodles whilst when she went on her London vacations. I don't know what she did for a living, but a lot of clients who went to my dads were rich.
25. I love music. I know, who doesn't? But I mean I REALLY love music. Spotify say I listen on average 8 hours a day. That is kinda insane. And despite my love for music, I don't listen to the radio. Call me a hipster, but I just can't do it. Yucky.
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I get a little tired of people who assume that just because you have kids, you are automatically completely uncool, and that all your time is spent wiping babies from head to toe, giving spit baths, criticizing their every move, volunteering for PTA, blogging in your spare time, clipping coupons before crock potting a pot roast, ironing the clothes, bleaching the whites, mopping the floors, harvesting your eggs, sewing for your etsy shop, scrapbooking the little things, taking pictures of everything they do, saving for college, reading Dr. Suess, socializing at the bus stop, sweeping the floor, laughing over coffee with your jogging stroller, wearing your birkenstocks and listening to Baby Einstein.
Just because I DO THESE THINGS OCCASIONALLY.
Does not mean for one second that sometimes I don’t just want to be a kick ass girl with streaks in her hair, a ring in her nose, a tattoo on her arm, concert tickets in her purse, vodka in her fridge, a leather mini-skirt in her closet, her best single friends and a standing reservation for Las Vegas once a year with a don’t ask don’t tell policy, and the desire to just once be seen as more than the mother of 5 kids. Sometimes I just want to be seen as a “Maggie”. A “Maggie” with an extremely adorable set of children… (I joke, but sometimes it's hard to over come labels. )
Married + 5 Children
Born in New York
Living in Chicago Land
Italian + Mexican American household
Published Photographer + Artist
Lung Cancer Activist + Advocate
Social Media Enthusiast
Openly in Grief Therapy
Believes in Freedom Of Religion
Studied Animal Science
Sand Cloud Ambassador
Backpacking + Hiking
Crystals + Meditation + Yoga
Writing + Scrapbooking + Blogging
Foodie + Cooking + Banking
Tropical Fish Keeping
Coffee + Coffee Shops
Travel + Road trips
Okkervil River + Good indie bands