Why Alexandria will Speak Spanish & My Faith in Humanity is Restored.

The last 5 days have been a crazy whirlwind of excitement. Messages, Social Media Notifications, Article after Article linking back to this blog, showing off my baby girl. I’m still at awe at how many people are interested in something so simple… a birthday message for a man who makes our lives better every single day. But, there are always those people who try to spoil something sweet. For every 5 “aww”s and “she’s so cute”s, there’s a rude, obnoxious comment.  The most hysterical one so far? “This is America, she should be saying Dad” comments.

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Listen people, if you feel this way, you should just stop reading now. I’m over it. I’m done. If you want to live in a world with no culture, no diversity and a lack of tradition that’s fine by me… here, let me direct you to a nice boulder somewhere for which you can build a home and a community under. You and your closed minded buddies can all just go live there, under that rock, where you’ve probably been for the last 15 years or so. And there, you all can have meetings and rallies and make signs, and keep your bigotry and hate to yourselves.

Because after all, that’s what you’re trying to promote right? People staying to themselves, people staying with their own kind. Because I have some news that may be quite shocking to you… something that I know might shatter your whole world to have to come to terms with: The Hispanic Culture isn’t going anywhere.

Now, people who know me personally, know my parents are both American. I’m pretty sure my Dad is the only White person left in Hialeah (<— there’s a link there for you that aren’t familiar with this little Cuban Sanctuary). When I was 8, my mom married a Cuban man, and my introduction to the Latin world began.  I suddenly gained an Abuela & an Abuelo. I learned that instead of just Christmas Morning we now have Noche Buena and the holiday was suddenly extended an extra day. And, primarily due to my nosiness and need to be in everyone’s business, I began learning Spanish. I may not have been born into the Hispanic Community, but I grew up immersed in it. In college at the University of Florida, I actually worked at a restaurant called Virtually Cuban.  My friends would joke with me CONSTANTLY that it fit me perfectly because that’s exactly what I was.

If it wasn’t already obvious, Javy is Colombian. One of the original reasons the video was uploaded was because I knew his family all over the world, who can’t live here with us, would like to see how much she loves her Papi. When the time comes for Alexandria to travel to Colombia, or Spain, you better believe I want her to be able to communicate with her family. Her Colombian Culture will ALWAYS be important, it has been since birth.

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And it will be, for the rest of her life.

For ALWAYS.

I was lucky enough to grow up in a community in South Florida where I had friends who were from all over the world. I joke all the time that our group of friends is a branch meeting of the United Nations: Cuba, Colombia, Venezuela, England, China, the Philippines, Argentina, Nigeria… So, to play devils advocate, I can totally understand how someones fear of another culture could push them to hate. People are always scared of what they don’t know, it’s human nature. It’s part of our will to survive. Early Man would come across something they’ve never seen before and run from it – because that was safest. But in today’s world, where we’re not hunting and gathering to survive, this fear should be replaced with curiosity.

Instead of shying away from all that is unknown, why not try to understand? Why not try to learn? Why not try to adapt? You don’t think most of the people who come to this country try REALLY hard to assimilate into American Culture? Most learn English. I have multiple children in my class who have only been in this country for a year or so, and are working so hard to learn the language. It’s all about adapting to your environment.

Because unfortunately, if you don’t, you’re going to be all by yourself in that little town under the rock. In California, it is projected that Hispanics will be the new majority in 2014. And in the United States, Hispanic People will probably be the majority in 2043. Pretty soon, you’re going to have a Nation full of bilingual and multilingual individuals, and you’re going to be all by your lonesome.

The best part about all of this? My faith in humanity was restored yesterday. While the negative comments were flooding in, I tried my hardest to ignore them but they bothered me. Some were downright hilarious, like how Alex should be in Speech Therapy… seriously guys, she’s 27 months old. Your Speech Therapist License should be evaluated. But I digress.

As the negative comments came in, the internet fought back. Person after Person downvoted, or responded to the comments standing up for my little girl. Supporting our decision to raise her bilingual, and encourage further cultural diversity in the world. People lashed out about their ignorance. Users were forced to continuously defend themselves from their lonely hatefilled island they had put themselves on. Most erased their comments or just gave up. But knowing that so many people had our backs and we didn’t have to respond meant the world to me. And it will mean the world to Alexandria when she’s old enough to understand.

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Calling all Working Moms: Are you Offended?

Let’s face it. In the technological world of today – it’s easy to find people you can relate to, and just as easy to find people that irk you to the core of your soul. Normally for me, it’s Black & White. Either I agree, or I don’t.But as a work

ing mom, this whole Marissa Mayer Fortune Magazine Cover Scandal has me a little confused about where I stand. Go ahead and click the link to catch up, I’ll wait… (CLIFFNOTES: Marissa Mayer, new CEO of Yahoo! graces the cover of Fortune’s “Most Powerful Women” issue. Problem: She’s not pictured pregnant, which she was until Sunday September 30. Reason: She declined to be photographed.)

My first instinct was to turn up my nose and write this chick off. How is she so caught up in her “position” and so busy on her high horse that she refused to appear on the cover of this special issue HONORING her??? Or is it that she’s embarrassed that she’s pregnant? If you’re pregnant show it off – Fuck the world!! Right? That’s what we all do and say right? Ehh, maybe not. If I were newly named the 14th Most Powerful Woman in Business, and I just so happened to be 9 months pregnant, what would I do?

Realistically, you better believe I didn’t wanna be photographed when I was 9 Months pregnant. Especially not to be plastered all over the internet for people to gawk at. Aside from being an emotional mess raving bitch while pregnant, I just really didn’t feel like myself. I mean, what’s more draining & time consuming that literally CREATING A HUMAN BEING. I imagine being the CEO of a global corporation could be pretty damn time consuming as well, don’t you think?

Which leads me to my next point. Here is a lady, who has worked extremely hard in her life to have earned the nod as one of the most powerful women in business. Someone who has obviously put her career first for most of her life, is being immortalized and recognized for her achievements on the COVER of a special section of FORTUNE MAGAZINE. You’d want to look as fabulous as ever, no? Some argue being pregnant does make you look fabulous. I know people who say pregnancy is a beautiful thing that should be embraced with open arms and flowers and rainbows and carebears and hugs and shit. This is all fine and dandy for you lucky girls, but for some of us this just isn’t reality. Suddenly you question every bit of confidence you’ve ever had. You second guess every decision you make. You worry about EVERYTHING. So explain to me why the HELL the youngest, most powerful woman in Business would want ANYONE in the world to see her like this?

Exactly.

Let’s Say Marissa Mayer did pose pregnant. Instead of “Mommy Blogs” discussing how she was “Dissing Mommyhood” – business blogs would be talking about whether or not it was the right move for her career. Yes it would’ve been a nice gesture for working Mom’s everywhere. Yes, it might’ve even won her some brownie points with Moms around the world, but she would no longer be Marissa Mayer, google exec turned Yahoo! CEO. No matter how powerful, cut throat or genius you are – you will always be the lady who appeared pregnant on the cover of Fortune. You’re always the lady with the baby. The lady who’s so tired, exhausted, miserable & hormonal because well, fuck, she’s carrying around another person INSIDE OF HER.

I’d be a damn liar if I didn’t say I was guilty of thinking like this myself! When I was pregnant with Alex, I hid it from everyone at work for almost 4 months. A lot of people around me would ask me why and tell me that times have changed and people are way more accepting nowadays of working women with families. Truth was – it was total bullshit. When I came back from Maternity Leave – all my assignments changed to much less exciting projects. I got “accidentally” left off e-mails about work events after hours. I eventually quit because I felt like I wasn’t being given a fair chance to prove my capabilities. Might’ve all been in my head – probably wasn’t – but it definitely changed the way I related my career with my family. Put it this way – when it was time for me to go on job interviews to restart my career, I didn’t mention my daughter. I didn’t want anyone to think she would get in the way of my career.

It’s a sad thing when women are nervous about sharing their motherhood with the world. It’s a damn shame that women have to hide the fact that their pregnant. It’s a fucking TRAGEDY that women have to “work from home” during their Maternity Leave (as Marissa Mayer says she will).

So yes – it’s a huge opportunity missed. A TREMENDOUS opportunity missed to start changing that “stigma” associated with being a working mom. I am a BETTER employee because I multi-task. I am a BETTER employee because I now have a family to provide for. I may not be IN THE OFFICE every once in a while because my kid is sick, but you better believe I will make sure my responsibilities are taken care of. Whether that means bring work home, stay up late, wake up early – I will never let having a career get in the way of me BEING A MOM.

It WILL start to change. Someone will take those opportunities and capitalize on their powerful positions – eventually. Let’s just hope its before my daughter grows up and has to deal with the same issues.

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So – are you offended that homegirl didn’t pose pregnant for the Fortune Magazine special section cover? Would you have done it? I wanna know your thoughts. Please share. I know I wouldn’t have.