Things I miss. 11.14.14


Things I Miss.

Things I miss From the Northwest

Written from the Point of View of the Five Senses

By Sara Gamachew

November 14, 2014

Some things that I really miss from the States are the aromatic scent of candles.

They can really make life worth waking up to.

I also miss the various scents coming from Febreeze and Glade air sprays.

These simple things can make any room smell like a lavender garden, a midsummer breeze, a fall holiday dinner, or a peppermint candy scent for the winter.

I miss the taste of sweet potatoes mashed and mixed with a dash of cinnamon and butter. That is one of my favorite memories of Thanksgiving dinners as a child.

I miss the mouthwatering taste of nachos with a zesty avocado and sour cream dip. When I was pregnant, I watched my diet and splurged on Ranch dressing. Than a few months later I was back to Blue Cheese, Thousand Island, and Honey Mustard dips with just about anything I could find. When I wanted something sweet there was a variety of junk food, I would crave Gourmet Jelly Beans, Cotton Candy, Candy Corn, and of course ice cream/frozen yogurt with a variety of toppings. Yum that just makes my mouth water thinking about it. To wash down all that yummy food I would be drinking Dr. Pepper, Mr. Pibb, or Wild Cherry Pepsi. I would go the healthy route with Fruit Punch, Raspberry Lemonade, Strawberry Lemonade, or anything sweet that I could find. If I wanted to go the warmer route with drinks, I am a tea person: Chamomile, Chai, and Fruit Flavored tea to name a few. Than during the holidays I go for Peppermint Mochas, Chai Tea Lattes, and of course my favorite the Carmel Apple Cider. Good ole Apple Cider does the trick when I need to be thawed out from the winter weather.

I love the feel of sand between my feet when I walk down the neighborhood beach. It reminds me of my childhood running up and down that same beach as a kid in elementary school. As I got older, I loved walking down the streets of downtown. I would smell the sea air from the Puget Sound, listen to the merchants surrounding me in the market place, and just marvel at all the buildings sprouting up in various parts of town. I valued the chance to walk up and down the mall venues that would call to me in various parts of town. On one end, you can see Nike-town displaying the latest athletic shoes and then on the other end you can see Nordstrom and Macy are displaying countless fashionable clothes and accessories.

I miss these just a few things from the Northwest. You can find any of these things in any part of the United States. I just picked the one area that I can remember from the places that I grew up.

Aside

11/22/13


Dream girl
Dream girl (Photo credit: @Doug88888)

Dream a Little Dream

By Sara Gamachu

Friday, November 22, 2013

When I was married (and even when I was single,) I used to watch talk shows, reality shows, and anything that could keep my mind off my ordinary life.  One of my favorite was the Ellen Show, Oprah Winfrey show, and Extreme Makeover Home Edition.  I cried when the EMHE went off the air.  I loved watching the episodes when a lucky viewer (or member of the audience) was chosen to get a prize of some sort.  On the Ellen show, it was some lucky person who got a car or some coveted item that everyone applauded over.  While over on Oprah, it was an inspirational guest or some random recipient of Oprah’s Favorite item of the week.  Finally, on Extreme Makeover Home Edition Ty and his crew chose a family or community to have their entire home remodeled.  I used to cry along with all of America (and the world) as these people were receiving the chance of a lifetime.  I am not talking about 15 minutes of fame.  Every one of them was recognized for doing something that no one else could do.  Sure, they could have been nominated by someone, but that is not my point.  J  I used to think perhaps one day that could happen to me.  Sure, I thought of that in my mind while watching in my in-laws living room because we only had two of the local stations on our television at home.  Nevertheless, it gave me a reason to dream during those tough days.  Now I would be surprised if any of those people even looked at my blog.  Sure, I still dream about being that lucky person picked out of the audience.  Only now I can at least do it from an environment that says dreams can come true….if you just dream a little.  Chuckles maybe someday it might happen.  I am sure my son would watch and excitedly point out his mom from the crowd.  I could hear him saying, “Hey that’s my mom on TV!”  I would be crying because I never thought that could ever happen to me.  A single mom who just dreamed and wrote out her feelings.

Final NaBloPoMo Entry


Never Belonged

By Sara Gamachu

Friday, November 22, 2013

I have always felt like I did not belong.  I could not fit in to any group as a kid.  People (in my personal and professional life) would be afraid that I would do something stupid or not correctly.  It has taken me 3 decades and a lot of experience to realize that I truly did not belong.  I did not fit in to any clique or adolescent group while I was in school.

Now that I think about it… my first taste of peer pressure was in 3rd grade when I begged my mom to get me a jean jacket so I could fit in with a group of girls in my elementary school.  Ah, yes 3rd grade when my entire life changed.  The fall of my 4th grade year, I was plucked from the innocent public school system into the big dogs of public school.  It was the year I learned my first curse word (being a Pastor’s kid that is a huge mistake).  By 6th grade, I flipped someone the bird on a dare.  I can barely remember the other kid looking at me in shock.  The kind of look like what have I done to deserve that?  6th grade was also the year that I was introduced to the junior high bullies.  Problem is that they looked just like me…  African American girls who called me names because I was very slender.  It was after that horrific year that I stopped using the word skinny and referred to my body as slender.

By 7th grade, my parents chose to put me in a private school.  Being in a religious environment would heal the scars of 6th grade bullies.  I vaguely remember those 2 years.  The parts that briefly come to mind were trying to fit in with my classmates.  We were the first seventh and 8th grade class at the school.  With that honor, those 2 years were filled with the greatest classmates a girl could have.  For two brief years, we were all awkward teens just trying to deal with the world.  To this day, I had a classmate actually ask me if I was all right.  I remember that it was the last time I felt wanted or at ease.

By the time, I hit high school things changed again.  I went to a different secondary school than my friends so that meant I had to start over.  My parents describe the next 2 years as my rebellious stage.  Yes, I was in an elite Christian school…but I was a teenager bent loose on being a normal teen.  That meant I wanted the whole high school experience prom, homecoming, and the whole shebang.  Sadly, that is not what happened.  Let us just say I barely made it without by the skin of my teeth academic wise.  I was a proud member of the “I Hate My Parents/Dad club.”  Yep I put my parents through adolescent hell for those first 2 years of high school.  By the time, my junior year came my parents thought homeschooling would be the solution.  Yeah like being away from the cliques and crowds would help.  It was that year that I decided to teach myself the math that I continuously failed at understanding the previous 2 years.  Ah, Algebra meets thy doom.  By the time, my senior year came my parents put me back into public school at an alternative high school.  Now may I say that I actually blossomed my final year of traditional schooling.  For once, I did not have to fight to fit in.  All of my classmates (including myself) were considered what the traditional system would label as misfits.  To be blunt the learning scale was so watered down anybody could have passed.  To the shock to my family and myself I ended the year not only with a 4.0 GPA…I also received great achievement awards including scholarships to the local technical college in my neighborhood.  I went from being a zero to a most liked student.  I was so lucky to have some of the greatest educators who (in my opinion) saw the unknown skills that I had under my educational belt.  It was that year that gave birth to my desire to be a great writer.  Sure I have had teacher’s compliment me on my journal writing in the past… but for the first time I was part of the newspaper club at my school.  For me that was the closest I could get at being part of the popular group.  Yes I final belonged!

Now fast forward a few years.  I had attended two separate colleges searching for that belonging feeling once again.  It was during my second year, I found I was good at working with students with special needs.  Ironic…a girl who barely made it through the school system wanting to help pave the way for kids who were labeled for not belong in their educational careers.  Yes, you would think I had arrived in the sphere of belonging.  I graduated from my program dreams of being a Paraprofessional/Teacher’s Assistant ahead of me.

I soon realized that I could not afford to get my Associates of Arts Degree so I entered the working world.  Let me briefly tell you a few of my job positions that I took on the next few years.  1) Daycare provider, 2) McDonald’s crewmember, 3) Customer Service Assistant/Representative, and 4) Office assistant (in different genres).

It was somewhere around in the 2000s when I hit an exhausting wall when it came to belonging.  I had just lost my job at a very élite home electronics retail company.  I had given almost 4.5 years of my professional life to a job that when I thought I was at the highest of my “belonging” in my life.  It has taken me years to realize those years would help me in my personal life.

It was in 2008 that I met my ex-husband.  I was a girl next door who fell head over heels in love with a Southern person who happened to be in the military.  The next few years are honestly a blur.  What I do know was by the time I got out of that relationship I was nothing like the girl I used to be.  Not only did I not feel like I belonged.  Of my both self-confidence and self-esteem was shattered.  I was put down verbally and emotionally.  It was horrible.  It did not even compare to the bullying I had endured in 6th grade.

Now it is 2013 and I am a single mother to an adorable little boy (who means the world to me).  I am literally starting my life over from scratch.  *I have been told by a former friend that my ex-husband has vowed to make my life miserable because I chose to leave an unhappy and unhealthy relationship.  Yes, I, Sara, made the decision to leave a verbally and emotionally abusive relationship.  The same family members that I had once turned on are now the ones who are helping me to rebuild my personal life.  To them I would be forever grateful.  I have friends and family around the globe who reached out to me telling me, “Yes you do belong!”

*On an interesting note, this friend (who will remain nameless) was someone I actually thought had accepted me during my marriage.  One of those people who actually made me feel like I belonged.

 

Day 15 of NaBloPoMo: Courage


Courage.
You usually don’t hear that word a lot. For me it means standing up even when everybody is sitting. When I was young I learned to give the finger to someone on a dare. In junior high I was the kid who couldn’t tell a lie (“Yes he did do that”.). It wasn’t until high school when I shed my good girl image. I decided no more telling the truth. I was going to look out for me and step on anyone in my way (in my case my parents pure teenage rebel girl). In college I was able to decide what was it I was actually good at. After that my memory is kind of fuzzy. No not from drugs or booze more like putting everyone else before myself. I was a people pleaser. The day I told my ex-husband (some very colorful words) “You don’t care how I feel!” That should have been a warning that something was about to happen. Days later I gathered up as much courage as I had packed a weeks worth of clothes for my son and I…and I left. I was scared to death that he would find me and take away my precious son. Yes that was the good, the bad, and the uh oh I am in trouble folks. I was living a life that even I couldn’t recognize myself.

Now these days I look at life differently. Everyone tells me how proud they are of me. What they don’t know is fear is a pain and it can come at you at anytime.

Day 12 of NaBloPoMo: Doting Parent


I had a wonderful time talking with my son today.  He was showing me the new movies.  I am so glad he gets to watch Disney movies with his dad.  I loved hearing him talk to me.  He was saying “Mom!” like he wanted to make sure I was watching or listen to him.  No matter what I made sure he knew I was there.  Thank you Google for making this possible.

 

 

 

I have always wanted what was best for my son.  I wanted to make sure he knew that he was number one in my life.  When we first moved into our apartment  I did my best to make sure he felt comfortable.  I wasn’t a natural cook, yet I knew how to make a mean peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  On the weekends I was happy to rent a movie (thanks to Redbox) and relax with our dinner on the couch.  We watched Aladdin, Toy Story 2, Bob the Builder, and Finding Nemo together. 

 

Doting parent
Doting parent (Photo credit: euphro)

 

 

 

Day 11 of NaBloPoMo: Sara in Wonderland Series


English: Alice In Wonderland
English: Alice In Wonderland (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

I thought I would do some posts about how I feel like my life is similar to the movie/story Alice in Wonderland.  I have felt like my life has decided to go backwards or a mixture of past and present.  It is humorous actually.  See my parents and I came to this country when I was very young.  So I pretty much grew up in America.  Its funny when I hear people tell stories about how their family came on the Mayflower or through Ellis Island.  I couldn’t really relate to that.  I have had people mispronounce my name in so many ways.  It started when I was in junior high all the way to when I became and adult.  As I got older I decided to go by nicknames because it got harder for people to say my name.  By the time I got my first full-time job it got easier.  It was the first time that I was identified by my name and proudly answered to it.  Its funny I worked for that company for almost 5 years.  It was the best job I had ever had.  It gave me the chance to be a person without worrying about my family ancestry.  Plus my mom loved coming by and hanging out with my co-workers.  My mom was so proud of me to get a job that I really liked and I stuck to it.  Yeah those were good days.  I finally had a point that I felt like I meant something to someone… even if that someone was customers and sales staff.  Yes I was a Customer Service Assistant at one of the biggest home electronic stores in the Northwest.

 

Now you might ask me…where does the backwards feeling start.  Well as I grew up my family (which was my parents and I then) started churches for the Ethiopian Community.  My father had come to America to continue his education.  My mother, who had been her before as a student, and I came along with him.  We basically started over without really starting in this new country.  My ex-husband occasionally would remind me that my family was rich and they could help us out.  I wondered where he got that idea from.  See while I was working I got my parents a new T.V. for Christmas to replace the old one we used to have growing up.  My father wasn’t so sure about me getting this big television.  I told him that I wanted them to have something nice.   The old one had been with us since I was a kid in the 80s.  I figured it was time for them to upgrade a little.  I think my dad was actually happy and just didn’t know how to show it.  Here his daughter buys them a television after all the years.  These days my dad thinks I am pretty high maintenance  I laugh and say who me… never.  I may not be able to read people’s body language well, but when it comes to customer service I could tell the consumers from the servers.  Now as I was saying my ex-husband thought we were wealthy people.  We lived in our own house and took care of each other.  What he didn’t realize was I didn’t have an easy childhood.  I had changed schools from 3rd grade until I graduated from high school.  I can brag that I have been in public, private, and home-school.  I was a scholarship student the private school years.  My parents worked hard to make sure my brother and I got an education.  Both my parents had regular jobs (to which they have retired from) while counseling and preaching to the Ethiopian community.  Sure I have shared them with kids and adults alike.  So now that I am an adult I kind would love to have an ordinary life.  Right now here is where the backwards starts…..

 

To be continued

 

Cry


Crying..
Crying.. (Photo credit: Anders Ljungberg)

 

There are days I just want to cry. I cry because of my innocence lost in one day.  I cry for the little boy looking for his mommy.  I cry for the family that thought they lost a relative.  There are days I feel like Alice from Alice in Wonderland.  Hmm it just happen to be one of the movies my son liked to watch.  Right now I am at the end where she is trying to escape.  My nightmares are so real that I have to remind myself to wake up.  It’s a good thing I have my family to catch me when I emotionally fall.

 

Day 5 of NaBloPoMo: Claire Huxtable vs. June Cleaver


The Cosby Show (1984-92)
The Cosby Show (1984-92) (Photo credit: quicheisinsane)

Imagine this if you will a reality television show based on TV moms of the past few years.  There will be Rosanne Conner, June Cleaver, Claire Huxtable, and lets throw in Marge Simpson to name a few.  Desperate Housewives of TV Land could be the title.

There are 2 titles that I love to go by Domestic Diva and Domestic Goddess.  The goddess side of me is the traditional wife who “loves” to clean the house and make things perfect for when the husband came home.  Than of course the diva side of me.  The side that says “Hey I have done so much to make your life easier….what about me?”  My son’s father would once in a while refer to me as Claire Huxtable.  That was on a day  when I decided to put on a scarf to hide my frizzy curly hair.  Now that I have had time to think about things… I should have taken that as a compliment.  He also let me know that it was my job to keep the house while he went to work.  I could imagine some of these housewives doing a double take and say “What are you taking about?”  I used to watch Desperate Housewives for fun.  I would say yep that’s me.  I loved Felicity Huffman‘s character.  She basically told her husband that if he wanted to try being the “wife” for a day to go for it.  Folks you saw how that turned out.  I consider the day I left my husband my personal 4th of July Independence Day.  I was an under-appreciated wife who just finally said enough already.  Trust me the only thing I did wrong was I stayed with him for so long.  Paint me the villain or the hero.  It just depends on which point of view you look at it.  Lets just say I am healing from 3 year marriage that was very hard.

So who do you think would make a good character in this TV series?  Mrs. Brady, Peg Bundy, or could you see anyone else I may have looked over.  Yes moms/wives you are the unspoken heroes who do their best for their family.  I salute you!

Day 2 of NaBloPoMo: Laptops and visitations


I am so excited today.  This is my first blog entry from my new laptop!  Well my laptop was in the repair shop so it feels like new. 🙂  I was so excited last night and started writing up some blogs about my old website and realized uh oh I forgot to get some sleep.  So with 4 hours of sleep I got up and headed to the repair store.  By 3 pm I was home figuring out how to get the modem to work on the laptop,  So this entry won’t be as long as I really want it to be, but tomorrows will be amazing.

See I was so lucky to have friends and family that allowed me to use their laptops and desktops until this one got fixed.  Plus I have an Android phone that has been my lucky back up for when I wanted to get online when I was on the go.   Tomorrow I get to see my son via video chat so I am pretty pumped.  I didn’t get a chance to see him last weekend so this will be amazing!

Between my blogging and helping some friends out with office work I have been pretty busy this last few weeks.  It will soon be officially a month in a few days since my son went to visit his dad.  I am hoping they are having a good time.  I miss him dearly, but his father hasn’t seen him since May so this was an extended visitation.  See he gets visitation and I have custody of our son as per the divorce decree of February 2013.  He had tried to challenge it… but the Judge gave him a 4 month extended visitation and I would have him the rest of the time.  Than after the 4 months he comes home to me and then visits his dad during the Spring Break, Summer Vacation, and certain holidays.  It is only fair.  Trust me when he tried to challenge me this year for the custody it was a shock that the judge didn’t change his mind.

So tomorrow I will have a longer entry and I will now be able to get things moved over in the next few days.  I imagine it will take at least 2 weeks or so to get the old blog turned over to this one.  That should give plenty of time for everyone to get used to the change.

 

Have a wonderful evening!

 

Sara

Ghost


This is how you start over.  You let the ghosts from the past float over you so they aren’t part of your present.  I wanted to write this on my Facebook page as a note, but something told me that it would come out as a woman ranting on her past.  Nobody would understand why I did what I did.  So I thought and thought…. while I was thinking it brought so many things to my mind.  Like such as why aren’t people accepting my friend requests.  Do they understand that it is really me.  Than it hit me.  They think I am a ghost or some different profile other than myself.  Okay maybe that thought came from Instagram.  Yeah I had someone actually ask me if I was a ghost and to be more active.  That day I did something that I rarely do… I decided to a) take a break from Instagram, b) Block that person (because I had a right to and didn’t need anyone to tell me what I could and couldn’t do), c) Really look at who was or wasn’t following me.

From that day until today I realized I am not a ghost.  How could I be?  Now I am going to break my rule of identifying myself.  My real name is Molly… actually it is Mahlet, but people call me Molly for short.  When I left my husband I literally left everything behind.  I packed a weeks worth of clothes for my son and I and as much baby supplies that I could imagine.  My son was about to celebrate his 2nd birthday.  I left the house my ex-husband and I were living in and basically fled.  I ran for my life.  From this moment on I am going to continue going by Sara, the writer, and Molly the woman.  When you read the entries from my other blog you will see me use my real name.  I find that in order to move forward I can’t keep looking at the past.  So I am turning the page from being Mahlet A. to becoming Mahlet S. the writer who goes by Sara.  Like I said I am not a ghost….I am just a woman trying to start over….

Thank you readers for accepting me the person.  Please feel free to comment.  I could really use the feedback!  Also I decided today to be part of NaBloPoMo.  To me it is a challenge to use my writing to inspire others who may have been in the shadows.  My mom always has said that I could make a difference with my writing…. so that is exactly what I am going to do.  So join me as I let go of the ghosts of my past and move on to my future.

Ghost
Ghost (Photo credit: lore)

Sincerely,

Molly S.

#822