Desert Sun

My desert sun

I’m sorry I was gone for so long

I didn’t mean to hurt you

And leave high and dry

But It’s easier to hide in the snow

Easier to write

Easier to hang up the phone

Easier to hide from you

The you that sees me when I’m in pain

As clothes make me sweat in the

desert sun

However, in the snow I can hide under layers of protection

Protecting me from the evils in my mind

Protecting me from my old heartache

Protecting me from issues I tired to leave in the desert, but followed me to the snow

However, as the snow melted in the desert sun, I am left to face and shed my layers

Answering questions I tried to avoid

Seeing faces similar to mine

And visiting the sun rays of the desert that I forever missed, but avoid seeing

It may have been months, but you, the desert sun, can always center me and remind of the dirt, cacti, and mountains I come from.

It’s you, the desert the sun, that remind me the dirt in the snow ain’t shit.

That I can be my own desert sun if I stop and breathe the memory and feels of you.

That the mystical power of the desert sun pushes me forward and beyond the icy streets that I love, but are only the branches that grow from your roots

My desert sun

Moments That Change You

About this time every year I think of where I was in 2011. Just got out of a bad relationship, dealing with the deaths of my grandfather, dog, uncle and graduating grad school. A lot of events happened in 2011 that I honestly block out, and it wasn’t until recently do I recall those moments.One big one would change my life. A beautiful soul named Jose came to teach a corporate improv workshop at my job. It was my first real job, and while some of my coworkers were not into what was happening, I was like this is cool let’s try it. And with this moment, the next 6 years led me to Chicago and improv.
Improv has changed me for the better. It allowed me to explore my art, and has allowed me to meet people I didn’t know I wanted, but needed. On my way home tonight, I wondered what my life would have been without that moment and I don’t know. I probably wouldn’t be in Chicago. Maybe married. Maybe a mom. Probably a director position in corporate America. All beautiful goals and things, but feel I would be mostly tired and searching for meaning around something I wasn’t passionate about. 
With improv, it’s opened doors for me to explore other forms of art like storytelling, poetry, and writing. It’s given me positions like directing I never thought I would do. While I’m not making a living with my art at this time, in the last year I’ve been looking at ways that it can go in that direction and help people. 
Improv has also brought me my Chicago artist community and friends. I spent many years wondering what was wrong with me. Meeting them, I know I’m imperfectly, perfect and that my feelings are valid. Nothing is wrong with me.
I believe Jose walking in that room was suppose to happen as a choice in my life. And I ran through that door to the life I chose.

Also that Phoenix Summer heat tho.

Why Windy Cactus?

Hi! You may not know me unless your my mom who found my blog or my roommate who I am reading this to, but allow me to reintroduce myself.

My name is Maria, and I am proud 30 something woman of color. I’ve been living in Chicago for about three years, and originally from Mesa, Arizona. I tell everyone Phoenix because it’s easier than explaining where Mesa is unless you’re a Chicago Cubs fan. I am currently employed with a 9 to 5 job, and a performer at night with improv, sketch, storytelling, and poetry. You could call that part of my life my 6 to 12 job that fills my passion, but doesn’t pay. It’s a glass half full, bank half empty type of thing.

If you figured out the spoiler of why I called this blog Windy Cactus, then you know it’s a take on the Chicago nickname of the “Windy City” and a symbol of Arizona. If I had to tell you, no worries… you still hold a special place in my heart. I also came up with the name while eating Gluten Free pizza at Giordano’s so take that as you will.

But why a blog? I don’t have the one reason why, but mainly I wanted to provide a sample of everyday life for trying to “make” it as a woman of color. What does “make” it mean? I am not entirely sure, but maybe happiness? But then that’s so vague too.

All I know is I am the ambitious one trying to be happy and excited about her accomplishments. It’s a weird fault of mine to not be happy right now, but looking at what else can we do. I feel often the ambitious person achieves a goal, and moves onto the next big thing. The biggest faults of the ambitious person? Not being able to live within their accomplishments and being proud of themselves for too long. I feel for many people, but especially people of color, being proud for too long is viewed as a negative. That we must keep moving as the struggle can be oh too real.

So what things will I want to write about? The excited side is thinking all the things like body positivity, mental health,  dating, comedy, running, and where I can find time to nap. The strategic side is like let’s focus, man. And I think both are right and valid and will give the full picture.

So here goes all the things.