Category Archives: Rants


We all have them. The question is, how much mental strength does one need to fight them and win?

This year has been filled with nothing but negative, dark, morbid, unpleasant events. Most of them, I’ve had not one bit of control over. I may have entered 2018 with a positive outlook, but as the months began to pass I began to develop a sour, hateful, and bitter attitude toward and against those around me.

Lately I’ve been surrounded by friends who struggle with depression. I’ve had my own personal experiences with this particular demon, but that was 9 years ago, and now I am in a much more healthy state-of-mind. I am not ashamed to admit that I used to self-harm, self-medicate, and self-loathe. Hell, I despised myself and the path that I put myself on. The floor wasn’t even beneath me, I was beneath it. Do you hear that? Me. Me. Me. Me. Me.

I didn’t and still don’t know how I pulled myself out of that hole of emptiness, rage, and destructive behaviors. I wanted out, but I was too chicken shit to really do anything about it. Recent events have me reflecting on how I healed my emotional wounds and I hope I can relay it in a way that speaks to others so that they can help themselves.

Through humor, laughter, and finding the positive in every single negative, over time, I have healed myself. With the cards I have been dealt, especially with my brothers, it’s true what they say. Things could always be worse.

To make my point, your mental health matters, but so does the mental health of others. Share a smile, be kind, talk yourself through the negative thoughts. Positive thinking does help, but only with persistence. It’s ok to think, “me, me, me, me, me,” as long as it bestows sunlight on your soul without disregarding the feelings of those around you.

Never be afraid to end relationships that no longer serve you and embrace the ones with whom you can have a deep conversation. Look for the meaning behind the words they speak. Also, never be afraid to ask for help on your journey to achieving true happiness.

You deserve it.


New Year, New Me? Nope.

I don’t make promises I can’t keep, so instead, I set goals and achieve them. I also don’t like to change, I am eager to evolve.

For 2018, absolutely no bullshit, I will obtain the physical and mental joy these personal goals will bring to my soul. It’s time to adult and I’m ready to tackle the responsibilities all at once.

Drumroll, please…đŸ„

I will lose 30lbs by the end of the year.

I will save every dime possible and plan a wedding with my fiancé, who has put up with my ass for what will be 13 years.

We will find a home.

Last but not least, I will establish myself as a writer in the food industry. Whether it be getting back into the swing of freelancing or finding the forever gig I’ve always dreamed of. I have too much passion to quit.

I think if you wish for what you want hard enough, either it will happen or you will discover something new and refreshing about yourself.

So, I will.

Sunday, Bloody Sunday

Happy Spring, all.

Seems like I only tune into my thoughts once a season, nowadays. I’d like to change that, but honesty is my policy and I won’t lie to you.

Tonight I was watching TV upstairs in my parents’ room, when that one thought entered my brain. You know the one, the one that changes your mood in an instant and can bring a tear to your eye in a split second.

Yea, that peach. It happened so fast. All I could say was thanks, asshole brain. 

Anywho, I physically, for one hair of a second, had the urge to go downstairs and hug my brother, Jason. And I was about to jump off the bed to do it. Then I remembered, as fast as that feeling came and went, that he wasn’t home.

Then I missed him. So much so, that it brought tears to my eyes. 

That moment finally came. The reality that I’ve been aimlessly living in for the past 7 months just cut my heart strings. In a millisecond.

Suddenly, I remembered how my weeks used to go. When I came home from work, Jason was waiting at the door for me like clockwork. Ready to give me a hug, without even knowing how my day went. I wouldn’t feel as guilty being out of the house because I knew they’d always be there.

Now, we bring them home every Sunday for dinner if we’re not already bringing them home for a long weekend. Now, whenever they are home, I feel guilty for being one second away from them and I do my best to make our time together worth it.

All I can do, is hope that Jason AND Sean enjoy their independence and that Jason doesn’t get mad at me for one second. (Because Sean is never mad at me).

All I know, is that it’s hard to bring them back on Sunday night, knowing that I can’t get my hug for another week.

Jesus Take the Wheel

Please take a seat at the table of my life and listen, because not everyone gets invited.

These past four months have been, well, a shit storm and I’m just reeeeally hoping that on Jan 1, 2017 at midnight I can take a breath of fresh air and mentally mellow the fuck out. 

As much as my body has proven to me lately that it is oh so certainly stressed, I haven’t been feeling it mentally, oddly enough. That is until these past two months. I’ve hit a point in my life where I need to step back out of my comfort zone and be that bad ass adult that I am destined to be, without any excuses. It’s time to dust off this ladder of life and climb that son of a bitch. I know which direction I’m headed in and I have to admit that it’s kind of scary, but I’m excited to soon have a place of my own, marry my best friend, and settle into a job that I can enjoy for years to come. I just need to be willing to sacrifice and embrace change. 

I have been in complete #nofucksgiven mode for the past month and I’ve hit my breaking point. If I don’t like something, I get stuck in the notion of disliking it until I can change the outcome. If I don’t like someone, well that can go any way depending on the individual, but you will definitely hear about it. When I feel like my creativity is being sucked bone dry, I am going to take the straw out of that sucker’s mouth and return it dipped in glitter and gold. 

2017 will be the year of change in finances, freedom and fitness. Meanwhile, 2016, you can exit stage left you dirty disappointment.

Why I Cherish Every Moment

I’m laying in bed right now, trying to fall asleep. So naturally, I start having a full blown conversation with my conscience. 

At this very moment. I lay here in my warm cozy bed and appreciate everything that I have and don’t have. The reason why I feel this way is because life is too goddamn short to worry about petty bullshit. I have a pulse right now dammit and I will do what it takes to make it thrive. 

Over the years, I’ve lost people I’ve had close relationships with, long relationships, that were abruptly ended by death. I miss these people every day and would give anything to give them an update on my wellbeing. There is no worse feeling than not knowing when your last goodbye to someone will be. I’m sickened by the thought. You can go from being on cloud 9 and thinking that you’re the happiest you’ve ever been then boom, your world shatters into shards and you have to put the pieces back together. 

What I’m saying here is, whoever you’re close with, hug them tight and count your blessings. Make that person laugh so hard that they cry and admire the expressions on their face when they do. 

Most importantly, appreciate what you have, because in the words of The Eagles, “We may lose and we may win, but we will never be here again.” 

He Liked It So He Put a Ring on It!

This week has been a whirlwind of overwhelming emotions. It all started when my boyfriend whom I have been dating for 10 years (high school sweethearts) proposed to me in Door County, WI. I was very surprised, excited and I couldn’t be happier. My ring has a story behind it, but I’ll save it for next time. The whole thing still doesn’t feel real. However…I’m experiencing the death of my grandparents all over again in full force because I’m upset that they won’t be around to see how my future unfolds. 

I’ll skip ahead, away from the idea of them being there in spirit, but it’s just unfair and not the same. I’m angry and bitter about it and it’s starting to show. 

Today I visited the cemetery because I needed reassurance that they WILL be with me during this process and I strongly had a need to tell them while looking at their name. Even though I know the answer.
The best news to end my trip to emotional hell is that Julio and I get to celebrate our engagement with the family during my Father’s Oktoberfest party. Yay! 


Stay Tuned…

An idea just popped in my head to possibly start a segment of this blog and call it “Dammit, Dana.” The range of discussions with myself will venture out into panic moments of “oh crap, I meant to do that and forgot,” as well as little pep talks like “Dammit Dana don’t get down on yourself.”

Exciting huh? It’s under construction…ï»ż

When You Give Your Parents a Computer…

They will crash it.

Two years ago, I signed up for a Capital One card where I could earn miles on purchases just so I could buy a Macbook Pro. Best decision I ever made. I have a computer that is all my own and the best part, there’s no possible way it can get a virus.

The PC we have is operated by my parents and I have never been so irritated than this past week. My mother is completely illiterate when it comes to printing documents and she plays every single Publisher’s Clearing House contest game on the internet that she can find. She also opens emails from strangers and leaves a million browser tabs open as she walks away from the computer.

My father is not as bad. He can type word documents, he can navigate Facebook. He can also upload pictures to and go pick them up. Therefore, he’s not really to blame in this situation.

For the past two weeks our computer was running slow, wouldn’t turn on, kept shutting down for 3+ hours and all-in-all just crapped out.

In the end, I had to reboot the damn thing to it’s factory settings.

Upon receiving praise from my father and hearing that “there is a spot for me in Heaven” (mostly because I made the desktop background a view of Waikiki Beach) I had to give them instructions like children on the “Do’s and Don’t’s of the computer.”

Now it’s running smooth…so far.

Oh, parents.

Oh 2014, It’s Been Bittersweet.

This year started off really effen terrible. I guess the best way to review it would go something like this.

The highlight of my year started exactly one year ago today when I received the best news I’ve ever heard in my life. For the past 22 years my brother Jason has been undiagnosed with a genetic disorder along with his 18-year-old brother Sean. When describing the boys to people my parents and I would compare their movements to Cerebral Palsy, but that wasn’t what they had. Their characteristics such as muscle spasms, the way that they eat, and the way they get around are all the same but they have completely polar opposite personalities. Over the years my family has experienced moments where we all feel like science experiments. We’ve had skin removed for testing and liters of blood drawn, but eventually it was all worth it. We received a call on December 31, 2013 from Dr. Kravitz, a Neurologist at Rush University in Chicago. She left a message on our answering machine that she finally had a diagnosis for Jason and Sean. My mom cried. How could you not? She called me at work and as I was standing in a bank vault I learned that my brothers are the only ones in the United States that are missing the Genetic Mutation BCAP 31. It happens to be in the arm of a protein and carbohydrate gene. Six pairs of that Gene are missing. There are 6 boys in France that have this. The oldest being 22, almost Jason’s age. Jason seems to not be as involved as the 22 year old. I want to bring awareness to this situation and I hope that 2015 brings that. On the not so bright side, I am a carrier of this gene. I always had a feeling, but the confirmation felt like a kick in the crotch and it brought tears for my eyes for a minute. That was until I put a bright spin on my thoughts. It’s pretty cool to think that I can create my own daughter using science thanks to gender selection and gender counseling…but not for a while.

Later that night we went to my Aunt and Uncle’s house out in Algonquin, IL. It was New Year’s Eve, so naturally we were celebrating the good news and wishing on a happy and healthy year. However that was not the case.

At the time my grandmother (mom’s mom) was suffering from pancreatic cancer. It was heartbreaking to watch it eat her right in front of us. After being told in the month of February that they couldn’t do anything else to fight the cancer, she quickly got worse and passed away in hospice on March 7, 2013. Waiting in a hospice center for someone to die feels like Hell’s waiting room. It’s the saddest thing to know that every patient in there had hours left until they were carried away in a hearse. It will drive you insane having to wait for a loved one to pass.

In April of last year I celebrated my Grandmother’s memory by going to Las Vegas. I remember telling her that I was afraid to go because I was scared that something would happen to her while I was gone. She told me not to worry. I didn’t have to. I went there with her back in 2004 for my eighth grade graduation and we had a great time. I thought of her a lot while I was out there.

In May, my Great Grandmother, aka Nana, aka my mom’s grandmother passed away after a long battle of dementia and old age. She was 96. This woman once had the health of 10 horses and outlived her daughter due to cancer. Although she didn’t quite remember who was who my grandmother visited her the most. My Nana was a religious Italian woman. It just so happened on the night my grandma died she called her name several times. Shortly after, she started to stop eating, she didn’t speak much and then she passed on May 17, 2014. Two days later, my Aunt’s Greek Uncle passed away. We were so tired of the whole “death” thing that I grabbed a pamphlet for a “Career in Funeral Service.”

In June, I was the proudest sister in the world when Jason graduated high school. It was a happy moment that was much needed and he celebrated with a cheeseburger from his favorite restaurant. I also went with my cousin and her husband to get tattoos, which was quite hilarious. I was tempted to get another one myself.

In July my dad and I bought new tickets for our Chicago White Sox game because we got rained out on the 30th of June. I just so happened to buy tickets for Elvis night without even realizing it. It was a great game and I got to watch plenty of Elvis impersonators fall from the sky.

In October I got to ride a bull at the Mall of America and make an ass out of myself. I also got incredibly drunk at my cousin Jesse’s destination wedding in Minnesota.

In November I had a very memorable birthday week with the people I love. My birthday was Monday, November 17th and on Sunday my cousin and I bought some booze, took a train to get some Cuban food and then got tipsy at Eataly and ate cheese for two hours. My dad picked us up around 11pm and we drove around for about an hour and a half learning about architecture from my dad. I wouldn’t have wanted to spend my first hour as 25 doing anything else. On Monday my boyfriend took me to Glazed and Infused because that’s where I wanted to go. We then stopped for two of my favorite things in this world, tea and sandwiches.

In December it was warm as hell and I finally got to take my little Seanycakes to see the Lincoln Park Zoo lights. He was as excited as I hoped he would be.

The holidays were hard. They always are. As you get older they are not what they used to be and it’s sad to realize that the world can’t be viewed through rose-colored glasses anymore. Each year brings a new chapter of life and you just learn from all the bullshit. It really does make you a stronger person.

To end on a light note, by December 31, 2015 I would like to have a full-time job that doesn’t feel like work and to take a few vacations that last longer than 4 days. I would also like to be financially set for my future and 20lbs lighter.

Happy New Year Everyone!