The Small Things

Sexual assault and sexual harassment have always been a problem. Always. Although in the last year it has been brought up more often, brave souls have shared their stories to bring awareness to the situation that we face. Both women and men can be victimized, but that is not what this post is about. This post is about the small things that women deal with daily. The small things that men may or may not realize that they do, which make us feel so uncomfortable.

Yesterday, I was in a town that I was unfamiliar with and I was walking with my purse in my work clothes searching for an ATM. A man stopped in his truck, rolled his window down, and just stared at me. He didn’t make any comments, I didn’t hear any “cat-calling,” but I felt so incredibly uncomfortable. I’m not sure if men know that the things they do make us feel uncomfortable. The tiny things like just staring for too long can make us feel unsafe. For the men who want to fight the problem, and may not have physically or verbally done anything wrong, should know that the things they do e.g., getting too close in proximity, staring too long, really scares us. I don’t want to speak for all women but I know many of my friends/family and I do so many things to avoid being harassed or raped.

I remember a point during my early years of college, crying and telling my husband (boyfriend at the time) that I didn’t want to be pretty because I don’t like when guys look at me or try to talk to me. You may not be a part of the sexual assault/harassment problem, but I think all people should take into consideration what the girl/woman feels when you get too close while talking or if you are left alone with them.

The other night I read a post on facebook that explained it so well. The woman talked about trying to sell her dryer and giving times where potential buyers could come and look at or pick up if they wanted it, but only when she knew her husband would be home. A man came and she used her judgement to decide if she would feel safe or not with only her and him alone. She thought everything would be alright, and it was for most of the time. He began to look her up and down and asked for help to carry it out of the basement. When she got sweaty he commented about how she was such a hard worker and that he bets her husband must enjoy her like that (all sweaty). gross.

In case you didn’t know…

  • We walk quickly to our cars and lock the door as soon as we are in.
  • We plan out how to walk or drive each other to our cars, so no one goes alone.
  • We watch our loved ones walk into the doors of their homes and shut the door before driving off.
  • We take detours on a street if we are walking alone.
  • We are extra observant when we are outside at night.
  • We don’t even wanna take ubers/lyfts/taxi’s alone.
  • We send our location to everyone.
  • We talk to someone on our phone if we have to walk alone.
  • We carry rape whistles or concealed weapons (keys in our fingers)

It’s the small things. Even if you never talk to her, what your body language is saying can make her feel sooooo unsafe. It’s important to be aware of that. Don’t be a part of the problem, help heal it.

What Marriage is like for a NewlyWed

Marriage.

Marriage is beautiful, in whatever way you would define it. My life completely changed after I got married, literally. I left home and lived in a place I was unfamiliar with, then my husband left me for an entire month (for training). For myself, this marriage has been what many old-timers would call pretty “traditional”. When I got married, I moved from my home with my parents and siblings. My husband and I had never lived together, nor really spent a night together up until that point. I was terrified. We talked about it a lot, before we even got engaged (yes, being together for 6 years before I even got a ring, we had definitely talked about everything), and we really wanted to live with each other. We didn’t know each others habits, we didn’t know how each other slept, etc. It’s different. We barely even spent much time together; we were long distance for 6.5 out of the 7 years that we were dating.

Again, I was terrified that we were not going to be compatible together. A lot of my friends and family did encourage me, knowing full well how in love we were with each other, but they did express some concerns in the beginning. I shared these same concerns. What if we hated the way each other lived? The way we did or did not do the dishes enough. The way we washed the clothes. Or maybe even the way we put our clothes in the laundry.

In the first month after our marriage, we were temporarily living in Washington state. I am a very family-oriented individual, and it was really hard for me to adjust, even if I knew we were coming back to the islands soon. I really enjoyed it. The first month together. I learned about him and his habits, and he learned about me. It was a real trial run, I guess you could call it, even if we technically had already signed our lives away to each other. I enjoyed it! It was amazing.

Now that we are back in the islands, we have our own place, we have vehicles; we are what we would call “adulting”. I mean, he’s been adulting way longer than I have already. He left home right after graduation, and joined the military. But, now I really am at this self-reflective point where every night after work, I just stare at him and thank the Heavens for all the blessings I have received in my life thus far. We are very happy with each other, with the way we live, and the way we work together (which is very well).

Many old-timers may also call this, “The Honeymoon Stage”. It hasn’t been all bliss as people normally would say this stage is, we’ve definitely gotten into arguments, but nothing really serious. It’s mostly me being petty. haha. It is also, most definitely not all unicorns and rainbows, but 90% of the time it is. My husband shows me that he cares, in ways that are not normal. My friends and I call this “The Local Boy” syndrome. Local boys in Hawaiʻi are different. They show their love in different ways, but you can see it and you can feel it. My favorite part about my husband is how handy he is. I swear, he is part mechanic, part-plumber, part-electrician (not so much part-maid though) and part everything else. It’s amazing for me because I can’t do the things he does. But I pull my part with having a job and sharing the cooking and cleaning duties.

Overall, it is beautiful. My marriage is amazing. I think we are doing very well right now as newlyweds, we have lots of support and love from the special people in our lives. I wanna give a huge shoutout and mahalo to our families for being so helpful in our transition to our very own place! We are grateful, and we know how blessed we are.

*If you haven’t heard in recent news of Hurricane Lane, where I live in Oʻahu was not really affected. But our hometown got hit pretty bad with severe rain and flooding. Keep our islands in your thoughts and prayers!

Happy Curl, Happy Girl

Signing off,

Curly Island Girl

Quick Life Update: Settling In

Hi Everyone!!!

I’m officially back in the islands ( I have been for a couple of weeks already)!

My husband and I have been settling in to our new place in Oʻahu. My in-laws flew up from the Big Island to help us get our things together and buy appliances/furniture that we needed. The first weekend at our new apartment, we also attended my husband’s cousin’s wedding in Kapolei. It was absolutely beautiful, and I’m so happy for their new journey as a married couple as well! (We are twinning in this new marriage, haha). His parents left soon after that weekend, and we had our last week before work started, doing all kinds of crazy adult things.

He had to get his truck legal in Hawaiʻi, and I needed get a vehicle (which I did! I named her Taimane; she’s a 2018 Chevy Malibu). After, getting a vehicle I had to get used to driving here. It’s pretty tough because the sheer amount of people living on this tiny island is ridiculous. I’ve been driving back and forth because my friend, Misty Girl, has been flying up here to bring me my boxes from back home and my other friend, Amanda, has been here for about a week and a half, staying in the city next to me. It’s been fun with them! They’ve been my buddies in helping me to learn to drive here. Side Note: I know how to drive, but Big Island doesn’t have any freeways and a lot less people, so it’s not hard to drive there.

This week was my first week of work, and it’s great! I love feeling useful in society, haha. I dress semi-professionally, with slacks and nice blouses, and I actually like dressing this way because I’ve never had a full-time job before. I stay at work longer than my husband, so when I head home (its a 20-30 minute drive, depending on traffic), he’s already home. We are both excited for this weekend, only because we have more time with each other. When we get home, we are both so tired and want to just eat dinner, shower, and go to sleep, so we are lacking time together. It’s fine, but you know, we are still newlyweds. This weekend, I also wanted to go buy more work clothes, and stuff for the apartment (we don’t have a vacuum, help! our floors are looking grim, and we need some night-stands, our phones are sitting on the floor next to our bed sides. So we have a huge shopping list right now, that I hope to check-off this weekend!

I want to seriously get back into a regular schedule of blogging again, but work keeps me really busy, I may just need to wake up a little earlier on days that I do want to post, so I can blog before I get ready for work.

I hope you have a fantastic and beautiful rest of the week!

 

 

Happy Curl, Happy Girl

Signing off,

Curly Island Girl

 

A New Adventure Awaits!

In 5 days, this island girl will finally be back in her home state! I will miss Washington a lot; mostly for my friends that I have made here and the natural habitats that surrounds me. It’s been a struggle being in a stagnant position. By that I mean, not working and not taking care of my siblings, etc. It’s been a wonderful two months of “vacation,” but I’m ready to start this new adventure.But first! Here are some pictures of the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

My husband and I are moving back to the islands (not to my home island, but the “mainland” of Hawaiʻi, or more commonly known as, Oʻahu). I have applied for a job and have done an interview over the phone, and I’m really hoping I get it! I didn’t think I would be as quick finding a job, but everything is turning out beautifully. We have a place already, we signed the lease a couple of weeks ago, and let me tell you, I have never been so stressed doing paperwork for my own apartment. I felt like a true adult. haha.

I’m ready to be back amongst local people, to hear Pidgin being spoken in normal conversation, to be in the same time zone as my friends and family, and to eat the food! If all goes well, in the next couple of weeks, I will be an employed resident of Oʻahu. In case you’re wondering, no, it is not my favorite island, but yes, it is the closest my husband and I can get to home. We are extremely excited for this new adventure. We will finally have our own place (together) and be able to start treating our lives as such. I think he’s mostly excited to get his truck back (oh and his Xbox). Our things arrived about a month ago, because we were supposed to be there a month ago. Alas, the military life doesn’t always go as planned, which is why we haven’t reached our next destination yet.

I’m blogging today because I know I won’t be back online until a couple of weeks have passed, because I definitely will be working hard on settling us in. We have lots of things we need to buy for our own place; we have no kitchenware, no dining room table, etc. Maybe, I will post pictures for you to see what our apartment looks like after everything is finished. I hope your summer has been amazing, for those in Hawaiʻi, it’s just about to end. Our children go back to school in a couple of weeks, and the colleges all start up again in about three weeks or so.

Have a beautiful last few days of July! And welcome in August and a start to a new adventure.

Happy Curl, Happy Girl

Signing off,

Curly Island Girl

Quick Life Update: Apartment Hunting, Writing a Novel (?), Job Search

Aloha all,

It’s been about 2 weeks since I last blogged… and I’ve been busy, but also relaxing. Most of the things that are on my mind right now are my husband, Jane the Virgin, apartment hunting, my Harry Potter game app, writing, and job searching.

As most of you know, if you’ve been following me for quite some time, I just got married in May! It’s been almost two months and we are about to move back to Hawaiʻi. However, we still haven’t secured an apartment yet… gasp. We have just applied for one, and we are really excited. I am hoping and praying that we do get it. It’s in the perfect place, near to stores, his work, and one of my family members also live in the same area (like 3 minutes away). I’ve never applied for an apartment, it gave me so much anxiety, because I’ve also never had to adult like this. It’s very eye-opening.

Along with relaxing and enjoying no work for now and no school anymore (woohoo), I’ve decided to write in my spare time. I am only used to writing short stories, so I didn’t give myself a limit. I’ll just keep writing until I feel like it’s finished. It started as an influence of my husband and I’s early part of our relationship, then it began to spin into a sci-fi/romance sort of genre. I have really felt encouraged watching Jane the Virgin, haha. She is so motivated and good at writing, and I know she’s one a character on a television show, but I feel inspired by her.

As for job hunting: that’s not going as well as I would like it to. It sounds like it’s going to be really hard for me to find a first job doing something that utilizes my B.A. in English. If that’s how it is, then that’s how it’ll be. I can be a barista at Starbucks for now, haha. I just need to get a job to provide more income for both my husband and I, and to also start paying off my school loans. I know we will be alright, but I worry a lot that I can’t do this. I have never worked a real job, blessings all around to my friends and, especially, my family for making it possible to focus solely on school. I keep looking on apps and online at potential jobs, re-working my resume, gathering and making a portfolio of all my published works, etc.

To those who have been following my journey as a blogger; I appreciate you, always!

Happy Curl, Happy Girl

Signing off,

Curly Island Girl

Change.

Alooooooha.

I am BACK!

I am officially a college graduate and a wife!!! I am also not in the islands right now. In the next month or so I will be back, but for now I am in the PNW (Pacific Northwest). It’s much too cold for this island girl, but I am enjoying the low humidity (my hair is pretty fantastic).

Graduation was amazing. I worked very hard for five years to get my Bachelors degree. Along the way there have been many hardships, but I have also made many connections and friendships (that I believe will last a lifetime). College is so much better than high school. In high school, I had friends. I still love these friends, but people change, and I only have two that have remained relatively close since then. Before I left Hawaiʻi, I had a conversation with the friends I made in college. We talked about how we hope we never forget each other, and I truly believe that I never will. The friends you make as an adult, may not change as much as the friends you made as a teenager and a child. Most of us have already gone through major changes and have transitioned into adult life, therefore, we should be pretty similar for the rest of our lives. Or at least I hope so. The ideals and insights we have made about ourselves and society at this age (albeit, we are still young) is something that I don’t see changing much in the future. I think that’s good. I think we are considerate, kind, loving, and caring individuals, and I hope that never changes. Mahalo nui loa to all the people who have contributed to my knowledge growth, my personal growth, and my social growth in these past 5 years. You are amazing people (you know who you are). I love you guys with all my pu’uwai (heart). Here are some pictures: In Hawaiʻi, we give lei at celebrations… Usually completely covering our entire head.

 

My wedding. My wedding was the most beautiful activity I have ever been a part of. It was small, oh, but it was perfection. I never imagined it to be that amazing. I felt so beautiful, and I felt so loved. I still do. Our parents (my husband and I) worked so hard and so quickly to send us off with love and many memories, and we are so equally grateful. We had a quick ceremony at the beach park that we met at almost 8 years ago. Then we had a reception that was so much fun. I do not regret anything about that day. The people who mattered were there (whether in spirit or in physical form) and that’s what made it perfect. My sister who is a growing photographer (not yet professional, but might as well be), took all the photos and they are so lovely. Check out her photography website here. My sister’s wonderful girlfriend did my hair! It was a rapunzel braid, complete with fresh flowers. It turned out exactly how I imagined it. She is also a talented at makeup, here is where you can find her YouTube channel. Thank you, thank you! My best friend drove me in her car, she remained a huge contributor to my bridal shower, my bachelorette party, and the wedding. She was so supportive and if I had bridesmaids, she would, hands down, have been my Maid of Honor. My mother. She suffered a stroke in early Fall of last year. Although her mobility in her left arm and leg is still currently very limited, she handled all the decorations and made everything as perfect as she could for her daughter.

So many family members and friends contributed to making my husband and I’s day so incredibly special. I could not thank them enough. You are beautiful people with beautiful souls.

 

Next time I blog, Iʻll go back into a normal-ish posting schedule. We are still going through moving process. I hope you enjoy my pictures, and Iʻll be back!

Happy Curl, Happy Girl

Signing off,

Curly Island Girl.

Time Moves Too Quickly…

Hello everyone. 

Some of you may be disappointed in me, and some of you may be relieved that I’m back! I know it’s been almost a month, and for that I sincerely apologize. I have been struggling with school and my personal life. For those who have been following me since the beginning, knew that this year was going to be a huge deal for me. Tomorrow, I will take my last final of my undergraduate career and this Saturday, May 11, 2018, I will graduate with my B.A. in English with double minors in Anthropology and Gender & Women’s Studies (and high honors!). Another exciting thing happening this week … my fiancé is coming home! He will be home for my graduation and the following weekend, we will be husband and wife.

A couple of days after the wedding, a big new journey will begin for me. I’ll be moving away from home, so I will have many new experiences to share with you! I’m going to try my best to blog these next couple of weeks… but if I don’t make it, now you know why. I may just have to wait til after the wedding and all the craziness dies down to sit comfortably and come up with some words to describe it all for you!

Here’s a recap of what has been going on in the month I’ve been away from Tales of a Curly Island Girl:

I got another tattoo to commemorate my new step into marriage, by permanently placing my maiden name on my ribcage. It did not hurt at all, probably because it was so small and that I have already been tattooed nine other times. I immediately told my fiancé that I now felt “ready to be his wife.” LOL.

I did my graduation photoshoot … and another photoshoot (but that one is a secret). It was so much fun! My sister is an amateur photographer but she is very talented for someone who never uses photoshop. One day Iʻll give you a link to her website! She’s currently working on one.

I had a bridal and a “bachelorette” party on the same day! My family and best friend threw me a bridal party at a small tea room in my town. It was so cute! Everyone sat on the ground on small pillows. We played games and had teacup/mug exchanges, along with an incredible display of desserts and small sandwiches. I had an amazing time. That same evening I went out to my favorite bar to meet with my close friends and a few family members. We spent the night talking stories, drinking, and enjoying each other’s company and presence. I am incredibly grateful for all the love I have received from all the people who are special to me.

Last week, I was awarded money for a submission I made to Gender & Women’s Studies Contest: Research Paper. My submission was my final paper to my Senior Seminar for Gender & Women’s Studies, titled, Women as Birthing Professionals: American Doula Work. I loved doing the research on the amazing women who stand alongside doctors/midwives and expecting mothers.

Lastly, if you have been following along in national news (I’m hoping they are correct, some have been spewing incorrect information), you have heard that my island has been in turmoil since April 30th. We had a series of hundreds of earthquakes in a very short amount of time, leading to one of the craters (called Puʻu ʻŌʻō) on our active volcano, Kīlauea, to collapse and push the magma down the East Rift Zone. This rift zone runs along a main residential area called Leilani Estates. On May 4th, the Big Island had two large earthquakes, the second being measured at 6.9. Thatʻs the largest earthquake the state has had in about 40 years. That earthquake caused Halemaʻumaʻu (the crater at the summit of Kīlauea) to erupt ash, and it has been slowly emptying of magma since then (my concern is, where is all Halemaʻumaʻuʻs lava going?). That same day, the first fissures erupted into the residential neighborhood I just mentioned. I havenʻt checked how many new fissures and active eruptions there are… but from what I can remember, I believe there are 9 within Leilani Estates and over 30 homes have been destroyed.

Many people around the state and the nation are watching us right now. Some have had very unkind words to say. Here is what I have to say about that: Native Hawaiians have direct genealogical ties to the land. Those who live in Puna (the moku or district that the eruptions are happening in) know that when and if Kīlauea ever erupts, they will get out of the way, and they have. They know that what they have built on the land that is being covered was not going to be there forever. However, it is still hurtful to hear and see those who are being insensitive to their plight tell them that “they shouldnʻt have built there.” They respect the land, and they respect Tūtū Pele as she makes her way along cleaning house on her land, however, that doesn’t mean that they donʻt hurt watching their family homes burn to the ground, or the forests where they ran and played when they were keiki be destroyed. Be kind. Don’t be cruel. If you donʻt understand the special connection to ʻāina (land) that Native Hawaiians have, do not mock and criticize. Ask if you really want to know. If not, mind your business, donʻt be nīele (curious or inquisitive) if you really donʻt want to listen.

Okay, when I come back, if its in the next two weeks or after it, I will let you all know how my graduation and my wedding went. Then I will transition back into my normal blogging! I have so many ideas for my Just Think About It Series. I also want to update everyone on my Curly Girl Method Series as well.

 

Have a wonderful rest of the week.

Happy Curl, Happy Girl

Signing off,

Curly Island Girl

I thought “This is It”

I’m sure you’ve heard of the scare Hawaiʻi just went through on saturday morning. I woke up to my iPhone alarm blaring at me. I thought it was just a flash flood warning…. but then I see this:

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 1.55.22 PM

I immediately called my fiancé, Iʻm actually surprised the call went through, because during this statewide panic the phone lines were flooded. He picked up on the first ring and I was panicking and in full hyperventilation. Heʻs in the military and he continued to tell me to relax and breathe. I was preparing myself to tell him my last goodbyes and “I love youʻs” with tears falling down my face. I ran outside and listened for our emergency nuclear missile sirens and none went off in my town. I turned on the radio and – nothing – I continued freaking out while he stayed on the phone with me.

This was it, I thought. This was all I got to do in my short life, (my happiest life hasn’t even started yet). My fiancé continued watching on his social media and on his phone for any news from the continental U.S. (where he is stationed). He then told me with relief that our congresswoman had tweeted that we were in fact not in harms way and that it was a mistake.

For half an hour, the state of Hawaiʻi panicked and there was chaos. An emergency mistake alert did not go out until half an hour after the initial danger alert was sent. The entire world watched as we panicked. Some prayed, some cried, some even laughed. That was the most scariest event of my entire life. In the event of a missile threat, Hawaiʻi was completely unprepared. We do not have shelters to protect us from a nuclear bomb, and if we do have bunkers from WWII era, we do not all have the luxury of being safe in there.

I read across social media the sadness of my friends holding their babies in bed, thinking that this was the last cuddle. I watched the panic on Mānoa campus ensue as students ran in terror. It was terrifying.

Coincidentally, saturday was also my childhood friendʻs wedding. She had the worst scare of her life, but it only put her half an hour behind schedule. Her wedding was still incredibly amazing. We cried and enjoyed her happiness, and the happiness surrounding us all with the craziness that morning. It turned out to be an amazing day and night, and as we went out to the bars and clubs, we decided we would “Live our best lives” because we can never know when the threat will be real.

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 2.08.22 PM

Hawaiʻi and itʻs government learned an important lesson that day, that we are unprepared and that we are grateful we still have more time on this Earth.

Happy Curl, Happy Girl

Signing out,

Curly Island Girl

My Last First-Day

Yesterday was the first day of Spring Semester 2018. This is my last semester of undergraduate school. I have so many thoughts. Half of it is joy (because I have big plans right after commencement), the other half is sadness. I have been a student at my local university/college for five years. I have made the greatest friends in my college career, thus far, and I can’t stand the fact that I’ll be gone soon.

I am an English major, double-minoring in Anthropology and Gender & Women’s Studies. I just picked up the GWS minor because most of my english courses were cross-listed with GWS. I love what I learn. I love learning. I love listening to my fellow classmates share their knowledge, which furthers my own knowledge.

The word, “Professional Student,” comes to my mind. I swear, all I know, is being a student. I’m pretty good at it too. I like the rush of first week of classes, the craziness of last-minute papers, and the madness of finals week. Students band together, and we share this special awareness of what goes on within classroom settings, boards, events, etc. I love that, that is what I will miss the most!

And of course, the scariness of having to finally join the workforce. And paying those loans off — YIKES. I have most certainly thought about graduate school. I haven’t applied yet, but I intend to. The application fee is so high, Ugh, and I need to take the GRE too. Anyone else struggled with that as a soon-to-be graduate or a fresh-out-of–undergrad-school student?

I know my thoughts are so scattered on this post but I feel like I have a lot to say, but not enough energy to write. I still haven’t done readings for my anthropology course tomorrow… so maybe I should get to that. I’ll try and come back again some time this week! An elementary friend of mines is getting married on Saturday! Maybe, I’ll share some pictures of her wedding.

It’s been a pretty fantastic start to the new year (other than my sister’s car window being broken and my purse being stolen on the 1st) so far. I hope yours is going pretty great too!

Happy Curl, Happy Girl

Signing out,

Curly Island Girl 

Hauʻoli makahiki hou (Happy New Year!)

Itʻs 2018! This is gonna be an incredible year for me. Yesterday, my family and I went hiking to a waterfall/river area called Narnia. We were gone for about 3-4 hours, and when we came back to the cars parked outside, there was trouble. My sister’s Civic (it’s rather new) was broken into. The window on the passenger side was completely shattered… and MY PURSE WAS GONE. Albeit, it was an ugly old brown purse, that costed around $20, so it wasn’t a complete loss. However, my wallet was in there, and there went my driver’s license, debit card, Starbucks card (I’m a gold member, YES I AM IN LOVE WITH STARBUCKS), and about $40 of cash. Whoever it was who stole my purse, also got my deodorant, my pareo, a sports bra, floss, and some ibuprofen.

I laughed after making the police report because they stole from a person who had nothing. Whoever it was is gonna be so hygienic! haha. My sister’s window is much more expensive to repair than the things I lost. But, I’ve cancelled and reordered all brand new cards and I just got my replacement driver’s license today.

Even if my New Year’s Day ended with a junk situation, I still had a wonderful day, and I still wholeheartedly believe this year will be amazing.

Mahalo nui for visiting!

Happy curl, Happy girl

Signing out,

Curly Island Girl