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  • Mariela Gomez

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When faced with challenges, I turn on a switch I don't even know I sometimes have.


No matter what comes my way, I always know that the show (life) must and will go on. That's sort of how I've always lived my life.


Grief is an unexplainable feeling. When my dad passed away, I was destroyed, and it felt as if the whole world had come down on me. I took time off from work, cried for weeks, and slept for entire days, and I allowed myself to dwell.


I allowed myself to swim in pain. However, I did not let myself drown in despair.


My family is my heart, and they are the fuel to my life.


Before my dad passed away, I was working hard every day. I graduated in December of 2020 and decided to take a gap year to realign my focus before applying to grad school. I wanted to slow down and reflect, so I did just that. But that didn't last long. After two months of graduating, I knew what I wanted to do- pursue journalism. I was motivated and had this fire burning inside of me. I vigorously began looking into schools and programs of my interest and eventually began setting up 1:1's with advisors and professionals in the industry.


I was working as a content manager for a beauty salon (where I still work), interning at the court as a mediator, and taking informational meetings between my job and internship.


I was doing what I knew how to do best; utilizing all the resources at my disposal.


In early March, my dad began showing signs of sickness. I decided to go back home to be with my family. I was working from home, setting up doctor's appointments for my dad, translating hospital papers, picking up medicine, anything and everything I could do, I would do.


No one knew how tired and defeated I was feeling.


What I have learned about growth is that you have to accept that you will get knocked on your feet before you even stand.


Life will knock you down on all fours, at least; that's what I felt.


In late March, my dad passed. I was devastated, but I knew life had to go on. I had a zoom meeting three days after he died. So, I wiped the tears that rolled down my cheeks, and I joined my zoom meeting.


Who knew a simple zoom meeting could hold so much meaning. I rose when I felt like I couldn't even stand. The person on the other side of the screen had a significant impact on me. She probably didn't even know it, but she gave me hope—the kind of hope I desperately needed. This zoom experience deserves its own blog, so I will share it when I am ready.


So why do I write this today? To remind you and myself that we are strong. Whatever we go through, we can overcome.


Picture Credit: Shutterstock


Always,

Mari

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