“You suck!” and other constructive criticism that is always offered

FIRST OFF, I WANT TO APOLOGIZE TO ANYONE THAT I HAVE EVER HURT IN MY LIFE INTENTIONALLY OR UNINTENTIONALLY. People change and have a bad habit of not telling each other that we’ve changed. I am not perfect and I know I’ve hurt some people before. I do try very hard not to but I am human and mess up from time to time. So, if I’ve hurt you and apologized for it, know that I am genuine. If I’ve hurt you and didn’t realize I did, I am so very sorry. If I apologized, and you never forgave me… I’m still sorry. No need to come back into my life if you feel it is unnecessary/uncomfortable. Maybe God meant for us to go different directions.

This entry is rather long and has been in draft mode since about the middle of 2014… I took a lot of time with this one. It has little to do with ridding the world of cancer or how to run a marathon or train for a triathlon… but it has the most critical ingredient for doing everything in your life to the best of your ability.


I remember Momma telling me that she was grateful for some of the things that cancer made her aware of. She said it taught her what was really important in life. It taught her how to say “NO” to the things that were not priority. It taught her about faith, family and friends. It taught her about the importance of forgiveness.

Not too long ago, I did a little experiment in forgiveness. Remembering her words, I asked for forgiveness from those whom I thought I had wronged for one reason or another. I’ll be honest, many of the times, I had no clue what it was that I did that made them hate me so much but I thought it was the right thing to do in this journey of mine in order to continue forward.

The responses from them were shocking but I had prepared myself for anything so I knew whatever it was that came back to me, I would take to heart and use it to make myself better. Just like in pageants, I went into it knowing I was giving these people the opportunity to judge me and hoping that I could use their feedback to make me a better person.

I straight up asked for forgiveness for anything that I had done wrong to them and asked them to tell me what it was that I did so that I could correct it.  Weird thing was that… NOT ONE of them said I had done anything wrong to them. They said they just didn’t like me any more. They liked me when I was sad and when things in my life were falling apart but once I found happiness and conquered my struggles, they no longer saw a reason to befriend me.

I was listening to satellite radio not too long ago… it was the morning mash up on Sirius with Taylor Swift. What she said was brilliant about the masses criticizing her. They had asked her if she took all the criticism that was given to her seriously. Taylor responded in the exact same way that  I did. If the criticism came from someone credible with valuable critiques, she did her best to make those suggested changes. However she noticed that some of the criticizers said things mostly because they saw something in her that scared them, intimidated them or came from an angry foundation within that person.

Swift knows that she can’t please everyone, no matter how many records she sells or awards she wins.

“When you do what I do, which is you put yourself out there for a lot of people to say whatever they want, there’s a million different opinions,” she told E! News. “I get that, no matter what, you’re going to be criticized for something.”

But, according to Swift, there’s a difference between criticism and hate.

“But I also get that there are different kinds of ways to criticize someone. There’s constructive criticism, there’s professional criticism — and then there’s just being mean” she said. “And there’s a line that you cross when you just start to attack everything about a person.”

Very true, Taylor!

As I searched on for ways to deal with this type of behavior, I kept finding that silence is the best way to handle it. “You can’t change people who don’t think what they’re doing is wrong,” I was told.

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People don’t come with warning labels tattooed on their foreheads that tell you they are currently struggling with anger issues, or are in their manic stage of being bipolar or are in the deep ruins of depression, addiction or… whatever it is that they are dealing with. Humans are strange beings and complicated. We have a tendency to think that all other beings think the way we do individually and many times – most of the time – it really isn’t the case.

It wasn’t until recently that I discovered that people who have even the slightest bit of a chemical imbalance or mental instability can be easily knocked into a place of anxiety, irritability, anger and other mood swings simply by taking wrong dosages of prescribed drugs, self medicating, too much pre-workout shakes or coffee. I happened to be at the wrong place at the wrong time when someone who was tackling this problem went through their swing.

Although it hurt tremendously when I was a recipient of the anger outlash, I also know that their actions came from a deep place that I was never a part of and I simply unintentionally ignited a trigger for them to react the way they did. They will never apologize to me because in their mind, they think they have done nothing wrong or behaved inappropriately. Examining my own behavior, I try to ask/answer to myself if I was in a state of unhealthy emotion and maybe taken their behavior to a completely exaggerated level because I was sad, agitated, sleepy, exhausted, etc. and this could be something that was all concocted in my head. Saying hateful things to another when in a state of anger is no excuse but realizing that when at least one of the parties involved was a little bit off that day, it makes it easier for me to deal with and forgive… and offer even more friendship.

I get hate mail occasionally and can now take a step back and recognize that the people who are saying these things – the really bad things (granted some of my haters have reason to dislike me and I respect that) have had quite a bit of history with their temper and saying some pretty nasty things without apology.

So when I saw a friend of mine torn to shreds by cyber bullies, I picked her up with some pretty vicious quotes that were offered to me as to give her some perspective on how cyber bullies work. I think she appreciated it and giggled when I told her, “My haters are the coolest haters in the world! We must have yours meet up with mine so they can have coffee and discuss further.”

I also mentioned that my haters had a habit of “unfriending” me on facebook but follow me on other social media…

*now, I don’t talk about my day job here – I’m an interwebby nerd aka Social Media Manager, a PR and Marketing manager that specializes in internet technology – so I can see a lot of stuff that most cannot on the net on a regular day to day basis. It’s my job to do so.

So I can see that they view all the stuff I post on other sites. I am pretty active on facebook, twitter, instagram, etc. and this blog. If you’re a follower or friend, It’s pretty easy to see what I’m doing, how I’m feeling, how my training is coming along, etc. because I’m pretty candid.  But there are also certain sites that I use for my work clients in addition to my personal stuff  (i.e. for their visual graphics, quotes, gifs and other cool stuff that I repost on client sites).

I shared with my beat up cyberbullied friend that when my haters become unmanageable, I will jump onto pinterest or another frequented site and start posting about Jeffery Dahmer. They seem to settle down after that and keep a distance. Heh! Wouldn’t you??? (Ok, that’s a joke and I really don’t do that – but am guilty of posting some pretty funny tongue in cheek stuff that they would understand and get them embarrassed enough to stop their gossiping)

My point being is that if you know someone is being unreasonable and going over the line with gossip about you, it’s ok for you to feel hurt but don’t let it keep you down. Some people are mean. That’s it. They’re just plain ol’ mean. Some people are mean all the time. Some people are mean when they’re triggered by certain memories, certain foods, certain chemicals… but most of the time, their meanness has nothing to do with the person they take it out on.

If you find yourself being a target of people like this, please know that their behavior is rarely because of you as a person. But take care of yourself, shelter yourself and your emotions and don’t let their hate make you like them.

It was then that I saw Cassey Ho stand up for herself against the hate remarks. She wasn’t silent and she did it in an awesome way!!!

That’s when I knew I had to do the same… not just for me but for anyone else who has been told

YOU SUCK

You’re too fat to run a marathon

You’re too slow

Why do you even bother to run a marathon if you can’t finish in “x” hours?

You aren’t embarrassed when people see you like that in spandex? I would be!

Honey, you need to do more squats.

You should work on your core more.

Don’t you think you’re too old for this?

If you collected all the money you spent on races and triathlons, you could have paid a plastic surgeon to do a hell of a better job on you.

You’re just in a midlife crisis looking for attention.

After all those races that you do, you should be in better shape.

and then there’s the gossip said behind my back…

She’s so fake

She lies about her pace time

(and then there’s the gossip too mean to even post here… because I’d hate for my children to find out about that and shame on those gossipers who never thought about that or worse… don’t really care about how their words affect people other than just me)

When people say things like this about my body and me – personally, it hurts me. And honestly, I think they intend to do that. But what takes me over the edge completely is when they talk about the reason I do this.

One of THE most hurtful hate mails I have ever received. It was hurtful because she made me feel like all I've done, all that my teammates have done, all that the survivors that have been by my side all along, doesn't matter. And worse, that they don't care to get better.

One of THE most hurtful hate mails I have ever received. It was hurtful because she made me feel like all I’ve done, all that my teammates have done, all that the survivors that have been by my side all along, doesn’t matter. And worse, that they don’t care to get better.

Making a mockery of the money that I have raised, the events I’ve participated in, the organizations I’ve supported is low enough… but saying that these people “don’t really want to fight cancer” is preposterous.

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My TNT Super Heros!!! Christa Emig and Eric Cooper (*I tweeted this pic to MK who I later sneaked up on the next day)

My TNT Super Heros!!! Christa Emig and Eric Cooper (*I tweeted this pic to MK who I later sneaked up on the next day)

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David Mendez, 52, beloved son, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend entered into eternal rest on Sunday, January 19, 2014, at his residence in Arroyo City, Texas, surrounded by his loving family after a valiant battle against lymphoma.  A native and lifetime resident of Brownsville, David was well-known not only in Brownsville but across the Rio Grande Valley and the state of Texas due to his talents as an architect. David was a partner with Gomez, Mendez, and Saenz, a distinguished architectural firm known throughout the Valley and State. David’s name can be found all across the Valley and State on the countless schools and buildings that he worked on. David was proud to have served as the President of the Lower Rio Grande Valley Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. David’s accomplishments and community involvement are too numerous to mention as he was quite active not only in Brownsville but throughout Cameron County serving on different boards. In his spare time, David was an avid outdoorsman whose passion was fishing, which is why he drove in from Arroyo City where he lived every day. That passion for fishing, led him to establish the Hooked for Life Kids Gone Fishing Foundation several years ago. David strongly believed in the proverb, “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”  David was deeply loved and will be profoundly missed not only by his family and friends but by all those who were fortunate to have known him. David was preceded in death by his loving mother, Esperanza Hinojosa Mendez; a brother, Roberto Mendez, Jr.; and a nephew, Nicolas “Nico” Benavides. Left behind to eternally treasure their memories of him is his father, Roberto C. Mendez; the daughters that were his pride and joy, Erica (Jamie Figueroa) Mendez and Ashley (Andres Guerrero) Mendez; the granddaughter that was the apple of his eye, Natalie Hope Guerrero; his sisters and brother, Margie (Felipe) Beltran, Yvette (Juan) Rey, Monica (Rudy) Buitureira, Cesar (Nancy) Mendez, and Yolanda (Rafael) Leal. David will also be missed by his nieces and nephews, Bobby Beltran, Miguel Rey, Rico (Amy) Benavidez, Vanessa Beltran, Monique Rey, Alejandra Mendez, Brianna Buitureira, Carolina Mendez, Bianca Buitureira, and Cesar Daniel Mendez; two great-nephews, Brandon Rico and Bradley Benavidez; and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, and other extended family members.  Visitation will begin at 10:00 a.m. today, Wednesday, January 22, 2014, and continue through 4:00 p.m. Visitation will resume at 5:00 p.m. and continue through 9:00 p.m. with the recitation of the holy rosary scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 555 West St. Francis St., Brownsville. The Funeral Mass will be at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, January 23, 2014, at St. Joseph’s. All services will conclude after the Mass and in accordance with David’s wishes, cremation will follow. David’s favorite color was yellow. The family respectfully requests that you wear something in any shade of yellow to the services.  Rene Capistran, Rudy Gomez, Joey Lopez, Dr. Ruben M. Torres Jr., M.D., Joe Touchet, and Manny Vasquez are honored to be serving as David’s pallbearers. David’s brother, Cesar; his brothers-in-law, Felipe, Juan, and Rudy along with Roan Gomez, Isaac Ochoa, Rolando Borrayo, Johnny Rodriguez, Dr. Nolan Perez, Manny Vela, and the Hooked for Life Executive and Advisory Boards will serve as honorary pallbearers.  In lieu of flowers and in keeping with David’s passion for fishing, memorial gifts in David’s name may be made to the foundation he started: Hooked for Life, 1800 E. Van Buren Street, Brownsville, Texas 78520.

David Mendez, 52, beloved son, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend entered into eternal rest on Sunday, January 19, 2014, at his residence in Arroyo City, Texas, surrounded by his loving family after a valiant battle against lymphoma.
A native and lifetime resident of Brownsville, David was well-known not only in Brownsville but across the Rio Grande Valley and the state of Texas due to his talents as an architect. David was a partner with Gomez, Mendez, and Saenz, a distinguished architectural firm known throughout the Valley and State. David’s name can be found all across the Valley and State on the countless schools and buildings that he worked on. David was proud to have served as the President of the Lower Rio Grande Valley Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
David’s accomplishments and community involvement are too numerous to mention as he was quite active not only in Brownsville but throughout Cameron County serving on different boards. In his spare time, David was an avid outdoorsman whose passion was fishing, which is why he drove in from Arroyo City where he lived every day. That passion for fishing, led him to establish the Hooked for Life Kids Gone Fishing Foundation several years ago. David strongly believed in the proverb, “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
David was deeply loved and will be profoundly missed not only by his family and friends but by all those who were fortunate to have known him.
David was preceded in death by his loving mother, Esperanza Hinojosa Mendez; a brother, Roberto Mendez, Jr.; and a nephew, Nicolas “Nico” Benavides.
Left behind to eternally treasure their memories of him is his father, Roberto C. Mendez; the daughters that were his pride and joy, Erica (Jamie Figueroa) Mendez and Ashley (Andres Guerrero) Mendez; the granddaughter that was the apple of his eye, Natalie Hope Guerrero; his sisters and brother, Margie (Felipe) Beltran, Yvette (Juan) Rey, Monica (Rudy) Buitureira, Cesar (Nancy) Mendez, and Yolanda (Rafael) Leal. David will also be missed by his nieces and nephews, Bobby Beltran, Miguel Rey, Rico (Amy) Benavidez, Vanessa Beltran, Monique Rey, Alejandra Mendez, Brianna Buitureira, Carolina Mendez, Bianca Buitureira, and Cesar Daniel Mendez; two great-nephews, Brandon Rico and Bradley Benavidez; and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, and other extended family members.
Visitation will begin at 10:00 a.m. today, Wednesday, January 22, 2014, and continue through 4:00 p.m. Visitation will resume at 5:00 p.m. and continue through 9:00 p.m. with the recitation of the holy rosary scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 555 West St. Francis St., Brownsville. The Funeral Mass will be at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, January 23, 2014, at St. Joseph’s. All services will conclude after the Mass and in accordance with David’s wishes, cremation will follow. David’s favorite color was yellow. The family respectfully requests that you wear something in any shade of yellow to the services.
Rene Capistran, Rudy Gomez, Joey Lopez, Dr. Ruben M. Torres Jr., M.D., Joe Touchet, and Manny Vasquez are honored to be serving as David’s pallbearers. David’s brother, Cesar; his brothers-in-law, Felipe, Juan, and Rudy along with Roan Gomez, Isaac Ochoa, Rolando Borrayo, Johnny Rodriguez, Dr. Nolan Perez, Manny Vela, and the Hooked for Life Executive and Advisory Boards will serve as honorary pallbearers.
In lieu of flowers and in keeping with David’s passion for fishing, memorial gifts in David’s name may be made to the foundation he started: Hooked for Life, 1800 E. Van Buren Street, Brownsville, Texas 78520.

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Sissy

Sissy

Yes, that hurts. I’ve gotten to know each of these and many many, too many others who are also “fighting cancer” and I can tell you from the deepest part of my heart… they aren’t faking it. They’re fighting it … or they fought it with all they had.

After asking these people who hurt me, why they did the things they did… one REALLY surprised me saying that if I’m willing to put myself out there, I’m automatically giving the public permission to judge me. (*in a way, I get this, but what I don’t get is the next thing she said) She considered herself a really good friend of mine because by telling me that she and a few others had been talking behind my back and  mocking me, that I should not let it bother me because eventually it would make me a better person.

What the…???? Ya, now you see.

So when this same group of people continue to speak non-sense of me with ill intent and others come to me to let me know, I have a hard time saying in a nice way that some of these people are a bit off their rocker. I am better able to cope with gossipers, haters, bullies and word vomit from the peanut gallery. But it still hurts.

I enter as many events that I possibly can. Yes, there have been a lot of them. More than most people do for a cause. I do events and fundraise/participate in global, national, state, regional, community, local organizations and non-profits and individual fundraisers for friends of mine or family members/friends of friends.

I do this because I want to help with the things that my mother identified gaps in: helping local people who have a need and are coping with cancer, helping the caretakers of those people, making sure that everyone has access to affordable treatment, finding a cure and finding the cause.

I help local AND national/worldwide funds because, lets face it… there are no medical or science labs that are located in the Valley that can find the cure or find the cause.

The majority of my participation in events has been with LLS because it was Sissy’s last request for me to run for her. She had a blood cancer, the type of cancer that LLS specializes in. I’ve also participated and helped with many, many others.

Now, I know what I’ve done and why I do this. Clearly, this bully didn’t and she has her own perception of me. I was told a long time ago to just not defend myself or try to reason with her because

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So now, today, I am in awe of the way that Cassey Ho gracefully made her point. She changed herself to fit what the haters wanted but then SHE wasn’t happy inside. If I change myself to become what my haters tell me to become like, then I won’t be fulfilling the promise that I made in the first place. And we all know, it won’t make them happy. They’ll just find something else or someone else to be complaining about. Happy people just don’t say things like this at all.

Oh… and P.S. I don’t post and blog for attention. I’m in MARKETING, PR AND ADVERTISING. This is my field of occupation. I know better than to think I’ll get my story heard by those who need it if I just keep my head down and mouth shut. I’m not spilling my guts about my races to brag or compete against YOU. It’s to share my experiences so that I keep it from eating me up inside, start the conversation so that we all learn together from each other, grow as a healthy population towards a world without cancer.

Oh.. and another P.S. the next time that girl with acrylic nails, frosted highlights and three feet of mac lip stick and a maxed out credit card filled with botox tells you that I’m “fake”, just smile at her and remember the picture posted above.

Ok… the last P.S…. don’t let the haters get the best of you either. Ok? You’re better than that.

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One Response to ““You suck!” and other constructive criticism that is always offered”

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