During pharmacy school, I spent my spare time browsing through blogs to gather inspiration. I would save and pin ideas for my “future dream home” or daydream about the “luxury vacations” I’d be able to take once I was “making that pharmacist money.” I would obsess over professional attire inspiration outfits and spend all my leftover student loan money on trying to replicate these looks from the very limited selection of stores Tallahassee had to offer.
I lived my life through rose colored glasses and believed that everything would figure itself out once I had that degree.
Looking back now, my time could have been better spent preparing myself to enter the workforce. A beautiful home, picture-perfect vacations and compliment-worthy outfits taught me nothing about “adulting.”
Adulting (noun): the practice of behaving in a way characteristic of a responsible adult, especially the accomplishment of mundane but necessary taskOxford dictionary
The lie was that I looked put together on the outside, all while knowing absolutely nothing that was practical or relevant to “adulting.” I immigrated to the US the after my fourth birthday in 1995. My family and I became part of the Cuban exile community in Kendall, a Miami suburb. You see, as a child immigrant, my knowledge of “adulting” was limited to the Cuban exile community and this wasn’t necessarily the most comprehensive outlook for the world of today (blog post to follow).
I now live within a mile radius of my parents (as every good Cuban daughter should) with my high school sweetheart turned husband and our adorable doodles, Bruce and Wayne (more on them later).
Mortar and Pastel is a play on mortar and pestle. A mortar and pestle is used in medicine by pharmacist to grind medications, in the kitchen to blend herbs or to make the popular Puerto Rican dish of mofongo. When I think of a mortar and pestle, it brings about my passion for pharmacy and my new-found love of food. I swapped the word “pestle” in exchange for “pastel” for my love of light, bright and airy feminine interior design style (and pastelitos, of course).
Side-note: I’m embarrassed to admit but it wasn’t until I moved out of my parents’ house at the young age of twenty-one to start pharmacy school that I was even open to trying new foods, let alone cook.
So if you are in your late twenties reading this, I hope that we can continue to go through life together. If you’re in college or high school, I want to congratulate you for being so “woke.” Honestly, you are much more in tune with your inner self than my shallow self ever was. I’ve grown up a lot over the years and would be using this platform to share my experiences.
As I live out the last years of my twenties and prepare myself for the next decade of life, I want to live my life with more intention. I want to do more things that bring me true joy (thank you, Marie Kondo). I want to feel as though I am living my best life, rather than checking things off my to-do list (this part is hard because I love me a good to-do list!).
I want to live a more practical but fulfilling life, a life where I have a creative outlet and I’m able to share my successes and my frustrations, my lessons and failures, my knowledge and my growing pains. I want to reach women like me, women that get caught up in the whirl of materialism and mechanics of a busy life. Women can learn from other women, even quiet and reserved ones like me.