According to My Mother

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Photo by Phil Hearing on Unsplash

We began to speak over the candles, over the orange and white carnations, and to my grandmother’s picture that was sitting beneath my aunt’s cross. My aunt had set up a small memorial for us to gather around in, in her tiny one bedroom apartment she had shared, with my 3 cousins and my uncle, for the past 20 years. My grandmother passed away on Friday, February 8, en route to a hospital in a small village in Guerrero, Mexico. She was 80, and still had braids that reached her feet. She died in her own country, in the arms of her son. …


Small Name. Big Soul.

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Veronica Huerta Foster

Who are you?

My name is Veronica, and I am currently a security guard, student, and freelance writer, mostly on Medium, but I also write for some SEO work. As an ex-Grubhub driver, I know my city, Los Angeles, like the back of my hand! I love driving around at night through downtown LA and listening to hip-hop or deep house music.

I grew up in Burbank, CA, a small cookie-cutter town that screams Edward Scissorhands (probably because Tim Burton grew up there too).

I love the old-timey and movie vibe of it, but life has now brought me to the South Bay area, and I love it here! I have been, in my lifetime, a waitress, an EMT, a psych assistant, and also an electronics technician in the Navy where I finished as an E-5. My best accomplishment, however, is being a piano player since age six and a poet. …


LA will Never be the Same

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Kobe Bryant after Winning 5th Championship

Kobe’s House. The Grammy’s venue. Staples Center. I drove by it and saw a woman in a silk white shawl and contoured dress, waiting for her Uber on the grid locked corner of Fig and 9th. Around her, a crowd of several men in modern purple tuxedos waited also, including a guy wearing a sequin pink suit, and two girls walking up the street in silver sparkling dresses and Gucci bags. Yet, I felt no sense of luxury or celebration with the onlookers in the crowd, on Olympic Blvd., …


After I was raped I blamed my body to the point of wanting to cut my hands off

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Image: cure plus/Flickr

In September 2016, after heavy drinking at a party, I found myself barely conscious and wondering what had happened to me for the next few days. I felt something was incredibly wrong with my body. I was 21 and naive. Of all places, at a party full of so-called friends, I never thought my body could be violated right under my nose while blacked out and unconscious. My co-worker, of all people, told me days later that he saw me stumble out of an alleyway, followed by two men who attended the party and then fled. I passed out.

My mother always used to say that the dreams I had meant I could tell the future—I was a psychic and a clairvoyant with a pure spirit. After my rape, I didn’t feel pure anymore. My premonitions stopped, and I began to have nightmares where cockroaches as big as rats would swarm my room and crawl up my legs to my arms and onto my hands. Of course. Why would the universe choose me to share its information when I had let her down? I had let her so down. I had been weak and drunk and violated. …


Unseen: The Getty Center’s New Photography Exhibition, and the Fascinating Story Behind It

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Henry Holmes Smith (American, 1909–1986) Title/Date: Photography Student, 1947 Culture: American Medium: Gelatin silver print Dimensions: Image: 11.4 × 9.6 cm (4 1/2 × 3 3/4 in.) Mount: 25.5 × 19.5 cm (10 1/16 × 7 11/16 in.) Accession №2004.175.18 Copyright: © J. Paul Getty Trust Object Credit: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, Gift of the Smith Family Trust

“This is exactly what we wanted,” a visitor named Kelly told me as she walked by past the bustling crowd, holding her young daughter by one hand, and holding a camera in the other, “really, really it’s awesome.” Her excitement came rightfully so, as she was astounded by the fine quality and utter selection of photographs displayed at the Getty Center’s latest photography exhibition: Unseen: 35 Years of Collecting Photographs, which celebrates the exhibition’s 35th year at the Getty Center in Los Angeles.

What makes the collection so entertaining, illustrious, and awe provoking is the sheer amount of different mediums, artists, subject matter, even time periods that are displayed in the collection. The new exhibition features never before seen photographs from the Getty’s vaults that were hand selected by curators, such as Amanda Maddox, that include deeply personal and powerful insights by these respected curators on every photograph on display. Among the photographers in the exhibition are Man Ray, William Eggleston, Horst P. Horst, Henry Holmes Smith, and contemporary artists such as Korean born Myoung Ho Lee and Japanese native Osamu Shiihara just to name a few. …


My Most Prized Possession Fell to the Bottom of the Sea

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There was the furniture, the books and mangas, and my Japanese kimono my cousin got me while deployed, when he was 23 and I was 9. There were my stuffed animals, my designer pillows and colorful, beaded throws that were bought in a feeble attempt to make my city apartment feel as if it were an island getaway. There was my countless perfumes and stacks of bath and body lotion, some stuck inside ice cold bottles and untouched since their purchase. Speaking of bottles, there were the countless beer growlers, empty Sailor Jerry rum vessels, cartoon Mountain Dew bottles, and cans in a pile in the kitchen that I had failed to recycle. …


“Do not anticipate trouble, or worry about what may never happen. Keep in the sunlight.”

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In this hectic, time crunched world, it’s so easy to forget about the inner worlds of our children. It’s so easy to forget that they, too, feel as strongly, if not more so, than us. It’s so easy to dismiss their troubled and anxious minds as nothing more than imagination, or mini dramas. However, as I experienced growing up, anxiety has some very real and long lasting effects the more it gets embedded into the minds of children. They become adults with panic disorders, trust issues, and long lasting habits and cognitive behaviors that are not easily undone.

To prevent this life of suffering in adulthood, we must be proactive and take the thoughts and mental health of our children seriously. We mustn’t ignore the signs that may be so blatant, yet easily dismissed. Here are 5 signs that I myself experienced growing up, and that may signal growing anxiety in children. …


Putting a Name to, and Stopping the Fear

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There are moments when I think to myself about all the times I felt my breath leave my body. I think about all the times I knew I was going crazy. I knew I was going to die. I knew I was about to have all my thoughts spill out onto the concrete, in the middle of the crowd, like an overflowing box of jigsaw puzzle pieces that had no need to be in disarray. …


Who Benefits Most May Surprise You

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Two things in life are guaranteed: death and taxes. However, the benefits from these taxes coincide with the prolonging of death in the now aging and growing retired baby boomer population. These "boomers" are the primary beneficiaries of all the taxes paid by those considered middle-class and upper-class that contribute to the social security bubble.

And yes, it is the middle-class that receives the most benefits, but also the ones that primarily pay into social security for the elderly along with upper-class taxpayers. However, as mentioned in the text Pearson Politics in America, "All wage income is subject to the Medicare tax, but wage income above a certain level—$128,700 in 2018—is not subject to Social Security taxes" meaning middle-class taxpayers pay more by ratio than the top 50% of income taxpayers considered upper middle or upper class. …


How TV Extra Autumn Nicks Finds Magic in the Blurs

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“You ever see the blonde blur in the background walking back and forth on TV? Yeah that’s me!” Autumn Nicks tells me enthusiastically. “Yeah, the back of my head is in a lot of things” she jokes. I laugh and we converse in awe together, about the ups, downs, magic, setbacks, and everything in between that comes behind the scenes of television. To be a TV extra, Autumn Nicks has taught me, is a tough, but extremely fun and rewarding gig. When it comes down to it, she can’t think of anything more fun to do on her days off from her other job, the one that we both share: providing security for million dollar art at the Getty Museum. Our one color uniforms are a far cry from the set and makeup she’s used to, the glamour of getting ready, the franticness of the crew. “Yesterday, I kept turning around to see Edie Falco,” she says, “You mean Nurse Jackie Edie Falco?!” I yell, barely holding back my excitement of the infamous Nurse Jackie having graced my friend Autumn’s presence. “Yeah, that Edie Falco.” It dawned on me, then, that I had much to learn about the hierarchy, culture, and dynamics of the production of television. …

About

Veronica Huerta Foster

Photographer. Former Sailor. EMT/Psych worker. Poet. Captivated from the start.

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