Ana's Moment of Catharsis

Ana opens up about her experience during the flower ritual.

"On the road from the City of Skepticism, I had to pass through the Valley of Ambiguity."-Adam Smith

Sometimes my skepticism borders on cynicism. On our last day in Bimini, my patience had worn thin and the cynic in me was front and center. All I wanted was to get off that island. The tribe had spoken and I wanted to go home.

What started out as a silly ritual became the most cathartic moment for me this season. I think we all have our dragons to slay, and my dragon doesn’t seem so scary anymore. A lot of the guilt and fear I was carrying around drifted into the ocean that day.  I left Bimini a lot stronger emotionally and even a little hopeful about my future.

Signing the divorce papers was tough. Closing the door on something that defined you for so long is never easy. It has been several months and I am at peace with the decision. No second guesses. No could’ve, should’ve, would’ve. Robert and I continue to co-parent our girls and help each other in any way we can. It works for us and that is all that matters.

At the core of this season were our ever-evolving relationships -- we saw them begin and fizzle out, we saw them end only to begin again, we struggled to hold on, and struggled to let go. We’ve all had our share of heartache this season, but we also experienced a healthy dose of joy. We made new friends, strengthened existing friendships, burned bridges, and waged unnecessary wars. We all did and said things that made us proud and others that perhaps we regret. I believe that feelings both of happiness and pain let us know that we are alive -- and being alive is a really wonderful thing.  

I also learned about the benefits of social media and how it can be a great way to connect with amazing people all over the world. But I’ve also seen the pitfalls of and witnessed the abuse by those who use it as a tool to elevate themselves at the expense of others. Things like fake Twitter followers, fake Facebook accounts, and blog posters with many aliases are rampant across the franchise. Who knew? I have been lucky to have the unwavering support of so many of you, and for that I am so very grateful. While I may not have enjoyed hearing criticism, I have carefully considered many of your valid points and advice. No one is harder on me than I am on myself, so in the spirit of self-preservation I did my best to ignore some of the more gratuitously offensive rants.I hope you will continue to share your thoughts with me via Twitter @AnaQooks or via the contact page on my website at anaquincoces.com where I will continue to blog and post recipes.

Wishing all of you a beautiful holiday season filled with peace and surrounded by the love of your family and friends.
Here’s a traditional Coquito recipe (our version of eggnog) to add a little Christmas cheer to your holidays.

Coquito

Ingredients:
2 large egg yolks
1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk
1 (14 ounce) can cream of coconut
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
2/3 cup rum
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions
Lightly beat the egg yolks and place in a double boiler with the evaporated milk. Whisking constantly, cook over simmering water stirring continuously until slightly thickened. Allow to cool to room temperature. Place the mixture in the blender, add the cream of coconut, condensed milk, rum, vanilla, and ground cinnamon. Pour into decorative glass bottles and chill until ready to serve.

Salud!

Until next time,
Ana

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