Starting chemotherapy was a new awakening for me. It opened my eyes to just how serious of a battle my body will have. My surgery to remove cancer cells wasn’t healing as it should, so chemo was delayed for a couple of weeks. Just as I was to have surgery to implant a port catheter in my chest, which serves as a method to more easily transfer the chemo medications into the body, there was another delay caused by COVID-19. No non-emergency surgeries were to be allowed in hospitals, so my surgery was delayed for five more weeks. As soon as the COVID-19 regulations were lifted, the green light was given to implant the port catheter and chemo followed a few days later. My sister, Denise Williams Austin, arrived from her home in Houston to take me for round one of intense chemo. About a week later, she said she was taking me to Boca Chica Beach to energize my soul and my heart. This is my favorite place in the world and she knows it. Read the full story at themonitor.com
As a child, I always dreamed that one day I would be able to move out of my parents’ home and head straight for the “Big Apple.” In 2016 I got into drama school in New York City and a childhood dream was slowly becoming a reality. I packed my life away into three suitcases and my parents dropped me off at the airport. I walked through the security gate, my eyes were starting to swell with tears, and I turned around to wave goodbye to my parents before I embarked on my new journey. Now, four years and a master’s degree later, I’m quarantined in my overly priced apartment in New York City, 1,984 miles from San Juan, Texas, and 10,475,520 feet away from my loved ones and not a mere 6 feet, as recommended by the CDC. Read the full story at themonitor.com
My mother was never the type of person who bought movies. In fact, she hated it. When I’d ask for a movie as a kid, she always made a certain facial expression. She slightly furrowed her eyebrows, while giving half a smile, almost like she was mocking you. But to be fair, my dad constantly bought movies at flea markets and yard sales, so her reaction seemed appropriate. How could you want more when there’s already some in the house? I remember when my mother, my aunt, my cousins and I watched “Frontera” with Michael Peña and Eva Longoria. Because of the language barrier between the family, the movie was in Spanish, but we had the subtitles in English to suit everyone. Read the full story at themonitor.com
When I returned to McAllen to visit my parents the first week of March, I thought I’d only be here for a few days. A global pandemic had other plans for me. Eight weeks later — 56 days and counting — this is my new reality. This 28-year-old CNN reporter is back in her hometown, living with her parents, and a new sort of rhythm has set in. And what a different rhythm it is. I had just come off the heels of the experience of a lifetime as an embedded presidential campaign reporter for CNN. I spent a year covering Elizabeth Warren, attending all her public events, asking the Massachusetts senator questions every chance I got, and crisscrossing the country — sometimes visiting several states in a day. It couldn’t have been more frenzied or hectic. Read the full story at themonitor.com
I saw a young couple holding hands and strolling down the sidewalk on 10th Street with some groceries the other day. The guy was wearing a blue surgical facemask; the girl wasn’t wearing a mask of any kind. She was smiling. I assumed he was too, but I couldn’t tell. I know people who would call that girl wildly irresponsible, a public health risk and a bad example. Read the full story at themonitor.com
By Keely Lewis By some quirk of fate, my husband and I took a long-planned tour of Italy in October, never imagining that within four...
It was my brother’s 15th birthday on Wednesday, and we got him an Oreo ice cream cake from Dairy Queen (his favorite). After dinner,...
“Mom! I need to tell you something!” “Yes, baby,” I reply to my young son. There is a painful, dramatic long pause, as his brain formats the next sentence — or perhaps shuts down all together, rotten from hours of television. Read the full story at themonitor.com
I’m not myself, and that’s OK. On May 24, I’ll have worked as a journalist for a decade. That’s 3,650 days. Being a reporter is not...
For the past month I’ve said the exact same thing to every person I’ve interviewed when I meet them. “I’d shake, but they tell me I’m not supposed to anymore.” The other person invariably smiles and nods, and we both chuckle about the absurdity of not being able to shake hands. Usually we’ll talk for a minute about how strange everything’s gotten and how we hope it’ll be over soon. Read the full story at themonitor.com.