The Jeff and Jer Showgram is part of my life and my family. I have a great time doing what I do on the air from 6 to 10am with the people that I love Monday through Friday on KyXy 96.5.
BUT, over the last couple of years, I have been blessed to be able to talk to groups of people about my life and what I have done and what I have seen.
The picture above is from East Mesa Juvenile Detention Center. That’s me along with ex Padre Steve Finley and skateboard legend Willy Santos. I love talking to the kids at juvie and I’ve been fortunate to be able to be allowed in to “girl juvie” as well.
The dilemna I may be facing about whether or not I should keep the counseling job at McAlister despite the long hours is actually a good one to have. I’m doing the things that I love to do. From being on the radio in the morning in my hometown to working at McAlister Institute during the day in Chula Vista where I grew up and literally steps away from my mom’s home.
Unless, I become a famous rock star, counseling kids and talking with adults who want to get clean through recovery and treatment is probably what I’m going to be doing when I grow up.
The decision that will be made most likely today that will determine whether or not I can continue to work the long hours as of late is nothing to worry about.
I think I recently became aware of what I truly want to be doing in life. What I do and who I talk to, isn’t just at McAlister. I get calls and emails all day long and messages on Facebook all day from people that want to get clean or from their loved ones asking for help. I get at least one message a day from a complete stranger needing advice and I welcome it, because I love trying to help.
The reason why I can talk and give advice and listen is because I’m no angel. I started as a young teeenager (barely) and went decades of using and watching friends fall and brothers die. I have seen it all and through my life and experience, I can talk to anyone about anything when it comes to getting clean and the struggles of addiction and getting to sobriety.
I think the reason why I do this is because I miss my brothers and when I was much younger I had no idea on what to do to help them or myself, but now I think I do and the only way I can deal with the loss of Ray and Frank is to help others. I see my brothers face everyday when I talk to a group of people. I see and hear the same stories and see the same look I saw in my brothers so many years ago. I miss my brothers and maybe that’s one reason why I don’ t mind the long hours and I love the fact that I’m in the heart of Chula Vista where I have all my memories of Ray and Frank.
Yesterday, I had a really cool moment happen. I was on my 30 minute break from work at 6pm and I went to Jimmy’s for dinner. The busboy came up to me and said he met before about 2 years ago when his teacher at Castle Park brought him to the radio station to talk to me, because he was messing up. He shook my hand and told me he was doing well and he told me about how he was doing and told me about his family. He takes care of his mom and he’s not even 20.
He asked me about friends he was still seeing and how they are doing bad things. I spoke to him and gave him advice and then it clicked and a lightbulb truly went on and I realized this was what I was suppose to be doing and this was the town where I was suppose to be doing it in. CHULA VISTA!
So, today I meet with Jeanne McAlister to get her advice on whether to stay on as a counselor or not. Whatever she decides I think I will be part of the McAlister family for a very long time.
There is one reason why I wouldn’t mind NOT working those long hours other than being able to see and talk to my kids and my mom more often. That reason would be I would miss my best friend Anita.
I met Clark and Anita Bartram the day before Amber Dubois’ memorial service. Ever since then, I have been close with their family and I got close with Anita and with Clark’s blessing, she kind of became my best friend.
This is Clark and Anita together on the cover of IRONMAN magazine. You can see why she may like hanging out with me, it’s because Clark and I resemble eachother so much and we have the same build and muscle mass.
The reason why I love Clark and Anita is because one weekend after I first met them, they went to visit my mom.
Many people think when they see me with Anita that she’s my trainer, but she’s not. She only trains women and Clark only trains men. That’s a cool agreement they have with eachother.
So, if you’re a woman that wants to talk with Anita about working out, you should send her a message on Facebook. Search Anita Alvarado Bartram. OR you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward the email to her. Many of my friends already workout with her. I hope you do too.
As you can see above, Anita and Stevie Wonder are very close.
I like Anita because she yells at me a lot about stuff going on in my life from the girls I talk to–to things I do on the radio. One thing I love about Anita is that she has never got on my case at all or even said one word to me when I put on a couple of pounds. It reminds me that she’s my friend, because she’s my friend.
All this talk about McAlister and finally getting settled in on the radio has got me back to getting excited about THE HOPES AND DREAMS ACADEMY that Clark and I started about one year ago exactly.
In 2010, http://www.hopesanddreamsacademy.com did a lot of stuff for kids that are under privileged in San Diego. We took so many kids on trips and tours and talked to many kids locked up.
With Clark being so busy and with the Jeff and Jer Showgram getting back on the air, we took a break with Hopes and Dreams, but over the last few weeks, I finally got inspired again to get HOPES AND DREAMS back on track.
Who knows if I will be employed by McAlister at the end of the day as a counselor. BUT, what’s cool is that I’m motivated once again to get back to all the projects I had on hold and that also includes my mom’s non profit organization: http://www.nanaswish.org .
I feel really focused more than ever. Working long hours is good for the soul. I appreciated everything about that. You appreciate a day off more and you appreciate the weekend more when you work non stop and work at a real job.
Remember, if you’re a woman reading this and needing to workout or train with someone, I hope you call on Anita. (Message her on Facebook Anita Alvarada Bartram). She has the best rates in town and she will work with you on that. She’s really cool and don’t feel bad if you’re not eating right, because neither does she.