10 Meaningful Facts about Me

1. I became pregnant at 16 and had my daughter at age 17. When my father found out I was pregnant, he said I had to start being an adult. It broke my heart, and I felt like my life was over. My mother straightened me out. She said I was a kid, and she’d do whatever she could to make sure I had a childhood. And she did. I was raised by the best mother on the planet, and I’m sure all my friends knew it. I ramble on about my journey of teen mom to entrepreneur here. I drag on about my experience of being a Teen Mom and my entrepreneurial journey here.

i-speak-a-little-korean2. I have a passion for the Korean language. It wasn’t always the case. When I was in the military, I was assigned to learn Korean. I hated it and couldn’t stand the teachers. Learning it was a real struggle for me, and I often felt like the instructors were trying to sabotage my success by not giving me the attention to succeed. I learned later that the instructors were graded by our test results at the end of the course. I was determined to finish the program, knowing good and well that I was crappy at the language, just so I could take the test and receive substandard scores. Trust me, I tried hard to get great test scores… I hate failing. In the end, I succeeded in making it through the program and receiving substandard scores. At least I won on one level. As an adult, I’ve found myself obsessed with learning the language. My favorite pastime is watching Korean dramas… with subtitles.

3. I’m a polymath. I love to learn. If I had one addiction (besides eating), learning would be it. I can’t help myself. I want to learn and be EVERYTHING. As long as I’m alive and have an active brain, I’ll keep absorbing whatever I can.

4. I’m a self-published author. Some people are born to write. Not me. One day, I got bored with being (just) a stay-at-home mom and decided I’d become a writer. It took me about 2 months to pump out a full length novel. Little did I know, getting traditionally published is tough! Kudos to all of those who’ve made it through the process. Well, I wanted to be a published author, so I published my book myself, then another, and some short stories… I’m coming out of the open now. Some of my works are a little racy… erotic, some are a bit gruesome. My works are written under my secret pseudonym, Reena Jacobs. Don’t tell anyone… like I said, it’s a secret.

drawing-i-botonical5. Stick figures used to be my masterpiece, before I became an artist. Well… amateur artist. I decided to become an artist and art student out of irritation. If you get to know me well enough, you’ll find I do things to prove people wrong or to make a point. You said I can’t do what? We’ll see about that. Well, the story goes, my youngest daughter (middle child) graduated from high school. She’d become passionate about art, at least I thought she did. Rather than going to art school, she decided she’d work at a Seadoo shop, making minimum wage, next to her dad’s real estate business. I’m still not sure why she thought that was a good choice. I decided if she wasn’t going to be an artist, I would and I’d start a gallery to support young artists. I enrolled in school and learned to draw! Me! From crappy stick figures to realistic images. What do you think about the flower I drew? Excuse me while I break my arm, patting myself on the back. Great news. Just before the enrollment deadline, my daughter also enrolled in art school. Check out her work here.

6. I’m an introvert, and I love it. When I was in my teens, I realized something interesting. The only time I was ever bored was when I was with someone else. It has to do with compromising and being considerate of what others want to do, even when I don’t want to do it. When I’m alone, the only one I have to be considerate of is me. That doesn’t mean I hate getting out. I enjoy having one-on-one conversations, giving presentations, participating in workshops, providing training. I like to socialize and talk. What I’ve learned, accepted, and embraced is that I can extract myself. I don’t gotta do…

the-watchtower-logo7. I’m agnostic. I was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness, and I still defend them, as well as Mormons. I don’t slight anyone of their religious beliefs and support religious freedom. And when I say religious freedom, that doesn’t just mean Christianity, as some like to say. I’ve just stopped believing in the writings in the bible. Do I believe in “a god?” I’m undecided. I will say, I’m comforted by praying and do so. If someone says they’ll pray for me, I say sure. If you’d like to pray for me now, go for it. I’ll respectfully accept all the goodwill you have in your heart for me.

8. I’ve moved around A LOT. The longest I’ve lived in one spot is 5 years. That was when I first married my husband. I’d seriously settled down, just for him. Prior to that stint, the longest I’d been in one domicile was 3 years. I don’t know why I moved around so much as a child. I never bothered to ask my mom. I’m only guessing she was moving us to better situations. Though I didn’t know it, we were pretty poor when I was younger. Top ramen, eggs, and food from the food bank.

corban-and-renee9. My girls are old enough to give me grandchildren, but I’m thinking it won’t happen. My oldest daughter is asexual. She came out maybe 4 years ago. I’m still in a bit of disbelief. Sometimes I think she’s just being defiant. She learned this defiance from her mother. My middle child (the artist) told me long ago, she’s not having children. I said the same thing to my mom. Only thing, I think I drilled in sex education too well, whereas my mother figured I was smart enough to no better. Haha I showed her! I want my kids to live their lives, but I also want to be that grandmother everyone looks at and says, no way! You’re not old enough to have grandchildren. I know… silly… a bit selfish… but I don’t care. By the time my little boy grows up, I’ll look old enough to be a grandparent, and it won’t matter.

10. My mother is my pride and joy. I’ve always had a stubborn streak. When I made up my mind, my mother let me learn on my own. She always gave me space to grow. Beyond that, she lived (still living) her life as an inspiration to me. When my dad left her when I was 4, she was poor… we were poor. She worked in a laundry room and shopped at the food bank. She spent 3 months on welfare and realized it wasn’t for her. My mother went to school during the day and worked at night to put herself through nursing school. She earned her CNA, LPN, and eventually her RN. When I look at my mother and think that she came from a poor hick town from poor parents, was left with next to nothing when my dad abandoned her and still achieved her dreams of being a nurse, I know I can do anything I set my mind to do.

Think you can handle my quirks?

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