To answer the first question that probably popped into your head, yes, I am named after The Little Mermaid. The movie was released just 2 years before my birthday in May of 1991. Which I guess gives away my age. Did you do the math? Probably not, I know I wouldn’t.
Born on the Big Island of Hawai’i but raised in the continental United States, I am no stranger to adapting to change. I left Hawai’i when I was about 6 years old. Don’t ask me why my family decided to leave paradise, I have no answer for you. But off we went! Onto Utah, then Nevada, then Texas, through Arizona, New Mexico, made it to California and also managed to visit Louisiana and New Jersey. All of that before I hit the 4th grade. By the time I was about 10 years old, we moved back to our home state but decided to settle on Maui instead. That didn’t last very long either, I was back on the Big Island by the 5th grade.
I’ve played the roll of the new kid at least a dozen times, by the time I reached intermediate school I was (regretfully) a bully, tomboy type that could be found playing basketball in the covered courts during recess.
In high school I was the over achiever. Team Captain of the JV girl’s basketball team, Yearbook Committee, Class Council, Sierra Student Coalition, Spanish Club, Secretary for the Future Educators Association, Class Mascot, Leo Club, must I go on? I’ve always been the type to have a few friends from different cliques. Jocks, band geeks, stoners, etc.
By the time college came around my over achiever persona went out the door. The Community College I went to was on another island, Maui. So I didn’t have to worry about bumping into my parents. I became your basic college party girl. I wasn’t a good one either. I remember there being lots of drama, smoking, drinking, hooking up and not knowing where I was after waking up from a wtf kind of night.
I dropped out of college to come back to the Big Island. There were a few good reasons to come home. 1. My grandmother was diagnosed with terminal cancer. 2. A guy whom i thought was my soulmate at the time. Neither of these are the actual reason why I came home. I came home because I was failing my classes (not even attending half of them) and I was running low on financial aid money. It was a pretty big fail, that I am literally still paying for to this day.
After coming home, I ended my relationship with that “soulmate” to start a family with someone else. Scandalous, I know.
We had a daughter together and named her Pepper. Yes, Pepper. No, I am not naming my second child Salt. Long story short, we separated and I became a single mother, it changed my life forever. I was forced to make ends meet on my own with no help from my parents. The irresponsible Ariel was slowly dying and turning into a mother who would do anything for her daughter and to prove wrong everyone who doubted her.
In 2014 I swiped right on Tinder & met the man I will be spending the rest of my days with. In 2017 we leveled up and he became the father to my second born, Oliver. & In January of 2018, we leveled up yet again, to Husband & Wife. We are living comfortably and happily. This blog will tell you more about how we got here and what we do to get by. About how I had to change to become the mother I am today, what I’ve learned from past mistakes, and what I’m doing to better myself for the future.