It Takes a Tribe to Survive.

If 2015 were a person all I would have to say is, “Bye Girl!”

This year was by far one of the most difficult years in my adult life. Every year is typically chalk full of peaks and valleys, well this one had wayyyy more valleys and just a few exciting peaks – peaks I rejoice in daily over a glass of prosecco next to my amazing husband, while watching our toddler sing Cinderella songs at the top of her lungs. Hands down they are the best part of my year.

As I sit in my living room near the dried out Christmas tree, Harry Potter playing in the background and reminisce about the really sweet Christmas we just had after such a crap year, I’m reminded of how blessed I really am.

Despite how badly 2015 kicked my ass and left me on the side of the road bruised and full of anxiety, I must absolutely take a moment and thank God for surviving this dreadful year. At 32 years old, I’ve come to realize that when things seem most dark, one only has their tribe to lean on and faith to hold on to. And by tribe I don’t just mean family, but also those lovingly chosen FRAMILY members who stand by you, lift you up, give you a swift quick kick in the ass to get over your self-depricating depression, make you laugh and let you cry when you can’t keep your emotions together a second longer. [“Framily”, as in Friends so close they might as well be Family.]


We’ve all been there. Over-worked, stressed out with colleagues or clients, issues with family, anxiety over issues that might or might not happen, money matters, raising a small child who has an attitude like a full grown teenager [except their tantrums are over princess dresses and wearing a chongo or a bow], sleep deprivation, marriage issues, worries about the future, and taking care of sick parents. For some reason this year seemed to be riddled with all of these and then some. I won’t bore you with all of the gory details of the past year, but let’s just say it was a pinche mess and this Esposa is ready for a fresh start.

I’m not one for New Year resolutions, but this year my goal is to show my family and framily how much I appreciate them in any way I can. I could not have made it through this year without their support, humor and selflessness.

My aunt always says, “It takes a tribe of people to raise a child,” but I’ve learned that it TAKES A TRIBE TO SURVIVE, a very carefully chosen tribe of friends who become family, because not every friend is worthy of the “framily” tribe status.


In high school adults would provide sage cliché advice we all despised listening to and usually added in an eye-roll for good measure, “Choose your friends wisely” or “You might have a ton of friends now, but when you get older you will only have a handful of close friends,” and “ Tell me who your friends are and I will tell you who you are.”

At the time, being an incredibly “smart” and snarky teenager, I was bored of their advice and didn’t really believe it. Well there’s a reason for clichés… it’s usually because they are all so painstakingly true you wished you would have listened a long time ago.  If I had a dollar for every cliché that came true I would have a least one hundred bucks…

Since college I realized how having a huge group of friends didn’t make sense AT ALL, but feeling a true connection with people and taking time, no matter how busy you are or the distance between you, maintaining real connections is vital to one’s inner happiness. As I grew into this sage old wisdom over the years, I still had no damn clue how truly vital my tribe would become after getting married, having a beautifully snarky daughter of my own and coming in to the third decade of life.

Over the past year my family has struggled in ways I couldn’t have imagined and without my framily I honestly don’t know where I would be mentally or emotionally. We all go through our own personal struggle and drama, but for some reason this year changed my views on just how much I appreciate the important people in my life. Those who’ve loved, not only me, but my husband, daughter and mother – just as we are! And trust me, that’s a lot.

Life is crazy, filled with so many emotions, some times a span of 24 hours can be completely life-altering. Many times we don’t tell those close to us just how important they really are [insert cliché adult wisdom here].

With that said I would like to address my framilial tribe, all silly sarcasm and snarky-ness aside [well maybe a little silly sarcasm]:

I love you all more than I can ever hope to express in words. All of you are so incredibly important, unique and special. I’m more serious than usual – you each bring a light into this world that has changed the entire course of my day[s] with your generosity of time and love, listening ear, encouraging texts, being ever-present during all of life’s little moments, and lest I forget the dirty memes, ridiculous jokes and happy hours that were truly happy because you made them so.

You’ve left a happy mark on my life, no matter how dark it’s been. You haven’t just been around to share the good times, but you’ve been there through the hard times too.   If someone were to look at our tribe to take measure of who we are, I believe they would find a unique group of incredibly loyal, happy, brutally honest, fiercely loving, and protective people willing to be there for each other no matter what the situation. Not to mention hilarious and full of ridiculous movie lines, nerdiness and talents I wish I possessed. Ya’ll are the sugar to my cotton candy – the contour kit to my blotchy naked face – the invisibility cloak to my Harry Potter costume and I couldn’t imagine my life, or our lives, without you.

Thank you for always being uniquely you, showing me a different point of view, telling me your honest opinions, and having my back. I do not consider us the modern day “squad,” with “squad goals,” but rather a Tribe, which is by definition, “those which have followed ways of life for many generations that are largely self-sufficient, and are clearly different from the mainstream and dominant society.” [thank you Wikipedia]  You’ve helped me grow as a woman and each of you are priceless in my heart.

If you haven’t thanked your tribe for their love in 2015, take a minute and get on that. 2015 was a terrible year, but my tribe was amazingly on point.

Bye Girl to 2015!  Hello to a new and exciting year with the best tribe a lady could ever hope for in a lifetime.

Cheers to a new year and much love to all,

Esposa Dani




2 thoughts on “It Takes a Tribe to Survive.

  1. Tori says:

    I love you with my whole heart. You are the sweetest, funniest, and most fierce woman I know and you inspire me all the time to be a stronger and more thoughtful person. May 2016 be kinder and filled with more love than your cup can handle my “framily” sister.


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