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Fresh perspective and a

Mrs. C. Johnson | Owner of Jaybear Bake Shop

Whether dealing with the family business or my dating life, Dana Morales has always given me a fresh perspective and a “real talk” answer. She helped me to figure out the path I needed to take; whether I liked it or not. With her help, I was able to see myself through her lens, giving me a fresh perspective on how to handle relationship issues which were instrumental in helping me find myself. I began this journey in the summer of 2007 after I broke up with my long time College boyfriend. He had cheated on me and I kept asking myself why…. 

Why wasn’t I good enough? 

What did I do wrong? 

Was she prettier than me?

 Was she nicer than me? And more….  

The one thing I did know from seeing a photo of her was that she was, in fact, skinnier than me.  That was a wake-up call  My first reaction was to put him down. Now granted, he was a jerk… but I would have thoughts like, “He wasn’t that attractive and had acne and was a band geek anyway but so what. I wasn’t perfect either and I did love him. So then I re-evaluated myself and thought ok. So you’ve been a couple for two years and now you’re on your own. 

What now? 

I tried dating around for a while and going out to the club, but at the end of the day the nightlife was never my thing and I have always been a one guy kind of woman so I said cool. Let me take this opportunity to work on me. My weight at my largest was 260. I am not 100 % sure I was that heavy at this time, but I know I was close. So I began to put in work.  During my entire college process besides some of my best friends from home, there was someone who was always there for me. My older cousin. She was someone who inspired me because she was intelligent, pretty and had her master’s degree. She also owned her own home and lived on her own. These were all the things I wanted to have! She was independent and was very smart, real and positive. I loved hanging with her and all of my family since we were kids but during college, we really became much tighter. I took the time to spend many weekends visiting her and my second home Nashville. In the past, my “home” was at my aunt and uncle’s house(her parents) but as I struck out on my own I began to always stop in and visit them and just stay with her. She lived on the other side of the city so we always got to share a Friday night meal with my favorite Aunt and uncle and then she and I would hang out, watch random shows on Tivo and just talk. 

Over the years this happened so often I would be put off if we went out and got too tired to stay up lol.  But these talks were more than just a catch-up session or short bonding experience. They were times for me to share who I was, who I was becoming and to seek her advice for varying situations. Whether it was family business or dating life she always gave me a fresh perspective and a real talk answer that helped me whether I liked it or not. She would give me perspective on how to handle relationship issues, compromise love struggles and eventually was instrumental in helping me find myself. I knew that she was strong and so when I found myself alone (romantically) she helped me to understand that life wasn’t over. It’s cliche but I was better off. Even having known him, because after talking to her I realized these were experiences I needed to have. He taught me things about respect, and honesty and dependability and especially trust. By not having those things he helped me to know exactly what I wanted to have in a relationship. He helped me grow from a naive little girl to a more knowledgeable and realistic woman. She helped me to take these lessons, analyze them and use them for my good. She had been there, we all have and regardless of your situation often times there is something that someone older than you can either relate to or provide some different type of perspective on.  I cherish the times we spent together and while sitting here thinking I am wishing for another weekend to go visit. Of course, I can do this at any time, but now we are both married so Hubbies must tag along lol  She has been one of my rocks an unmoving supportive force that has only grown stronger through the years. It’s funny because she gets to experience most of life’s normal journeys before me and share with me the lessons learned lol. She was married and I got to share with her and Primo (what I call her husband – Cousin in Spanish) and sing at their wedding. She became a mother and I got to come to her shower and support her and meet and love on my sweet little cousin who was the flower girl in my wedding.  I haven’t taken that last hurdle, but I know when I do she will be there waiting just to encourage me and enlighten me.  Now she is encouraging me to take my time in the nesting process to set clear goals and to encourage my hubby to do his part to help out as well. It’s strange to be at the point in my life where talking about my husband is a normal thing but that’s where I am. I am glad that she has gone through so many things because since I have known her she has always been a source of good sound advice, encouragement and increasingly in the last few years a spiritual example and guide. She is one of the most positive people I know.  And it is just so wonderful to know her. I look forward to driving up the road ( a couple of hours lol ) soon to see my favorite Prima and her/ our family.