- Lost my father to cancer: One of the hardest things I’ve ever had to deal with in my life. Papi was the rock in the family, and our entire family dynamic changed overnight.
- Lost a dear friend: Vinny Chagnet left us after a massive heart attack far too early. Only in his 30’s, it really hit hard to lose someone who had been such an uplifting part of the racing community.
- Moving Away/On: Life changes are especially hard. I kept this struggle private for me, but it was very hard time in my life. There are always two sides, and I dealt privately with many hurtful things coming from people that weren’t even involved.
- Losing my “children”: My little chihuahuas were everything to me, and losing them was as painful as losing a child. I know eventually I will get another, but months later, I still have dreams that they come back.
- A Career/Job Change: I just wasn’t happy in newspaper anymore, and was forced to work from home for about a month until I found my new job. I think they found out I had been looking elsewhere, but an unexpected layoff is hard financially and I’m struggling to catch back up.
- Letting my sponsors down: Perhaps the hardest thing for me to swallow was disappointing my sponsors, who have all patiently waited for me to get the new car done. I’m hoping that a great 2008 will make up for this, but its not something I’m proud of.
- Picked up my new Mustang VFN body: Braved the winter storm to pick up my new racecar body for the Thunderbird to Mustang make-over.
- My first mainstream magazine feature: Being featured in Latina was a huge deal for me. Its the Cosmo of hispanic-america.
- Interviewing with Don Schumacher: When Gary Scelzi announced he was retiring, Oakley was looking for a candidate to fill the seat for their Nitro Funny Car. Although I bombed the interview (hello, STAR SHOCK), I view having the opportunity to interview with Don Schumacher high on my accomplishment list for 2007.
- Moving on/Away: As they say, when one door closes, another opens. I’ve settled well into my new enviroment, and am quite happy with how my life has formed. I learned many things about myself and learned to do a lot FOR myself in the process.
- Welcoming PNN: I had the great pleasure of meeting Lauren Elliot and becoming involved in the PNN.com community. Look for great things coming up in 2008 with PNN.
- New Car: I’ve been wanting a fun street car again for a really, really long time. I finally got my wish. Call it retail therapy.
- Nitrous Pro Mod: Though right now it seems to have stalled out, I was approached about driving a Nitrous Pro Mod.
- My first TV Segment: Was featured on Hispanics Today, a nationally syndicated TV show.
- My DREAM!: All I’ve ever wanted was to race in NHRA. And now, I’m actually going to be given a shot. I’m a signed driver for a Top Fuel team, provided we can find the funding to get out there.
- Starting a new job: Finally, a job I’m really excited about!
I’m hoping to start 2008 fresh and work hard towards a great year of racing, personal growth and career development. 2007 is officially over, and no dwelling on the past will ensue.
Be safe as you celebrate the ringing in of 2008!