Who is Lina Marcela?
A few months back, I was asked to speak during an SEGD event at the Art Institute of Atlanta, the design college where I obtained my second bachelor’s degree. It was an interesting request by the universe, as I had been trying to figure that out myself for the past 3 years, however, at the universe’s request I did a profound revision of my life, dreams, paradigms, and new knowledge and here is what I discovered:
My name is Lina Marcela Talero, and this is my story…
I am a professional multidisciplinary designer, photographer, singer and artist based in Atlanta. I moved to the USA in 1996 from the city where I was born and half way raised; Bogota, Colombia. My story begins there, a few months after my first birthday during the palace of justice siege, on November 7, 1985, an attack against the Supreme Court of Colombia, in which members of the M-19 Marxist guerrilla group took over the Palace of Justice in Bogotá, Colombia, and held the Supreme Court hostage, intending to hold a trial against President Belisario Betancur. Hours later, after a military raid, the incident left almost half of the 25 Supreme Court Justices dead.
The military’s role in the siege has been described as a holocaust and massacre by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. Some of the main playing characters of these horrible crimes, and who were the founding members of the M-19 Marxist guerrilla group are members of our very distinguished and corrupt government today, and there still not really a true story on what really happened that day. That day, the Colombian “Policia Nacional” lost one of their best warriors, in fact, “El Tiempo” compared him to “Rambo.” My mom lost her husband, my sister and I lost our daddy, my grandparents lost their oldest son and our whole family lost a role model.
This soul journey begins like this…
The captain and guide of my soul journey, my daddy, the one who has made me a seeker of truth, integrity and justice.
After my father’s death, my life was pretty normal, yes the country was going through a revolutionary war and some of the years were the “years of Pablo Escobar,” but my mom, my grandmother and the rest of my extended family which are WAY too many to name one by one, made sure my sister and I had a good, relatively normal childhood.
Eventually, after my mom’s company went through some corporate changes, my mom decided it was time for all of us to embark on a new journey and we immigrated to the United States where we now reside, live the dreams and reap the opportunities and rewards life brings our ways.
My first 7 years in the USA, Middle school memories, high school graduation, Florida!
My time and experiences during my journey in Gainesville, FL while doing my first Bachelor’s of Design, with a concentration in Architecture
This did not happen immediately, however, the original dreams we had also changed a bit during the process and we went through some MAJOR hiccups. One of them was enduring seven years of verbal and psychological abuse, at the hands of a broken person. One who was in my journey recently as part of the “negative individuals who hurt me” but who I can now honestly say, I believe was more broken inside than anyone else I have encountered.
The broken teenage girl, with a childhood victim paradigm, was living her life to the fullest, partying and going to school, but not really paying attention to my choices, the people I hurt in the process nor the consequences of my actions. I spent freely and abundantly without really noticing and realizing I wasn’t earning that money. I was disrespectful to my mom many times, and I saw my life in the eyes of a victimized ego who no longer really cares about the whys or how’s of this life process.
First architectural job experience in Corporate America; Carter & Burgess!
Jacobs: The place where I learned about architectural retail, construction documents, Washington D.C., and must importantly the company responsible for bringing me to Atlanta.
I graduated, mediocrely, I say this not because I did not get good grades, I did, but because I wasn’t going to school truly. I did not give 100% of myself as I should have, I did not learn as much about my passions because I was busy doing what society expected me to do. I did not understand there was a clash of worlds inside of me, which was shattering me daily. Still, like this, I went to work to another city, in a job just like I was expected.
I learned a lot about architecture through my times in Carter & Burgess, I had many experiences, some involving not too much integrity of myself, but nevertheless, experiences which later on I had to accept and forgive, about the time when I was living my life on autopilot. I made friends and enemies, through this journey and eventually it was through that particular office that I ended up here in Atlanta.
The beginning of an unwanted fresh start… probably the best blessing in disguise.
AiA, the place where my morphing and soul spirit journey began. The place where I found the roots and grounding I needed to start the alignment of my life journey and change my personal money story.
In 2010 when I got laid off, I was devastated. What I like to call, “my self-destructive ego” was shattered and the pain and suffering I felt, as a result, to losing my job was horrible. As a girl defined by her career I lost my self-esteem in an instant and began to accept things in my relationships that I wouldn’t have accepted at any other time. And tt was during this time, that my victimized ego, also decided to let go of probably the only man who deserved my attention at that particular time, because of false paradigms I had learned in my past that now hunted our relationship and even the respect I should have given him.
The only good thing about this self-centered ego that was controlling me is that it maintained a small level of interest in learning and knowledge, and thus it decided to embark on a new learning journey at the Art Institute of Atlanta. It was there, at the Art Institute and through the exercise of my creative expression where I finally began to stir back into myself and began to take control of my life. This time around I was finally determined to grow and not just party. Though the Ego kept jumping through loops to make me lose myself again until finally, the biggest surprise of my life came to ground me and I became the mother of a beautiful baby girl and I finally settled down with the second love of my life. This second love wasn’t anything like the first though, as it was a total reflection of the person I had been all through those previous years.
The best surprised the Universe/My God sent my way. The one who shows me daily my strength and tenacity, the one for whom I make my craziest of decisions, but most importantly the one who keeps inspiring me into becoming a better person daily.
Leonisa, the answer to a prayer and God’s (AKA “El Parcero’s“) first sign and reward to a life that spirit finally approves and is aligned with my choices.
My life as a new mommy wasn’t terrible, it just wasn’t as romantic and supportive as I would have thought or wanted. I was living with a total reflection of my previous self-centered, self-involved ego, and I have to admit that it wasn’t pretty. I understood the real meaning behind the saying “what goes around, comes around” and I received in full force every insult, infidelity, lie and abuse I had given to my first love. This second love was shattering me at full force and it was fast paced destructive. I still managed to get myself a job before graduation with a company that was close to my heart, Leonisa. Leonisa is a Colombian founded global company that specializes in the manufacturing and commercialization of women’s lingerie, shapewear, swimwear and men’s underwear.
Working at Leonisa was a beautiful experience. It was aligned perfectly with my soul journey as it felt connected with the fact that just like us Leonisa, was born in Colomba and was now in the process of becoming a USA brand. I worked with Leonisa for about a year, and I was able to complete catalogs, brochures, had my first pass at experiential graphics, and created printed material for their retail user experience and wholesale trade show pop-up shops. Through my personal career, I began to feel accomplished, but it was in my internal world that my heart was still in pieces.
SRSSA journey and humbling experience of working with a company that created the skyline of the city I now call home. The place where I finally found myself and began to live my true life purpose and inner prosperity journey.
The tension of an unexpected child was breaking my family apart. My daughter’s father verbal abuse continued and although it wasn’t necessarily confirmed, I also knew there was infidelity in the horizon. I was being told I wasn’t woman enough, or good enough to marry my coping habits got stronger and now the same paradigms I used against my previous boyfriend were being used on me to break me, destroy me and belittle me in the same way, and sometimes even with the exact words I once belittle him. I thought maybe if I found a better job, and could bring home a higher paycheck things would get better, so I was able to find a better position at SRSSA, an architectural firm that pretty much embraces all of my skills in one company. A company that provides Architectural, Interior Design, Master Planning, Landscape Architectural Services and Graphic Design. A place where I have grown my architectural interest and my graphic and web design skills.
I was thrilled and humbled to start at SRSSA, and it was as rewarding and beneficial as it needed to be. They were flexible with my schedule, and it was easier to bring more money into the house, plus it was closer to home. The abuse did not stop, and in fact, I began to receive messages online about my partner’s infidelities. I held on to him tight thinking things would change. I wanted things to work, I wanted my family to work and thinking about losing it was terrifying. I began to cope through some of the pain of being verbally abused by going back to previous habits which included the same exact paradigm contradictions I had dumped my previous boyfriend for I smoked. I smoked to stop the pain and feel numb, and not focus on the fact that my family was going to the ending hall and I wasn’t ready to see it go. Thankfully my mind began to awaken to some of the beliefs my coach Maria, whom I have been working with for the past two years, engrained in my head, and I have finally taken control of my life and money story.
To be honest, if there is anything I have come to learn about myself, is that as the multidisciplinary designer there is still a LOT to be learned, as a human I must continue to work on evolving at a conscious level in more stronger, and meaningful ways. I want to live a life where I can continue to be 100% dedicated to my craft, my soul’s growth, my family and most importantly aligning accordingly with God’s plan to shape and mold my life. I continue to take pride in my continuous investment in courses and education to develop the best version of myself in all aspects of my life, as well as having a keen eye for detail and a flawless approach to the study of light and beauty. I want my designs to inspire people into working on their inners prosperity journey and help them move towards realizing their goals and dreams in ways they never thought possible. I want to be the “Maria Hinton” who inspires more Latina Women into stepping comfortable into their shoes, becoming unapologetic about who they are and embracing themselves FULL FORCE into their own potential.
I want to give back to the world, to humanity, have the opportunity to turn my wildest dreams into a reality while still being able to provide for my daughter and any other child that needs me. I dream of one day opening a school for children like the one Shakira has; “Fundacion Pies Descalzos” or the one Juanes opened; “Fundacion Mi Sangre” which is why I donate part of my earnings towards those foundations to begin aligning with that part of my soul. I NOW have the power to know that ANYTHING I do will bring either riches or demise into my life, and for the first time ever I am proud to say that this time, I WILL ensure nothing distracts me from the final target. I may not be perfect, I am not liked by everyone, and I am still on my way to a better me, however, for the first time I know that maybe I am supposed to be that voice that lights up change. That I am here to speak and be heard, I know my story can inspire someone else and make them believe in themselves and that is not only important to me but a lot more rewarding than the abundance that is now showering me on a daily basis.
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