“Latinos can really be the bridge holders for the world …And if we can collectively come together and realize we can do this, we can help heal the world because we are familia.”– Janeli Saucedo
Janeli Saucedo-Castrejana, is a 30-year mother, wife, and advocate living in San Antonio, Texas. Her blog, “The Esposa Experience” Chronicles her attempt at being the quintessential Esposa her family and cultura tells her she needs to be. In 2017, she came out as HIV positive and has continued on her path of advocating to end the stigma against HIV/AIDS and those living with the virus. She recently launched the “Positive Vida Podcast” with her husband Jake. They intend to use the podcast as a tool to help those living with HIV and those who love them
She’s also an advocate for autism awareness, chronicling her son’s diagnosis and daily life with autism, as well as her battles with depression and anxiety on her social media platforms
When she’s not working as a Communications Specialist or advocating, she’s burning sage, blasting 90’s hip hop and R&B, aligning her chakras, and trying to connect more deeply to her spiritual self.
This week I have the pleasure of introducing a true fighter and all around badass to you all. Her name is Janeli Saucedo-Castrejana and she is a mother of three, a wife to her college sweetheart, and an advocate in the Greater San Antonio area.
Janeli is a force to be reckoned with, she has a successful blog and podcast, is a successful communications specialist and is an advocate for HIV/AIDS and autism awareness. During the interview, we talk about Janeli’s story, her truth, and how she is living as an HIV positive woman and mother.
Here is a sneak peak of what we talk about in this episode:
⦁ Janeli jumps into her secret that she was hiding from the world. She is HIV positive. She speaks about coming to terms with it and speaking her truth to the world.
⦁ She openly talks about her depression and anxiety and how her children were robbed of precious time and memories. By feeling comfortable enough to fully feel and express these emotions, Janeli paves the way for others to relate and connect.
⦁ We get deep on the retreat and break some uncomfortable barriers about our culture and tired conversations. Janeli opens our eyes to a new way of seeing it. She explains that we [Latinas and Latinos] as a culture, are going through the stages of grief collectively and separately.
Thought Questions/ Reflection:
⦁ Janeli states, “We’re not contributing to the solution, we’re contributing to the problem by being quiet and caving under the fear and under the stigma.” Has there been a time in your life in which you have remained silent when you have wanted to speak out? How did this make you feel? When have you allowed for your voice to be heard when others have tried to silence it?
Podcast: Spotify and Anchor: Positive Vida Podcast