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You can say superstitions fill the empty holes in my life. It's just fun to have a reason behind random habits I maintain.

Maybe all of this started when I was a little girl and my mother would say, "don't do that, because then this will happen." And mamá is never wrong! 

In addition to the occasional "limpia de huevo" (egg-cleansing) and touching things I've stared at to avoid "ojo", my dedication to superstitions continues to grow as a young adult in college. Sometimes I think about accepting that these traditions are silly, but I'm still going to take special precautions... just in case.

One of my favorite things about superstitions is that they add color to my already vibrant culture. My mom, your mom, their moms and our tias have passed down special remedies to avoid bad luck throughout generations.

Can you blame them? We are only on the pursuit of happiness and we are not willing to let anything get in the way!

So, I've decided to take some time out of my day to write about my favorite superstitions that I don't really believe in... but I keep up with just in case.

1.) Showering at Night

I strategically shower at night before going to bed every night. I believe I am washing away all the negativity I picked up during the day. Just think about all the people you came in contact with today, whether they were having a good or bad day, chances are their vibes cling on us.

Once upon a time, I read somewhere that our feet are the roots to the rest of our body. We have to keep them clean so whatever bad vibes we pick up on our daily journey won't travel up our body at a time of vulnerability (when we are asleep) and attack us.

Sometimes I am too tired and I go to sleep without showering. I find myself waking up with my body feeling tired, heavy and grainy (the world is a dirty, dirty place).

2.) Closing my Closet Door, Cabinets & Drawers

Forget the Coco! Or Boogieman, whatever you think lives inside your closet. Not closing the drawers, cabinets or drawers will make the boyfriend escape! 

I got this from my Spanish teacher as a junior in high school. She said that not closing the drawers at night when you sleep will mean that your boyfriend is up for grabs and another girl will take him away. I remember my drawers were broken at this time, and I went home to fix them to make sure they properly closed even though I had never even had a boyfriend.

This thought is one that I often remember whenever I go home. I like seeing my drawers closed because it looks neat and organized. However, it's pretty funny to think a boyfriend would leave you based on your drawer-status haha.

3.) This Plant

My neighbor told my mom that the plant on the right of the screen forbids daughters in a household from getting married. That's right. My mom gave her plant away for someone else-- without daughters-- to decorate their house.

I have to admit that I was glad she gave it away, not because I was afraid of not getting married, but because I don't find this plant very appealing for home decor.

4.) Dad's Boots Will Protect You

This is the latest superstition I have heard about, but it's a nice one to believe in.

My friend was constantly waking up in the middle of the night because of bad dreams. Her mom gave her a pair of her dad's boots to place at the foot of her bed.

These worn boots were supposed to alert bad spirits that she was not alone and her dad's protection was vigilant, should they want to bother her. ¡Pues, santo remedio! After placing the boots in front of her bed, the nightmares went away.

5.) El Ojo

Avoiding "ojo" is a superstition I share with my roommates and friends in college. It all started with one of my friends, who has a very powerful mind over matter. 

Staring at something for too long in admiration will hurt it. 

For example, my friend was admiring the feathers on a poster board at school for too long. Out of the blue, a small tornado came and knocked down the poster.

She admitted similar instances had occurred with other objects she starred at. So, she went and asked her mom for the remedy to this "ojo". The response was: you have to touch the things you've been admiring.

Ever since then, she finds a way to touch whatever objects she likes. However, we found out it needs to be done fast!

She was about to touch my bookshelves one day, her index finger was just a few centimeters away. Before she reached it, one of my books fell and knocked down the two shelves. I hanged them up again after she touched them-- they've been up ever since.

All of these superstitions are fun to express every now and then. These cultural traditions are something that tie us back to our ancestors, which is part of the reason why I decide to keep them alive. What are some superstitions you believe in?

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Comment by Cynthia Amaya on December 23, 2013 at 12:50am

WE HAD/HAVE (I don't remember; whoops!) THAT PLANT. If we still have it, I MUST get rid of it!

Also, I prefer to shower at night, but I never thought of it that way. I love your reasoning behind it! I'm going to start thinking of it that way, too! 

Comment by Michelle Contreras on December 21, 2013 at 12:37pm

The one about El Ojo is interesting. I've never heard of it.




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