My life story and the exploration of what it means to be neurocomplex, redheaded, putting out fires in life, living with passion and intensity, feeling the forward movement and thirst for change.
Highlights: -Living through childhood trauma -Surviving and learning to thrive -Embracing our passion -Being unique and finding our sense of belonging -Midlife awakening -Finding your way in parenting -The immense joy has to offer despite roadblocks -My art process -Starting Inspire Community Outreach
Approximately 500 pages of evidence, poetry, journal entries, art and photography, with special focus on embracing who we are and becoming who we were always meant to be.
Except:About the Book
This book is a love letter to my heart, for fighting all my life to fit in.
This book has been healing to me and includes many of the things I have learned over my lifetime on how to find peace, all while feeling deep unrest. I did not create this as a self-help resource, although I hope there are slivers of inspiration. This is not a, “Follow these easy one hundred and eighty-six steps for self-actualization, happiness or resilience…” sort of book. It is much more: accept the beauty that you are and celebrate the differences or sensitivities you possess. It just so happens that I have found peace and resilience while I did that. I know what you’re thinking, why write a book about that?
The Reasons I Wrote This Book:
I fell into this. It was not my intention to write this at this stage of my life. I’m thirty-seven years old, a PhD student, a single mom to three amazing children who need my care and attention, living through a high conflict separation, and managing in the middle of a pandemic, affecting my city significantly.
I had previously considered writing a compilation of memories and thoughts, just for myself. I felt like writing it out, just as I had written my master’s thesis. I thought it would be therapeutic for me and help me shake the shame off. I had carried so much shame throughout my life, as I navigated being who I was, finding kindness despite so much harm.
As I began, I discovered that there was so much to process and share. If I were to share it in the way I had hoped, with research, art, poetry, my heart and pain, all blended on paper, it would be a big project. I put off the big project (because life) and started to put slivers of thoughts into photos and poetry onto social media. I want to shed some light on the questions I have been answering all my life:
How did you make it here?
How did you survive?
How are you so resilient?
In 2020, I felt like I was going through something. I felt like there was an internal revolution, one side against the other, fighting it out, and the real me (the free me) was winning. My photos, my writings and journals were all reflective of this awakening. I shared a more personal sampling of this on Instagram as a visual journal of my self-discovery, in the hopes of inspiring others.
I started to receive different messages on several social media platforms, through email and sometimes even crossing paths with people, with them questioning me about what is happening with me. I must be honest; I didn’t think at first it was that obvious to others and their messages surprised me. Some of the folks I knew as acquaintances, and some I didn’t know at all, but they had known of me for years. I did not know how to answer because I was not really sure what was happening, and I didn’t care other than the fact that it was incredible. I became curious about what other people were noticing from the bit they were seeing. I welcomed questions and conversations about their perspective and answered honestly.
I started to think about how and why this was happening to me. Why now? Was it this midlife crisis everyone was talking about? I didn’t feel like I was in a crisis. I felt like I was alive for the first time. Although it didn’t start out that way. It had started with anger, pain and sadness, but when I took it and I held it close, it became something else altogether. In holding it instead of fighting it, it became everything. It changed.
When others noticed the change, it occurred to me that I should start keeping a more detailed account of what was happening. One month into this phase, I had a random message telling me that, if I wrote a memoir, they would be eager to read it. I had my answer.