Personal Reflection 5/7/22
I have some life updates.
I am now a Communications Advisory Committee member of The National Foundation to End Child Abuse and Neglect (ENDCAN).
I am a volunteer as an assistant for Tiny Buddha still.
I’m volunteering for The Humane League and Butler County Humane Society.
I am halfway through writing my children’s book and YA. My YA is half outlined and half written. It will take some time to write the rest of it. I have Payton my MC absolutely transform. I have an angle for my new book, You Are Beautiful: A Guide To Finding Your Authentic Self. Those are the three books I’m working on actively. I have a memoir, memoir follow up (or part 2) and a book on deconstructing faith on the backburner. I sent out queries for my memoir. It’s in God’s hands.
My past speaking to youth was an amazing time. I almost made it a program, then mental health breakdowns took me from that. But I am proud of how it helped others. This would have been the logo for the program:
I worked with youth, branding and did interior design. Interestingly enough, they all connect. My brand is be an activist in general but I have areas where I help youth as part of my brand story. Interior design taught me a lot about design in general. I went through all the colors once and I favored scarlet. So I made that my logo color!
(Note the red balloon above is just for fun, not using that image in anything).
The above picture inspired my motif in all my books of a brilliant road. It was my grandpa’s. I later had a dream about this road. I added two other motifs to my books — scarlet red balloon and the blue sky. The brilliant road is the road of authenticity. The red balloon represents a mindfulness containment exercise where you have it let go of anything holding you down. You also rise with it to the blue sky. The blue sky is just in my YA, and it is the face of God, freedom, self-actualization and happiness. It represents getting to the heights of who we can be by saying we can touch the blue sky. Together they make “Every road has its reason, to rise above to unseen brilliance.” Unseen brilliance is the blue sky! These are simple images that a child can understand, so I turned my original title of a YA book into a children’s book, Brilliant Road and the Red Balloon and renamed my YA You Are The Reason My Sky Is Blue. I’m tempted to have it be “Skye” since my character is that name, but I fear constantly correcting people so I let it go.
I feel like my grandpa is guiding me in my dreams.
I wrote for Forbes for a while other places.
I’ve achieved my brand goals in what I want to focus on. Execution is next! I found the causes I care about.
This is all started because of my modeling pictures (seen above). I was scouted. Then I was preyed on by a brand manager. I got signed on my own by another agency. Then I left that behind me. At the same time, I had a branding internship and started to rebuild a life after leaving a Brandeis Masters program for teaching. I became disillusioned with the education system after seeing the desperation kids had for prestige and grades and also how little they were allowed to use their voices. I saw poor mental health and balance. I walked away and decided to help youth in other ways. I did exactly that. I helped a lot of kids turn around in life. I loved it. I went to places of need. And it’s all connected. My last step with my YA is to make it for youth, something I learned teens wanted from books when I student taught.
The dots are connecting!
And I’m only getting started.
I am reading Demystifying Disability by Emily Ladau and Nobody’s Normal: How Culture Created the Stigma of Mental Illness by Roy Richard Grinker. I am using them for my YA, which is essentially a human and and animal rights YA.
I had a mental breakdown from bipolar some years ago, and instead of running from that fact with shame, I have made it part of my story. I have used my voice for it, and the main and best thing I did was send feedback to someone who oversees the mental health system in my area. I turned people in too. So I know I have done good that way.
The thing is…I didn’t intend any of this. When I walked away from Brandeis and that brand manager, I had nothing. Nothing to my name, no friends or family to support me and nothing to live for sometimes. I turned that all around because of my faith. I know God used me in certain places. I helped kids just as they were developing and taught life lessons through writing. Faith is enough. Faith works.
I’ve delved deeper into rights research. And I know what I stand for. I know that my YA is essentially prolife with understanding and forgiveness towards anyone who gets an abortion. I didn’t want to write it this way. I want to be prochoice because it’s easier, because it’s feminist and what everyone is saying to be. But I have maternal instincts in me. I know that I would rather die than have an abortion. And I’d rather go hungry than sell my body. (So yes I’m anti- sex work too — See Valiant Hearts this video). We fail as a society if we allow these things. And I think one day, there will be enough funding to change things. We need to turn this world around.