I’ve always liked a challenge, but that’s something you already know about me- if you know me personally or are familiar with my work. But the talented Ann Litts challenged me to post 10 things you don’t know about me, so here I am. Finding 10 things that I haven’t written about in my work meant dipping into the more obscure areas of my life. It took some thought, and I’ll admit I’m mostly winging it. But you’re here, and I’m here. That must mean you’re curious, and it surely must mean I want to share.
- I am a trained and certified Laughter Yoga Leader. No, I do not practice anymore. Like my therapy education, training, and license, my Laughter Yoga one is something that I keep in my own personal toolbox of knowledge but don’t use on a regular basis. I just liked the idea of healing people through joy. It was nice contrast to my more serious therapeutic practice, and no less effective.
- I didn’t figure out I was a feminist until my college women’s studies course, which I honestly signed up for because (a) it was a correspondence course that fit into my full-time work and school schedule, and (b) I thought it would be an easy A. The first assignment was an essay on what feminism is, and the blinders fell off. I called several old friends to tell them I’m a feminist, and I could actually hear their eyes roll over the phone. They already knew. Because I always had been. I just didn’t have a name to put to it,. and the word feminist had many negative connotations when I was growing up. I didn’t realize that it just meant that I believed in equality between men and women- in theory as well as in practice. Of course, I started out as a white feminist because I didn’t understand how race, gender orientation, and sexual orientation fit in with feminism. I’m happy to say that I continued to learn and am now a proud intersectional, inclusive feminist.
- I was born in Hawaii, but don’t get too excited. My family moved back to Tennessee when I was still a baby, and it was only as an adult that I transplanted myself to Georgia. But I’d still love to see it. I feel the pull of the islands in my blood.
- It’s not really a secret, but I don’t just write essays and poetry. I’ve written children’s books, one middle grade fiction, and several women’s fiction stories. All, as yet, unpublished, as they’ve been written in the last 3 years, and between writing them and being a single mom, I haven’t had as much time as I’d like to really push hard to find an agent and publisher. Right now, the most important thing for me is to do the work. I’ve no doubt the rest will follow. The first book I wrote (full length, adult novel) was actually a mystery. It’s fraught with tension, romance, and intrigue, but I’ve decided it needs a lot of work. I actually stopped revising it for a while because some of it was inspired by a love affair gone wrong in my own life, and both reading it and writing it can be difficult for me. I definitely will finish it- when I’m ready.
- I’ve worn a lot of hats in my life. I’ve gone from conservative Republican to liberal Democrat (no secret there), but I’ve also worn the hat of a wide variety of jobs. It’s not because I couldn’t keep one or couldn’t make up my mind. I’ve just always been willing to work hard, and in some of the places I lived, I had limited opportunities. I found I could turn my hand at nearly anything if I tried. So…. I’ve been a cashier, a server, a day care worker, a customer service representative for a call center, a low-level supervisor, a docent for a historical society, an independent sales rep for jewelry/children’s books/beauty products, an entrepreneur, an addictions counselor, a photographer, a family therapist, and an office worker. I feel like I’m leaving something out, but there you have it. I was pushed into being a writer by an unexpected layoff, and I’ve never looked back. After all, it’s what I was always meant to do.
- My SUV is named Eleanor, and my kids speak to her when they get in and out of the car. She’s named after the late, great Eleanor Roosevelt, of course. She’s neither new nor all that pretty, but she’s a beast. I love her, and she needed a name so I gave her one.
- I am capable of lucid dreaming. I used to have dreams that came to me in a series. Each dream would pick up the thread of the last. It took me a little while to realize that I had control of the direction. It was conscious control. I knew I was dreaming, and I knew I could alter the course. I don’t do this often, but it is a fact about myself that I stumbled upon and found interesting.
- In college, I was required to take a variety of physical fitness courses. I chose Personal Fitness (which was a waste of time), yoga, racquetball, and social dance. I haven’t played racquetball since college, but it was fun. I still practice yoga, and I’ve signed up for swing dancing lessons because it was one of my favorite dance styles. Look at me: using my college education for something other than work.
- I starred in my senior play in high school. I was pretty sure that I was going to be the next Julia Roberts. After all, if writing was an unrealistic profession (as I was told it was), then rebellious teenager that I was, I needed to choose an even more outrageous one. I held on to that idea until college when I realized that I liked the stage, didn’t love the camera, and didn’t really want to act for a living. Writing was a thing I did off and on through my twenties, but I didn’t jump into professionally until my thirties. But I think I was pretty damn good in that play, if I do say so myself.
- There are some trends I’ve never embraced. I’m not trying to be different; I just don’t believe in liking things just because they are popular. It’s why I can honestly admit that I never liked any of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies or A Christmas Story. I don’t understand this new eyebrow trend, and I’ve never called anyone I dated bae. I’m not a Belieber and never will be. I hate, loathe, and despise reality television and the negative impact it’s had on society. And I will never understand why strangers want to sext each other. I don’t know you; how do I know we’ll have chemistry in real life? Anyway, that seems like a lot of things in one bullet point, but my point is that I don’t believe in liking things just because everyone else does. I believe you should love what you love. If you love these trends because you just do, I’m not judging. You do you. I’m going to do me, which means that there are a lot of things that are totally out of style that I still love and plan to keep right on loving.
There are a lot of things you probably don’t know about me. But I’m happy that you’re here, reading this incredibly random list. There’s one thing that is no secret at all: I have so much love for my readers! Writing is the thing I’ve always loved, and the fact that I get to do it is because you’re here to read it. I appreciate you. So…. if you’d like to do this, by all means, please do. If you don’t want to, that’s okay, too. But thank you for being here and for your encouragement and support for my work. You make my dreams possible, and I hope sometimes my own dream can help inspire you in yours.
With so much love,