Posted in Blog, Mental Health, Reviews

Review: Mommy I Need You by Regina Hall

This book is an easy read that I finished in two nights, but the topic of this book is not easy. This is the true story of sexual abuse that a young girl (Regina) had to endure. The book chronicles how she felt when it first started; scared and unsure, to a teenagmommyer who didn’t understand her own sexuality, to a woman who overcame the trauma.

There are excellent nuggets of wisdom and self discovery. Trauma can stay with you forever but Regina shows how you can use that trauma for good – by sharing her story.

The last few chapters were in-depth and I felt a real connection to the author. The first few chapters shared the story but were not as in depth as what was to come. Overall, for those that have suffered sexual trauma or are the parents to someone who has suffered sexual abuse this book gives great insight. Emotions can be difficult to explain and Regina does an excellent job of sharing those.

Posted in Mental Health, Reviews

Review: Breaking the Chains of Transgenerational Trauma: My Journey from Surviving to Thriving by Dorothy Husen

The title is a bit of a mouthful but the book will make your heart full. Right from the start of the book I was hooked; the author jumps right into her story and I wanted to know more! When she shares about her mother and grandmother’s stories it made sense how she was raised. It wasn’t a lack of love, it was what they knew and that is what they had to pass on.

I have heard about transgenerational trauma in the past; trauma that is passed on from generation to generation. It is quite common until someone finally learns how to break that cycle. That is what this book is really about. As much as I loved hearing about Dorothy’s story I was more interested in how she became the cycle breaker.

Throughout the book I could identify with some of the struggles that she had learned from her parents. I understood that certain lessons I had learned needed to be relearned. The trouble is how?

At the end of each chapter Dorothy gives you exercises that you can use to help break the cycle in your family. It is not an easy thing to do and I am a huge advocate for therapy if you have the opportunity. This book is a great starting point with the real life examples and the exercises. Don’t skip the exercises, they are worthwhile and will help you along your journey.

Posted in Mental Health, Reviews

Review – Yin, Yang, Yogini by Kathryn E. Livingston

Exercise is often stated as a coping strategy for mental health. I use exercise myself and love the release of endorphins that it gives me. However, yoga specifically is often given as a coping strategy for anxiety. The calmness of yoga and the idea of non-attachment can be very helpful for someone who suffers with anxiety. Being told this can seem silly and I used to wonder how that could possibly be true. How is focusing on my breathe going to help me?

Within this book Kathryn shares how she went from someone with extreme and sometimes debilitating anxiety to someone willing to put herself out into the world. To her this would not have been possible without yoga. She does a great job writing about the transition from her one self to her new self. The words are well chosen and the writing is clean.

I found that I struggled to get into the book in the first bit, kind of like how I struggled to get into yoga (yes not only do I do yoga

but I am also a yoga teacher). As I continued to read to I identified more and more with Kathryn and am so glad that I didn’t put the book down. By the end I couldn’t put the book down.

Not only was I identifying with her journey of learning yoga but her journey with cancer. She had breast cancer and I had cervical cancer. When she writes of wondering if it will ever return I feel her worry. When she writes about having to come to terms with this illness I feel her pain. She doesn’t gloss over the strong emotions that come with this diagnosis. She embraces that part of her journey and shares it openly with all of her readers. I felt like someone else finally understood me!

If you have ever wondered about yoga this book is for you. If you have struggled with cancer and the emotions that go with it, this book is for your. If you love a well written story about someone’s life, this book is for you!

You can purchase your copy on amazon.

Posted in Blog, Mental Health, On Writing

Work in Progress

This year is getting exciting; and yes I realize that it is two thirds over. The beginning of this year was a bit of a struggle mentally, but it is turning out to be a great end of the year.

The YouTube channel Write or Die Show is going well and has been getting great feedback. When I first came up with the idea for the channel I didn’t know how I would find guests or if anyone would even be interested in listening to the interviews. However, I have already recorded nearly 80 interviews and have a waitlist of 20 guests for the next set of recordings.

From the interviews that have already been posted people are thanking me for talking about mental health. I am blown away by the encouragement that I have received. Not that anyone needs external validation but when my depression rears (which is was – and telling me this was a horrible idea) having that external validation helps to quiet those negative thoughts.

There will be lots more episodes coming and I hope you will share them!

In March I was able to publish not just one but two books! Diamond the Cat and Embracing Me came out that month. Again, the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. Thank you to everyone who has purchased the books and I am so glad that the messages are impactful.

As you know (if you have been keeping up on the blog) I have been diligently working on the audiobook for Embracing Me, and I am happy to announce that it has been sent into ACX and is now awaiting approval. Fingers crossed there isn’t anymore editing that needs to be done.

A Little Scare is almost finished the editing process as well and should be released by the end of September if all goes well. Just in time to make a great Christmas gift for the teen who loves horror. I am really excited about this book as it is so different from what I have published previously and I hope that everyone will enjoy the collection.

Don’t worry I have some more non-fiction books in the works as well.

The Crime Stoppers of Niagara history book is coming along. It is a slow process but involves much more research than previous projects I have worked on. I have learned so much about Crime Stoppers and it really is an interesting organization.

The newest book that I have started working on is my first collaboration with a another author. This will be his first published book and I am excited about the topic – mental health. Which we all know is a topic I love to talk about. In this book we are examining it in regards to biblical principles (if you didn’t know I am a Christian and this has been a book on my mind for many years). This is just getting started so it will be a few months before it is ready to publish.

And if all of that wasn’t enough I will be releasing a self-care journey journal. More on that as it gets more into production. Plus, a list of ideas to be written – more scary stories and more children’s books.

Wow, I have my work cut out for me. Thank you to everyone who continues to support me.

Posted in Blog, Mental Health, Reviews

Review – My Daze with the Dark Muse by DM Needom

This is not the type of book I would normally pick up but that’s the fun of having books sent to me to review. First off, if you have an aversion to harsh language this is not the book for you. Second, if you have an aversion to reading about sex, this book is not for you.  Other than that this book is an interesting read. B08PF8LXBN

The book starts with being written as if the main character is writing in his journal. I enjoyed this viewpoint as I don’t see it used much. It chronicles his struggle as a falling Rockstar with a drug addiction. The author does a great job in showing the internal struggle of being an addict but not wanting to be an addict.

As the book progresses the main character’s struggle progresses. Eventually, it ends him in rehab, but that is not the end of the story. The real ending (which I won’t give away) is a great twist. I didn’t see that coming and the author does a great job of building the suspense before revealing the twist.