While I sipped my coffee this morning, I picked up a book I had been reading last night. Instead of starting where I left off, though, I felt compelled to open the book to a different place. As my eyes scanned the words in front of me, I felt a sudden surge of excitement, and my heart raced a bit. Written on the page in front of me was the British tale of the orange-throated, blue swallow—the same bird that graces the cover of Let My Legacy Be Love, A Story of Discovery and Transformation: Tracing Adult Issues to Childhood Hurts.
Many people have asked me why I decided on the swallow as a cover photo for this memoir/self-help hybrid. My answer has been that as a kid, I loved the swallows that sang on the wire outside my bedroom window, and to this day I still love how they swoop down and then soar up and away. It feels magical. But this morning I learned that the blue swallow with the orange throat and smoky wings is associated with transformation and the changing of seasons. How wonderful, especially since my inspiration for this book is to help others by sharing my stories of self-discovery and transformation. What an incredible parallel that bird turned out to be!
So, here’s how everything went down. In 2007, I suffered a life-changing heartbreak. As hard as that period was, I decided that I would not let it destroy me. Instead, I would open myself to the experience and let it be my teacher. I have to admit it wasn’t easy. To work through my rollercoaster-like emotions, I began journaling and writing stories about the events as they were happening. I noted even the smallest encouraging comments and reassurances, recording them on 3×5 cards. I also continued my practice of daily gratitude even on my worst days. By the time my life turned around, I had an entire corkboard filled with notes and inspirational sayings. I also had a couple of journals and several story-filled notebooks. By then I was determined to share what I had learned through my process of healing and transformation, so I decided to put my notes and stories in book form. It was then I began writing.
When I shared a few stories with my friend Carlene, she began asking me questions about what I had written. When we started working together, her questioning became almost investigative, and it was then that the stories changed and evolved. In sum, it is through our conversations that we realized my stories were tracing adult issues to childhood hurts. Thanks to the hours Carlene spent working with me; the content in the book is much deeper and richer than if I had done it alone.
As I said above, I share my stories as my way of helping others who are struggling through difficult situations or who can’t figure out how to break a repeating pattern in their life. The book is an example of the triumph you can experience when you look at the events in your life from a different perspective. It’s not only possible; it’s do’able. I would be so excited if you, too, began a path of discovery and transformation. I am here to help. Let our legacy be love!