The week before the release of my book earlier this month, I had a day of self-doubt. Maybe writing the story for myself was enough. Maybe I shouldn’t speak it out loud.
Much of the first chapter of the book was events in my life that I had kept secret for years. I was too ashamed to speak up about my past to even my closest friends and family. Now I was revealing it all in a book. I called my 23 year old daughter Lucy to ask for advice.
“Even if you help just one person with the book, that’s enough,” Lucy said.
As I pressed the ‘Submit’ button for my manuscript later that day, I said a prayer asking that the book reach the people that needed the message.
“I know that when I pray, something wonderful happens. Not just to the person or persons for whom I’m praying, but also something wonderful happens to me. I’m grateful that I’m heard.” — Maya Angelou
The week following the release an excerpt from the book was posted on one of my favorite websites: Rebelle Society (check it out here). Most of the readers comments were positive about the book excerpt, one suggested it was a personal matter and I needed therapy.
I had a book release party on the beach in Miami surrounded and supported by some of my closest friends. I knew they would like it, but what surprised me was the messages I started receiving publicly and privately, thanking me for writing the book. So many women said they saw a piece of themselves in my story. So many women said they saw they could heal their past wounds and trauma because I spoke up about mine.
Even in my own family, I felt some amazing shifts and support by speaking up instead of hiding. My son Sam, a comedian, produced my book trailer based on my conversation with each of my four kids (ages 19-24) about the subject of my book. It wasn’t an easy conversation at first. It was even harder to tell my mother. For all of us, it paved the way for more authentic conversation about life. It reminded me that sometimes the best thing we can do is to listen without commenting or judgment. Just listen.
Enjoy the book trailer (with a special appearance by my mother) and please keep sending comments and feedback about the book through the website or follow me on Facebook for updates. I am grateful that I’m heard.