I’m a big believer in talking about what you want, doing something to get what you want, and dusting yourself off after you find out getting what you want is hard work. Writing MamaQuest.org has led me to cool, unexpected places and connected me to people in such a way that I’m not sure I can show enough gratitude. People say I’m brave. I grew up Catholic so I automatically reject this idea. The truth is I’m only brave because I have amazing supporters. So here’s a list of what’s been going on behind the scenes, thanks to your support:
1. Publishing a Children’s Book by Alice Muscarella. My mother wrote a brilliantly funny book: My Life as a ½ Polish School Girl in Chelsea, Massachusetts. An amazing artist, and good friend, Maggie Nichols is illustrating the pages while I finesse the prose. I have wanted to put this together ever since my mother passed away and now it’s finally happening.
2. Launching a new site. I need your feedback! Last month I launched Trauma to Art (t2a: trauma2art.com) after being inspired by the dialogue with some MamaQuest.org supporters. So far there are two contribution options:
- Tell My Story – Free write: A candid and creative essay about loss. I work with writers to edit and perfect the piece, then publish it. Check out the stories up so far.
- Monthly topic −Every month we focus on a new topic related to grief. This month we’re creating a list of ways to take care of ourselves. Check out the list so far and add to it.
3. New Writing Gig for Open to Hope. Finding good quality online grief resources can be daunting. In October I stumbled upon an amazing resource Open to Hope, soon after I started writing a monthly article for them. Link to my posts.
On March 14, Open to Hope founders Dr. Heidi and Gloria Horsley will interview me on their radio show about my mother’s children’s book, my battle with depression in the first few years of my mourning process, and Trauma to Art.
4. Unleash the Leader in the Girl (Holiday Gift Idea!). Have you ever heard of The Girl Effect? The idea is simple: A woman is the world’s most powerful force for change. Empowering her is the first step to empowering entire communities.
To help support my new friends at The Mariposa DR Foundation attain a permanent spot on the Global Giving Web site, I asked to contribute to an exceptional blog 4WomenWorldwide. Read that post and learn more.
P.S. A mere $20 gives one girl a healthy breakfast for one month.
5. Personal Pursuits: Book, fellowship, documentary, or shutting off my iPhone and moving to Paris. I’ve been freelancing and pursuing personal projects for almost five months now and I’m ready to make some moves (maybe). I’m a big believer in putting what you want out into the universe so it’s only fitting that I share my dreams with you.
- Book: I have been researching international mourning traditions and even traveled to New Orleans for All Souls Day last month. (Their traditions are the result of African influences) Then, a friend passed my name along to a professor who plans to write a book about that very topic. I emailed him about contributing with a chapter about my mother’s cremation, the origin of cremation and the differences in Catholic cremation compared with the practices of other cultures. It looks promising.
- Fellowship: I’ve applied for a Reporter Fellowship with a public radio affiliate. The opportunity to learn and take on a new challenge excites me so I’m keep my phone lines VERY open!
- Documentary: I spent quite a bit of time on the periphery of the building industry. The disconnect between the industry and the average person bothers me. I constantly see smart people neglect their homes and expose their family to harmful solutions that offer one measly, short-term benefit: It’s cheap. I am pursuing a documentary project about homeownership. My piece will define homeownership for perspective buyers, and inspire existing homeowners to take great pride in their dwellings by learning how to care for them. I’m working with an environmental documentarian on a treatment now. Then I’ll start raising capital!
- Paris: I swore I would learn French when I moved back to Massachusetts but instead I’m thinking of abandoning all my worldly possessions and moving to Paris, OR starting a charity to raise money for Rosetta Stone. Just $1 will bring me closer to my dream! Just jokes.
Please email me or comment so I can hear about your latest projects. I love hearing from readers and supporters. If there is ever anything I can do to help, give me a shout. firstname.lastname@example.org