Many moons ago, when my daughter was still stomping around the house, wearing plastic heels and pretending to be a high priestess, beating the shit out of every stainless steel appliance in my kitchen, I had an epiphany. What if I could capitalize on this witty exchange by writing about parenthood?
One-liners and motherhood was the inspiration behind Sassypiehole. It led me down a colorful path of imaginative bliss that felt surreal. A few years before filing for divorce, I attended my very first writing conference and befriended a group of likeminded individuals: moms and dads who were taking the world by storm, sharing heartfelt and hilarious stories about parenting. The energy in that three-day-excursion was exhilarating, and all of us became hooked on each other. These were my people; this was my tribe. Life was spectacular.
But then something happened, stifling my creativity and propelling me into a web of gloom that nearly destroyed my career. I stopped engaging online during this chaotic five-year-interval, mostly because it was hard to see everyone so happy while my life fell apart. It wasn't their fault they were optimistic and triumphant, but vulnerability does funny things to a person, and it was hard for me to watch.
I spent the next three years feeling like a creatively unplugged failure. Whenever I tried to write anything of value, it came across as bitter and resentful. Eventually, I stopped trying altogether and put my energy somewhere else, covering trending news and stories for several publications. While doing so certainly helped pay for some of the outrageous legal bills sitting on my desk, the stuff pouring out of my fingertips — worldly accounts of the good, bad, and ugly things happening around us — wasn't of any interest. It seemed as though my career was coming to an end, and it was all my fault.
For many, 2020 has been a horrible year filled with nothing but sadness, confusion, rage, hatred, and fear. For me, it's been quite the opposite. Despite facing all of the same uncertainties as everyone else, I've never felt so alive, and here's why: I am rebuilding my village, and it's stronger and better than it ever was before. The coolest part? My town extends way beyond the ordinary.
There are two districts to my new surroundings, and I'm pulling them together to make one. My followers are men and women who swap thoughtful messages and hilarious banter with me daily on Facebook and Instagram. Some of them have been with me since 2010, others are new, but each one of them is looking for the same thing: peace, love, and a few laughs. My creative friends, mostly writers, comedians, and content creators, want the equivalent with a twist, so why not bring us all together into one happy space?
Never have I ever met so many people with such thick skin and enormous hearts. It is an honor and joy to be me some days, living an unimaginable dream in the worst of times, but — Do you know what? — I'm not alone. The way I see it, you have two choices in life: continue arguing with friends, family, and random strangers about that which you cannot control or find your tribe. There is nothing that compares to the feeling of being accepted for who you are, not what others want you to be. Thank goodness I figured it out before leaving this universe. You might want to give it a whirl.