the women in me memoir strong women

The Women In Me will inspire you to call on the influencers in your own life. Possibly you’ve drawn on them in your past and can now appreciate their impact on you.

Are you caring for your chronically ill husband? Did you grow up with suicidal, alcoholic

parents? Are you searching for a loving relationship? Have your efforts at starting a fulfilling

career been thwarted by someone determined to hold you back? Maybe you’ve postponed your

own dreams in order to keep from making waves with a significant other. Does your life seem to

be heading a long way from where you’d wish it to be? Any of these can steal your happiness or

keep you from achieving your potential. All can crush your hopes and dreams.

This is the story of a woman who grew up in a dysfunctional family, was trapped by a predator at

age 8, was suffocated by an abusive marriage, grappled with being a single mother, finally found

her soulmate struggled with a blended family, juggled the incompatible roles of wife and

caregiver, yet maintained her faith, at least most of the time. She did it thanks to some special

women who supported her in ways she didn’t recognize until she unconsciously drew upon their


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The Birth of a Book

When my good friend Nancy started talking about writing a book to help others deal with the

stress that life smashes our faces into, I thought…well, I wasn’t excited. There are so many

books like that already available. Even so, I was willing to help my friend create The Women In Me. It

would be very personal, dredging up memories of experiences that weren’t all happy. That

makes it difficult to transfer thoughts into words describing those thoughts, which is why she

asked for my help, as a more seasoned writer.

It took at least a year before the idea was fully formed in our heads. We’d talk from time to time

about experiences we came to see that we shared. The conversations became more personal

as we bared our souls to each other. The more we talked, the more energized we became to

create this project together. What Nancy really wanted to do was use herself as an example of

how much can be accomplished or endured if we don’t try to go it alone. Looking back, she

recognized that there was an army of women behind her, throughout her life, whose influence

gave her the tools to butt heads with life and come out the victor. Starting as a child, she learned

enduring lessons from her four main influencers — her mother, grandmother, and two aunts.

Later, other women appeared when she needed them, offering help, teaching her coping skills, or

helping her decide which path to take as she walked into her future. She wonders who she’d be if

it weren’t for these women, along with the strong faith that was passed on to her by her four

main influencers.

We know you’ll identify with many of the situations and emotions that Nancy encountered in The Women In Me,

especially if you’re currently a spouse/caregiver, a survivor of a recently deceased spouse you

cared for during a long illness, or a divorced mother struggling to rediscover who you are while

maintaining a home for your family. We hope that, as you read these pages, you’ll be reminded

of the people who influenced you in ways that helped form you into the good person you are


May you embrace what the poet John Donne wrote 400 years ago: No (wo)man is an island.