Wow, thanks, Jodi Aman of Heal Now and Forever, for the blog award! It’s always exciting to be recognized by one’s peers, especially by someone whose work I admire.
Here’s the catch: To receive the award, I need to write seven things about myself. Seven? I can usually come up with one, especially when I’m trying to make a point, but seven feels monumental. I’ll give it my best shot!
- My first name is Beth, after a character in Little Women. I have a sister Amy, also named from the book. Of course, I also have other siblings NOT named from the book (John, Valerie, and Bryan), but I can’t explain that. I have Beth’s shyness and Jo’s bluntness, which don’t mesh well together. I stopped going by Beth at age 33 when I decided I felt more like a Nadine…whatever that means.
- I spent years on a spiritual quest and ended up converting to Judaism. I am not into the rituals so much, but I love the emphasis on ethics and integrity, and the concept of tikkun olam (repairing the world) is an integral part of my philosophy.
- I grew up in a blue-collar household, where I was taught a strong work ethic. This is where I get my populist leanings and start spitting nails when people speak of the working class as “lazy.” I would challenge any of these pompous politicians, especially one who thinks poor children aren’t being taught to work hard, to spend one day in the shoes of these Americans who give so much and receive so little. Oops, I’m getting political again!
- Ill health defined much of my childhood, and in my late 30s, I had Chronic Fatigue Syndrome for many years. These days I am strong and energetic, and I am grateful, grateful, grateful. This is why I am so into organic, local foods, gardening, yoga, and other forms of stress reduction. Every time I hike a mountain, I remember the years that I couldn’t. I hope I always do.
- I graduated from college at age 45. For years I didn’t admit that I wanted to be a writer when I grew up, so I would take classes, trying to come up with something else, ANYTHING else, that I could do. Finally I gave up and admitted that good or bad, I write, and I’m not much good for anything else. Because I was still dealing with the ill health in #4 above, I finished via “distance learning” from Eastern Oregon University in an accredited degree program. Better late than never! It was a proud moment for me.
- Julia Cameron is my hero. I found her book, The Artist’s Way, in 1997. I had always wanted to write but didn’t know how to get started. Within three weeks of practicing the principles in her book, I started to write, and I haven’t stopped. Her work, which focuses on unblocking creativity, also led me to start quilting, taking photographs, traveling, and more. I thank her not just for the writing, but for opening my life to adventure.
- A former co-worker started calling me Spa Woman because I love massages and facials, hot springs, and all other forms of pampering. I liked the nickname, so I use it online frequently as an alias.
As part of accepting this award, I will pay it forward by recommending other great blogs — stay tuned! I will offer those tomorrow as part of my Thursday Books and Blogs entry. Thanks again, Jodi!