Don’t Call Me Inspirational: FREE SIGNED COPY!

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Harilyn Rousso is a disability activist, feminist, psychotherapist, writer, and painter.  Her list of accomplishments is stunning.  Her book, ‘Don’t Call Me Inspirational’ holds reviews from the likes of Gloria Steinem who says, “I’ve known Harilyn Rousso as a powerful activist and gifted artist, but with this revelatory book, she becomes something even rarer: a storyteller who conveys her uniqueness and so helps us to discover our own.”  Rousso’s novel, published by Temple University Press this year, is a biography so powerfully written that it explodes from within itself, and beyond the issues uncovered in women’s studies, disability advocacy and politics there exists a rare exuberance. (READ FULL REVIEW)

DISABILITY LOOP NEWS is giving away a FREE SIGNED COPY! All you have to do is “LIKE” our Facebook Page and you will be entered into the drawing on June 12th!

LIVE RADIO INTERVIEW!

RachelLoveShowpicDo not forget to tune in today at 1:00 pm Pacific time and 4:00 pm Eastern to listen and ask questions our guest is Courtney Frey, she will be happy to answer questions you might have, all you have to do is use the comment section for it. If you wish to read Free Chapters of her book, please go to her website and register.

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN LIVE

 

 

About Courtney:

Courtney Frey is an approaching 40 young years mother of three amazing teenagers and lives in rural Iowa.  She has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Bachelor’s in Human and Health Services.  Courtney is also the author of “One Birth mother’s Emotional Truth on Healing, Recovery and Success” (Adoption Press, 2002) and is a national speaker on women’s issues.  She has published hundreds of articles for Adoption Media LLC, and currently operates a personal inspiration blog as well as http://www.itsneverinvain.com for her upcoming novel, Restitution.  Courtney is a speaker for RAINN (Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network) and can booked for engagements through the Contact link on this site.  Her Creative Team is compromised of Jen Kelchner of http://www.jenkelchner.com and Jim Genet CEO of http://www.syngii.com.Courtney is a huge literary addict and is a fan of Edgar Allen Poe, Hemingway, and Charlotte Gilmore Perkins.  She even named her little 8 year old Maltese, Hemingway and she proudly sports a tattoo of a large Raven on her back.  Her literary passions stem from her relationship with her father, which is revealed in her novel.  One of her favorite quotes is from Poe, “I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.”  She wears high heels to sporting events, likes Hemingway Martini’s, and eats sushi any chance she can get.

About RESTITUTION:

Tess never screamed. Not out-loud. Not when she was five years old, abused at the hands of a man she called Pastor; and not through the years she was molested by her Uncle. Silence.Shame. Did she cause these bad things to happen?  Was she really, like the Pastor had said, “A bad girl who made bad things happen …?”  Would she ever be worthy of love?

“I still love him,” Rebecca whispered through a bleeding crack in her lip as Tess held her close on the bare mattress in her tiny bedroom.  Her father had beaten her; again.  How can a daughter still want to be loved by a man who is supposed to protect her?  The hate would come soon after he killed her mother, leaving her trying to survive a string of Foster Homes.  But could she do what the courts were asking, years later, and care for him as he died?  Forgiveness never means excusing.

Tess ran her hand over the white hospital blanket, trying not to cry for her best friend, Amy, who comforted her, “I won’t walk again, but I’ll find a way to live.” The accident had left her paralyzed.  We were 16. And we were mothers.

Restitution will lead you into the valley of darkness, through the horrors of child-hood sexual abuse, domestic violence, the loss of a child through adoption, abortion, paralysis, and life altering events that we don’t talk about; enough.  But it does something more than that.

Tess, Rebecca and Amy don’t just survive. They win. It is a story of three lives, not unlike your own, that will empower you to reach back into the shadows of your own past and reclaim the little girl left behind.

Beauty For Ashes

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It’s a Monday night and it’s late. I’ve just returned from witnessing a miracle and I cannot remain quiet. Those involved may not have even seen it through the right eyes to know they witnessed a miracle. But, they were the miracle workers that answered a prayer whispered many, many years ago.

I met Courtney Frey, author of Restitution, not even two months ago. A friend of mine had met her, just a couple of weeks before me randomly, after she commented on a blog post of his. Within less than 24 hours, they realized the connection the universe had made between them that was not coincidental. Courtney and I instantly connected and formed a fast friendship. In six weeks I gained a sister for life, she is a part of my heart now forever.

Her story, Restitution, is painful at times as the dark things we don’t discuss are shredded under the Light. Whether you have experienced sexual abuse, incest, rape, violence of any sort or not, the emotions of her story are truly yours at some point in your life. That deep sense to belong, to be wanted, to be loved. You read and your spirit says, “Yes! Me too!” She has chosen to take her story and show that beauty for ashes is not just a sentence in a verse in Isaiah 61 but is reality. (see below for context)

Over a decade ago, Courtney wrote the above lyrics, part of the chorus of Bridges, to go with her story and what she knew in her heart she had to do. It has sat in a purple crate along with the manuscript of her book until the beginning of 2013. The time has come to build the bridge and to let others know they are not alone. And then came her miracle….

I have some talented friends. One set of friends that are musically inclined heard about Courtney’s story and said they’d take the song Bridges and record it. So last night, I witnessed a miracle, a blessing, an answer to prayer.

kiloWatt Studios & Kevin Ward

Kevin Ward, Founder and CEO of MixCoach, has been in the recording industry for over 20 years. kiloWatt Studios is located in Murfreesboro, TN just outside of Nashville. Along with Kevin’s wife, Janna, two of our other friends, Stephanie Sarsfield and Cindy Letson, literally breathed life into the lyrics and spent hours laying down the vocal tracks to a song that had never been sung. For hours, those words resounded in the studio…”bring my daughters home”.

At the end of the night, Courtney who had been on Google Hangout from Iowa the whole time, just wept unashamedly to us all. “Thank you, thank you, thank you. There are no words for my gratitude. You have no idea how much of a blessing you have been.”  How do you put words to witnessing your own miracle? While the gang at kiloWatt may see that they just “did a favor” because they enjoy hanging out and jamming, they were miracle workers. Their Spirit nudged them to participate and they said, “YES!”.

I’m seeing a lot of miracles these days. We say that our world has already “gone to hell in a hand basket”. We witness horrific, deplorable acts all of the time. But, I’m here to boldly announce that their is a greater power of Good working through the people of this world. That there is more greatness to come, more healing of wounds, more freedom to souls, more miracles to be seen.

Your shame and dishonor will be eviscerated. You will receive beauty for ashes.

Please Visit Jen for more AMAZING and POWERFUL Insights and for more information on Life Coaching … Become Empowered, Change Your Life!

Official Video Book Trailer Launch!

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http://www.itsneverinvain.com  ……  I would love feedback and support.  Please click on the trailer image above to be directed to the video, you can also download the first 6 chapters FREE for a limited time only.    This is a scary journey for me … to be so exposed …. I hope and pray that it reaches even just one person who needed to hear and to know …. you are not alone.  And, NOTHING is EVER in Vain.   Courtney Frey, Author.

Why Won’t You Stop Talking About Your Past?

Why Won’t You Stop Talking About Your Past?

Questions like this one, and others like, “Move on already … no one wants to talk about abuse.  It’s over, grow up – it’s done with,” are often responses from others who find out I’ve written an entire novel about my history with sexual abuse, my having bi-polar disorder, being a teen mom, and other issues that I have the audacity to bring into the light.

As my “real” job, aside from being an author, I am the Editor in Chief for Disability Loop News, a national media platform for the advocacy, information, support and unity of the disability community.  One of my jobs is to write book reviews.

book-mockup_newToday, in the mail, Harilyn Rousso’s book, Don’t Call Me Inspirational, came in the mail.  Bless her heart, she even signed the book for me.  Now, at first I looked at the cover title and saw the sub-title which reads, “A Disabled Feminist Talks Back,” and I thought … whoa … this is going to be a wild ride.  However, as I nestled in with my coffee and my morkie in my lap, I was absolutely floored by the words in her first chapter.  It was as if she were saying them right to me.  It was as if she was telling me, “KEEP GOING – there is a REASON!”

For anyone who shares their story in the purpose of greater connection to self and to others, for those who reach out with their stories of survival and recovery, KEEP DOING IT.  Don’t let the nay-sayer’s who are “uncomfortable” with the topic bring you down.  Perhaps, just perhaps, they aren’t ready to heal quite yet.  I bet, however, your courage makes a difference and that you are a light – even when it doesn’t seem like it, in their dark places.  This is what she writes in Chapter One ….

“So that’s my story, my journey in a nutshell.  Having come to a place where I not only accept but at times appreciate and celebrate my disability status, I’d like to offer support and a bit of advice to young people who may be struggling with the fact that they have a disability and who may be hoping beyond hope that it will go away or that no one will notice.  I’d like them to consider the possibility that they can stop hiding and pretending, that they can claim disability and be all right.  There’s no magic pill to get them to that all-right place – if there were, I’d gladly give it to them (and take one myself).  But there is a path, their path, to get there.  Maybe my journey will help them.  Even if nothing I did makes any sense to them and they have to forge their own direction, I want them to take heart.  They should trust themselves to find their way – and call on some of their older sisters and brothers with disabilities to help them.  Most important, they should know that there are some great moments of self-discovery and freedom ahead of them.

Daring to claim disability or any part of yourself that you have been taught to disavow can be an amazing adventure …”

I LOVE what she points out ….. ” … that you have BEEN TAUGHT TO DISAVOW …”

To breaking free from the mis-guided teachings of shame and secrecy and to a bright and purposeful future of empowering ourselves and others through the life journey of overcoming odds against us.

Write on fellow authors and reachers …. write on, and reach on.  You DO make a difference.  Now, excuse me, but I’ve got to get to Chapter Two …. she starts the Chapter with, “I was in a hurry to be born.”  Wow.  This feminist can WRITE! 🙂

To see the full review on June 3rd visit http://www.disabilityloopnews.com!

 

 

How Do I Reach Out For Help?

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Snow fell into my footsteps as I walked, and when I looked back it was as if I didn’t exist.  Like I was just standing, out of nowhere, and there was nothing to prove I’d come this far.  My back ached, the only evidence that I’d been walking, and I rubbed my swollen belly.  I hoped my baby was not as cold as I felt.

I’d remembered there was a church up in the distance, my saving grace.  I didn’t have anywhere else to turn.  I was homeless and pregnant at sixteen.  Amy, my best friend of three years, had been letting me sleep on her couch but she was in the hospital now.  A pot of boiling water, tipping in one painful second, scorching her paralyzed legs – she would have major surgery.  I’d had to go.

The Vineyard looked desolate, but as I edged closer I could see a light on inside, up the grand stairs reflecting inside the expanse of windows.  The door was open.  A rush of warm air held me, and stepping inside I realized I was going to have to ask a stranger for help.  I shivered.

The Pastor was kind hearted, offering me warm tea and a chair in his office before asking me, “How can I help you?”

The question was too big for me.  There were so many things I needed help with, so many choices that led me to this very moment.  I don’t know when I started crying, but the tissue was starting to fall apart in my hand when he gently asked, “Do you have a place to go tonight?”

Nodding my head no, he immediately picked up his telephone and began making phone calls, telling the other person on the phone that there was a young expecting girl without a home tonight.  Would someone help?

I’d walked nearly three miles and my feet had swollen up, the tears fell so heavy they couldn’t dry, and my little baby was kicking against my ribs as if to tell me, “Someone will help us.”

_____________

helpAsking for help, in and of itself, requires us to be completely vulnerable – to let loose of our ego, to accept our limitations, and admit that we need.  For some of us, this is the most difficult thing to do because we fear that others will think us weak and incapable.  We have a tendency to pretend to the outside world that all is well and fine, but on the inside we are weeping and crying out … most of us convince ourselves that if people love us they will come to us, they will see our need, and we don’t have to admit we need them.

This leads to our feeling isolated, uncared for, unloved, and unseen.  We internalize not only our own needs, but now – we listen to the lie that if we were really truly loved; someone would have reached out to us.

Ask for help.  It is not a sign of weakness, it is a movement in courage.  It is your standing up in your life, and for yourself, and in that one act of vulnerability … you are changing your life and the lives of those you reach out to.  You are creating powerful change.

Who do you reach out to?

Reach out to someone you respect, someone in your life who has a positive influence on you.  One of the mistakes we can make when we finally become vulnerable in our need is to try reaching out to someone who really isn’t equipped to help us.  Maybe, they are in need so much so too, that they just aren’t able to give you what you need.  So, when you think about reaching out, consider someone in your life who has the tools and the resources to really help.

How Do I Ask for Help?

Sometimes, we get ourselves so down and to the point of what seems like no return that our need builds and builds and before we realize it, even thinking to ask for help is impossible because if someone were to say, “How can I help you?” We wouldn’t even know where to begin.  One step at a time.  Choose your immediate need – sit down and write a list of areas in your life that you are struggling with.  What is the main issue you are dealing with?  Once you deal with ONE thing … the rest will fall into place.  You can even say, “I am so overwhelmed that I don’t even know where to begin, but I do know I need help.”

If you’re not ready to walk to a church, call a therapist, or maybe you aren’t even ready to leave the house and put yourself out there … that’s okay.  I encourage you to reach out to a life coach.  My own life coach, Jen Kelchner, who is a part of Restitution’s Creative Team, is available for online coaching.

In the meantime, if this story spoke to you in any way, please feel free to contact me.  We are all in this together.  Nothing is ever in vain, and you aren’t alone.

Reach.

 

 

 

Refuse to be a Victim

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There have been times in our lives when others have taken things from us – our innocence, our sense of worth, our joy. Yet, we CAN restore those things back to us, we are the rightful owners of our happiness, our wholeness, and our VALUE. We can stand up and refuse to be victimized! To all of my followers, Be Strong Today in the knowledge that whatever wrongs have been done, we can turn them and use them for GOOD in our lives! Blessings!

Restitution Novel COMING SOON!