Step 13. Making life beautiful

 Dear Reader the power to choose is one of the greatest gifts of humanity.

Being able to choose our thoughts and emotions allows us a special kind of power in our lives – a power that we can use to benefit ourselves, or that we can unconsciously and unintentionally harm ourselves through poor use of it.

Possibly the greatest frustration in most people’s lives is finding themselves in situations, events and circumstances beyond their control. This lack of control can make one feel helpless and frustrated.

We may not be able to control everything in life but the one thing we can control is ourselves, our thoughts, feelings and reactions.

So how do we do this?

Step 13. Making life beautiful:

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Continue to belief in sacredness, in love and beauty.

Choose to stay focused on the gift you are to each other.

Remind each other of the option to create special moments.

Remind each other to turn away from cultural co-dependence.

Know that we can decide how we should be.

We can choose to stay open to creating our own definitions, rules and legends – we don’t have to do it the ugly way.

  We get to choose every moment. 

  • What can you do to help your partner make their life beautiful?
  • What can you do to make your own life beautiful?  Take a moment to really think about this, dear Reader, and see how you can practice this daily.

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This debut memoir chronicles a woman’s spiritual exploration and growth as she overcame a disturbing childhood and helped others heal.

Brought to America from the Dominican Republic as a youngster, Molina-Marshall should have led a happy life. Her father was a diligent worker, and his large family wanted for nothing. But the author recounts that her dad had a drinking problem and was a serial philanderer. Molina-Marshall’s long-suffering mother left him for a woman. Then it was all downhill for the bright, 12-year-old girl, who was shuttled between foster care and relatives. According to the author, she was sexually abused by the husband of one of her siblings. This resulted in Molina-Marshall becoming alienated and moody. By 15, she simply tried to survive. In her favor were grit and a restless intelligence. She quit school, rented a room, and found a factory job. Time went by, and for a while she was happily married. Yet when her husband left her, her life truly began. She turned to religion for answers but decided that blaming God for her woes was a cop-out. 

In this absorbing and moving memoir, Molina-Marshall’s vivid storytelling is fearless. She frankly discusses the truths she discovered and the indignities she suffered. These admissions are disclosed with a touch of resignation and plenty of bite. However painful, everything she experienced was a lesson, and she bravely realized that she was part of the problem: “The fear of being hurt, rejected, or abused often led to me feeling lonely and misunderstood. No one knew the agonizing pain I felt being trapped in my thoughts and anger. I was becoming my biggest threat.” 

The author skillfully recounts her intricate spiritual journey. To deal with her psychic wounds, she searched for an inspirational system. Her open-mindedness led her to the interfaith concept—cherry-picking from various religions and spiritual movements, yoga, and Indigenous beliefs as a way of finding peace. Along with her female partner, she built a therapy practice, making use of every spiritual element that aided her and others. The road was bumpy, and she found that women of color in same-sex relationships were not welcomed everywhere. To do good works—and finally live on her own terms—she effectively overcame bigotry.

An engrossing, cathartic account of empathy and success through determination and confidence.

Pub Date: May 3, 2022   |    ISBN: 978-0-578-38315-6  |   Page Count: 264    | Publisher: From Trauma to Triumph  |   Review Posted Online: June 13, 2022