After my mandatory stint in childhood, I took on the task of being a wife and mother, remaining in those roles for fourteen years.
In 1972, at a time when I felt as though I was walking in a fog, I took flight, I had an inner calling I simply had to follow. I left my husband and children to “find myself.” I dubbed this period in my life “The Leaving Event.” (My memoir, Flight Instructions: A Journey Through Guilt to Forgiveness, is a must-read if you want to learn all the sordid details.)
This is my personal blog. It focuses on what I learned on my journey to forgiveness, pre and post publication. Several blogs are brief episodes from the book, and some are about what I call PMS, post memoir syndrome.
On my journey I adopted a shadow persona called Denial. In the precarious company of Big D, I was actually able to accomplish some pretty amazing things
After completing an undergraduate degree, I joined the Army and, taking advantage of the G.I. Bill, furthered my education, obtaining two master degrees, and a PhD. I side-stepped to London, England in 1986. I met Princess Di at a ribbon cutting ceremony at an old people’s home in Kensington. She shook my hand, we made eye contact, she smiled.
I’ve been a therapist, a teacher, a lover, a long-distance mother, and a spiritual seeker and teacher. During my time in the Deep South, I became a racial justice advocate, joining the ranks of other anti-racists and, in the process of the work, made the tiniest chip in the iceberg of injustice. I carried my passion for racial justice back to Oregon and was awarded the Martin Luther King, Jr. Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013.
Shortly after this, desperate to find self-forgiveness, I “dropped out” to dive into writing my memoir. Follow my blogs, and read the book to see what happened.
Buy Flight Instructions in Print Copy & Kindle or other eBook versions
I was born a social worker—counseled childhood friends, rescued birds from cats. I eventually made a career of it. After earning a bachelor’s degree from Idaho State University, I joined the U.S. Army in 1974, and was stationed at Madigan Army Medical Center in Washington State where I counseled the families of military members. I earned a Master of Social Work degree in 1979 from Portland State University in Oregon and worked at Children’s Services for seven years. I earned an MA degree in gerontology, and a PhD in social work from the University of Pennsylvania.
In 1986 went to London, England to study at the London School of Economics and Political Science for six months and then to Baton Rouge, Louisiana in 1988, joining the faculty at Louisiana State University, School of Social Work.
During my tenure at LSU, I co-authored two books: The Faces of Social Policy: A Strengths Perspective. (2002), and Mental Health Services and Aging: Building on Strengths of Older Persons. (1996) Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole Publishing Company and published many articles in professional journals. I moved back to Portland, Oregon in 2002, holding teaching positions at Marylhurst University and University of Portland before leaving academe in 2007 to write full-time.