The Gardenia Project

Ep 12 Suzanne, Learning to Be Kind to Yourself

Ep 12 Suzanne, Learning to Be Kind to Yourself

Suzanne tells the story of how early on she learned what she should look like. Teen magazine is not the place to get that advice, but when she was young and impressionable that is what she saw the world saying the standard should be. She then went on to deal with a lifetime of food addiction. Suzanne bravely shares a truth that most of her friends don't know the extent of. She realizes that she is tired of hiding the struggles that she has daily. We all benefit from the universal lesson to be learned in being more kind to ourselves. 

Ep 11 Kim, Love Carries You Through

Ep 11 Kim, Love Carries You Through

his story from a dear friend of mine may be hard for any of you that have lost a child. As Kim shares the story of the loss of her baby Garrick, I want to make sure that you have that warning before listening since it is such a delicate subject matter for those of you that have experienced this loss. However, her story is one full of love and laughter. She talks about the things she learned from her son, Garrick. How he taught her to see all the beauty in life and be grateful for it every day. How the love from friends and family really does carry you through. 


Ep 10 Hilary, My Inner Voice of Strength

Ep 10 Hilary, My Inner Voice of Strength

Happy International Women's Day 2018 my friends!! I am celebrating the amazing women in the world today by releasing another podcast telling the story of a strong woman! 

Today's story is one of sudden trauma, how your life can change in a split second, and how the inner voice in your head can decide a lot about the way we heal. Your entire life is hugely effected and somewhat decided, I think, by your attitude. Sometimes we forget what a huge role that voice can play. This story is a reminder of how powerful it is to keep our inner voice a positive one! 

Ep 9 Jesseca, To Love and Accept

Ep 9 Jesseca, To Love and Accept

We all learn different lessons in life and they come to us in numerous ways. Jesseca shares a lesson that she never dreamed that she would have to learn. It has taught her about love and acceptance of those that she loves in a whole new way. I respect her so much for the way she handled herself in the middle of watching her life fall apart. I also respect what she let that time in her life teach her about the world, accepting others, telling the truth, true love and kindness to ourselves.  There are so many things that life will teach us if we choose to learn them. 

Ep 7 - Bambi on Rewiring our Brain

Ep 7 - Bambi on Rewiring our Brain

Learning to cope with the anxiety our brain creates and how we can take back control is the subject of the this podcast. Bambi suffered from panic disorder and debilitating anxiety and learned how to control the panic before it escalated to a full blown attack.  She is now a brain coach and helps people learn how to control their brain and anxiety. 

Ep 6 - Michelle on Receiving the Greatest Trust that can be Bestowed

Ep 6 - Michelle on Receiving the Greatest Trust that can be Bestowed

As this story shows a lot of how things play out it life may depend on your heart. And your actions. And on the way you treat and respect others. 

Listen to Michelle's story for proof of just that. I love a story with a happy ending. And I am so excited to share this uplifting story as the start to our second season of storytelling!

Ep 5 Nora - No Shame, Life after Attempting Suicide

Ep 5  Nora - No Shame, Life after Attempting Suicide

Nora's story is heart breaking and powerful. She suffered a huge loss as a teen and spiraled into darkness that wouldn't lift. It lead her to rock bottom. More than once. She hid her feelings and pretended she was fine for many years. She learned the hard way how hiding and stuffing sadness down doesn't work for her and what she needed to do to change the course of her life. She learned to live. It was a long hard road. 

Ep 4 - Kathy on Dealing with Darkness

Ep 4 - Kathy on Dealing with Darkness

Kathy is just like you and me. Someone you might see in the line at the grocery store or meet in your networking group. She is married and has two kids and a runs a successful business. That's the stuff we all know about each other. The things that we share with people. What we let people see of us. Then there are the things that we don't share. Kathy decided that she wanted to get brave and share her story about dealing with depression and anxiety. She has dealt with both of those things her whole life. 

Ep 3 - Maura, One Caretakers Strength - A Child with the Invisible Illness

Ep 3 - Maura, One Caretakers Strength - A Child with the Invisible Illness

One of the things that can strike at anytime is disease or illness. It can sneak up when you think everything is just fine. I am guilty of being afraid of this for my daughter for sure. So what happens when your child gets diagnosed with an illness that currently isn't curable? How do you deal with that pain, and then learn to cope with it every single day? That is Maura's story.

Ep 2 - Elizabeth - What's at Stake When we Don't Speak Up

Ep 2 - Elizabeth - What's at Stake When we Don't Speak Up

When I first heard Elizabeth's story my mouth hung open. Then I immediately teared up and cried as she kept talking. I remembered all the times I didn't stand up for myself. The times I can look back on when I knew I wanted to say something, but just didn't for all the reasons that we don't. And the ways that not speaking up didn't serve me or totally changed me. 

Ep 1 - Anna on Finding Yourself, Getting Un-Lost

Ep 1 - Anna on Finding Yourself, Getting Un-Lost

Part of my goal for The Gardenia Project is to not only help women feel empowered by sharing their stories, but to shine a light on the realities of our lives that we are often too afraid or embarrassed to talk about publicly. I want to change the dialog. I think that by sharing our stories (however dark they may seem to us) they will loose their power over us. Things that are hidden remain big and scary. Things that are shared remind us of the ways we can connect to each other, that we are not alone.

A bouquet of happy! Portrait session for Anna in Portland Maine

A bouquet of happy! Portrait session for Anna in Portland Maine

I am always amazed by people who are so positive even after having really awful experiences. It would be so easy to take something that was so bad, for so long, and really let it turn you into a negative person. Always expecting the worst from life and people. Anna has clearly decided that will never be the case for her. 

Climbing into the drivers seat

Climbing into the drivers seat

This morning I am supposed to be finishing up a presentation for my networking group. A group of people that I have known for over a year now. They aren't my closest friends, but a wonderful group of people that I know pretty well. And they all know me. They are kind and open, and I have presented my photography to them in the past several times. I realize I am terrified to present my new project to them. The one that I am so excited to be creating.