An incredible memoir and an incredibly positive story to read, I NEVER PROMISED YOU A GOODIE BAG: A Memoir of a Life Through Events – the Ones You Plan and the Ones You Don’t, is also a self-help book for recovery.
All of us experience trauma and tough problems to solve and most often in hindsight these events help us learn how to cope and survive. Jennifer Gilbert has taken a horrific event from her 20s and actively worked at recovery and finding happiness and joy in her life. It was no small thing.
“Even in my fog of disbelief, I recognized that no one actually knew what I had gone through. I had been picked – targeted, followed, and attacked with the express intention of murder. It hadn’t been an accident. And while I was being almost killed, I’d also been abandoned. And altered, I’d learned that the universe had nothing good in store for me. I’d been marked with a big V for Victim, and if something so terrible could happen to me once, why couldn’t it happen again?”
Gilbert went ahead with doing the work she enjoyed the most. She was a very social person and had been busy organizing parties in her backyard and the neighborhood children into a summer circus. And it was the focus on her work, celebrating life,that helped her recover and move forward. She kept giving the gift of celebration to all the people and events that she brought to her business and then with the help of counseling and love of her family she was able to find her own celebration of her life and herself; discovering a treasure chest of joy.
Jennifer Gilbert’s website is www.savethedate.com She is an events planner in NYC and she has won awards for her organizational skills, business management and entrepreneurial endeavors. She is a type A and I think maybe even a bit hyperactive. She practices taking a relook and altering her ideas and thinking. I think my daughters would really benefit from reading her words and wisdoms.
I was incredibly moved by the following quotes, because it was similar to the traumas that I experienced over my childhood and 20s. Deep down I have had to confront my feelings of unworthiness and shame, and I wonder why people feel so free to attack me and what it is that brings out their hostile, competitive, and negative junk. Those feelings of what did I do to attract this to me are explored in depth.
“and if my life wasn’t a right, I concluded that it must be a reward, something that had to be earned.”
“For years after, I would work harder than I’d ever worked before just to prove myself worthy to others – to bosses, to clients, to men, to the universe.”
“ …no one who didn’t know better ever would have guessed the wells of shame that lay beneath.”
There is an unlimited amount of joy and we all have very different routes to find our happiness, but we must find and discover our own path and what makes us happy.
I was delighted to discover Gretchen Rubin’s dust cover comment. A great recommendation. I have read Rubin’s newsletter/blog and followed her for number of years now. Rubin wrote THE HAPPINESS PROJECT.
I could not put this book down – it is a positive, funny, and surprising honest memoir and I think you will enjoy it very much. This book spoke loudly to me.
“We do not think our way into new action, we act our way into new thought.” ~Anonymous
This book is being offered at a reduced rate at Amazon and you could win a free copy from this site for a comment or a review of this book. You can win a free copy of the book for a review on Powell’s also.