Look at You Now

Look at You Now
Author: Liz Pryor
Release: 2017-06-06
Editor: Random House Trade Paperbacks
Pages: 288
ISBN: 9780812987546
Language: en
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CHICAGO TRIBUNE BESTSELLER • For readers of Orange Is the New Black and The Glass Castle, a riveting memoir about a lifelong secret and a girl finding strength in the most unlikely place In 1979, Liz Pryor is a seventeen-year-old girl from a good family in the wealthy Chicago suburbs. Halfway through her senior year of high school, she discovers that she is pregnant—a fact her parents are determined to keep a secret from her friends, siblings, and community forever. One snowy January day, after driving across three states, her mother drops her off at what Liz thinks is a Catholic home for unwed mothers—but which is, in truth, a locked government-run facility for delinquent and impoverished pregnant teenage girls. In the cement-block residence, Liz is alone and terrified, a fish out of water—a girl from a privileged, sheltered background living amid tough, street-savvy girls who come from the foster care system or juvenile detention. But over the next six months, isolated and in involuntary hiding from everyone she knows, Liz develops a surprising bond with the other girls and begins to question everything she once held true. Told with tenderness, humor, and an open heart, Look at You Now is a deeply moving story about the most vulnerable moments in our lives—and how a willingness to trust ourselves can permanently change who we are and how we see the world. Praise for Look at You Now “A funny, tender and brave coming-of-age tale.”—People “A poignant, often funny reminder that we learn who we are when we’re at our most challenged.”—Good Housekeeping “Searingly honest.”—Family Circle “Readers will swiftly be drawn into the author’s compassionate retelling of her teen pregnancy—her fear, shame, regret, joy, and even her forgiveness of her parents for sending her away. This coming-of-age memoir is authentic and unforgettable.”—Publishers Weekly “[Liz] Pryor’s refusal to bury the truth of her experiences is the greatest strength of her book. Her honesty about a youthful error and desire to let that honesty define the rest of her life are both uplifting and inspiring. An unsentimental yet moving coming-of-age memoir.”—Kirkus Reviews “Pryor has vivid memories of her time in the facility, and her straightforward, unvarnished narrative, written as if by her seventeen-year-old self, rings true. Her story is well worth sharing.”—Booklist “I started reading this book thinking it was a compelling, honest, sometimes funny, sometimes poignant look at the world of teenage pregnancy, and knowing it would offer an inside look at the places where girls used to be hidden away until their babies came. I finished it damp-eyed and understanding that Look at You Now is much more than that. It is a story about how family dynamics work. It is about how wrenching it is to give away something born of your flesh, even if you know it’s the right decision. It’s about how much we can learn from people very much different from us. Most of all, it is a subtle, graceful story about how sometimes the worst things in our lives work best to shape our characters into something shining and true, something that will serve us for the rest of our lives.”—Elizabeth Berg, author of The Dream Lover “Liz Pryor’s story is shocking, moving, riveting, and, ultimately, inspiring. She writes like a natural, can balance humor and sorrow perfectly, and in Look at You Now, has written a pitch-perfect memoir.”—Darin Strauss, author of Half a Life

Look at You Now

Look at You Now
Author: Liz Pryor
Release: 2016
Editor: Unknown
Pages: 252
ISBN: 9780812998009
Language: en
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"The author describes her experience hidden away by her wealthy Chicago parents in a dreary government facility for impoverished pregnant teens after she discovered she was accidentally expecting at age 17 in 1979,"--NoveList.

Breakaway Learners

Breakaway Learners
Author: Karen Gross
Release: 2017
Editor: Teachers College Press
Pages: 224
ISBN: 9780807758427
Language: en
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This powerful book explores how institutions of higher education can successfully serve "breakaway" students--first-generation, low-income students who are trying to break away from the past in order to create a more secure future. The gap between low-SES and high-SES students persists as efforts to close it have not met with great success. In this provocative book, Gross offers a new approach to addressing inequities by focusing on students who have succeeded despite struggling with the impacts of poverty and trauma. Gross draws on her experience as a college president to outline practical steps that post-secondary institutions can take to create structures of support and opportunity that build reciprocal trust. Students must trust their institutions and professors, professors must trust their students, and eventually students must learn to trust themselves.

Tough

Tough
Author: Terry Crews
Release: 2022-04-26
Editor: Penguin
Pages: 289
ISBN: 9780593329818
Language: en
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From Brooklyn Nine-Nine star Terry Crews, the deeply personal story of his lifelong obsession with strength—and how, after looking for it in all the wrong places, he finally found it Terry Crews spent decades cultivating his bodybuilder physique and bravado. On the outside, he seemed invincible: he escaped his abusive father, went pro in the NFL, and broke into the glamorous world of Hollywood. But his fixation with appearing outwardly tough eventually turned into an exhausting performance in which repressing his emotions let them get the better of him—leading him into addiction and threatening the most important relationships in his life. Now Crews is sharing the raw, never-before-told story of his quest to find the true meaning of toughness. In Tough, he examines arenas of life where he desperately sought control—masculinity, shame, sex, experiences with racism, and relationships—and recounts the setbacks and victories he faced while uprooting deeply ingrained toxic masculinity and finally confronting his insecurities, painful memories, and limiting beliefs. The result is not only the gripping story of a man's struggle against himself and how he finally got his mind right, but a bold indictment of the cultural norms and taboos that ask men to be outwardly tough while leaving them inwardly weak. With Tough, Crews's journey of transformation offers a model for anyone who considers themselves a “tough guy” but feels unfulfilled; anyone struggling with procrastination or self-sabotage; and anyone ready to achieve true, lasting self-mastery.

I Thought it was Just Me but it Isn t

I Thought it was Just Me  but it Isn t
Author: Brené Brown
Release: 2008
Editor: Avery
Pages: 303
ISBN: 9781592403356
Language: en
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DESCRIPTION BOOK:

Draws on research with hundreds of interviewees to identify the pervasive influence of cultural shame, discussing how women can recognize the ways in which shame influences their health and relationships and can be transformed into courage and connectivity.

The First Part Last

The First Part Last
Author: Angela Johnson
Release: 2010-05-11
Editor: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 144
ISBN: 9781439106587
Language: en
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Bobby's a classic urban teenager. He's restless. He's impulsive. But the thing that makes him different is this: He's going to be a father. His girlfriend, Nia, is pregnant, and their lives are about to change forever. Instead of spending time with friends, they'll be spending time with doctors, and next, diapers. They have options: keeping the baby, adoption. They want to do the right thing. If only it was clear what the right thing was.

If You Find This Letter

If You Find This Letter
Author: Hannah Brencher
Release: 2015-03-10
Editor: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 258
ISBN: 9781476773605
Language: en
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The founder of The World Needs More Love Letters, who has dedicated her life to showing total strangers that they are not alone in the world, reveals how she rediscovered her faith through her attempt to bring love into the world.

Gorge

Gorge
Author: Kara Richardson Whitely
Release: 2015-04-07
Editor: Seal Press
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9781580055604
Language: en
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Kara knew she could reach the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro. She had done it once before. That’s why, when she failed in a second attempt, it brought her so low. As she struggled with food addiction and looked for ways to cope with feelings of failure and shame, Kara's weight shot to more than 300 pounds. Deep in her personal gorge, Kara realized the only way out was up. She resolved to climb the mountain again—and this time, she would reach the summit without waiting for her plus-sized status to disappear. Gorge: My Journey Up Kilimanjaro at 300 Pounds is the raw story of Kara’s ascent from the depths of self-doubt to the top of the world. Her difficult but inspiring trek speaks to every woman who has struggled with her self-image or felt that food was controlling her life. Honest and unforgettable, Kara’s journey is one of intense passion, endurance, and self-acceptance. In Gorge, Kara shows that big women can do big things.

Know My Name

Know My Name
Author: Chanel Miller
Release: 2019-09-24
Editor: Penguin
Pages: 370
ISBN: 9780735223714
Language: en
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Universally acclaimed, rapturously reviewed, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for autobiography, and an instant New York Times bestseller, Chanel Miller's breathtaking memoir "gives readers the privilege of knowing her not just as Emily Doe, but as Chanel Miller the writer, the artist, the survivor, the fighter." (The Wrap). "I opened Know My Name with the intention to bear witness to the story of a survivor. Instead, I found myself falling into the hands of one of the great writers and thinkers of our time. Chanel Miller is a philosopher, a cultural critic, a deep observer, a writer's writer, a true artist. I could not put this phenomenal book down." --Glennon Doyle, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Love Warrior and Untamed "Know My Name is a gut-punch, and in the end, somehow, also blessedly hopeful." --Washington Post She was known to the world as Emily Doe when she stunned millions with a letter. Brock Turner had been sentenced to just six months in county jail after he was found sexually assaulting her on Stanford's campus. Her victim impact statement was posted on BuzzFeed, where it instantly went viral--viewed by eleven million people within four days, it was translated globally and read on the floor of Congress; it inspired changes in California law and the recall of the judge in the case. Thousands wrote to say that she had given them the courage to share their own experiences of assault for the first time. Now she reclaims her identity to tell her story of trauma, transcendence, and the power of words. It was the perfect case, in many ways--there were eyewitnesses, Turner ran away, physical evidence was immediately secured. But her struggles with isolation and shame during the aftermath and the trial reveal the oppression victims face in even the best-case scenarios. Her story illuminates a culture biased to protect perpetrators, indicts a criminal justice system designed to fail the most vulnerable, and, ultimately, shines with the courage required to move through suffering and live a full and beautiful life. Know My Name will forever transform the way we think about sexual assault, challenging our beliefs about what is acceptable and speaking truth to the tumultuous reality of healing. It also introduces readers to an extraordinary writer, one whose words have already changed our world. Entwining pain, resilience, and humor, this memoir will stand as a modern classic. Chosen as a BEST BOOK OF 2019 by The New York Times Book Review, The Washington Post, TIME, Elle, Glamour, Parade, Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Sun, BookRiot

I Do it with the Lights on

I Do it with the Lights on
Author: Whitney Way Thore
Release: 2016
Editor: Unknown
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9780399594502
Language: en
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"Whitney Way Thore stands five feet two inches tall and weighs well over three hundred pounds, and she is totally, completely, and truly ... happy. But she wasn't always the vivacious, confident woman you see on TV. Growing up as a dancer, Whitney felt the pressure to be thin, a desire that grew into an obsession as she got older. From developing an eating disorder as a teenager, to extreme weight gain in college, to her ongoing struggle with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), Whitney reveals her fight to overcome the darkest moments in her life. She holds nothing back, opening up about the depths of her depression as well as her resilience in the face of constant harassment and mistreatment. Now Whitney is on top of the world and taking no BS (Body Shame, of course). And she's sharing the steps she took to get there and the powerful message behind her successful No Body Shame campaign. She even reveals her favorite 'F' word (it's probably not what you think), the thrill of doing it with the lights on, and the story behind the?Fat Girl Dancing? video that started it all."--

What Did I Do Wrong

What Did I Do Wrong
Author: Liz Pryor
Release: 2011-05-17
Editor: Atria Books
Pages: 208
ISBN: 1451649657
Language: en
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STORIES AND SOLUTIONS FROM GOOD MORNING AMERICA’S ADVICE GURU It happens without warning, and it devastates you: Your closest girlfriend cuts you off completely. No more late-night phone calls and emails, no more catch-up lunches and dinners. She has decided for whatever reason to move on with her life and has left you to try to make sense of what happened. The experience can be as painful as the death of a loved one and as confusing as an unexpected breakup with a significant other. You replay scenes from the friendship and wonder what you did wrong. You’ve lost a loved one and you don’t know what to do. Now, What Did I Do Wrong? gives voice to this painful, common, yet rarely discussed phenomenon and provides a resource—and some answers—that you can rely on. Relationship expert Liz Pryor has had a number of these breakups herself, and so she set out to discover why they were happening in order to help herself—and others—get through the pain and prevent it from happening again. Through personal interviews and her popular website, lizpryor.com, Pryor collected hundreds of stories of friendships gone wrong. She draws on those stories to explore the dynamics of friendship breakups in a candid, intimate way, revealing the patterns, the warning signs, and some ways to put a friendship right or help it change so that it meets your friend’s and your changing lives. She also explains how to end a friendship—if you find that you need to do so—in ways that honor both parties’ feelings and your history together. Like the best kind of girlfriend—one who really will stay friends forever—Pryor blends plain, old-fashioned, feminine good sense and good humor with genuine empathy for the thousands of women who live with the confusion and anxiety that linger after the sting of an ended friendship. What Did I Do Wrong? will validate your feelings and inspire you to be more forthright and compassionate with new and old friends. You will be moved and uplifted by the many stories of strong friendships, broken friendships, and renewed friendships that make this book a treasure of women’s wisdom and experiences.

Body of Work

Body of Work
Author: Pamela Slim
Release: 2013-12-31
Editor: Penguin
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9781101615836
Language: en
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These days it's increasingly rare to have a stable career in any field. More and more of us are blending big company jobs, startup gigs, freelance work, and volunteer side projects. We take chances to expand our knowledge, capabilities, and experience. But how do we make sense of that kind of career - and explain it? Pamela Slim, the acclaimed author of Escape from Cubicle Nation, gives us the tools to have meaningful careers in this new world of work. She shows how to find the connections among diverse accomplishments, sell your story, and continually reinvent and relaunch your brand.

Raw

Raw
Author: Lamont "U-God" Hawkins
Release: 2018-03-06
Editor: Picador
Pages: 304
ISBN: 9781250191182
Language: en
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Selected as a Best Book of the Year by Esquire "Couldn't put it down." – Charlamagne Tha God "Mesmerizing." – Raekwon da Chef "Insightful, moving, necessary." – Shea Serrano "Cathartic." –The New Yorker "A classic." –The Washington Post The explosive, never-before-told story behind the historicrise of the Wu-Tang Clan, as told by one of its founding members, Lamont "U-God" Hawkins. “It’s time to write down not only my legacy, but the story of nine dirt-bomb street thugs who took our everyday life—scrappin’ and hustlin’and tryin’ to survive in the urban jungle of New York City—and turned that into something bigger than we could possibly imagine, something that took us out of the projects for good, which was the only thing we all wanted in the first place.” —Lamont "U-God" Hawkins The Wu-Tang Clan are considered hip-hop royalty. Remarkably, none of the founding members have told their story—until now. Here, for the first time, the quiet one speaks. Lamont “U-God” Hawkins was born in Brownsville, New York, in 1970. Raised by a single mother and forced to reckon with the hostile conditions of project life, U-God learned from an early age how to survive. And surviving in New York City in the 1970s and 1980s was no easy task—especially as a young black boy living in some of the city’s most ignored and destitute districts. But, along the way, he met and befriended those who would eventually form the Clan’s core: RZA, GZA, Method Man, Raekwon, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Inspectah Deck, Ghostface Killah, and Masta Killa. Brought up by the streets, and bonding over their love of hip-hop, they sought to pursue the impossible: music as their ticket out of the ghetto. U-God’s unforgettable first-person account of his journey,from the streets of Brooklyn to some of the biggest stages around the world, is not only thoroughly affecting, unfiltered, and explosive but also captures, invivid detail, the making of one of the greatest acts in American music history.

Blood Orange Night

Blood Orange Night
Author: Melissa Bond
Release: 2022-06-14
Editor: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 288
ISBN: 9781982188290
Language: en
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Brain on Fire meets High Achiever in this “page-turner memoir chronicling a woman’s accidental descent into prescription benzodiazepine dependence—and the life-threatening impacts of long-term use—that chills to the bone” (Nylon). As Melissa Bond raises her infant daughter and a special-needs one-year-old son, she suffers from unbearable insomnia, sleeping an hour or less each night. She loses her job as a journalist (a casualty of the 2008 recession), and her relationship with her husband grows distant. Her doctor casually prescribes benzodiazepines—a family of drugs that includes Xanax, Valium, Klonopin, Ativan—and increases her dosage on a regular basis. Following her doctor’s orders, Melissa takes the pills night after night; her body begins to shut down and she collapses while holding her infant daughter. Only then does Melissa learn that her doctor—like many doctors—has over-prescribed the medication and quitting cold turkey could lead to psychosis or fatal seizures. Benzodiazepine addiction is not well studied, and few experts know how to help Melissa as she begins the months-long process of tapering off the pills without suffering debilitating, potentially deadly consequences. Each page thrums with the heartbeat of Melissa’s struggle—how many hours has she slept? How many weeks old are her babies? How many milligrams has she taken? Her propulsive writing crescendos to a fever pitch as she fights for her health and her ability to care for her children. Lyrical and immersive, Blood Orange Night shines a light on the prescription benzodiazepine epidemic as it reaches a crisis point in this country.

Paid For My Journey Through Prostitution

Paid For  My Journey Through Prostitution
Author: Rachel Moran
Release: 2015-09-08
Editor: W. W. Norton & Company
Pages: 304
ISBN: 9780393351989
Language: en
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An astonishingly brave memoir of prostitution and its lingering influence on a woman’s psyche and life. “The best work by anyone on prostitution ever, Rachel Moran’s Paid For fuses the memoirist’s lived poignancy with the philosopher’s conceptual sophistication. The result is riveting, compelling, incontestable. Impossible to put down. This book provides all anyone needs to know about the reality of prostitution in moving, insightful prose that engages and disposes of every argument ever raised in its favor.” —Catharine A. MacKinnon, law professor, University of Michigan and Harvard University Born into a troubled family, Rachel Moran left home at the age of fourteen. Being homeless, she was driven into prostitution to survive. With intelligence and empathy, she describes the exploitation she and others endured on the streets and in the brothels. Moran also speaks to the psychological damage inherent to prostitution and the inevitable estrangement from one’s body. At twenty-two, Moran escaped the sex trade. She has since become a writer and an abolitionist activist.

Daring Greatly

Daring Greatly
Author: Brené Brown
Release: 2013-01-17
Editor: Penguin UK
Pages: 304
ISBN: 9780670923533
Language: en
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Researcher and thought leader Dr. Brené Brown offers a powerful new vision in Daring Greatly that encourages us to embrace vulnerability and imperfection, to live wholeheartedly and courageously. 'It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; . . . who at best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly' -Theodore Roosevelt Every time we are introduced to someone new, try to be creative, or start a difficult conversation, we take a risk. We feel uncertain and exposed. We feel vulnerable. Most of us try to fight those feelings - we strive to appear perfect. Challenging everything we think we know about vulnerability, Dr. Brené Brown dispels the widely accepted myth that it's a weakness. She argues that vulnerability is in fact a strength, and when we shut ourselves off from revealing our true selves we grow distanced from the things that bring purpose and meaning to our lives. Daring Greatly is the culmination of 12 years of groundbreaking social research, across the home, relationships, work, and parenting. It is an invitation to be courageous; to show up and let ourselves be seen, even when there are no guarantees. This is vulnerability. This is daring greatly. 'Brilliantly insightful. I can't stop thinking about this book' -Gretchen Rubin Brené Brown, Ph.D., LMSW is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. Her groundbreaking work was featured on Oprah Winfrey's Super Soul Sunday, NPR, and CNN. Her TED talk is one of the most watched TED talks of all time. Brené is also the author of The Gifts of Imperfection and I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn't).

The Inheritance of Shame

The Inheritance of Shame
Author: Peter Gajdics
Release: 2017-04-26
Editor: SCB Distributors
Pages: 360
ISBN: 9781941932094
Language: en
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Read the book that's getting conversion therapy banned in Canada Winner of the Independent Book Publisher Award, Finalist for the Randy Shilts Award for Gay Nonfiction and the Saints and Sinners Emerging Writer Award. "Unforgettable... This book is appallingly appropriate in these times." — FOREWORD REVIEWS This resonant and acclaimed memoir recounts the six years that the author spent in a bizarre form of conversion therapy that attempted to "cure" him of his homosexuality, and the inspiring story of how he cast out shame and reclaimed his life. Kept with other patients in a cult-like home in British Columbia, Canada, Peter Gajdics was under the authority of a dominating, rogue psychiatrist who controlled his patients, in part, by creating and exploiting a false sense of family. Juxtaposed against his parents' tormented past–his mother's incarceration and escape from a communist concentration camp in post-World War II Yugoslavia, and his father's upbringing as an orphan in war-torn Hungary, The Inheritance of Shame explores the universal themes of childhood trauma, oppression, and intergenerational pain. “DEEPLY MOVING." — THE ADVOCATE “RAW AND UNFLINCHING" — KIRKUS REVIEWS “A HERO’S JOURNEY IN WHICH ANY READER, GAY OR STRAIGHT, CAN FIND INSPIRATION.” — LAMBDA LITERARY FOUNDATION All over the United States and Canada, districts, cities and states are banning conversion, ex-gay and reparative therapies. A powerful example of "healing through memoir," this book offers the most complete and compelling reason for those bans to date. A groundbreaking memoir, The Inheritance of Shame offers insights into overcoming all kinds of shame, especially that which has trickled down from previous generations, and into the complicated but all-too-worthwhile process of forgiveness.

Look Me in the Eye

Look Me in the Eye
Author: John Elder Robison
Release: 2007-09-25
Editor: Crown
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9780307405722
Language: en
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “As sweet and funny and sad and true and heartfelt a memoir as one could find.” —from the foreword by Augusten Burroughs Ever since he was young, John Robison longed to connect with other people, but by the time he was a teenager, his odd habits—an inclination to blurt out non sequiturs, avoid eye contact, dismantle radios, and dig five-foot holes (and stick his younger brother, Augusten Burroughs, in them)—had earned him the label “social deviant.” It was not until he was forty that he was diagnosed with a form of autism called Asperger’s syndrome. That understanding transformed the way he saw himself—and the world. A born storyteller, Robison has written a moving, darkly funny memoir about a life that has taken him from developing exploding guitars for KISS to building a family of his own. It’s a strange, sly, indelible account—sometimes alien yet always deeply human.

What Did I Do Wrong

What Did I Do Wrong
Author: Liz Pryor
Release: 2006-04-04
Editor: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 208
ISBN: 9780743288842
Language: en
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DESCRIPTION BOOK:

It happens without warning, and it hits you with devastating force. Your closest girlfriend, the Ethel to your Lucy, the Thelma to your Louise, cuts you off completely. No more late-night phone calls, no more afternoon e-mails, no more catch-up lunches and dinners. She has decided for whatever reason to move on with her life and has left you to figure it out on your own. The experience can be as painful and confusing as a sudden breakup with a significant other, and you replay scenes from the friendship and wonder what you did wrong. Until now, women had to endure the heartache of losing a friend all alone, without the social support and understanding that accompanies, say, a romantic split-up -- and to make matters worse, they don't even have their best friend's shoulder to cry on. But What Did I Do Wrong? gives you that sympathetic shoulder and a resource -- and some answers -- that you can rely on. After author Liz Pryor had gone through a number of these breakups herself, she set out to discover why they were happening, how to help herself -- and others -- get through them...and how to prevent them from happening again. Through personal interviews and her popular website, www.lizpryor.com, Pryor collected hundreds of stories of friendships with which you will identify. Now she draws on those stories to explore the dynamics of friendship breakups in a candid, intimate way, revealing the patterns, the warning signs, and some ways to put a friendship right or help it change to meet your or your friend's changing life. She also explains how to end a friendship -- if you find that you need to do so -- in ways that honor both parties' feelings and your history together. Like the best kind of girlfriend -- one who really will stay friends forever -- Pryor blends plain, old-fashioned, feminine good sense and good humor with genuine empathy for the thousands of women who live with the confusion that lingers after an ended friendship -- for women of all ages, races, and backgrounds. What Did I Do Wrong? validates your feelings and inspires you to be more forthright and compassionate with new and old friends. It might even lead you to reconnect with a lost one. In the end, you will be moved and uplifted by the many stories of strong friendships, broken friendships, and renewed friendships that make this book a treasure of women's wisdom and experiences.

Out of the Dark My Journey Through the Shadows to Find God s Joy

Out of the Dark  My Journey Through the Shadows to Find God s Joy
Author: Mandisa
Release: 2021-04-27
Editor: K-Love
Pages: 256
ISBN: 1954201001
Language: en
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DESCRIPTION BOOK:

Grammy award-winning music artist Mandisa tells an inspiring story of peaks and valleys, trials and joys, wins and losses. Through her gripping narrative, she shows that our choice to trust God can not only overcome our need to understand why bad things happen, but can help us to embrace a life of joy and freedom. Out of the Dark is Mandisa's exploration of the journey she's taken from when she first became a Christian, to her rise as an American Idol finalist and receiving multiple Grammy and Dove Award nominations, as well as the dark and challenging times she experienced along the way. She writes personally and openly about the hardships she has faced and the way she felt betrayed by God, but also about how God has brought her out of the valley into His glorious light. Along the way, she also shares her struggles in learning how to love her body and care for her health. Just as Mandisa's Grammy-award winning song "Overcomer" was topping the Contemporary Christian Music charts, her friend for whom "Overcomer" had been written passed away. After losing this close friend to cancer, despite years of prayers on her behalf, Mandisa descended into depression, isolating herself and turning to her familiar friend, food, for comfort. Throughout Out of the Dark, Mandisa uses her experiences to address the following themes: The pain of grief and loss Surviving abuse Embracing true beauty and a healthy body image Coping with severe depression Healthy--and disordered--eating The role of faith in hope and healing Letting go of shame Following your unique calling and passion How friends and family are crucial for healing The challenges of 2020, including protecting mental and emotional health while navigating a public health crisis; quarantining; and coping with racial injustice Trusting God daily for hope and healing ​In the darkness, Mandisa knew God was there -- but she wondered if she could trust Him. Even at her lowest point where she saw no human way forward, God was at work, powerfully redeeming her story and calling her out of the dark. Mandisa tells her story with warmth and vulnerability, challenging us all to focus on God's purpose for our lives, surround ourselves with friends who will fight for us, and face life's challenges with courage and faith. If you've ever found yourself in a dark place as the result of grief, depression, or loss, Mandisa's story will reassure you that even when you're walking through dark valleys, God can and will lead you on a path to joy and hope.