After transitions from attorney to stay-at-home mom to Pilates instructor, Colleen reinvented once again. She now co-hosts the podcast Hot Flashes & Cool Topics, which seeks to give a voice to women in midlife and beyond. She wants to create a series of conversations centered around topics women of a certain age can relate to, learn from, and share.
When you work with women in midlife and beyond, what are the biggest issues you see in your practice?
One of the biggest things I have seen with this age group is mothers who feel lost when their children grow older. They were very involved in their roles as mothers and wives, which is beautiful, but often they have lost themselves in the process.
When her husband abandoned Wendy with three young children, Wendy became a construction safety manager to support her family, then finally had the chance, in her 50s, to pursue her dream career as a writer and editor after meeting her now-husband and moving to the South.
Diane was 35 when her 3-year old daughter was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis. When Mallory died at 25, she asked her mother to publish her memoir. Diane has made it her mission to preserve her daughter’s legacy by traveling around the country to spread Mal’s wonderful insights on love, life, and chronic illness. (more…)
You are a celebrity ghostwriter, award-winning journalist, and Emmy-nominated reality show creator. Now you’re out with your first book, Zen Bender: A Decade-Long Enthusiastic Quest to Fix Everything (That Was Never Broken). What was the catalyst for this book?
Zen Bender was organic, in terms of how it came to be. I lost my job in TV news like so many other people in 2008, thanks to the recession, so I started ghostwriting self-help books for celebrities. As part of that process, I started reading self-help books for research. And then I just got really into them.
Your work as a writer and filmmaker questions ingrained expectations of womanhood. How did you come to take on this role?
I was living these expectations every day–and trying to make sense of the pop culture messages about how to do womanhood ‘correctly.’ I felt bad about how I looked, wondered whether I was too smart and threatening to men, and worried that I was single into my 40s–even though I was actually living a pretty fun life.