#SURVIVINGMYSELF Book Blog: Why I Wrote This Book

Hello friends! I’ve been asked this question many times over the past two years: Why on earth would I chose to write a book?

It’s not an easy endeavor and for most of my life, I was a VERY private person.

Perhaps it would make more sense to write a fictional book versus a memoir (given my previously held notion that I would never reveal any situation or moment that made me look less than perfect)

To be honest, at first it was just an idea that popped into my head. It was a Saturday night in August 2016. I had just started my new shift to become a motivational speaker, speaking mainly about my stroke and inspiring others to overcome their challenges with a certain number of principles.

So, on this lovely Saturday night, I was relaxing and watching the movie “The Devil Wears Prada.” Being a Type-A, rather high strung individual, I was learning how to “relax.” (Much harder than you think……I envy the calm, care-free people out there but alas, I am not one of them but I am trying to learn to not always feel like a rat running on a treadmill).

But back to the topic at hand. I’m finally relaxed, totally enjoying this awesome movie and then BAM! Out of no where it hits me! Having a stroke was not the only challenging time in my life. I had eating disorders and a crazy car accident that could have killed me.

So I called my friend (now my editor) the next day and ran the idea by her. I’ll write a book that “helps people.” (Honestly no idea where I would start but that was my initial thought). The completely naive and foolish girl inside of me was like “easy peasy, I’ll just write a book, it will be on shelves in a few months. There’s nothing to it.”

Of course I was wrong. We (my editor and I) started by meeting each week for a few hours. I call them “book unraveling sessions.” I didn’t know what to expect but the jist was that she would ask me questions (super uncomfortable!) and she’d dig deeper and deeper and I would remember a memory or experience that I had suppressed for years.

After most of these sessions, I’d go home, cry and feel baffled at what I discovered that day. The pain and discomfort I felt made me want to stop and quit – VERY often.

But there is one reason I kept going regardless of how hard it was for me. As a young girl, I never had a friend who understood what I was going through. I felt so different and so alone which had many negative consequences.

I wrote this memoir so that every person who feels different and alone can now feel like they have a friend in me. I want he/she to know, I understand you and you are not alone. 

If you have a question you’d like me to answer in this book blog series, please email me (dina@dinapestonji.com) or Facebook.

Surviving Myself will be available this summer! Stay tuned for more.