Everyone Has A Story Part 3

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So… the next person who was crazy enough to agree to let me interview them was my good friend Niki.  She is

Quickly becoming someone I look up to (even though I’m 3 years older).  Here’s what she had to say.

Mike: Would you please introduce yourself to the readers of dontquestionfate.wordpress.com? (please include a brief bio if you like with a website where readers can check you out.

Niki: Hi, I’m Niki a cat-loving, tea addicted, madly in love 24 year old living in the outskirts of LA. I take extreme pleasure in being creative and dressing up, Lol, you can check out my personal style blog at LoveNiki.com

M:  We all know that life isn’t easy would you care to share a story about a time that was particularly rough on you?

I don’t have one particular story to share rather, I’d like to share with you the feelings & thoughts that greatly impacted and shaped me as I was growing up.

N: I had the toughest time understanding the idea of self-worth & acceptance. Learning that I, as all people do, deserved the best and had incredible value as a person was a concept that alluded me for years on end. I spent wasted so much time trying to please others and be the person I thought I should be rather than the person I was.

M: What kind of effect did that have on your day to day life? How did it impact your relationships with those around you?

N: I constantly accepted less than I deserved. I found myself in unhappy, and unhealthy relationships and situations that brought about nothing but emotional distress, confusion, and a lowered self-esteem.

M: How did you get past all of it? What was your motivation to overcome the rough patch?

N: I never stopped trying to improve. I read tons of articles on self-improvement. I expanded and explored my relationship with God. And my relationship with myself. Then there came a point where all the pieces fell into place. The worked I put in paid off.

I have to admit, all the rough patches I’ve been through seem like they’re lifetimes away. It’s almost as if my painful experiences and memories belong to another person entirely. And in many ways, they do.

I am nowhere near the person I used to be.

M: Tell us about your life right now. Is it going the way you thought it would?

N: Yes! Life is pretty freaking amazing right now and improving by the day.

M: What advice would you have for someone going through tough times?

N: You have more power than you realize. You can literally shape your life into whatever you want it to be. But don’t get me wrong, good things don’t come to those who sit around wishing for them. You have to put in the time and effort. Just as you would build your dream house brick by brick, you have to build your dream life piece by piece.

M: Do you think it will be easier to deal with obstacles in life now that you have been through some of them?

N: Absolutely. I feel empowered and in control, not of life itself , but of the way I respond to it, and my ability to shape the future. God willingly of course 😉

N: Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers such as websites, projects, or encouragement?

Breathe. Know your worth. And hold no one else accountable for the quality or state of your life except for yourself.

I’m currently pursuing one of my creative dreams at LoveNiki.com. I hope to inspire women to embrace who they are and to have fun with fashion. ( and life!)

Everyone Has A Story Part 2

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It’s no secret that I am constantly learning from those around me.  I have had a chance to work withh the incredibly talented Morgan Poferl.   Heres what she had to say when I asked her some questions. 

Mike: Would you please introduce yourself to the readers of dontquestionfate.wordpress.com? (please include a brief bio if you like with a website where readers can check you out.
Morgan: Hello! I’m Morgan Poferl! A San Francisco Bay Area native, boxed wine aficionado, avid ‘terrible movie’ watcher, only child with an affinity for all things ‘acting’.

Mike: We all know that life isn’t easy would you care to share a story about a time that was particularly rough on you?  
Morgan: My mom is bi-polar, Manic/Depressive and my dad was never in the picture. After a bout of my mom trying to self-medicate, it was decided that I go live with my mom’s younger sister. The transition between life with my mom to life with my aunt was by far the hardest experience I’ve had.    

Mike: What kind of effect did that have on you dy to day life?  How did it impact your relationsips with those around you?

Morgan: Prior to ‘the move’ (sounds so ominous ) I was used to a living essentially out of a suitcase. My mother’s illness made her an unpredictable tenant and unreliable employee, so I moved a lot the first eight years of my life. So, when I settled into my aunts’, I had a hard time taking root. Making friends at school became a difficult task, as I did not know if I was going to be in their lives in the next months, or even weeks. By far, the biggest effect was not keeping in contact with my mom. Wondering where she was and how she was doing dominated my thoughts. Well, worrying about my mom and wondering if Leo DiCaprio would be on the cover of Tiger Beat grabbed my attention span.  

Mike: How did you get past all of it?  What was your motivation to overcome the rough patch?  

Morgan: As in most things (of course on different scales) time is the greatest healer. My mother made a lot of bad choices, but they served as some of the greatest life lessons for me. I saw the path she went down and I knew I deserved something better. It would’ve been a disservice to all those who helped rear me if I hadn’t seen those shortcomings as gifts, almost.  

Mike: Tell us about your life right now. Is it going the way you thought it would?

Morgan: Well, my timeline is a little… behind,  But I’m determined to reach the goals I’ve put in place for myself. I feel more focused and driven and I can only attribute that to the road I’ve traveled thus far.  

Mike: What advice would you have for someone going through tough times?

Morgan: Look to those standing beside you. You are NEVER alone.  

Mike: Do you think it will be easier to deal with obstacles in life now that you have been through some of them?

Morgan: Definitely. I welcome the rough days as I know it’ll make the better ones brighter. They give us strength and definition. They also carve out a connection to someone else going through similar trials. Isn’t that what art, or living is all about? Connecting out to our fellow human beings?  

Mike: Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers such as websites, projects, or encourgement?

Morgan: Always, ALWAYS educate yourself. Everyday should be a new opportunity to learn. Also, time though out your day to laugh! If you have never read anything by David Sedaris, he just came out with a new collection of essays called “Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls”. I’ve had several moments where I’ve called people into the room where I’m reading just to read excerpts aloud. Most importantly, do what you love. Refuse to settle for anything less.

We All Have A Story To Tell Part One

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I recently got the chance to work with a very talented writer/photographer and a bunch of other this I’m too tired to list right now.  After many long hours on set and many conversations I have learned we are not that different.  Here is a short interview with Rick Tolson.

Mike: Would you please introduce yourself to the readers of dontquestionfate.wordpress.com? (please include a brief bio if you like with a website where readers can check you out.  
Ricky: My name is Ricky Tolson. Or Rick, Though Ricky comes up more and more I am originally from Ontario California, and spent most of my life there. Currently I am a freelance Screen Writer and Raconteur. I do not have a website or anything so fancy, but I do Have FB, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, ETC….  

M: We all know that life isn’t easy would you care to share a story about a time that was particularly rough on you?

R:Growing up where I did I was surrounded by Drug users, pushers, hustlers dealers thieves, gangsters, both kinds; The kind that smile while they stab you and the others who only look the part. Meth was my neighborhoods’ drug of choice. I watched it rape the world around me like a plague. My family was not immune to it. I dealt with drug raids, CPS, my mother sleeping for days at a time, my uncle dealing in front of me. My brothers growing older and getting addicted. Like I said a plague. A fucking plague that rots you from the inside until there is nothing good left in you. My mother took a bad hit of the shit. And lost her life. It is why I never knew a fathers love. I never fell to it. But it fucked me just the same.  

M:What kind of effect did that have on you dy to day life?  How did it impact your relationsips with those around you?  
R: I sort of answered this in question two. But to elaborate, I learned not to trust very many people. I had to bottle up everything and lock it away. Being the good kid made me the black sheep. No matter how many people I fought. No how hard I tried I’d always be the pussy. My father hated me for being born. Knowing this. I shut down. I hurt a lot of people physically and emotionally. My self most of all. Mostly because I didn’t know how to deal with what was going on inside me as I tried to sort out what was going on around me.

M: How did you get past all of it?  What was your motivation to overcome the rough patch?  

R: Honestly I made a conscious Decision. That I personally give credit to God for. By all reason I should have fallen into the drug trap. I made a decision. I knew how wrong everything around me was from a very young age. I broke The cycle even as it continued to consume those around me.  
M: Tell us about your life right now. Is it going the way you thought it would?  

R: My life as it is, is still a work in progress. But I have made huge strides. I am actively writing, graduating from college. I am clean have no jail record…lol…. Am married and live a very normal life. And that is a good thing. I recognize I still have a lot to grow, and to accomplish, and though I am not as far along in life as I would wish, I am making progress. And hungry for more. And have the satisfaction that nothing I have has ever been handed to me.  

M: What advice would you have for someone going through tough times?  

R: Never EVER give up. Life sucks, it’s a God damned fact. BUT you have the power to make it better, and make an impact. Its about making a choice. Sit and rot and die an empty soulless shell of a person. Or fight and go down swinging. Do what you do because you love it.  

M: Do you think it will be easier to deal with obstacles in life now that you have been through some of them?  

R: Some things yes, some no. I thought I was prepared for my mothers death. I was not. I think I am for others in my family. Deep down I dread it. I am fortunate to have a awesome support system now. And am better equipped to deal with life’s bullshittery.   8.  Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers such as websites, projects, or encourgement?   We all have purpose. ALL OF US. Its not always easy finding out what that is. Keep moving. We are all meant to attain our goals at different times. Patience is the hardest part of succsess.