My Memoir: Doris, Sophia and Me
“The most profound tool we have at our disposal is the simple act of telling our stories to other human travelers.”
Who the heck are Doris and Sophia?
Let me introduce you.
Doris is my mother. She passed away when I was thirty-six years old. She battled cancer and when she died, I felt like a little girl abandoned in a shopping cart at a super store. Suddenly, thirty-seven didn’t feel so grown up.
Sophia is the name I chose for my daughter-who was never born. My husband and I were diagnosed with unexplained infertility and after years of unsuccessful fertility treatments and a failed IVF, I had to find an identity outside of motherhood. I think of Sophia as a sort of spiritual sage because despite her physical absence she has been a guiding force. At the time I chose her name, I didn’t know that Sophia in Greek, means wisdom.
Here’s the deal…
Woman must come of age herself. She must find her true center alone. She must become whole.
-Anne Murrow Lindbergh
With a perfect blend of self-deprecating humor and raw candor, Stephanie Baffone—writer, speaker and therapist, takes us on her spiritual battle against grief, loss, and coming of age in middle age, fought in the throes of her soapy kitchen sink and plastic weave laundry basket.
Whether it happens at age 35, 45, 55, or even later, there often comes a time in life when we find ourselves questioning everything we thought we knew. We suffer crises that spawn the kind of emotional and spiritual breakdowns that leave our hair on end, trenches in our brows and spirits shattered.
For Stephanie, growing up was charming, and generally predicable. The daughter of a first generation Italian father and an Irish mother, she clung to the belief being a compliant “good little girl,” with a pair of rosary beads in tow, safeguarded against loss or affliction.
At twenty-three, she married her high school sweetheart, confident she had bought off pain and suffering. When she struggled to get pregnant at twenty-seven, she spiraled into a period of darkness and began to suffer bouts of fear, panic and depression. Then at thirty-seven, satisfied she had paid her dues; she collapsed into a spiritual crisis following the death of her mother when her sense of safety in the world and worn-with-pride Italian/Irish, Catholic faith shattered.
For anyone who has ever said from a primal place, “Oh…my…God,” you will bump into yourselves as you read Stephanie’s irreverent, hilarious and poignant story of the ridiculous, ordinary and the sacred adventures of coming of age during middle age. It will leave you feeling a part of a sisterhood.
We discover alongside her, that the lessons she learned from her mother who didn’t live long enough and her daughter who was never born were the handholds that ushered her into the embrace of surrender -the place where true peace resides and real grown ups live.
Sneak Peak…click here