Who am I & How did I get here?

NelI am a writer and creator, manager, foodie, and philosopher who yearns for knowledge and varying view points. I ride the fence on most things ranging from politics to dinner. I love various perspectives on just about everything, but there are a few exceptions where I clearly know where I stand, and on those issues my feet are firmly planted. I write about many of those things here. But I want to know your experiences and your opinions, too. This is why I also consider myself an avid information-seeker. I have an incessant drive to learn, consider, and connect.

I live an exhausting but fulfilling life as a mother and wife of the most amazing man on earth. I also work full-time as a manager and marketing/design henchman for an independent real estate firm. I enjoy creating, mostly in the kitchen.  And although I dabble in photography, my real passion is music. I play the piano a little, but I mostly enjoy listening to a wide variety of music as a way to feed my soul.

I am a Midwestern woman with an open mind and strong desire to be a better person. My parents had me when they were very young but they made it work. You could say my life used to be pretty boring. I was raised in a loving home where nothing life-altering ever happened – until my high school years, that is, when we lost four young women (all students). Two were murdered [in separate incidents]; two were killed in [separate] car accidents. The two years in which these tragedies occurred were transformative. My peers and I all matured in a lot of ways in response to these traumas. I, personally, became incredibly insightful and contemplative, inspecting the intricate dynamics of relationships, faith & religion, the environment… everything. And I developed a deeply-rooted, compulsive need to tell people what they mean to me. This new way of thinking became a new way of living.

I graduated with my bachelor’s degree in 2000 and married my best friend in 2001, the year of 9/11. Once again, rattled to my core and suffering from mild PTSD half-way across the country, my practical solution to overcoming tragedy was to continue spreading optimism. In addition to my ministry position at the time, I started blogging. A consistent theme quickly emerged, even in the most ridiculous stories: There is good in even the worst of adversity if you’re willing to look for it.

My life is no longer boring. When my therapist asked about the major events in my life, his eyebrows raised and he said, “That’s a lot.” But I’ll tell you I never really looked at it that way. I’ve never been abused or assaulted, never been in a major natural disaster… It was just my life. So with nearly every post, I wonder if it’s appropriate to share so much, but I feel like others need to know they’re not the only ones who’ve lived an experience. While I have pain, I also have joy, and I can attest to the fact that some of the most intense joy has been born out of pain. It’s the joy I want to focus on not that pain, and it’s my honor to share that joy with others.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. I like you already! You have a wonderful writing voice and I can hardly wait to hear more from you. And props to you for getting back to piano! Have fun with it.


    1. nelbell says:

      Why, thank you! That means a lot to me. And, yes, I am LOVING the piano!

      Liked by 1 person

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