The Intricate Web of Crime, Trauma and Healing

Earlier this month in the span of minutes my life took an unexpected and dramatic turn. Yet as I write this, there are some very familiar themes woven deeply through and within my experience these past weeks.

On a Saturday afternoon, a man I’d never met brutally assaulted me and attempted to take my car. The aftermath of those minutes brought an upper jaw broken and fractured, my nose broken, my face unrecognizable and certainly a life experience that won’t soon be forgotten.

I’ve written and spoken very freely on my journey through and beyond divorce these past years and it seems I cannot stay silent when experience brings me insight, wisdom and awareness.

In fact the one media interview I granted to WSOC’s Erica Bryant was done before my jaw was repaired. Literally, even a broken jaw can’t shut me up from speaking and sharing my truth.

One of the most poignant and shining aspects throughout all of these past days and weeks has been: Love. Humanity. Connection.

The genuine, sincere and at times overwhelming force of the good that truly does exist in this world.

At the moment this assault was unfolding TWO people I’ve never met and whose names I may never know stopped to help. One called 911, stayed with me until police and medic arrived, then stayed even longer to provide detailed information, identify the suspect and as far as I know was still there as I was taken to the ER. The other person who stopped gave me the shirt off of his back.

Truly a juxtaposition of light and shadow at play. My choice is to focus on the light and the brilliant, kind, humanity of connection displayed by those individuals.

I’ve been aware that I have some amazing, badass, powerfully loving and heartfelt connections in my life. The outpouring of care, concern, support, hugs, gifts, notes, quality time, LOVE has been at times overwhelming to experience.

Yet it hasn’t only been those who know me who’ve extended such grace. From first responders to medical personnel, to investigators, to random people I’ve only just met the invisible thread has been one of deep and meaningful reverence. Reverence that I believe that reflects our shared humanity.

Because the uncomfortable truth is that this could happen to any one of us. Or it could happen to our daughter, sister, aunt, niece or friend. Because I am all of those things. And this did happen to me.

I sometimes joke (maybe I should quit that) that the Universe has a sense of humor. As though watching me navigate deep waters of forgiveness and healing through my divorce journey, this experience showed up to see if  I really mean it.

And I do. Because I haven’t felt or been tempted to conjure even an ounce of anger or hatred toward the person that physically hurt me. Nor am I angry at myself. I know that this isn’t a reflection of me or my worthiness and it doesn’t define me. It’s simply an experience and one that I will intentionally navigate with grace.

Whether harm is psychological, emotional or physical in nature, the truth is that hurt people….hurt other people.

That awareness does not mean I’m not participating in this person being held accountable for his actions. It does mean I won’t be tethered, defined or restricted by this experience.

There is SO MUCH good in the world. Really and truly there is, and there are people who will illuminate it time and time again, if only we’re willing to pay attention and witness it. That is the invisible thread that I choose to honor, appreciate and focus on because it certainly feels a hell of a lot better than anything else.

To each and every one who has in any way touched my life experience with love, grace, compassion and sincerity – “thank you” seems so inadequate but it’s all I’ve got right now.

Copyright©2019 by Diane McDermott, All Rights Reserved, “The Intricate Web of Crime, Trauma and Healing”

The content of this blog is the original content of Diane McDermott, Between the Lines LLC Ghostwriting Services, founded in heartfelt alignment, connection and creative expression


Podcast Episode: Magic of Allowing

Anyone who knows me well knows that I suffocate in the superficial and conversations of any quality are going to include depth.

In the past year one of the most fun discoveries has included being a guest on podcast episodes with a variety of hosts. Turns out it’s quite natural for me and every single one has been a genuine reflection of conversations I have with friends all the time.

This most recent episode was all about the concept of Allowing which is indeed powerful and quite a relevant topic. The Disrupt Now Program is all about highlighting game changers and those who are hell bent on disrupting the status quo, living in their authentic truth and unapologetically showing up for this messy, brilliant, brutal and beautiful human experience.

Just slightly aligned with me.

Check out the latest episode of the Disrupt Now Podcast and listen in on our discussion of the profound and powerful topic of allowing: Disrupt Now The Magic of Allowing

Everything that I write, speak and share is always from the perspective of what I wish my younger self had known or realized.

Natalie Viglione is the founder of the Disrupt Now Program, highlighting game changers and disrupters intent on shattering the status quo. She and I connected last year and our conversations are always an immense joy. Hope you enjoy listening in!

Copyright©2019 by Diane McDermott, All Rights Reserved, “Podcast Episode: Magic of Allowing”

The content of this blog is the original content of Diane McDermott, Between the Lines LLC Ghostwriting Services, founded in heartfelt alignment, connection and creative expression

Unapologetic Permission

Unapologetic permission to be our truest selves, honor what we value and need, to say no (and yes) as we see fit, to use our voices and tell our stories is always inherently within us. If you’re breathing, that’s proof you already have permission to unapologetically be uniquely you.

I have found though that at times other people can bring powerful invitations illuminating the permissions slips that already have our names on them.

Since ending my marriage I’ve been very open about sharing my own experience. Since the day my ex left I’ve never shied away from speaking about my own personal experience through and beyond divorce.

In sharing my own story I’ve been stunned at how many others have navigated divorce, are in miserable marriages, or are navigating separation and divorce. Time after time, my own sharing provided an invitation for others to share their own stories. Illuminating the unapologetic permission to share freely in a safe space.

I’ve also been on the receiving end of such permission illumination. My closest people have full security clearance to confront and challenge me. There have been many conversations including their sometimes gentle and other times relentless “encouragement” to own my natural gifts.

Everything from my denial of leadership ability, speaking and communication talents, writing, connection and relationships, intuition, perspective, humor, listening ability, empathy. If I attempted to deny or diminish it, I’ve been called out for doing so.

Awareness that I’m the only one holding myself back can sting but at some point we each have to choose to shine OR live with the awareness that we already have permission and any excuses are just resistance.

Unapologetic permission to be our truest selves is liberating but that can also be terrifying.

There’s a quote from Marianne Williamson that I swear haunts me (in a good way) this is part of it:
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.”

It takes courage to shine. It takes strength to move beyond the fears, doubts, insecurities, worries and hang ups each of us has.

Embracing the inherent permission each of us already has to shine brightly, perhaps more than ever before is scary. But it’s also so damn worth it and can indeed feel fun, light, expansive and maybe most of all true and genuine.

Copyright©2019 by Diane McDermott, All Rights Reserved, “Unapologetic Permission”

The content of this blog is the original content of Diane McDermott, Between the Lines LLC Ghostwriting Services, founded in heartfelt alignment, connection and creative expression

The Freedom and Potential of Relationship Beyond Divorce

I’ve never been a fan of the Valentine’s Day holiday regardless of whether I’ve been single, married or dating someone. It just reeks of contrived and unrealistic expectation which doesn’t sit well with me. Kinda the opposite of genuine and heartfelt, meaningful connection.

Several years ago around this time it was actually really fun to receive some long awaited divorce documents….and walk boldly into the ex’s attorney’s office allowing them to meet me for the first time.

This morning I was listening to a radio segment and they were talking about relationships in your 30s, 40s and beyond, as well as how different those relationships can be from previous ones.

I’ve actually considered this quite a bit personally, asking myself “what DO I want and what is meaningful to me”?

There is such immense freedom, possibility and potential in considering and allowing myself to design and intentionally align my values with regard to what a relationship might include.

For me, it wouldn’t include legal marriage and honestly probably wouldn’t involve living together either.

It would include fun, laughter, companionship, intellectual conversation as well as passion and intimacy. The thought of using dating sites or apps to serial date leaves me exhausted just considering it. That’s never been and still isn’t my style. Meaningful and heartfelt connection is woven into every single relationship in my life.

The past several years of deep introspection have brought tremendous clarity on my preferences and what’s non-negotiable when it comes to any relationship. That clarity is the foundation of every choice I make now, and that holds true for all versions of relationships.

There’s no right or wrong relationship formula and there’s such brilliant freedom and possibility in considering that I can choose all aspects of a relationship. Choices not based on external expectations or “traditions” but out of alignment and honoring myself.

At 22, hell even at 30 or 35, I didn’t realize I already had the ability to give myself unapologetic permission to create an entirely new and unique framework for a romantic relationship. I deeply realize that potential now. And that awareness is priceless.

Copyright©2019 by Diane McDermott, All Rights Reserved, “The Freedom and Potential of Relationship Beyond Divorce”

The content of this blog is the original content of Diane McDermott, Between the Lines LLC Ghostwriting Services, founded in heartfelt alignment, connection and creative expression


Contrast and Clarity

Contrast and clarity are powerfully and inevitably intertwined. Life will bring us contrast and the inherent invitation is the clarity we can choose to extract and take forward.

Contrast shows up in experiences, situations, relationships and any number of other pathways. I won’t suggest that contrast within this human experience is ever exactly “fun” to feel, but there are still brilliant gifts it offers when we choose to recognize them. Contrast is the space between what we do and do not want.

Clarity born out of contrasting/challenging/uncomfortable experiences is powerful because it’s like a compass. We’re constantly fine tuning to our true North: What DO I want, how do I want to feel, what will I and what will I not allow? This can be applied to any area of life but in my experience relationships are the most fertile ground for this wisdom to arrive.

As a writer I create my own working definitions of some words and divorce is one of them. I see it as far more expansive than the end of a legal marriage. To me, divorce means cutting energetic and physical ties while implementing value based boundaries.

I’ve divorced “friends”, acquaintances, business relationships, and of course my marriage. I’ve divorced mindsets, old versions of myself, professional roles, the list goes on. You could say I’m the Queen of Divorce in all of its versions.

When I get to the point of divorcing anything, there has always been a dance of contrast and clarity.

For a long while I was firmly in the camp of focusing on the contrast to show me what I didn’t want. There was a big shift last October that had me pivoting and looking more at what I DO want as a result of contrast.

That shift has been really powerful and doors continue to fly open as I focus on the clarity of what is deeply meaningful to me: The people, experiences, connections and things that are most deeply aligned with me and my core values.

The pathway of growth and awareness is an upward spiral and while the contrast never goes away, I’ve found my recovery rate increases exponentially.

More than a year ago someone I thought was a friend hired and fired me within the span of a few weeks, after I did a ton of work on their house listing. The shattering unfolded rapidly and it was clear we were not aligned. My boundary enforcement and cutting out of this person was swift and complete. But….it really hurt and it hurt for a while.

Fast forward to recently when it became clear a connection needed to be removed. My recovery rate was exponentially faster and so much easier. Clarity felt like relief.

Contrast is going to show up. Clarity can follow and whether it does so quickly or over time the invitation is always there.

I’ve deeply learned these past years that I cannot and will not hold responsibility for the choices, behavior and actions of others upon my shoulders. When contrast arises, I’ll mine the clarity and gratefully take that wisdom with me. Onward and upward always.

Clarity on what I do want continues to come into ever sharper focus. For that insight and the ever increasing recovery rate from contrast, I am immensely grateful.

Copyright©2019 by Diane McDermott, All Rights Reserved, “Contrast and Clarity”

The content of this blog is the original content of Diane McDermott, Between the Lines LLC Ghostwriting Services, founded in heartfelt alignment, connection and creative expression

Levels of Access and Boundaries

Boundaries are a key ingredient in my life and I could talk about them for days. My guest blog about Boundaries and Barricades is a great reference point.

Boundaries inherently involve both levels of access and discernment.

There are billions of people on the planet. I do NOT want, need or desire to have that many people close to me. I am intentional and discerning in who gets access to me.

There are levels of access and these aren’t concrete, they are fluid and flexible. One of my closest people describes concentric circles of access and I love that visual. People will land and move between those circles with myself at the center.

Being at the center of my own concentric circles is huge for my recovering people pleasing self. Unapologetically giving myself permission to guard, enforce and uphold the boundaries of access to me.

At times, honoring that permission to grant and deny access involves cutting. When I cut it is swift, complete and can feel harsh to those removed. The other side of that is the very powerful and aligned honoring of myself and my values. For that I give zero fucks and will never apologize. Unapologetic permission is freeing.

Honoring and upholding my own core value based boundaries is only and always my work to do. To allow those that prove worthy closer, while continuing to release those not aligned.

In conversations with close circle people lately, we all express there is tremendous freedom in both honoring and recognizing aligned and non-aligned connections sooner rather than later. It saves everyone time and energy.

For those of us that are highly intuitive and empathic, it’s beautifully liberating to witness both those who are aligned and those who are not. Either way, we see you and will take steps to honor our own values. Embracing heartfelt connection and removing ourselves from those who haven’t earned access to us.

Within recent days I noticed myself intentionally moving physically closer to those I trust most. It’s based on a feeling and defies logic but feels right, true and heartfelt. All of which are deeply meaningful to me. It also feels fun and joyful.

Onward and upward always. Trust yourself, listen to the whispers of guidance. There’s tremendous power in trusting yourself.

Copyright©2019 by Diane McDermott, All Rights Reserved, “Levels of Access and Boundaries”

The content of this blog is the original content of Diane McDermott, Between the Lines LLC Ghostwriting Services, founded in heartfelt alignment, connection and creative expression

A Bit of History on Yet Another New Beginning

I’ve been a writer (and reader) for as long as I can remember. In elementary school I was in a gifted and talented program for reading and writing. My senior year in high school I received the English Department award for outstanding achievement.

I could easily have been an English major in college but Psychology was a natural fit and also involves quite a lot of writing. I have brilliantly deep conversations with my therapist friends. I love and savor those connections.

And yet, I’ve consistently denied my talent in writing and written expression. Storyteller and writer? Oh no, certainly not me.

Close friends have been sending me things to ghostwrite for YEARS and acquaintances who don’t know me well but read my work on my own blog or as a guest blogger note the inherent power of my writing.

A natural gift and talent of mine has been evident and confronting me for decades while I resisted and denied it. Until I recently chose to start giving in and embracing it. Allowing instead of resisting. Surrender and trust more than rationalizing all of the “what ifs”.

My personal life experience involves a journey into being joyfully divorced. Writing has been a huge part of that journey and what started as a list of gratitude noting “gifts of divorce” evolved into my sharing the insight, wisdom, ups, downs and vulnerable truth of my journey both in writing and in speaking.

The Maya Angelou quote “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you” is woven into the foundation of Between the Lines ghostwriting services. I know it to be true in my own life and the lives of others.

We MUST find a way to tell our stories. The honest and messy, the brilliant and brutal stories of our life experience. Because doing so invites and provides others with permission to embrace and share their own stories. Freedom, liberation, vulnerability in the seriously brave wilderness of our most authentic and messy human selves.

Writing is a natural gift of mine and one that I use not just for myself but in the interest of helping others share their unique insight, wisdom, ideas and life experience. Writing, listening and intuition are all interwoven in my personality.

Some have asked why I’d want to write without any credit as ghostwriting is in essence behind the scenes. My answer? It’s not about the byline, it’s about expressing the message. I’m passionate about that expression and know SO many experienced, brilliant, insightful, wise, hilarious and talented people with so much to share. Using my writing to participate in that expression feels more beautifully aligned and genuine than I can explain.

Stepping into ghostwriting and writing in general feels passionate, ecstatic, brilliant, aligned, true, genuine and so damn badass. Between the Lines, welcome to the world.

If you’re interested in some of my recent personal writing, check out my other blog at Charlotte’s Best Buyers Agent (my former identity). I only half joke that I keep killing off old versions of myself.

The former habitual minimizing me has shed yet another skin and my writer self just took a huge step forward. I am beyond proud of myself, equally exhilarated and terrified but even more alive than ever before.

Onward and upward. With heartfelt connection, creative expression and magical badassery. It’s about damn time.

Copyright©2019 by Diane McDermott, All Rights Reserved, “A Bit of History on Yet Another New Beginning”

The content of this blog is the original content of Diane McDermott, Between the Lines LLC Ghostwriting Services, founded in heartfelt alignment, connection and creative expression