Category Archives: Sarah’s Thoughts

2018: The Year of “It’s Okay”

Burlington Earth Clock, Vermont
A year ago today, I was traveling alone to Vermont. It was the first time I’d ever taken a solo trip just by myself and for myself. Honestly, it was one of the best weeks of my life.
 
I’d spent the previous six December’s anxiously watching the calendar tick down to December 31st. To the annual reminder that in 2010, I’d thought I was just going to a NYE party and having a fun night. Instead, I was raped and left to pick up the pieces of a body that no longer felt like mine (see blog here).
 
Taking that week for myself last year to confront those memories head on…to burn them at midnight in a circle with five old women who chanted and taught me about loving my wounds…to the strength I found to stand up to my husband and tell him I *was* going on this trip alone no matter what…to coming home to find he’d destroyed the house and blown a few thousand dollars to “punish me” for leaving him for a week…to making the commitment to myself that in 2017, I was going to put me, first (see blog here).
 
That was my resolution almost 363 days ago: Me First.
 
I failed a lot on that resolution this year, but in the end, I made the decisions I needed to make in order to put me first. In order to choose happiness, choose me, and choose a better life than constant fear and pain…of him, of myself, of life.
 
And maybe that’s what resolutions are. Some failure, some success, and in the end, things are just a little bit different, but in exactly the way you needed.
 
So for 2018, here’s my new resolution…my new motto:
 
It’s Okay.
 
It’s okay to cry when divorce gets painful. It’s okay to be angry when life isn’t fair and the man who hurts me gets away with so much. It’s okay to feel lostand to fail and to have to start all over again. It’s okay to have no idea what tomorrow holds, or what I want next.
 
It’s okay to follow my heart, to date, to maybe fall in love again.
No pressure. No shame. No expectations.
 
2018 is right around the corner, and we’re all going to be okay.
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Vacation in Iceland: Bucket List ✔️

The view from our hotel in Reykjavik on the first morning!

I’m in love with Reykjavik…

In mid-November, the husband and I got to spend 5 days in Reykjavik, Iceland for our long overdue honeymoon/pre-baby bucket list! I’m not going to go on and on about it too much, but give you guys a quick rundown of what we did, plus some pictures!

(Side note: the best way to see pictures is on my Instagram, and if you followed me live, then you saw it on my Snapchat and Instagram Story!)

Iceland donuts! They were filled with a maple syrup/apple type thing. No idea what!

 

Three Favorite Sights:
1) Thingvellir National Park: a historic park where you can also see the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet. Such an incredible place to walk around, take pictures, and hike around the volcanic rock!
2) Blue Lagoon: a beautiful mineral hot springs and spa where you can swim, drink, and get mud masks while floating in the mineral rich, hot springs! Incredible relaxing and luxurious and everyone needs to do this!
3) Geysir: some of the world’s largest natural geysers are here, and you can see them explode every few minutes! It’s so powerful, and I’ve never seen anything like it!

Thingvellir National Park
Blue Lagoon Mineral Hot Springs!
Geysir (geysers!)

 

Three Firsts:
1) I ate a lot of strange things on this trip. When in Iceland, you know? Anytime I travel, I’m determined to try the local cuisine and put myself out of my comfort zone. Well…I did that. *squirms* We ate horse, reindeer, puffin, whale, etc. Honestly, it was all pretty tasty, but mentally, I died a little (haha!).
2) This was our very first time across the Atlantic, and the difference of styles and architecture–even the hotel rooms–was so interesting! I actually was obsessed with our little European style room!
3) We saw the Northern Lights! If you’re wondering why this isn’t listed on my favorites, it’s because we didn’t get the best views because of the cloud coverage while we were there. However, we still had the chance to see a good bit (even though it didn’t show up on my iPhone camera), and it truly was incredible!

Fin Whale and Puffin
Icelandic Horse (also called Mountain Beef!)
How cute was our hotel room at Reykjavik Lights?

 

Three Memories:
1) Gullfoss Waterfall: literally the “golden waterfall”, this was an incredible natural beauty! It was multiple waterfalls, so loud and powerful! Despite the fact that I was freezing, this was one of the most beautiful memories I’ll have from the trip.
2) Pre-bursting geysers: there’s a moment right before the geysers erupt that this bright blue bubble appears over the surface of the hot spring and it’s incredible. My camera doesn’t even do it justice to what it looked like in real life. It was one of the most fascinating phenomenon’s I’ve ever seen!
3) The Countryside: We drove over twenty hours total through Iceland’s countryside to get to all the different attractions and cool sights, and because of that, we saw massively beautiful things on our way. Huge mountains of volcanic rock, wild Icelandic horses (very unique creatures!), random hot springs, geothermal hotspots where the ground steamed, beautiful small forests, miles and miles of snow and ice covered grounds…it was sprawling and incredible. Just driving through this country was one of the most beautiful parts of the whole trip.

Gullfoss Waterfall
Geysir about to burst
Driving through Iceland…

 

Three Recommendations: 
1) If you go to Iceland, stay at the Reykjavik Lights hotel.
2) Use Gray Line Iceland tours to see the amazing sights and get around the island. Definitely do the Golden Circle tour, plus Northern Lights and Blue Lagoon.
3) Visit Islenski Barinn for some incredibly exotic local cuisine, like puffin and reindeer.


Want to see more pictures and videos from our trip? Make sure to check out our Instagram (here) and my Facebook posts (here, here, here, here) or my live Facebook video (here)!

 

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Me, Too

Trigger Warning: This post contains discussions on sexual assault.

Photo Credit: http://bit.ly/2yv1Kbp

Unless you’ve been under a rock for the past few days, you’ve seen friends and family members posting “Me, Too” on their social media profiles. Sometimes, that’s all they post. Sometimes, they share more. Sometimes, they share it all.

#MeToo is a grassroots movement where victims of sexual harassment and abuse are coming forward and telling the world…this happened to me, too. You’re not alone. We’re not alone. In fact, look how not alone we are. The movement took off quickly, and the response was tremendous. Because the number of victims out there is tremendous.

If you have a few minutes free today, please scroll through the #MeToo on Twitter (here), and give your love and support to these strong souls. 

I’ve also shared my story more than a few times on social media, and on this blog, as a victim of childhood sexual abuse and as a rape victim during college. (You can read those blogs here). I don’t talk so often about sexual harassment because I just don’t have the time.

I don’t talk so often about sexual harassment because I just don’t have the time. I don’t even have the mental ability to hold all those instances in my brain. It’s so “regular,” so often, so…normal to pretend I didn’t hear the lewd discussions about my body when walking past a group of men, or didn’t feel the pinch on my ass, or didn’t notice that that man didn’t just “trip” on the metro, but rather purposefully groped my breast. So normal to pretend that removing my wedding ring for a job interview is normal, so the man interviewing me won’t think I’m leaving soon to go have kids. So normal to rush to my car at night quickly and lock the doors, my keys sticking out between my knuckles, because at any moment…I could be raped again. So normal to look the other way, to pretend that it’s not happening, to mentally paint a less frightening world for myself just to get through the day like every other woman out there.

Except, it’s not normal at all.

In a perfect world, this showing of hands will help people realize how prevalent it is and how much is needed to be done to change our current culture. So, that’s the question…what do we do next?

Photo Credit: http://bit.ly/2ytyx0t

What Comes After #MeToo?

That’s the big question. Okay, great, we all spoke up. How do we change it? It’s so overwhelming to even think about. That’s fair because it is. Rape culture wasn’t created overnight, and it won’t be solved overnight.

But, it can be solved in a generation.

We can resolve to teach our sons that consent is paramount above all else. We can teach our sons to step in and not look the other way when their friends are engaging in “locker room talk,” or worse. We can teach our daughters that their bodies our their own. They don’t have to hug their grandma if they don’t want to. Show respect, but make your own choices with your body. No one has to touch you. We can teach our daughters that they are more than their physical appearance, and they have more than that to offer future partners. And yes, men and boys can be victims, too.

We can elect role models who don’t grab women by the pussy. We can hire teachers and tutors and coaches who prioritize children’s safety. We can believe victims when they come forward. We can empathize and understand, instead of shame and silence. We can be the support for future victims that we never had for ourselves.

We can teach all of our children all of this, and then maybe, the rape culture we live in now won’t be around when our children come of age. Maybe our children will never have to say #MeToo…too. 


Do you have ideas for how our world can change and grow moving forward? Let’s discuss in the comments!

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When The Bachelor Teaches Us Why Women Don’t Report

*Trigger Warning: I’m about to rant about sexual assault and victim blaming because I have no fucks left to give.*

Here’s the Back Story: In the last few days, the news has come out that the “reality” television show, Bachelor in Paradise, has been cancelled due to allegations of sexual assault while filming (read more here and here). Long story short, a female contestant was filmed “hooking up” with another contestant while extremely drunk and consent was no longer possible. Producers allowed it to continue, rather than stepping in, and now the show is being sued and cancelled.


Sexual assault and/or rape is one of the only types of crime where the victim’s past personal history gets to be part of the decision on whether there was/wasn’t a crime committed.

“Well, she’s always been a slut. It’s not like this happening is surprising.”

“She was an attention seeker, so this is probably what she wanted. I’m sure it’s all a ploy for fame and money.”

“She was drinking, and we all know her reputation. What did she expect?”

“She had a boyfriend and went on a dating show, so who’s really to blame here? She should have known better.”

The things I’m seeing online today (literally quotes above are from Twitter ) about Corinne’s assault on #BachelorinParadise are literally disgusting. Absolutely has my stomach turning, and I am NOT okay with any of it. In fact, I’m completely raging over it and probably gone off on a million people today over it.

Worst yet, I work with sexual abuse victims a lot and have gotten half a dozen messages today from people thanking me for saying something because they’ve been victims in the past and this entire ordeal is unbelievably triggering for them.

Honestly, it is for me, too.

Is she still talking to the man who assaulted her? Probably. Being assaulted while you’re both drunk is emotionally fucking confusing and it can take a lifetime to figure out where to place blame in your mind.

Is she suing the show? Fuck yes. The producer’s promised to protect her and then watched her be assaulted on camera.

Does she have a history of promiscuity and dramatic behavior? Who cares. Irrelevant. Next.

So, you think she did this for fame and money? YEAH, BECAUSE BEING A VICTIM OF SEXUAL ASSAULT HAS EVER WORKED OUT TO BENEFIT THE VICTIM IN THE PUBLIC’S EYE. EVER. What the hell are you smoking?

Did she have a boyfriend before going on a dating show? Maybe, but again, who cares? That’s for her and her boyfriend to figure out, and you’re lying to yourself if you think producers weren’t full aware and just wanted her on for ratings anyway.

Are her castmates now unfollowing her on social media, so she must be a liar because otherwise they’d be speaking out on her behalf? Are. 👏 You.👏 Kidding.👏 Me.👏 With.👏This. 👏 Shit. 👏  Her castmates lost a big payday and are blaming the woman who spoke up and “caused” it. Big shock–people aren’t supporting an assault victim. It’s disgusting, but it in no way reflects on the victim, but rather on the castmates for being vile.

I don’t give A FLYING FUCK whether she’s been promiscuous in the past, whether she was blackout drunk, whether she was making good choices, blah blah blah.

When a woman is sexually assaulted, it’s a damn shame that the public’s first reaction is to blame her.

What’s happening on social media today is exactly why so many women (and men!) choose not to report sexual assault.

For fuck’s sake. Be better, people.

#EndRant #VictimBlamingIsSo2007 #OverThisShit
#ThrowsMicrophoneatChrisHarrisonsStupidFace #FuckThisFranchise#BIP 

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When Marching Isn’t Enough…

I know, I know. With a title like that, this post could be going any direction, right? Well, stick with me ’til the end and you can decide for yourself.

Today, myself and half a million other women (and men!) marched in Washington, DC (and millions of others around the globe) for women’s rights.

The experience was unlike anything I’ve ever been through before, and I am forever changed by it. We were shoulder to shoulder with hundreds of thousands of people marching through the streets of Washington, DC a day after one of the most contentious elections in the history of our country.

I expected fierce. I expected loud. I expected drama.

And it was all of those things, but it was so much more. The march was soft and kind. It was generous and giving. It was open and warm. The air was alive–literally electrified–with spirit and excitement and unison. I’ve always spoken of wanting a unified country, but for the very first time I felt it.

Strangers held hands and sang together. People danced and twirled. Chants and mantras filled the air as women helped each other stand taller, stronger, wiser, firmer.

Women offered me free snacks, waters, hats, and other merchandise. We were just sisters, and generosity of spirit ran rampant in the crowd. There were for-profit stands on the sides of the march selling products, but they were all men. Draw whatever conclusions you’d like from that.

There was no question of what we were fighting for in that crowd. Our signs called for equal pay, affordable birth control, safe environments, an end to rape culture, and so much more. We weren’t anti-Trump. We were pro-women. We were afraid. We were brave. We are staring into the future, terrified, but facing it head on and not backing down.

My sign!

However, here’s where the rub comes.

Upon arriving home, I saw two things online and on the television: support or confusion. There were countless posts praising the marchers, and from the marchers, all around the globe. Do you understand the magnitude of that? All 7 continents, and dozens of countries marched for America, for women, and for American women. When’s the last time you saw a march in downtown Washington, DC for another country? This is record breaking. It is historic. It is unprecedented. We, as Americans, and as humans, owe people around the entire globe a thank you for supporting us in a time where it feels like our own government isn’t. Thank you.

They got it. They were there, or they wanted to be. They saw the purpose. They knew what it meant and they knew why it mattered.

Then there were all the men and women who didn’t get it. Who said on social media that women were already free, so why are we complaining. Who talked on the news and boiled today down to a one topic issue (ie: abortion) and decided the whole thing was shit. Who said women in America have it better than women in some other countries, so we should be grateful. Who said…stop marching. There’s no point. It means nothing. You mean nothing.

And that, ladies, is why this post is called When Marching Isn’t Enough.

They weren’t there. They didn’t see the crowd of extremists with a megaphone shouting “fags will burn in hell” and the crowd of women singing love songs, arms linked, in front of them.  They didn’t feel the strength and unity of women smiling and holding their head high despite the men in “Make America Great Again” hats on the side laughed and called out ratings for the women’s attractiveness level as they walked past, and the women who invited those men to march with us anyway because this march is so much greater than a new president. They didn’t see the women who had made hundreds of hats by hand and were distributing them freely to the crowd. They didn’t see the mothers who’d made snack bags for marchers just to make sure we were all okay.

They didn’t see the look on a woman’s face when she realizes her male coworker with less experience and time at the same job makes more than her. They can’t understand the frustration of paying exorbitant fees for birth control and pap smears when a man’s erectile dysfunction pills and prostate exams only cost a small copay. They didn’t feel the flush of humiliation when a strange man gropes us with zero regard for our wishes, reminding us that this body isn’t ours, but rather a dispensable puppet for any man’s fantasy. They didn’t feel the rise in blood pressure, the panic in our lungs, when walking alone and hearing footsteps behind you and quickly wondering what you’re wearing right now–would it look like you wanted it? They didn’t feel that sinking in their gut when the judge tells you the man who raped will only receive 3 months on probation because his future is more important than your justice.

They weren’t there. 

So, ladies, bring the march home.

Teach the people around you what “equal rights” really means. Hold your head up high and don’t be afraid to ask for what you know you deserve. Educate the next generations on how we can do this better. We can demand better. Feel the strength of the millions of women who were there today now standing behind you telling you that you can do this. We got you.

You deserve equal rights. You deserve affordable healthcare. You deserve to make your own choices about your body. You deserve to feel safe from sexual assault. You deserve laws that will punish abusers. You deserve the same pay as your male counterparts. You deserve to be defined by who you are, not what sex organs you were born with. You deserve freedom.

It wasn’t enough to just march today and then move on. This isn’t over. This problem doesn’t just go away. In fact, it may get worse. Take the march home, ladies. Take it with you wherever you go.

#WhyIMarch #WomensMarchonWashington

PS: I met Sara Gruen, author of Water for Elephants, and spent the day with her! It was amazing!

For more photos, check out my Facebook or my Instagram.

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Healing In A Moment: My Vermont Trip

It’s always a sobering and awe-inspiring moment for me when I look back and see how all the puzzle pieces fell in just such a way to create our lives how they were always meant to be.

It’s no secret that New Year’s Day is a tough anniversary for me. I’ve been open about why on my blog (here and here and here). Today is seven years since the day I was raped, and the first year that I’ve actually dealt with it head on.

Healing only happens with time, but it also happens in a moment. It’s all the little guard rails that push us back onto our course and keep us centered. It’s the fated people and places that point us to where we needed to go.

This weekend, I’m in Vermont staying at an AirBnb that I randomly chose off their website. It was the cheapest option, looked safe, and so I booked it. Upon arriving, I realized that the woman who owns the home I’m renting a room in is everything I’ve ever needed, and everything I wasn’t ready for until right now.

She’s a therapist, and a writer. Just like me.
She’s an animal lover, and a spiritual soul. Just like me.
She’s quiet and introverted, but loving and inviting. Just like me.
She’s recovering and healing from her own New Year’s Day assault…just like me.

The coincidence is shocking, but also…not. Life is magical like that. It puts the perfect people in front of you that you needed in that moment. She healed a vital piece of me in the moment our confessions melted together and we recognized a shared brokenness.

In that single instant, I felt a mend.
Small, but substantial.

We spent the weekend together, facing our same demon together, burning effigies and writing confessions and sorrows on scraps of paper to toss into the ash at midnight on New Year’s Eve. We had dinner and talked for hours and it feels like I’ve always known her, because maybe in a way, I have.

I was always meant to meet her. She was always meant to meet me. We were always meant to mend a tiny piece of the other.

Tomorrow, I leave for Canada and I already feel more spiritually full and happy than I’ve felt in years. This trip has barely started, and yet, I never want it to end.


Follow Sarah on her trip by following her on Instagram (@booksbysarahrobinson) and/or Snapchat (@booksbysarahrob)!

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2017: The Year of ‘Me First’

Burlington Earth Clock, Vermont

 

On the last day of 2016, I stood in the center of the Burlington Earth Clock and thought about time. Seems obvious, I know, but stick with me. In (corny) truth, it really was the perfect setting for considering the time behind me and the time stretched out ahead.

2016 was, by far, one of the hardest years of my life. I lost myself so entirely, and hadn’t even seen it coming. By the time I realized I was lost, there were nothing around to help me find my way back.

At first I looked for who was to blame. My job. My marriage. My husband. My town. My house. My “friends.” My family. My anything that wasn’t me. This wasn’t my fault. Someone else gave me bad directions and now here I am, lost and angry.

So goddamn angry. But the anger is good. Really good, actually, because it fueled me. First, in the wrong direction, but at least I was moving, at least I was changing. When I finally realized that lashing out at the world around me wasn’t making me feel any better, I started looking within. I realized that despite all the shitty breaks I’ve had and crappy circumstances (or people) I’ve been forced to deal with, none of those controlled my happiness. Nothing that was happening to me had anything to do with who I was or what would make me happy.

Only I could do that.

And then, I wasn’t so lost anymore. When you are the one drawing the map, it’s impossible to get lost. Everything is in your control…everything is in my control. I can choose to be happy, even in an unhappy place, unhappy time, or with unhappy people. Those things and people aren’t in charge of my soul, my spirit, my mood.

I am in charge.

2017 is going to be the year of “me first,” and I won’t apologize for that selfishness. I’m no good to anyone until I’m good to myself first. Years of putting my needs on the back-burner for other people has taught me that, and taught me that it’s time for a change.

In the coming year, I’m drawing my own map. I’m slowly going to find myself again, and revel in everything that I forgot I once loved about myself.

I’m going to fall in love again, but this time…with me.

 

Follow Sarah on her trip by following her on Instagram (@booksbysarahrobinson) and/or Snapchat (@booksbysarahrob)!

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Best of 2016: Sarah’s Favorite Reads & “Writes”

Two days until Christmas, and only a few more after that until 2016 is over (thank freaking goodness because this year has sucked–see why on my blog here or here), so it’s time to share some of my favorite reads of the year! And tell me your favs in the comments!

 

Top Favorite Read of 2016:

 

This is a memoir from Red from OITNB, or Captain Jane from Star Trek Voyager (where I first met her) & it has all the feels. It’s so eloquently, beautifully written that even the sad parts are wonderful. It’s an amazing story of being a young actress in a pre-tech, all-glam Hollywood world. 
 

Other “Read in 2016” Top Favs:

 

Moonshot by Alessandra Torre

This book is ‘MERICA. I loved, loved, loved it. It’s heartwarming and sweet, but sexy and unexpected. In fact, Love, Chloe and Hollywood Dirt by Alessandra Torre were also some of my favorite reads this year so you should probably just buy them all.
 
This whole series is perfect college, new adult romance. I adored the characters, the connected plots, and the alpha males. Easy, happy, wonderful reads. Highly recommend.
 
The Calendar Girl Series by Audrey Carlan
I literally devoured these. How could you not? They were quick, sexy, steamy, and made me seriously want to be a call girl for a hot second. From book one I was like, how is she going to pull this off with 12 books and 12 dudes and make it romance…yet, she did and it was amazing!
 
One More Thing by B.J. Novak
This is a collection of short stories and essays that I listened to on Audible, and man, I loved it. They are laugh out loud funny, very quirky, and take a ton of imagination. It’s so different and unusual, and made me smile. Highly recommend!!!
 
Wifey 101 by Jamie Otis
Aside from being a wonderful friend, Jamie has graced my life this year with a heartfelt, honest memoir about her life. It’s beautiful, eye-opening, and brutally real in a way that makes you reflect on your own life. For anyone who loves memoirs, The Bachelor, or Married At First Sight TV show!
 
Technically, I had a lot more favorites this year, but I can’t list them all! I read over 55 books this year (plus, I wrote 5!). I’m super excited about what’s coming in 2017, and can’t wait to show you guys, but for now, there’s a little recap below with the books I published this year, plus my holiday novella that you can all pick up now!

 

HOLIDAY NOVELLA

Rocker Christmas
by Sarah Robinson

(Only $1.99 &
#Free on KU)
From the bestselling FORBIDDEN ROCKERS series (http://amzn.to/2iaosNp) comes the sweet conclusion to Logan Clay’s musical journey to find love. In this holiday novella, Logan and Caroline figure out life after fame, while the rest of Logan’s band members begin to take center stage.
 
 

PUBLISHED IN 2016 BY SARAH ROBINSON

Saving A Legend
by Sarah Robinson
(standalone!)
Ex-con gets out of jail only to fall in love with a florist who is the sole guardian for her special needs little sister.
If that doesn’t sound complicated enough, add in a chaotic Irish family and secrets from the past to make this book one of my all-time favorites!
This is the second book in the Kavanagh Legends series, but all can be read as a standalone!
 
Becoming A Legend
by Sarah Robinson
(new release!)
This is the fighter romance to end all fighter romances.
An MMA National Championship in Vegas, a surprise wedding, a enemies-to-lover favorite, tacos (yeah…), and even some mafia action?
This is part of the Kavanagh Legend series but can be read as a standalone since each novel is about a different Kavanagh brother.
 
Not A Hero: A Bad Boy Marine Romance
by Sarah Robinson
(standalone)
8 years in the Marines, Miles is coming home to care to be with his ailing father…and bringing a lot of secrets, pain, and PTSD with him. When his former high-school classmate turns out to be his father’s new nurse, things get interesting fast.
 
Subscribe to my newsletter to make sure you don’t miss my next release!! Two secret projects coming soon, plus the 4th Kavanagh Legends novel, CHASING A LEGEND!  

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I Have No Answers…But I’ll Find Them

I want to start this post by saying…I’m sorry. You deserve better from me, as my readers and my friends and my family. I also want to say that this post is going to be long, maybe sad, and there isn’t an “I’ll try harder” or “I’ll do better” at the end.

There’s just me saying “this is all I’ve got” and “I have no answers, but I’ll find them.”

[warning for those with triggers, this post gets real]

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Every December since 2010, I’ve spiraled. Hard. Anxiety hits me like a truck, and depression swoops in to feast on what’s left. I told you all this in my blog post on my website in November about my long struggle with depression. What I didn’t tell you was why or…why now.

I didn’t tell you that at a New Year’s Eve party, only 3 hours into 2010, I was raped and assaulted by a man I trusted. A man I’d considered a best friend. A man I’d considered safe.

For a long list of reasons I may or may not talk about one day, I dealt with this alone. I turned the police officers away in the emergency room when I was being stitched up, and I kept it to myself. I put that night away in a little box and never touched it again.

I spent every year since avoiding New Year Eve celebrations like the plague, always finding an excuse to stay busy. And as the years past, I thought I’d dealt with it. I thought I was okay.

For the first year since, I’m struggling to find the reasons why I’m okay. I’m struggling to remember the distractions I used or what I focused on instead, and for the first time, I’m realizing…I’m not okay. Not even a little bit. I’ve never dealt with this piece of me and never realized that it had already crept out of its box and infected so much of my life. I’m not okay because I’ve never healed, and that is okay. I wasn’t ready then, but I think…I think I’m ready now.

I had a book release ten days ago and I’ve struggled to keep up. I’ve struggled to promote this book the way I normally would, to be online as much as I should, to be as jovial as I should, and I know that’s reflected in how the book is doing. You, as my readers, deserve better than that from me and I’m so sorry.

I know this entire post is different than my usual comedic ramblings or upbeat optimism, but everyone is their own fighting battles and I want to show you both parts of me. I want to be real and open because I need to be, for me, and because I want to be, for you. Because maybe one person will read this post and think…”I’m not alone. I was hurt, too. I haven’t healed, too. I need to heal, too.”

If that’s you, walk this road with me. Feel with me. Heal with me.

I don’t have the answers, but I’m looking for them. I want to feel the same *stars in my eyes* excitement over this book release (because this book is so great and it so deserves that!) that I’ve felt before, but the reality is I’ve closed everything off–both the good and the bad. I can’t feel…anything. And I need to find it again–both for myself, and for my writing.

I need to find me, and I’m going to. I’m going on a trip alone for New Years Eve. I’m spending it by myself in total silence, and not letting a single distraction get between me and healing the parts of me I’ve left broken for so long.

So, this whole post is just me saying I might be stepping back from social media a bit, or seeming a bit off. I might even be a little quieter than before, and I hope you’ll understand. I’m on empty, and I can’t really find where it all went, but it’s gone and I feel, in a way, so am I.

The only thing I do know is I won’t be lost forever. I will find me. I will come back with a roar, beating my chest like a warrior who fought her way out and triumphed. All I really hope for this post and this message is that you’ll be here waiting when I do.

Don’t give up on me. Please.
I haven’t given up on myself. 


Update:
These three blog posts continue to discuss my healing progress and growth:
1) I Didn’t Get Out Of Bed Today
2) The Year of “Me First”
3) Healing in a Moment


Above content originally posted on Sarah’s Facebook page here.

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Sarah’s Top 5 Favorite Apps That Cost $0

Everyone who knows me knows that books are my favorite thing of all the things, because…books. However, in the spirit of Black Friday and Cyber Monday and all the shopping happening this week, I’m going to tell you some of my favorite things that won’t cost you a gosh darn penny and really have nothing to do with writing or reading, because why not?

Here’s a list of my top 5 favorite apps or programs that I use literally every day and kind of make my life. Everything on here, I’ve tried so you can be assured I mean it. However, keep in mind that for some of these I’m also using affiliate links which means I get a little credit, or some times a couple dollars.

TL, DR: We’re talking Digit Savings, theSkimm Daily News, Shine Daily Texts, Breaking News App, and Starbucks Rewards (because, duh).

Anywho, check it out and tell me in the comments which apps you use and love on a daily basis!


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When I Can’t Save $ For Sh*t

A friend introduced me to Digit last Spring and it’s seriously been one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself (aka, I’ve saved $2,000 without even trying). This is a real bank account (yes, real bank account with FDIC insured and the whole nine yards) that saves for you without you having to do a thing. It basically automatically pulls a few dollars here and there from your checking account and puts them in a Digit Savings Account.

How It Works: Set up the Digit app (also done via text) with your checking account and start saving! That simple! You’ll get weekly alerts (or more/less frequent if you want) and you can set how aggressively it saves for you. You can also transfer $ back to your checking account in 1 business day, and you get $5 if someone signs up with your link (Hint!). It won’t overdraft you either, but if on the off chance it does, it will reimburse you everything including the bank overdraft fee (you can also set it so it doesn’t save if your account is below a certain $ amount just in case this makes you nervous!). Now you’ll have a nice cushion of money for emergencies, or a fun goal like a vacation fund or car fund or whatever else you’re saving for! We’re saving up for a car (or maybe that mythical honeymoon we never had *sigh*).

Learn more about Digit at https://digit.co.


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When I Don’t Know What’s Up In The World

Thankfully, a team of snarky, smart, sweet millennials is at the ready to give me the latest news in a less-than-2-minute read in my daily Skimm that goes out to millions of readers, including big-time celebrities like Oprah. Yes, this is Oprah approved! Also, this is bipartisan, so whoever you voted for, you can feel safe reading this!

How It Works: Every Monday through Friday, you get an email about the latest current events happening all around the world. You’ll sound a lot smarter at dinner parties and family gatherings because of it, plus Amazon Echo’s Alexa can read it out loud to you (set that up here) so you’ll feel knowledgable as hell during your morning pee! Side Note: They do have an app that’s $2.99/month and totally awesome and more in depth than the free email, but hey, free is free!

Subscribe to theSkimm today at theskimm.com.


When I Need A Happy Start To My Day

The Shine text has been my lifeline through this election season, and hell, every season. Every Monday through Friday at around 8:30am, I receive an uplifting text message about life, motivations, and positivity.

Here’s an example of the last text I got:
“It is not happy people who are grateful, but grateful people who are happy.” Love. Connectedness. Stretchy pants. Take it all in today, Sarah. #ShineOn 🙂 

Now who wouldn’t want to start their day off with a sprinkle of encouragement?

Sign up to receive your free Shine text at shinetext.com.


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When I Can’t Wait 30 Seconds For The News

The Breaking News app is perfect for news junkies like me because I can get all the latest breaking news in one sentence or less immediately.

How It Works: Download the app to your phone and make sure notifications are set. Now pick up to 10 categories to be alerted on (like the election, US news, local news in your town, etc). If you want more than that, I think you have to pay for it. Now each time something happens, you’ll get a notification on your phone about it! You can get the gist from the notification itself or click on it to read more in depth.

Download Breaking News at breakingnews.com/apps.


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It’s You. It’s Always Been You, Coffee.

I don’t get anything but a pat on the back from myself for telling you this, but if you’re a Starbucks lover, or even occasional buyer like myself, you need this app. I get free drinks all the time just by paying attention to their daily doubles or freebies or other cool promotional days. I also can order drinks from my phone and pay for it with my phone. In fact, if I don’t want to wait in line, I just order it from my phone ahead of time and swoop in at the last minute to pick it up while everyone in line stares at me with murder eyes. It’s fun to be hated by strangers.

How It Works: Download the app and link it to a Starbucks giftcard that you can reload again and again (or once you hit gold level, they send you a personalized gold card!). Order through the app and you’ll collect 2 stars per $1 spent. After 125 stars, you get a free drink of any size or type (you know my free drinks are the fanciest, biggest they have with 8 extra shots and would normally cost $20). It’s really easy to get to 125 stars without spending the $60-something you’d think you need to spend because Starbucks does tons of promotions for 50 free stars, 150 free stars, free daily double star points, free stars for ordering XYQ, etc. You just have to pay attention to the deals! 🙂 If you buy cheap drinks (think tea, coffee, iced coffee) instead of fancy drinks, then you really end up spending a lot less and getting the free drink sooner.

Break It Down For Me: For example, they recently had a deal where 9 purchases (over $1) within a week got you an extra 150 stars on top of the stars that each of the purchases normally gets you. By ordering 9 simple drinks like a grande brewed coffee between me and my husband, we spent $22.50 in a week and earned 150 stars, plus the 45 stars that our purchases got us (aka 195 total). In case that seems like a lot of coffee to you, I’m there every day all day writing so it’s kind of like rent to me (I seriously am talking like 50+hrs a week). That’s almost 2 free drinks right there (250 would be 2 free), and since I get a trenta-sized speciality holiday coffee drink with extra shots for my free drink (a $16.86 value according to my receipt), I pretty much paid $5.64 for 10 drinks, including a fancy as hell drink, and I’m only a few stars away from another free drink in a few days. Side note: I’m horrible at math. 

Side Note for Writers: If you get regular coffee or iced coffee, and I think even tea, you can get a $0.50 refill if you’re still in the store when you finish it! You can hang out all day and drink 6 grande coffees for under $5 and only a minor heart attack. Talk about a cheap office! (Note: the 50 cent refills don’t earn you star rewards). 

Join Starbucks Rewards at members.starbucks.com.


 

For more about Sarah Robinson and her books, make sure to sign up for her newsletter at eepurl.com/RUobv.

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