Please visit me at michelledowd.org
I have failed at more things than I have achieved. I have made nearly every mistake self-help experts warn you not to make. I am kind and loyal and I have an intense work ethic, but I am also messy, impatient, passionate and unpredictable.
Why should you trust me?
But I want to encourage you to trust yourself.
Because curious people always have more questions than answers, and we don’t always need to know exactly where we’re going to appreciate the climb. If we can learn to navigate by our internal compass, while filtering out the noise of conformity, we can curate a life that inspires us. For me, that means showing up daily for my practice, both on and off the mat. Whatever I get wrong, no matter how many times I fail, I come back to my mat. I show up and do the work. I breathe, get grounded, re-center. I apologize, make amends, learn from my mistakes, re-direct. I forgive myself and others. I invite myself back to the practice.
I created a literary journal several years ago. The phenomenal team I work with is currently curating our 17th volume. From the beginning, our motto has been, join the conversation.
And so I do.
I grew up in a small, conservative, isolated community and escaped to Pitzer College when I was 17. Iquickly married a boy I grew up with, earned a degree in English and World Literatures and moved to Boulder at 21 to teach at the University of Colorado and work toward a PhD I didn’t quite finish. I gave birth to 4 children in rapid succession, began a newsletter/magazine called SmartKids, taught at numerous colleges before earning a tenured professorship, and bought and sold several houses before finding home. I have loved and lost and been so sad, I thought I couldn’t continue. But I was committed to the profession of teaching and to being present for my children every day of their lives, so I showed up for these two commitments with everything I had in me.
I am immensely proud of the young adults my kids have become and of the students, former and current, whom I learn from daily as an adviser of college media.
I am a professor, yogi, writer, aerialist, runner, hiker, mother, sister, friend and lover.
But mostly, I am a student of life.
We’re all just trying to figure out how to build a solid airplane to take off in. We begin again.