September 7th, 2009
She is walking art, her body a canvas for amazing designs. Enjoy the exterior and then go deeper into the soul of Elayne Angel and meet a woman who is as creative and open on the inside as her artwork is on the outside. Her ability to accept, educate and encourage others is truly incredible. Thank you Elayne for sharing your story with us today!
What kept you moving forward on the days things were not going exactly the way you were hoping they would? In my adult life I’ve always felt secure in the knowledge that things turn out the way they’re supposed to. My friends often remark, “Whatever you touch turns to gold.” But bad things do sometimes happen and it can be difficult to find the silver lining of a dark and heavy cloud. Ultimately, most of the events in my life that seemed the worst would reveal themselves to be ultimately beneficial in some way.
For example, I was a sign language interpreter for the deaf and I loved my job. After a number of years working at a university, I developed tendinitis in my arms and had to stop interpreting. I lost my livelihood, my friends and colleagues, and a language I felt passionate about—I was devastated. But if that hadn’t happened, I wouldn’t have become a professional piercer and contributed to shaping that part of our modern culture. I’d have lived a life very different from the path I’m so happily living now.
Even the horrible tragedy of Hurricane Katrina held surprising blessings for me that helped to lead me into the wonderful life I’m living now. I can find a silver lining just about anywhere. It is all a matter of perspective: in my world, the glass IS half full. I’ve also got a favorite saying. Many would call it trite, but it works for me: “Never underestimate the power of positive thinking!”
What piece of advice would you give to someone who has decided they would like to live in a world of their own creation? I would absolutely encourage everyone to do so, and I believe that everyone can! But I’d also issue the warning that they must be secure in what they want for themselves, and understand that not everyone may agree with their choices. But if they are confident that their path will genuinely bring fulfillment and happiness, they should pursue it. It takes inner strength to go your own way, and that builds on itself the more “yourself” you become! I’d also advise “keep your eyes on the prize.” That is, when things get tough, remember your goals and keep moving forward.
What special things do you do for yourself daily to maintain your momentum and energy levels? I take great care of myself: I do yoga and other exercise most days, I drink a lot of water and eat fresh, healthy food. I don’t abuse any substances (I’m even caffeine-free these days.) I drink decaffeinated green tea and other herbal teas for energy and phyto-nutrients. I take some supplements, too. And I get at least 8 hours of sleep each night.
I also remember to be grateful for the marvelous life that I live. Experiencing gratitude on a daily basis is one of the most energizing, (and important) things a person can do.
If you could spend 3 days on a deserted island with two people of your choosing, who would they be and why? I’d choose Michael Pollan and Barbara Kingsolver. I’m pretty sure they’d be able to figure out what’s edible on our island (since this scenario usually involves being stranded with limited resources). And, I would love to talk to them about food. Reading their books about food (and the industrial food chain vs. locavore lifestyle) has had a strong and lasting impact on my life.
What is your favorite audio material and what do you enjoy most about this material? I love the sounds of my youth: the upbeat rhythms from the 1970s and 80s. Those are the “oldies” now, but they still make me feel good.
What is your favorite reading material and what gives it that special place in your heart? I’ve been a big reader since I was a child, and I love to read all sorts of books. But nothing beats a juicy novel with interesting characters of real depth, and an engaging plot. (I recently got a Kindle electronic reader, and now I can easily haul around a stack of books. I love it!)
Who has inspired you and what is it about them that you found inspirational? I’m totally inspired and impressed by my husband. He’s literally made himself in his own image through tremendous inner strength and determination. He has had his share of adversity in his earlier life, but he rose above it and moved on to experience a happy and successful adulthood.
His story is truly remarkable: he was born female and always felt as though he were actually male. During his youth he suffered from severe alcohol and drug addiction and depression because of the disparity in his inner and outer selves. Once he learned he could have a sex change, he proceeded to transform himself into the man he always knew he should be. In his case it was really a life-or-death matter. His transition has been so successful that nobody on the street would ever know he had not been born male, and people sometimes don’t believe him when he tells them of his past.
Not only did he make the transition from female to male, but he also found the self-confidence and comfort level to make himself the first female-to-male transsexual star in the adult entertainment industry! But he’s so much more than that. Like myself, he is an advocate for truly living as one’s self. He also helps to educate people about transsexuals, sexuality, and safer sex. I believe in what he’s doing 100%, and I’m a partner in his business, Buck Angel Entertainment.
What do you see in your future? I see a blissful life in which I continue to be happily married to my amazing husband, and we pursue our extraordinary lives together. I don’t even need to know exactly what we’ll be doing in the years to come. I’m sure it will be something we’re passionate about and that brings us joy, because that’s how we live.
Where is your favorite place in the world to spend time, what is special to you about this location? I’ve traveled the world quite a bit, but our home in the Yucatan of Mexico is undoubtedly my favorite place to spend time. If you were here, I wouldn’t need to offer any explanation of what is special. It is a place of exceptional natural beauty that radiates peacefulness and positivity. We’re surrounded by tropical gardens bearing many exotic fruits. Our home is supremely comfortable and beautiful, and there’s no place I’d rather be.
Who has been your greatest support system and how have they shown you their support? There’s only one person who has always been there for me: me. I came to rely on myself at an early age and that served me well throughout my life.
Though I’m now very close with my family, and in recent years they’ve been extremely supportive in every way. They did have trouble accepting my chosen path and they weren’t a part of my life for a number of years. Therefore, I’m especially appreciative that we finally share a loving relationship.
In the1980s when I became a professional body piercer and obtained my own extensive body art, they had a hard time accepting it. Now they’re actually proud of my role in bringing body art to the mainstream, though my piercings and tattoos were the very things that drove us apart in the past!
My husband is also wonderfully supportive. He was on his own a bit when I was writing my book, but he gave me the time and space I needed to do the job. We both make being supportive of one another a high priority in our relationship.
What / who are you most thankful for and why? It may sound circular or ironic, but I’m thankful for my ability to clearly perceive what an extraordinarily wonderful life I have and to deeply experience gratitude for it.
I’ve seen people who have everything in life (or so it seems), but by failing to be grateful about it, they miss out on truly experiencing and enjoying what they have!
Also, my grandparents always said, “Without your health you have nothing.” As a child this didn’t make much of an impact, but the older I get, their wisdom has become more and more apparent. I’m very grateful to be in good health and in little or no pain. I have suffered from chronic back problems for years, so a pain-free day is a luxury and something to really be thankful about.
What is your favorite way to contribute or give back? I do a lot of volunteer work in my industry. I’ve served two prior three-year terms on the Board of Directors for the Association of Professional Piercers. I’m currently serving another 3-year term as Medical Liaison, and co-editor of our quarterly journal.
My husband and I have essentially adopted a family here. We take care of them, and in return, they take care of us. It is a remarkable win/win situation in which each party benefits greatly from the association. Our family also consists of seven dogs, which were mostly adopted in Mexico.
We also support the local pet rescue foundation and our donations helped to build an “angel wing” there.
Please share the top three things you feel people would benefit from doing if they truly desire to create the life of their dreams?
1. Consider what you want for yourself and your life, and develop a strong vision of living that life. Think about it, and begin to experience it in your mind. Make sure it is something you feel passionate about.
2. BELIEVE that it can and will happen. This should go beyond thoughts or visualizations—you should be FEELING it. Bring it from a vision in your mind’s eye and thoughts in your head into your gut: actually FEEL it happening. Bring the excitement of it happening into a visceral experience.
3. Keep working toward making your dream life happen. Keep taking steps in the right direction, and you will get there.
Anything I missed that you would like to share? I’m a strong believer in the concept that we shape and form our own realities and destinies. If you’re a negative person, you’ll undoubtedly find yourself surrounded with more negativity. Alternatively, when you are positive, loving, giving, and good, these are the things you’ll find yourself attracting.
What products and services do you offer to assist others on their journey? If their journey involves body piercing, I’ve helped by writing the first book to authoritatively and exclusively take on the subject of piercing: The Piercing Bible—The Definitive Guide to Safe Body Piercing. It was published by Random House in May and is available at major bookstores and online.
If their journey involves an interest in learning more about human sexuality particularly issues of gender roles and sexual orientation, my husband is an educator and he is available for speaking engagements at schools and universities. This is his advocacy and education link: http://buckangelentertainment.com/
Thank you Elayne for taking the time to share your story with our readers. I encourage everyone to visit http://www.piercingbible.com/ and connect with Elayne today!
Be healthy, be focused and be the best you that you can possibly be!
Caryn Gottlieb FitzGerald
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Caryn Gottlieb FitzGerald has been a network marketer and connector since 1990. She is a published author, her passion is writing and she spends much of her free time meditating and connecting with like minded individuals. Caryn walked away from Corporate America in 2003, she continues to achieve the goals she sets for herself and has created the life of her dreams. Today, Caryn assists others in creating the lifestyles they desire through network marketing, privately owned businesses and spiritual lifestyle coaching. Ready to move forward in your life?
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EmbracingMyJourney L.L.C. was created by Caryn FitzGerald in 2008.
Caryn, known as "The Manifesting Queen" is a motivational columnist, speaker and writer, she has been featured in and published several books, including "Tulips In The Sand" "Fish Sticks, Books and Blue Jeans" “Manifest Success” “Visual Arts Junction Interviews” & “Online Marketing Success Stories..."
Caryn is a domestic violence survivor who has triumphed over a 10-year battle with anorexia and bulimia. She is a wife, mother, healthy-aging-specialist, writer, speaker, blogger, coach and a health food enthusiast Click to connect with Caryn at her website
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