The Heart Works is a collection of personal works written over the span of several years. The book began as a journaling exercise for me in 2014. At the time there was a social media challenge that was trending, 100 Days of Happy, that involved people sharing pictures or statements of what they were happy about or grateful for. One thing I knew for sure was that I was not happy…at all. So I decided to borrow from the idea, calling my exercise 100 Days of Solitude. I committed the final 100 days of 2014 to being intentional about being alone with myself and God and journaling in order to purge my emotions and jump-start my own healing. I knew that my unhappiness stemmed from a lot of things; the company that I was keeping and the lack of self-care were top of the list of things that were simply draining me.
I finished my journaling challenge but was not completely satisfied with my finish (you’ll find out why in the book). Later, as I read back through the journal entries I realized that, although they were quite personal and vulnerable, they were also powerful and I knew that they could help someone else heal just as writing them had helped me to begin to heal. I began compiling the journal entries and mixed in other pieces that I had written; revelations and reminders from God, short stories, letters, travel stories, etc.
The material explores the common experiences and emotions that occur naturally when we are dealing with love and loss, forgiveness of self and others, the realization of our own power, the pursuit of dreams, and so much more. Writing these pieces and choosing to share them has forced me to confront my own willingness and simultaneous hesitation to be vulnerable. Writing has always been a form of healing for me and I share with the knowledge that these experiences are not exclusive to me, so neither should healing be.
The book is divided into 4 sections: Journal Entries, Hummingbird Moments, Revelations & Musings, and Stories & Letters. The pieces are not meant to be read in any specific order, nor in one sitting. Some of the pieces are specific to women, others are specific to Black women, but readers of all backgrounds will find something they can relate to. The work is emotional, spiritual, cerebral, and real. You may read, explore, ponder, walk away, return, and reread at will.
I certainly hope that this labor of love, and slight procrastination, touches your heart as it touched mine to write and share. May you discover, in the reading, the beauty and truth of how your own heart works.