Charlese woke up one day unable to walk, which changed her entire career and life. This is her story and she is resilient.

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Trigger Warning: The Resilience Project provides an open space for people to share their personal experiences. Some content in this podcast may include topics that you may find difficult. The listener’s discretion is advised.

About the Guest:

Charlese was an entrepreneur in the beauty industry for 20 years. She built a hairstylist clientele more than once, opened and ran her own salon for 7 years, and educated for multiple product companies in the hair industry, speaking on stages to other salons and luxury retailers. An emergency back surgery in December 2018 changed everything. She retired from hair, sold her home and moved in with family to properly recover. In trying to find herself, she realized she could still be herself… the friend who has the ability to listen to a woman and make her feel confident and beautiful, but this time using her business experience as well as her writing talent. Charlese’s strengths are Copywriting and content creation, and she loves to support female business owners in reaching their goals. Since she started her company in the summer of 2019, she has been published in Entrepreneur.com, and featured in Self Magazine, interviewed on dozens of podcasts, spoken at 10+ summits, worked with multiple 6 and 7-figure clients, and is now selling her first course on… having your best launch, ever! And she is currently a staff writer at Incredible Marketing, Inc., where she writes high-ranking SEO blogs and websites.

Links:

Insta: @girlattheyellowdesk

Copywriter – Girl at the Yellow Desk

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Transcript
Blair Kaplan Venables:

trigger warning, the Resilience Project provides an open space for people to share their personal experiences. Some content in this podcast may include topics that you may find difficult, the listeners discretion is advised.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Hello friends, welcome to radical resilience, a weekly show where I Blair Kaplan Venables have inspirational conversations with people who have survived life's most challenging times. We all have the ability to be resilient and bounce forward from a difficult experience. And these conversations prove just that, get ready to dive into these life changing moments while strengthening your resilience muscle and getting raw and real.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Welcome back to another episode of radical resilience. It's me Blair Kaplan. Venables, coming to you with another co author, another story of resilience that's going to be featured in book number two. I met Charlese years ago and she's just super phenomenal lover. You know, when she said she wanted to be in this book, I am so honored that she wants to share her story with our community. You know, she has a huge story and a lot of experience. She is a copywriting and content creation specialist she loves to support female business owners and reaching their goals. I met her because she was doing that I even hired her to help me with some stuff. And since starting her company in the summer of 2019. She has been published in entrepreneur.com, featured in SELF magazine interviewed on dozens of podcasts spoken at over 10 summits worked with multiple six and seven figure clients and now she has a course she's absolutely amazing. But she's more than just her business. She has quite the story. In fact, she didn't always have a business. And we are here today to talk about how one day she woke up and wasn't able to walk, which changed her entire life and career. So hello, Charlese

Charlese Latham:

Hey, Blair, that was quite the intro. Thank you so much.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Oh, well, thank you. Thank you for being here being open to share your story. Just right there. When I said hello, Charlese I was like, in my head. It sounded like Hello, Clarisse

Charlese Latham:

People say that to me all the time. Believe it or not. It's so funny. It's it's funny. It's actually kind of cool. It's like, you know what, maybe I am sometimes a little scary. And that's okay.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

I mean, I live scary. But there's nothing wrong with scary, you know, I mean,

Charlese Latham:

yeah, I think the way people define scary changes to me. My definition of scary has definitely changed. And there's not a lot that scares me anymore about life. Because in that, in that, you know, jumpscare kind of way something is probably coming around the bend. So I usually prepare for it if I can, and when I can't, I just think we just go with it, but didn't always happen that way. Yeah.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

It's interesting. Like before we dive into your story, the fact that you say that, like, I realized in the fall, like a lot of the fear I've had in life, and I don't have a lot of fear, like I'm very brave, and impulsive and intuitive. And I just do things. I don't have a lot of fear. And I realized this, both my parents died, like, I feel quite fearless. It's like, what's the worst that can happen? And I know more bad things can happen and things that are worse than my parents dying. I mean, maybe might happen. I don't know. I don't want to challenge the universe. But you know, it takes going through some pretty difficult stuff, to be able to redefine what scary or fear is. And like, let's talk about your story. What was life like before when you were able to walk? I mean, you could walk again, but like what, like Who were you what happened?

Charlese Latham:

I was the kind of person that I guess you could say there was like always, you always just saw the shadow of me because I was always moving so fast. You know, I was a blur. And I liked it. I was the flash I would move around and just do 1520 things in a day. I decided early on to become a hairstylist because my my choices were actually writer, psychologist or hairstylist because I love to tell stories. And I'm really great at that. But also I love to know what goes on with people in their heads. And third, I loved beauty and I used to restyle on my doll hair. So those were some three totally different choices until I realized they're actually not at all in hairdressing. Let me tell stories. And whoo boy did I dive deep into the psychology of people and myself during that pace. So for 20 plus years, I did hair. I was into everything I learned as much as I could about business. I did go to college to learn business. I study business. I was one of the first people like fresh out of school at the salon I went to to take clients off the floor and start running my own Um, you know, behind the chair in California, you can rent separately become your own entity. So oh, man, I was fearless when I was younger like that, you know, I was a dirt biking, snowboarding, I was into all the stuff, there's a concert happening, I would do that at night, wake up early the next morning and do the thing I had to do. I mean, my life was so fun. And then I got married, I got married on the younger side, something I don't recommend to a lot of people, but it was the right move for me and is right at the right time. He and I still don't regret it, even though I'll get to the part where we've uncoupled, but at the time, it was just this, I'm not afraid to commit to this person. He's part of my life story. Let's go, Let's jam and we eat dirt bikes together, and we snowboard it to the concerts together. And I grew my business. And so I was one day approached, you know what you're great at speaking and telling stories, will you educate for us next thing, you know, half of my career was dedicated to teaching for top air companies around the US. And then they had me doing sales, they had me, I was offered jobs that, you know, my career counselor in high school said, You're gonna do hair, you'll never get a great job, you'll never make enough money. And I was like, Honey, I'm gonna make so much more money than you and just a couple of years. And not to be disrespectful. But in a like, I'm not going down your path, I see my path clearly. And I went for it. And, you know, there was always ups and downs, because that's life. But by and large life just kind of kept going on the upward swing. I got, you know, all that good stuff was going on. So I live in Orange County, county, Orange County, California, which I know you've been here before Blair. So I'm about 30 minutes from this little place called Disneyland. And so my life was, you know, going out with my friends going to the beach, going to Disneyland a couple times a week with our paths, had a beautiful dog and my my I did hair just two to three days a week. Got to volunteer a lot. I mean, anything I wanted to do is within my possibility of range to do and I always felt good, but I was always in pain. And one day it caught up with me.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

So what kind of let's talk about that pain? Where was in? What what consequence? Or was it

Charlese Latham:

you know, looking back after therapy, I can tell you what really caused it. But how extensively it was lower back pain cost from dirt, biking, snowboarding, couple of car accidents, and standing on my feet all day, doing hair. And so that 20 plus years I even owned a salon building that salon out myself, I remember laying on the floor, like hand painting the molding because it wasn't the right color. All those things I wasn't afraid to just get my hands on and do. They took their toll physically. But at the same time, I was hitting around 1314 years of being married to like the love of my life. And turns out that he had a secret life that he didn't have another family or anything like that. But he had a lot of secrets, a lot of demons and he did not want to face them. And eventually, they took their toll on his mental health. And he fell into a serious mental health crisis that completely affected me. And eventually we had to separate to for my mental and physical safety. So at that point, I was like now carrying all this the world on my back, carrying all the weight of everything and I wanted to carry him to I wanted him to get better. I wanted us to get through this and be together. And one day my back couldn't take that weight anymore. And so there was another car accident. And during our separation, I was driving with someone and you know, she it's a long story, but I was a passenger. And I mean on the on the five freeway, we were on our way to Disneyland, by the way, and we got completely sandwiched between a bunch of cars, we had to get hauled off the freeway in an ambulance, like it was it was her car was totaled. It was a major accident. And that was kind of like the countdown to just a few months later. I one day just woke up, opened my eyes and I was like, you know, it's whatever time in the morning it was and I have to pee really bad. And then I was like, Oh, I can't, I can't move my legs. I can't it's happened to that fear that one of the biggest fears in my life was something is gonna happen to my back one day and I won't be able to take care of myself and there's no one else here to take care of me. What will I do? Wait, you had that? I've always had that fear because I had to take care of my husband most of our marriage and I was a very strong individual. Through therapy. I've learned that I parented myself a lot as a child. So I always just relied on myself and you got fear of not being able to rely on yourself due to something out of your control. That was a major fear in my life. Who was I going to count on at that moment? Now my parents are still alive, they're still around. They love me, they helped me but it's not in the way that I felt like I was understood or need to be cared for. So that fear was like they're not going to be able to be here for me. No one will. What will they do that and my husband at the time when we had had that last car accident, he didn't even come to the hospital. He was 30 minutes away. He didn't even come to see if I was okay. I called from the hospital had to have a friend come and undress me just to get into the like CT scan and MRI is to make sure my head was okay. I haven't talked to this friend in a few months and I was like can you come like you know, make me naked and take out all my earrings and helped me, my husband wouldn't come my parents live about an hour away. They were like, it's kind of late. Let us know how it goes tomorrow. Like they just everyone just kind of so I don't make excuses for people. But I do understand that they had their own reasons why they couldn't be there. Maybe they didn't understand the severity of that. And since my mom has been there for me during subsequent things, but during that time, I think that that fear was very valid, that what's going to happen if I, so I woke up and I couldn't walk. And that was, that was the beginning of what I thought was going to be the end of my life.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Holy shit. Charlese , thank you for sharing all that. And I'm so sorry. You went through all of that. I loved your I love your tenacity, and your like, motivation and perseverance when it comes to like building an empire. I relate. So I know how hard that is. And I'm, I can't imagine what it would be like to live with that fear of like not having someone to take care of you when something happens. I mean, I kind of, I kind of get it now because my parents are dead, but yours aren't. But I'm like, Oh, if something happens, I know I have my sister and my husband, but whatever. But, you know, like, it's just it crosses my mind. Like, oh, God, what do I do? And, and that's just sounds really difficult navigating, you know, with your husband, like him not being able to be there for you because he's supposed to be your person. And I'm sorry, you had to go through all that. And like, that's a lot of accidents. And, you know, so So you wake up, you have to pay, can't feel your legs. What do you do?

Charlese Latham:

So then I you know, full panic sets in. But the cool thing about myself I think is my first panic is you know, it's fight or flight minus fight. Mine is like, Okay, everybody just shut up. What do we do first? So my, my dog, who I you know, I had after the separation. So he's with me at this point is like 13 years old, he that he was a French Bulldog. And he was, you know, very healthy, but still, like, he's an older pup. And he's next to me. And he would sleep in his crate. So he's looking at me like, Mom, this is the time where you let me out. So I'm thinking like, I can't be that dog can't be I can't walk. I'll never be able to do hair again. It was December my biggest money making month ever, and I was gonna pay off the bills I had come so like, things were really and then at that point, I had bought my first condo, which was super exciting. So I bought it after we separated. But at this,

Blair Kaplan Venables:

so this happened after you separated the

Charlese Latham:

Yeah, so I'm all alone. I owned my first condo with my I mean, I decorated, I'm like, I'm living like a pretty sweet life, I had just had two trips to dream trips. And that was to go to Paris. And I got to go to France, I got to go to Disneyland Paris, which I'd always wanted to do. I love how much

Blair Kaplan Venables:

you love Disney.

Charlese Latham:

It's embarrassing to that we're

Blair Kaplan Venables:

gonna circle back.

Charlese Latham:

It's part of my thing. But anyway, like, it was just a dream. And I remember like, I got to, to realize all of these wonderful things. And then here I was, and it was like this as punishment for living my dream, like you wonder these crazy things. But honestly, it was just an emotional response to the fact that I had been carrying so much for so long, and I couldn't do it anymore. My back was like, we're tired. So I call a friend, I could reach my phone, thank God. And I was like, who, who's up at 7am? Who could like I had two friends with keys. And so I texted both friends because I had thought ahead. My mom has a key but she's again, like over an hour, it was two hours away. So I texted the first friend I could think of now she has two young children. She's got to get off to school. And I just said, Help account walk, please bring key immediately. And then I texted other friends in case they could just like take the key from her. Like I didn't know who I could ask. But I was like this is the time to ask this is to see, this is when I need people like there's no fear of asking for help. I have to have help. So my amazing friends didn't even remember to put on her glasses. She jumped in the car and then said she got down the street and was like I can't see but still drove because the path to our houses is like five minutes away. So she was like whatever, drove super as fast as she could without an accident. Going straight to my house at that point or like a miracle that happened where the dog had figured out how to let himself out in 13 years he never had but suddenly he did so he let himself out. He she came and cleaned up the bathroom but she had to help me get to the toilet which is at 3637 years old a very weird thing to have your friend have to walk you to the bathroom because you might not make it but I made it and that began about a three week drama of begging doctors to believe me that my pain was so bad I needed surgery. They had me they tried to give me oxy which Thank goodness I'm not I didn't get addicted to that but they had me on all these painkillers told me just to wait it out. Oh, it's the holiday season. We're all going on vacation. Goodbye. It was it was me like through pain and fog of pain meds going I swear you just need to you just need to open In my back and cut out the exploded disk, what had happened was my disk which had been herniated and I knew been compressed so much that it actually exploded onto the two nerves on the side of that those were the disc would have been still. And when you pinch off those nerves i like theoretically could still walk, but my body wasn't letting me because for fear that it was snapped back and then render me paralyzed permanently.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

And did you really feel like that was what was happening? And the doctors weren't really believing you?

Charlese Latham:

Yeah, I mean, I had going down my leg numb spots, and I was trying to point at it. And he's like, Well, you know, the doctors just kept saying what's come back in six weeks, and I'm like, I can't move. I can't I can't go to the bathroom like I can't. A friend had come and taking the dog because I couldn't walk him I lived upstairs. So like I was confined to my room on meds. I had a couple of friends come and stay the night like people really pitched in people really came through for me. And I have to say, this is when I learned not to fear being alone, because it never you aren't. You don't have to be alone. And most people really, really aren't. And I got to see that for myself. So it ended up with me calling 911 And why are they always thought that was so hot. They're so cute paramedics beautiful men. And then laying out the strap in and carrying me down the stairs. Anybody know I prepared for their call. My friends came I packed a bag. I got to my underwear in my favorite book to the hospital. But yeah, you know, it was hours of sitting at the hospital in agonizing pain. And they tried to actually put me in an Uber and send me home alone to take care of myself. And that's a different story. Like I was like, myself. And so they had to illegally keep me Well anyway, shorten that story to three days of level 12 out of 10 pain could not walk by mom did come and stay but she had broken her leg. So she's there in a cast trying to help me. Anyway, it was lovely people all came and pitched in and helped. And three days later, a miracle of a doctor out here. He's actually turns out the best neurosurgeon in the area fit me into his schedule last second. And they they cleaned, they did what is called a diskectomy. So they cleaned out all the disc fluid and cleaned off the little nerves. And I could walk again, but I wasn't fully out of the woods. But they were like, you'll be back doing here in six weeks, and I fully fully wasn't.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

You're like, that's a lie. Well, first of all, Hallelujah to the magic doctor.

Charlese Latham:

Oh, yeah, he's amazing. Okay, and

Blair Kaplan Venables:

then what happened? So you got the magic doctor to clean out your fluids

Charlese Latham:

are laying in the hospital. My last night in the hospital, they said they're gonna discharge me the next day if I can walk, which was great. Because at this moment, I'm having by this point, I'm having PTSD. The lady next to me was screaming in the night and she finally got discharged. I had a room to myself, thank God and all by myself, like talking to myself. And I'm like, you can't do hair anymore. I'm like canceling clients from the, and I'm like, downplaying it, you know, because we're business owner. Like, I just had a bout of like, you know, back pain. I'm sorry, the holiday party, my friend Ken. So here I am looking at you know, 1000s and 1000s of dollars gone. And I'm like, panicked because I had decided to put my house on the market, which then sold while I was in the hospital, again, hallelujah. And it was then in there that I realized that my path was that I was gonna have to for the first time and 30 No. And so I was thinking 720 17 years moved back home to my parents, which scared me for a lot of reasons as well. Two hours away from my everyone that I knew and loved. But I, I was going to have to start over. And there was no way to do this without hitting the full ground all the way. And I did so sold my house, walked away, drove myself to my parents house and cried my eyes out for days. And that was my new life. That was December of 2018. I moved in the end of January 2018. Most of my furniture a lot of things I had accumulated over the years people lovingly bubbled packed my plates that I bought after my husband knew ducks. I was like I want Pete plates. Do you still have them? I do. I'm never getting rid of those things. Those are my one of my favorite possessions. And so yeah, I had to think of like that. What the heck am I going to do? Blair? Like, what am I going to do? How am I going to pay for my bills?

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Yeah, so you pack up your pink plates. A couple hours away to your parents lucky that you had them. But that's I can't even imagine if like, the choice to move home or the like, I have to move home like in your 30s or whatever. Yeah, like then what happened? Because that's 2018 Like we're in 2000 Where are we? 23

Charlese Latham:

Yeah, that was five years ago now. Yeah, so almost like you're still so yeah, we you know, it was you know, it was crazy as I think being an independent person like yourself, you probably can resonate with the idea that being told you have no options is like probably the worst kind of prison. It's like just give me my options. I'll choose one but like don't say I have no options and I'm ever grateful forever that I got to stay at my parents like not everyone has that not everyone has a back up plan. But it wasn't easy for anyone. They are very independent themselves. My brother had lived with them multiple times. But for whatever reason I'm moving on with this, this like this, this thing that rocked their lives. So I fell into severe depression. I tried to get jobs in like the hair industry. But this whole year, I think it was a year of me learning that I had to go on welfare, which I was not embarrassed about, give me the free food and the free like cash like that was fine. My ex pitched in and paid for like some car payments and stuff. Well, the story becomes a miracle later. So first of all, it's a year of like learning to deal with stuff. At this point, though, I'm packing on pounds. And it's harder to like, recover, because I can't go out and walk because like, everything hurts. And so I'm gaining weight, like things are getting worse physiologically for me, but at the same time, mentally. And so I'm like, Okay, now, you thought the worst had happened? Well, that wasn't the worst, actually, the worst was yet to come. But through all of this, I learned that I very much do need depression medication. And that is that really saved my life, I think forever, because now I know, my like childhood of dealing with little late depressions much more than I thought it was. So I learned a lesson about like therapy, self care, and mental health about myself that I really needed to face. So that was awesome. And then I said, I'm starting a freaking business then like I can do this. And what do I want to do? And I, you know, like I said, that night in the hospitals talking to myself, I can't do here. So I thought, This is your opportunity. So you can sit here and cry, which you're allowed to do and you need to but when you're done, what are you going to do with this? Because you've just been given a gift, you get to start over? What is that moment going to mean? And I thought you know, what I want to do is travel wherever I want, go wherever I want, do whatever I want and get paid to enjoy my work because being a hairstylist, I loved it. I have to say my ex husband would come home from his job working with cars. And he just complained people are so rude. People are so mean, I hate their cars. People hate me. And I'm like, God, what does that look like? 10 times a day someone goes, I love you. I love

Blair Kaplan Venables:

ya. Good.

Charlese Latham:

Yeah, thank you so much for everything you do. And we've had an hour of chit chatting about usually, you know pretty good things by the end. So the only way I could do that is to reach out to more women in business and offer to find ways to help them market use social media things that I already had learned how to do, which eventually then reminded me that man, I always wanted to write a book about hairstyling. I've always wanted to write a book. I have a lot of books in me, what am I doing, I need to write. And I started taking classes for writing selling myself as a writer, every time I took a VA job. I started as a VA like just doing little tasks as a virtual assistant and I hated spreadsheets. What was I doing selling myself to do spreadsheets, I don't know how to do those. Definitely learned to rebrand myself as what I wanted to do. And that was to write and apply myself to learning on the job and through anything that I could get my hands on to learn and I still do that to this day. So I whenever people say what you do for a living, I used to say, Oh, I was a hairstylist. But now I'm like, right? I'm a writer, and I'm so proud. Because that word encompasses a lot and people go oh, what kind of writer and I love that moment pause where I'm like, I'm gonna get to tell them what I write. I want to write her necklace. Wait, hold on. Hey, what do you typewriter necklace. I write whatever I want. Dang it. Blair um, so I do I help people write books, I edit books. But I also write blogs I have been had my blogs for my clients hit the SEO top of google rankings top three, multiple months in a row i i do social media, I rewrite their sales. And just so they can sell stuff. I give them confidence. Through words we hang out. And this all started you know, I realized my talent for this when people would say, Oh my God, I need to break up with this guy. What should I say? I'm like, give me your phone. Or they will say like, what should the caption be on this post. I don't want to hurt this person's feelings. But I want to, you know, convey this feeling. And I'd like grab my friend's phone and I write them a caption i love i My mom fell down. Unfortunately, on some water slipped on some ice at the grocery store. She's like, I don't know how to tell them like what happened and make it sound serious. And I'm like, oh, to whom it may concern you know, so I've always had the gift of like, in fact, short story, but I went to Ireland a few years ago with a friend and we got to the Blarney castle and you're supposed to click kiss the Blarney Stone. And I had a cousin who went to Notre Dame she you know did a year in Ireland. She's like you have to kiss the Blarney Stone and I messaged her, I said hey, little cousin what is the Blarney Stone about like, Do I really have to kiss it and she goes well, it gives you the gift of eloquence and I was like oh, I have that stone and it turned out that we did not kiss the stone. It's really scary. It's far off aside and this like old Irish man missing his teeth hangs you over the side with your legs while you try to kiss the stone everyone else's kissed and I found this adorable guy later on from college who Giving us a ride. And he said, Oh, you didn't kiss the Blarney Stone, did you? Because we like to break in on the weekends and pee on the Blarney Stone. It's funny though, like I already pointed to and I did not need to do that. And thank goodness, I'm another reason that I'm grateful.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Don't kiss the stone people.

Charlese Latham:

Just you know what? Take a picture of the Blarney Stone and walk away.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

I love that. Okay, so you have a typewriter necklace, you've built this career, you've turned your pain into purpose. How's your back doing?

Charlese Latham:

Okay, well, fast forward to it was pretty great. But like there was still something missing. Turns out I actually also needed a hysterectomy, which I had last year. Once that was finally complete, again, fighting tooth and nail for 10 years, so doctors about female issues that they didn't believe me finally get it done. The day after that surgery, I wanted to run a mile, my back only hurts but I'm stressing it out only sitting in the wrong positions only doing the wrong things. I'm 42 now so the typical 42 year old pain instead of the debilitating pain of someone who can't walk, so I'm still very careful. I no longer dirtbike snowboard and, you know, we talked about Disneyland, I don't read some of the rides that are really bad for your back. And that's okay. Um, very careful. I don't wear old lady shoes, but I wear shoes that are going to be old lady shoes. Eventually, I learned to take care of myself and enjoy where I'm at in life and what I'm doing and you know, living with my parents, not only did I have all that stuff happened to me, but the year after I was finally like making my headway through it. And then we had the pandemic, pandemic, two years of being stuck in that situation even longer than I expected. But a miracle happened where I got to move back to Orange County, because of my car broke down, and I'll tell that story another day on another episode. But to this day, now I live back where I want to with a beautiful, amazing roommate, we have the best relationship, I have another French Bulldog because while I was also going through hell, my dog died. And my divorce was finalized after four years of fighting. So it was like, again, the worst part of my life. And one day I just turned around, and it was no longer happening to me. And I'm not afraid of whatever could come next. Because even like you said, if something could be quote unquote, worse than all of that. I mean, what really could be worse than all of that, I would guess I would have to see him and not challenge. Not challenge anyone who tells me but I will say that I'm not afraid of it. Because I know that we can get through it. You can get through anything if you just keep going.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Yeah, and I absolutely love that. Like you're such a light. And thank you so much for sharing all of that. You know, we're as we're coming to the end, I mean, I feel like we can talk for hours. So you will have to come back and people will read your story. I'm sure you're gonna share some tidbits that you didn't share here in your story in the book, but how can people find you?

Charlese Latham:

You know, I love to hang out and talk with people on Instagram. So I'm girl at the yellow desk. That's what I named my company. I'll tell the story later. But there is no yellow desk. It's it's it's a funny story. So girl at the yellow desk, people remember me they're like, Oh, the do desk person. Reach out DM me say Hey, see what I'm doing. See what I'm up to learn about my course I'm creating to help people basically do what I do to write better to write their own stuff to support them themselves in their own business.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Awesome. I love that. And your story is just so powerful. Like how you, you know, were able to get through that and like completely change your career and turn your life round. And, you know, I feel like a lot of people have those moments like we live so many lifetimes in this lifetime. What advice do you have for someone who's going through something similar? Where like an injury basically changes their entire life?

Charlese Latham:

Such a great question. I'm actually have the same advice even for 17 year olds, what you choose to do in the moment? Yeah, it can have long standing repercussions. But don't be afraid of those repercussions just so you don't have to choose your forever career at 17. If you're in the middle of doing something you love with your life or hate with your life, and you have to change it in the moment, look at that as an opportunity to live a second life, a third life, something different. You know, 40 is middle aged, which makes it sound like it's elderly, but it's really not I have as many years to be a writer as I did to be a hairstylist and beyond. And I could change and maybe I'll be an artist 15 years from now, who knows, because I love to do art. So maybe all of those things will happen from your lifetime isn't as short as you think when you're in it. So yes, we only have one life to live here and you want to make the most of what you can but don't look at it like one choice is all you got. You can keep choosing and everything but I guess my big words would be everything you do is a choice and you have that option to make a choice every minute of every single day. So just choose with all of the like heart and knowledge that you have and make the next choice after that. So beautiful,

Blair Kaplan Venables:

okay, I love that. You make a choice. It's about the choices you make A bonus question. It's a Disneyland question. And just for some context, Alanna and I went to Palm Springs for grief week, and I've never been to Disneyland and so grief week is like where we like It's like spring break for Grievers. Like me, my mom, my sister and my dad. Anyways, everyone's up but they're dead. So not they're not actually there. But they're sort of anyways they died like few days apart. And Alanna and I decided forever, we will be together over those dates summer warm as long as we could. So we chose Palm Springs last year, and I've never been to Disneyland. And so my sister's like, let's go to Disneyland. And we'll put it between the two sad days and go to the happiest place on earth. And I told Shirley so she's like, was going to come meet us. But she unfortunately she's like, I know every corner. I know. A secret.

Charlese Latham:

And they'll say to you, I got sick. Yeah, got sick. But

Blair Kaplan Venables:

yeah, like I think because of like my age, and maybe multiple concussions and like back stuff. I can't ride certain rides like I get really nauseous. Like I used to be able to do everything. And like I found like, the easiest rides are like it's a small world and like the boat ride, but my sister would not stop talking about Space Mountain like we have to do. Now we got this stupid Genie, whatever ha pass and we made a reservation. And we did the same with this one of the Star Wars Star Wars rides. And I almost I was crying star I normally would have loved that. We look at this picture. Everyone's like smiling and yelling and like, you could see tears coming out of my face, like screaming like I thought I was gonna die. And I had to lie on a lie on a bed for 45 minutes. I was like, I'm gonna barf. I got off the ride and like fell over a little and a stranger caught me. I was like, I can't believe how dizzy I am on Space Mountain. And like. And then the same thing basically happened on the Star Wars ride where like my sister, I looked over and she like, was gripping for her life, like her eyes closed. We're both like we can't do. So what is your feeling? How do you feel about Space Mountain?

Charlese Latham:

Okay, first of all, it's the best ride ever. But I will say

Blair Kaplan Venables:

that it was terrifying. I was gonna die.

Charlese Latham:

I used to be able to write it a couple of times in a row. And I think there is something that happens with grief experience that changes some of the way that your physical body reacts to stress, I would call it because that is a stress induced situation. And I think that for some of us, it's not cathartic. It's not fun thing for me about Disneyland as I went every year, once a year as a kid with my parents, and it was the most fun I ever had. It was the moment we were all together, I got to buy something fun. I got to eat treats I normally didn't. So for me when I walk into Disneyland even to this day, and then my ex and I used to go all the time when we were first married. It was like the thing that we like could afford to do the only thing we could because passes were super cheap back then they were like $99 a year. So we would go and so for me, I walk onto Main Street and I am four years old waiting for fireworks. I am ready for popcorn. So those rides are the same. So I don't have the trauma response to that. But physically now I cannot do Matterhorn it would probably paralyze me there's a quite a few rights that with age you just you just can't do them. I used to get mad at my mom and grandma, like who wants to do a small role? That's boring. You know, nowadays, I told my friends I'm like, can we go on small roll points. They're like what I'm like it's air conditioning and it's slow. Oh, I know. I'll

Blair Kaplan Venables:

I'll come back. You won't be sick. I'm actually coming to LA. I'll tell you offline. But anyways, go. Let's go. Basically you make choices. That's her, you know, like you can make you have the ability to make choices. You should choose not to go on Space Mountain if you're old or grieving.

Charlese Latham:

Called do it. I have a friend who can't do it when she's having a bad day. Just don't do it. It's fine.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

I was just like, I couldn't like my sister just like all she talked about was like, like her hype her hype and like the pictures ridiculous meet her both like holding on for dear life. It's so funny. On that note, thank you so much for coming on this podcast and sharing your story. And, you know, I just look forward to the world getting to know you better. So thank you.

Charlese Latham:

Thank you so much, Blair. I appreciate it

Blair Kaplan Venables:

and love it. And thank you to everyone who tuned in to another episode of radical resilience. We do this every Friday back in your ears on your favorite podcast player. You know if you have a story to share, we are collecting stories of resilience from around the world to publish in books. Book number two is about to come out book number one was out last June became an international bestseller. You know, I'm going to be in the book obviously, Charlese is going to be in the book. There's there's no one in this world who hasn't survived a challenge. So if you were ready to share your story, you want to be a part of our community. There's a link in the show notes. Just remember like life is hard and beautiful and everything it's messy and everything in between and you don't have to do it alone. It is okay to not be okay. You will get through this. Let us be that lighthouse in the storm that light at the end of the tunnel because You're not alone. And my friends you are resilient.

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