In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…

It was that he spoke to me though I did not listen in the beginning. In the beginning I functioned as a child of my parents’ household – I beat myself up and asked why, why, God, did I keep screwing this up?

Every month not enough money.
Every month 800 number creditors calling.
Every month a shortfall and we face the first overdrawn.

I pulled my hair out, metaphorically. I asked the budgeting experts at our bank; they said “bring in more income.” How many jobs had I applied for and not one interview.

Night after night, computer glowing into the wee hours, trying to fund the business, trying to find a job, searching Monster, searching higher education sites, searching links from the Fund For Woman Artists site … searching, typing, seeking, applying. Month number five of desperation year number two I say to him, “I’m going to ask ‘W’ to look at our numbers; she stays at home, only her husband works, yet they are on their way to purchased home number four; surely she can tell me what I am doing wrong…”

You step, gently, to the center of the living room and begin to speak words I’ve heard you say earnestly, with fear that I would not hear you yet again, and something in your manner, your hesitancy, your gentle fierceness stills my closing ears and jaded consciousness.

I listen. Really listen. Stop my whole self and being to take in, absorb, your words.

“You work a miracle with our finances each month,” you say, definitively. “I watch you. You calculate the list of bills overnight when it would take me five weeks to do the same and I’d still be screaming bloody murder. I watch how you talk to those people. I couldn’t begin to do what you do, handle what I’ve given you charge of; not with such peace and competence.”

He has sounded so gentle, like a friar counseling a terrified parishioner. I think back to all the teleseminars I’ve saved and heard, all of the millions of wise female and male voices telling me how to successfully do this female entrepreneur thing.

Still I feel a failure, that I’m doing it wrong. The only bright spot a personal email or two from Lynn Scheurell and a brief Twitter from Felicia Slattery, Lynn taking the time always to respond and encourage directly and in person while solidifying her million-dollar business. She invites you, even, to, a membership you are quite not ready for, but the time and attention – the time and attention like gold.

You email her months later – two or three – when all has turned around; you have an interview scheduled – they called you out of the blue – and have already offered you an adjunct position. The interview is crème de la crème: full-time.

You are still surprised when successful Scheurell actually does pick up the phone and call you that night, filled with worry that she might be disturbing you too late. You laugh because it is 7:30 p.m., and your usual bedtime anywhere from 2 a.m. to 6 in the morning.

Gleeful, surprised, appreciative of her time, you tell her about the interview call; the former student now applying to graduate school because you threatened him if he didn’t; your admonition rang in his ears for five years and he is applying now; your new friend at your new bank and his friend, the image consultant who advises you for free, helping you prepare for the interview; meanwhile the head contractor and his solar panels guy are jumping up and down with enthusiasm about the house you wish to acquire for your headquarters; the three of you plan to get the $88,000 dollars worth of work done free of charge in exchange for showcasing the workers’ skills and abilities and they know and believe this dream of yours is possible…

I can hear the happiness in your voice, Lynn says; your energy has shifted and I am so happy for you. How can I help?

You remember the coaches you wrote about who said nothing--no time, no response--three exceptions and Lynn the biggest one. You remember the feel of those words like manna on your back and shoulders, nape of your neck and haunches, as you carried the weight of Blowing Up Barriers all alone.

I want to write something, you tell her, about the magnanimous million dollar grasshopper taking time to speak with a worker bee, a still struggling ant, and how the memory of that generosity, like the sustenance-filled words of her lover, once fully accepted, absorbed, taken in, fed her on those Gobi desert days of 800 number calls and overdraft fees.

The tide has finally turned and you want the big world out there to know: sometimes words from a wealthy mentor make all the difference in an up and comer’s psyche. My energy shifted, you tell Lynn, because I was fed by those who took the time to love me.

You end the call, ever conscious of her time and multitude of commitments. What you remember is the slight twinge in her voice when she thought it too late to call and the joy too thick to cut at the changes in your reality.

You turn the calendar back and you know you kept their words with you and the positivity of their words was God, God who sustains you now and propels you forward into a clear, bright future. The right word, the healthy word, even the sometimes chastening word is God. You know because it nourishes; you feed on it and the good grows.

Time to give some of that Word back.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Niama L. Williams is the guiding force behind Blowing Up Barriers Enterprises, a company that specializes in leading you to the life you have dreamed of living but can't quite seem to get to on your own.

She is the author of nine books, each describing her survival of trauma and celebrating those who have assisted her as she's walked her path.

Dr. Ni also facilitates two workshop series, "Affirming the Fully Imagined Life" and "It's Okay To Want: Eroticism and the Survival of Sexual Trauma" and interviews authors the first Saturday of every month from 12:00 – 1:30 p.m. on "Poetry & Prose & Anything Goes with Dr. Ni" under the auspices of

Review her credentials, publications and workshop descriptions at her website:; listen to her audiobooks at; or read the latest of her personal story at Tim Hooker's Sushi Tuesday,