Tell us a bit about your family
My family is a different sort of family. My father is a medium and I grew up learning much about spirituality, ghosts, and ‘the other side’. His controversial teachings caught the attention of the NBC Today Show, Time Magazine and other media sources.
I’ve never felt it necessary to read books on spirituality because it was taught to me as I was growing up. It was taught through example, love, and general discussions. I also passed this onto my own daughter as she was growing up.
I’m thankful for my childhood, especially as I began to develop my own medium abilities. I knew I could talk to my family and understand how it all worked or why certain things would happen.
How do you work through self-doubts and fear?
In the past, I’ve had to work past a lot of fear. Fear around ghosts, fear around ridicule, and fear around my daughter making painful life-long choices. Each fear that surfaced, I had to do something with it. A lot of times, I would try to deny the fear and push it aside. That is until the fear was in my face and I could no longer deny it. I had to confront the fear and stop giving it control over my mind. If my fear says I shouldn’t do ‘that’, then I do it anyway. That is confronting the fear.
It’s the same with self-doubt. I have to identify from where the doubt is coming and address it face forward. If I deny the self-doubt, it just gets stronger. In addition, the more respect I have for myself, the less self-doubt I have. Strong self-respect, a self-knowingness, and positive pride cannot reside with self-doubt. They are opposites.
How did you develop your writing?
As a child, I always loved writing stories. A story would enter my mind and I would immediately go to my notebook and begin writing down whatever story plot was entertaining me at the time. I loved doing that until I took a creative writing class in community college.
I allowed the instructor to determine my self-worth about my own writing ability. So I stopped writing in a creative fashion. As I worked towards my degrees in Special Education and Public Administration, I only wrote in an academic format. That was safer for me and I was good at it after writing so many college papers.
Even after I stopped working as a teacher, I wrote articles for newsletters and a local free paper. My writing style continued to be very academic. When I began writing my memoir, I had to shift from academic style to creative style so that my story would be interesting to read.
I had an editor who assisted me in this process of writing good dialogue, paying attention to redundancy, and structure. I improved my creative writing style through practice. I didn’t take any classes. I just wrote my story and then edited and re-wrote it so many times that now I know how to write in a creative way.
Tell us about your new book. What is it about and why did you write it?
My book is my memoir-Loving Conor; A Clairvoyant’s Memoir on Loving, Bonding and Healing. I work with the public as a medium/clairvoyant, but my story is less about that and more about my daughter and her son, Conor.
The story began when I was eighteen years old and in an abusive marriage. I walked away from my marriage at nineteen, with a month-old baby, and no money. I continued to make painful relationship choices until I turned twenty-two years old and I realized my pattern. I met my second husband who continues to love and support me in my work.
The story moves quickly to my daughter’s teenage years in which her anger profoundly develops toward her biological father and also her desire for older teenage boys. My daughter’s anger was expressed in different ways and my anxiety level was high much of the time during her teenage years.
At the same time, my medium abilities were developing when my daughter was around age thirteen and fourteen. In one of the chapters, I explain how it developed and some of the people I approached in a public setting who had a ghost attached to them.
When my daughter was around age fifteen, she fell in-lust with a boy of age twenty-one and who carried similar personality characteristics to her biological father. She became pregnant at age sixteen and we found out just how traumatized and angry the soul of her unborn child was. With my medium abilities, I had to help him begin healing his anger while he was still in spirit form-before birth. We talked with him while he was in spirit form. I had no idea if what we were doing would work. But this is how we came to love Conor. Did it work? Read it to find out! Also, my daughter writes her perspective at the end of the book too.
When you are not writing, how do you like to relax?
I am the type of person who has to have relaxation time. I can’t say for certainty when that developed, but I’ve been that way a long time. I relax differently depending on where I’m at and what time of day it is.
I like to relax through reading, listening to music from the 1940s and 1930s, drinking wine, taking walks, exercising/hiking, taking naps, watching music videos, and meditating. It’s not difficult for me to relax. I especially like low-key mornings. I’ll have my ‘old school’ Big Band Swing music on, drinking my coffee, and I’ll be on my computer. Or on a weekend evening I’ll have ‘old school’ Jazz playing, enjoying a Grey Goose martini or Kendall Jackson chardonnay, cheese and salami or crackers.
Relaxation is very important to me-just as important as my work. Balance.
What are you the most passionate about? What gets you fired up?
When I see or read about parents physically punishing their children or I read comments in which people say children need to be punished more gets me really fired up.
People have a misperception that punishment teaches respect. Like attracts like and like teaches like. Most people can agree that we learn by our parents’ examples more so than their lectures. We learn by what we see, feel, and experience. Punishment teaches punishment. Respect teaches respect. Consequences teach respect for outcomes. Punishment teaches how to hide so not get caught and it teaches the cycle of punishment.
Most people who were consistently punished as children continue that cycle as an adult. For some, it’s a major issue and for some not as major. Self-punishment is a synonym for self-judgment, self-sabotage, self-denial, and allowing others to control you on some level.
We can raise our children to be respectful by creating strong boundaries, offering respect, and delivering consequences without the energy of punishment or judgment. It just takes a lot more work and involvement.
What is your greatest strength as a writer?
I think my greatest strength is taking the time to write. But, that wasn’t always the case. I had to have my inspiration. A strong desire had to be there and then I always had time to write and edit my work.
Broke, with a month-old baby, nineteen-year old Tami Urbanek walks away from an abusive marriage only to find herself wallowing in anxiety and confusion, wondering how she will survive. At the time, she had no idea that the journey in front of her would guide her so far away from fear of financial survival and instead would push her into the realm of healing and spirituality. As the daughter of internationally renowned medium, Hossca Harrison, Tami seeks the assistance of her loving parents and a spiritual teacher named Jonah.
With their help, she begins to understand herself and her daughter, whose adolescent path of destruction threatens to tear apart their relationship. As Tami's own clairvoyant abilities surface, she is challenged with the task of helping not just her daughter, but the child that her sixteen-year old daughter is carrying: a child whose painful past life still haunts him and which must be resolved before his birth. Told with humor, insight and honesty, Tami's story challenges readers' minds as it touches their hearts, and when the last page is turned, it is a story not easily forgotten.
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Genre - Memoir
Rating – PG-13
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