What people are saying about our workbook...
I found it inspiring, emotionally moving, intelligent, informative and well written. It is a very important and relevant book for mothers and fathers, as well as professionals in women's studies, maternity, psychology, and all the healing fields and for those on their own unique human journey with universal experiences with challenges and suffering, healing and growth. It refreshingly brings to light with honest expression a very real human experience that needs more understanding, study, support, knowledge, empathy and open dialog . The spread and success of The Smiling Mask Team's words is having a much needed awakening impact on our world.
~ Kathy Seida
The Smiling Mask Team continues to break the silence and remove the mask through their honest and open reflections upon their personal life journeys! Through this workbook, which is filled with their wisdom and insights they offer rich tools for others to grow and thrive as well. What a gift they are and what a gift they have given! I cannot wait to share this book with those who are struggling to find their voice and remove their mask! Thank you!
~ Della Ferguson
Continued Care Coordinator
"Behind the Mask" is an inspiration, right from "The Tale of the Butterfly" through to "Walking the Talk". Thank-you to The Smiling Mask Team for reminding me again that there is more to life and motherhood than just getting by. Thank-you for sharing the skills and tools that have given you such success in your lives. Most of all, thank-you for being so open, honest and sharing your empathy and healing in the world. Your work has made an amazing difference in my life!
~ Rina Lichtenwald
Mom of Colwyn and Josephine!
Elita, Carla and Tania have done such a huge service to women with The Smiling Mask
, giving them permission to reach out and ask for help. Now with Behind the Mask
they are providing further guidance on how women can help themselves
and where to go for outside help. Well done ladies, keep shining your
~ Bonnie Bogner
Spiritual Coach and Teacher
I am a 30 year old woman of two beautiful children: Jora, age 5 and Jack, age 8 months. I was diagnosed with Postpartum Depression in October of 2010. My battle at times was unbearable. I thought I would never get through it. I felt alone, scared, ashamed and guilty. I couldn't believe this was happening to me. Why me....... Why not me.... I was able to seek treatment and began to realize that this was something I couldn't have prevented but I quickly learned that I could control with some hard work and useful information and guidance.
I met with Carla and she began to help me learn to heal and love myself again. She gave me very useful information that I put into my everyday life. I learned how to control my thoughts. I learned about good self talk and I learned to forgive myself and love myself as I had once done before. I was not healed at once. I still am not fully healed, but I can truly say that I have overcome some very troubling times and I am learning day by day how to deal with the stressful situations that come my way. I was introduced to the workbook, “Behind the Mask: Trust, Adjust and Transform your Life!” I loved it. It had great information and tips in it that I use in my life everyday now. I enjoyed the question sections as it gave me time to reflect and think back as to how I was feeling at that point in time, and it gave me wonderful ways to heal my inner being. I can honestly say that through my darkest hour of Postpartum Depression there were times that suicide crossed my mind. How scary that was for me. I did not realize how dark this disease could be if left untreated. I knew I needed to change my way of thinking about life, about myself and about my family if I wanted to survive. There were many days that I didn't even want to crawl out of bed, I didn't want to speak to anyone, and I would close the curtains just so I wouldn't have to see the sun shine. I guess to me, seeing the sun shine meant a beautiful, wonderful day and in my world it was cloudy and stormy... I wanted nothing to do with my new born son or my daughter. I got annoyed and stressed over nothing. I was angry all of the time. I would yell at my children over the littlest things. At times I felt like I was going crazy, literally losing my mind. It was very scary. I wanted to run away so I wouldn't have to deal with it all. It was horrible. I felt so much guilt and pain at the very belief that I could feel this way about my children. It was unbearable... It hurts at times when I think back to that time and remember how unhappy I felt and how I didn't think I would ever get better. I didn't want to feel this way anymore.
However, it is now February and I am beaming with happiness. I have learned so many positive things about life, about myself and about my children and my family. I love myself no matter what. I tell myself positive affirmations daily and I believe them. I spend quality time with my children and I love it. I feel that spark in myself that I had many years ago, it had been lost but once again it shines through.... I started exercising daily and eating healthy. I feel so much energy and I feel healthy once again. I don't really know where I would be today if it wasn't for Carla, Elita and Tania and The Smiling Mask. I feel as though Carla is one of my guardian angels because she has spent the most time with me, teaching and listening and empowering me throughout this hardship. I am so thankful that this book exists and that these women are saving lives daily by sharing their stories and teaching women like me, how to overcome Postpartum Depression. I truly believe that my life was saved because of them. To you ladies, I thank you and love you with all of my being. I thank you for letting me take part in this and for letting me share my story with all of you. Remember, you are not alone and there is help out there. Do not be ashamed or scared to get help. You too, can learn to heal yourself!!
~ Michelle Doell
My transformation was like night and day, after a four year coma, where I was imprisoned by terrifying thoughts of harming my son, and then suicidal obsessions I was pushed passed by breaking point. In my darkness I had attracted an angel, my twin Tania Bird. She was my balcony person. She uplifted me to awareness that I had the power to choose happiness or sadness. Her question was simple and to the point. “Come on Carla this is your last kick at the can!” “Are you going to beat it or are you going to let it beat you!” Something finally clicked, and I woke up and chose to focus my obsessions on positive change! We all have the power to make positive change! What are YOU waiting for!
~ Carla O’Reilly
Today, I have never felt this alive and connected to people and myself. Today, I understand that my life experiences are simply lessons meant to bring me closer to self acceptance, self forgiveness and unconditional self love. I would now describe my life as amazing, fulfilling, and over-flowing with gratitude. What a place to be!
~ Elita Paterson