I relate to them some, sure, but they aren’t “me.” There is some truth to the idea that they “came from me,” but only because I’m their author. There’s also truth to my relating to them, but not as much as you may think. Sam, or Dr. Samantha Jaspar, is a psychologist who talks to herself and might even sound crazy at times.
Like many people who are drawn to psychology or self-help, Sam knows that she needs therapy, and that’s what we like about these fields, that’s why they appeal to us. Sam too seeks the insights and help that psychology offer her too, not just her clients.
I have been a teacher of spirituality for fifteen years and, for me, spirituality is more about improving yourself than anything else. In my many personal experiences and experiences with people and helping people, I find that the best way to have a spiritual connect and experience the magic of the unseen is by being in the highest-vibrating place possible. For this, you need to strengthen yourself. As such, self-help and spirituality are inextricably linked.
I like Sam. In some ways she’s a train wreck, but in other ways she’s brave and she will attract more into her life than most. In Book 1 of my Cake Life Series, Cake By The Ocean: Chasing Dreams, Sam has several things go wrong in her life that lead her to “run away,” leaving everything (her cat, her office and life in the US) behind. She runs to the tropical island of St. Martin after her sister-in-law tells her about a great spiritual community and the ex-pat community there. I can relate with Sam, because things are good at going wrong, right? Still, I’m old enough at this point not to run away from my problems, not even to an island in paradise.
So, yes, I can relate with Sam, but not quite the way you may think. She says things, like “chin up!,” which I hadn’t been aware of hearing before I ‘heard’ her say it. She, like my other characters, are people all there own and they tell me little things about themselves. They correct me too: Isadora, a character in Book 2, told me that people call her “Iza” and to stop calling her Isadora. By that time I’d already written her into a few chapters and had to go back and run a “Find” and “Replace” function to change her name everywhere. Once I did, she settled. Similarly, Sebastian was meant to be “an extra,” a temporary character– or so I thought. Next thing I know, he’s stealing the show and the role of “main character” in Book 2. So, no, my characters aren’t me. Sure, I relate to them, but no one character is “me.” They are their own persons.
Back To Sam & Her Adventure
I Like Watching Her
Here my perspective: life is never what we want or expect it to be. I just saw one of my meditation students while I was on a meditation-vacation, as I called it. Not quite a formal retreat, but I had to squeeze meditations into my time in the Mexican Riviera. My student had a baby this year and said that it was nothing like what she’d expected. She thought it would be great, maybe the baby would sleep while she worked and such. Instead, the baby had an issue — which has been corrected— but my student has learned that life with a baby means a lot of crying, not knowing what the baby needs, trying different things and, basically, having your life now dictated by a little cute thing that can’t even talk.
Like I said, life is never what we expected. Some people do everything the “right” way, others don’t – and still, it’s not what you expected regardless. Life doesn’t really reward people or treat them well ‘just because.’ When Sam comes up against a wall in my novel, she’s at the end of her justifications as to why life is great at work, but shitty otherwise.
I like this. I have liked watching Sam decide that “the rules” aren’t working and that she’s just going to do whatever she damn well pleases. That’s when her life gets better— after it gets worse, not because life rewards reckless behaviors but because life want you to be real. Life is meant to be experienced to the max, but it’s hard for us to do, myself included. In some ways, I’ve done so more than most, which has brought about amazing things, but it can be challenging for any of us to live it all, to live to the max. Watching Sam begin to do so has been inspiring and fun.
Yes, “watching Sam.” As a writer, I don’t dictate what happens in my books. I observe and record. I enter another world, the world that Sam and Sebastian (introduced half way through this book and who becomes a main character in Book 2: Desert Cupcake, Finding Meaning, live in and have experiences in.
So, how do you live to the max?
Well, for one thing, you are honest and authentic with yourself. You throw everything you are supposed to be or have been told you should be, out the window. Easier said than done. Still, Sam moves to St. Martin because she wants to chase her dreams and, while that brings her a new set of issues, in the long run, it helps her become more of who she truly is, and that’s when her dreams come forward. Living to the max isn’t about being selfish or crazy, it’s about understanding who you truly are, looking deeper into your soul, and finding what makes you tick so that you can then enjoy what’s truly important and meaningful in yourself and your life.
Of course, like the rest of us, Sam doesn’t change over night, so she still has issues— even when we think her dreams have come true. Life keeps going, so that in Book 2, even though Sebastian is the main character, Sam’s life encounters more life challenges.
I hope you enjoy reading about Sam and Sebastian’s challenges and adventures as much as I like recording and reading about them too.
Read a free copy of Cake By The Ocean, Chasing Dreams HERE