Reimagine has been hosting candlelight vigils throughout the pandemic in order to break down taboos and hold space for all that we've lost. Author and health advocate Melody Moezzi offers insights on the transformation of stigma and adversity through creativity and how we can support loved ones in living fully with mental illness. Her book The Rumi Prescription: How an Ancient Mystic Poet Changed My Modern Manic Life will serve as point of departure to explore the healing that comes from trauma-related growth. Our additional guest is grief coach and Reimagine collaborator Jenny Dilts.
At this vigil, just a few weeks following the Persian New Year known as Nowruz, we will mark nature's rebirth and the blooming of spring.
Melody Moezzi is a writer, activist, attorney, professor, and award-winning author. Her latest book is The Rumi Prescription: How an Ancient Mystic Poet Changed My Modern Manic Life (Penguin Random House, March 2020), for which she won a 2021 Wilbur Award. Her other books include the critically acclaimed memoir Haldol and Hyacinths: A Bipolar Life and War on Error: Real Stories of American Muslims, which earned her a Georgia Author of the Year Award and a Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Bigotry and Human Rights Honorable Mention.
Melody's writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, NBC News, CNN, Al Arabiya, The South China Morning Post, Hürriyet, The Straits Times, Parabola and The Yale Journal for Humanities in Medicine, among many other outlets. Melody is also a United Nations Global Expert and an Opinion Leader for the British Council's Our Shared Future initiative. She has appeared as a commentator on many radio and television outlets, including CNN, BBC, NPR, PBS, CSPAN, and PRI. She is also an experienced keynote speaker and a visiting associate professor of creative writing at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Melody is a graduate of Wesleyan University (BA), the Emory University School of Law (JD), and the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health (MPH). She lives in coastal North Carolina with her husband, Matthew, and their ungrateful cats, Keshmesh and Nazanin. You can also find her on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. www.melodymoezzi.com
Jenny Dilts is a Certified Grief Coach who specializes in transforming adversity into advantage. She helps people feeling unmotivated and without purpose to deal with their grief in healthy ways and move towards creating a life of joy and purpose. Jenny's professional journey as a Grief Coach began when she sat with a friend days after her husband's sudden death. Holding that space for her unlocked and ignited a passion for supporting others in their grief. Another pivotal experience for Jenny was guiding a friend through the grief following her sister's death by suicide. Jenny's ability to appreciate both the darkness and the light guides others to move forward with their grief, create a new normal for themselves, and build a relationship with grief and gratitude. Jenny is the founder of Grieving Coach and host of the podcast Share Your Story: Exploring Humanity One Soul at a Time. Through her journey as a Grief Coach she has completely transformed her own life from not knowing who she was and living in the shadows, to shining as an expert not only in the field of grief, but also in her own life as a wife and mom of 5.