Bob is a Unicorn is my fourth children’s picture book. And while I don’t play favorites and I tell school children I can’t possibly pick a favorite book (they are like my children, I love them equally for different reasons) Bob does have a very, very special place in my heart. Soon (like today or tomorrow) you will be able to buy Bob (and his plushie version – SQUEEEE!!!) from my publisher’s website here http://new.myubam.com/search?q=michelle+nelson-schmidt They are getting in online to sell today I hear.
First let me tell you a question I am getting asked over and over again. “Why did you name him Bob? Of all the names on the planet. Bob? Really? Original much?” Well, like all my books, it has a personal back story. When my daughter Sophie was little she loved stuffed animals. I don’t mean just loved, she LOVED them. She slept with a mountain of them and even at 15 still has quite the stash. (To be fair it is in her genetic code – you should see my studio.) Anytime she got a new stuffed animal she always named them Bob. I have no idea why. Maybe to keep track, but Bob was the name for almost all of them. It became a running joke and I always knew one day I would use that as a character in a book. When the story for Bob made its way into my brain? With all my heart and soul, I knew his name was Bob. And it fits. Now you know. (Incidentally, last year she acquired a pink dolphin named Phil. Phil is trying his best to work his way into my brain and another book. We’ll see.)
So. Bob. What is Bob all about? The message of Bob IS up to interpretation – I want people to find what they need in Bob. But in my humble opinion? Well, Bob is about you. And me. And her over there. And you. Yes you, sitting reading this right now. It is about who we are right now in this moment and being okay with whatever moment it is. A perfect one. A messy one. A terrible one. A breath-taking one. A heart-wrenching one. All of it. In this life we don’t always get to choose what is thrown at us. But we do get to choose to own it. To live it, and walk through it. No matter what moment we happen to be in.
Bob is about loving who you are and who you want to be in this life. And sometimes? People are not going to understand you. They are going to look at you like you are crazy because you are a stay at home mom and have four demanding children all under 10 and you want to start your own business. Or you make good money and have a good life, but all you can dream about is starting a dog rescue and using every penny of your savings to make it happen. Or you want to move to Europe for a year and see what adventure may come of that. Maybe you are 100 lbs overweight and you decided in one year you are going to run a marathon. And you decided that over a piece of stuffed crust, extra pepperoni pizza. Or maybe, maybe you want to be a unicorn. And you know what? Own that. Own what you want and who you want to be no matter how silly, crazy, strange or impossible it might look to anyone else.
Believe in yourself.
Believe in yourself right NOW. Right this minute in your awesome, depressing, silly, messy, perfect, unorganized, beautiful, chaotic life. Because guess what? This is it, people. You don’t get a do-over. (Well, not that we are absolutely sure of anyways.) Love who you are RIGHT NOW. And want to know a secret? None of us have it figured out. We are ALL scared of messing up. We are ALL terrified of showing the world who we really are. What if no one likes us? What if no one gets us? What if no one understands us?
This is where trusting in, and believing in yourself comes in. See, the magical, amazing thing that happens when you decide to love and own who you are – with all that entails? When you do that, you begin to shine. You shine in a way that people notice. And while yes, some people may not get you, or EVER understand you, something else amazing happens. You attract people just like you! People will begin to resonate with whatever vibration you are giving off. They will find you. They will come out of the woodwork looking for you. Like attracts like. I promise. And even though you may start out with not a soul understanding who you are and what you want, or supporting you at all – and I’m not going to lie, that is painful – but, eventually? You will find yourself surrounded by other amazing, messy, happy, chaotic people that will get you. And support you. Promise. We are all connected. They will find you.
So while you are out there beginning to own your life and looking for your unicorn horn to put on and go be a Bob, do me a favor and remember something? We are ALL doing that. We are all finding our way. So be KIND to each other. Your journey might look so different than someone else’s journey that you might not get it or understand it. And you don’t have to. But you do have to respect it. So be kinder than you need to be. Yes, even to the mean people. Maybe they just haven’t located their sparkly horn yet. <3