Spawned in Opelika, AL.
I share a birthday with Emily Dickinson (yassss) and Rod Blagojevich (eeew).
The fam moves to a little house in Houston, TX. I had chickenpox and my mom kept dabbing makeup on me throughout the flight so I wouldn’t get kicked off the plane.
Diagnosed with ADD. Parents put me on Ritalin and that shit turns me into a zombie. They decided to just let their middle kid…be a kid.
I tell my 4th grade teacher that I’m bored within earshot of another teacher. This goes over like Stalin at a Bernie Sanders rally.
I join choir and Ms. Prescott’s Drama class because my brother was already in band and even though I wanted to play drums, my parents couldn’t afford an instrument for me, too. So basically, my career path is their fault.
Stint as Daffy Duck at Astroworld over the summer. Paid $9/hour. EPIC.
Met a guy. Moved to Knoxville, TN. Briefly. Returned to Houston that fall because…
Didn’t listen to my gut. Married that guy. Filed for divorce 7 months later. Shit.
Ate something I shouldn’t have. Got food poisoning. This happens a lot so I figured I should put it on the timeline somewhere.
Met a sweet guy. Married him. Moved to Japan. Taught English and ran a bootleg personal training business off the Navy base in Atsugi. Fucking loved living in Japan.
Take hubby to go see STOMP! for our anniversary. About 30 minutes in, I’m crying because on that stage is where I want to be. Who the fuck cries at STOMP!? (me) Sign up for acting classes. Get an agent. Become top booking talent in the wee small pond of San Diego.
Sweet guy and I realize that we like one another, but shouldn’t co-habitate or reproduce. We giggle about who’s going to file for divorce. Splitsville. Move to LA (bigger pond) to launch my acting career at agent’s behest.
After two years of not being enough or being told I’m too much, I give LA the middle finger and leave performing. I manufacture a bullshit resume and get a gig in marketing support.
Moved to Las Vegas (where culture goes to die, but at least housing was cheaper than LA).
Single, because after living as a serial monogamist for my entire life, I needed to figure out who Erika was and what she wanted to become.
After some career schizophrenia, I walk out on a job in financial services that pays me nearly $250k/year and go back to writing and telling marketing stories. A long overdue departure from corporate America involving many middle fingers and not a lot of cash. But happiness. And a move to Denver, CO.
Lose my ass after putting everything into a startup. Crawl back from $620 in my bank account and payday loans to living a peaceful life as a self-employed woman.
The Shattering. When you slip and fall in love and death rips that love from you in an instant, life goes to shit. Commence 20 months of depression, substance abuse, and every possible self-destructive thing a 30-something woman could do to herself. I’m living the unprettiest parts of a Hunter S. Thompson novel.
Write 2 books in a depression-fueled fog. Alternate wardrobe between a white terrycloth robe and a grey one. Because seasons and depression. Contemplate checking out of Planet Earth multiple times. Try. Fail. Thankfully.
Collapse crying on a mountain outside Las Vegas. Realize that I want to live. Actively decide to get my life back. Fall back in love with storytelling. Get asked to tell a story at TEDx Boulder. Shit my pants.
Single. Again. Because not suitable for human consumption and talking to a therapist seems smarter than texting one-night stands.
TEDx Boulder —when 2100 people give me a standing ovation after 16 minutes, I can’t sleep for 3 days (literally). The feeling that I’m not going to get where I need to go in Colorado grabs hold. Something’s next. I don’t know what. Shit, shit, shit.
Realize that my MUST is returning to performing. Fall in love with Chicago. Buy a condo in a gorgeously diverse neighborhood. Pack up 2 dogs, 2 cats and drive 17 hours to my new home. Realize that I moved in directly underneath Godzilla. This is going to be fun.
Fall in love with Clark Kent (not his real name). Turns out we’re the perfect brand of dork for one another. Decide to be a grown-ass adult in a relationship with another grown-ass adult. Write a solo piece about Clark Kent that Clark Kent never sees. Which sounds creepy. Brand storytelling continues, but so does my on-stage storytelling. Lost my PeterCat. Which sucked.
Still happy. Still in love. Still performing. Doing more Snoopy dances. Seriously have you seen me Snoopy dance?
Traded “fuck this” for “fuck yeah.”
Writing, writing, writing, writing (gasp), writing, writing, writing. This happened. Sucked. But writing.